The retirement funding disaster that is on our doorstep will be with us for a long time

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The human race is living longer as time goes on, but retirement age can vary quite a lot according to where you live. For example, in Australia it is around 65 or even up to 70, but in many European countries, 60 or under is the mean retirement age. Individual circumstances also play a big part in determining retirement age, such as health, redundancy or retrenchment.

One of the biggest fears amongst retirees is outliving their savings, and it is a very valid fear. Many countries have some sort of pension scheme, but this is often minimal, designed simply to aid with life’s necessities.

There are a few simple things you can start doing right now to ensure you have the means to live retirement to its fullest.

Make a Plan

The first thing to do is to get a handle on your current financial situation and seek out your superannuation, investment and savings figures. Once you have all of your data, you are in a better position to project forward to retirement age and work out any shortfalls. A financial planner or adviser may be useful in helping you understand what you will need – and by when.

It is also useful to know any relevant tax implications on superannuation benefits, as these vary according to jurisdiction.

From here, you can set yourself a retirement plan that will ensure you stay on the right track through your remaining career years.

Start New Savings Habits

It doesn’t matter how much you earn; it will not make any difference to your retirement if you spend it all.
An easy way to regularly save money is to set up recurring debits from your day-to-day account into a new fixed account specifically designed for savings. If willpower is a problem, put it into a term deposit or similar account that you are penalised significantly for accessing.

Another way to save for retirement automatically is to voluntarily top up your superannuation. Some workplaces can do this for you by organising additional contributions direct from your pay on your behalf, or you can do this yourself.

Increase Your Income

For most of us, our salary is our main source of income. However, with the cost of day-to-day living on the rise, saving can be difficult at times. Finding additional or a secondary source of income is a great way to boost your savings for later on.

For example, you can find another job or work extra hours to make more money. You could approach your boss and pitch a pay rise. Think outside the square and see what options you have.

Another way to increase income is through investing in the relatively new world of cryptocurrency. Like any form of investing, you need to do your homework and tread wisely, but the returns can be well worth the effort. There are several digital currencies to look at, such as Bitcoin,

Litecoin, and Ripple. It can change your fortune overnight like it changed James Gilbert’s, who became a billionaire within hours by investing in cryptos. Whichever way you go, always use a trusted broker service and be careful. Diversification can be a good trick to mitigate risk.

Other forms of investment can also yield great results long-term, such as real estate or stocks. Each option has its own pros and cons, so take the time to compare them and select the best options for your interests, budgets and projected timelines.

When to Start Saving for Retirement?

In a word – immediately. The sooner you start thinking about your retirement, the better off you will be when the day comes to hang up your work boots. Getting into the habit of saving a little money each month may take a little getting used to, but retirement will be knocking before you know it and you’ll be thankful you have enough to do all the things you dreamt about – travel, a new hobby, or spoiling the grandkids!

Time gives you the benefit of compounding interest, which effectively means your savings increase as each year passes without you needing to lift a finger.

So, take stock of your current finances and put steps into place now to ensure you end your working life with enough in the bank to live a full, happy and healthy retirement. There is no better time to start saving than right now.