Anyone thinking about retirement in the next few years needs to plan for healthy and unhealthy retirement years ahead of them. You may be healthy now, plan to golf every day or pursue some other activity that you have always wanted to do. If you are healthy now, there is a really good chance that you will be able to do just that. But there comes a time when our health changes and we need to change our lifestyle and also be prepared to pay for the kind of support we many require. Baby boomers are retiring in droves and many plan to lead healthy active lives for many years to come. However not planning for the unhealthy years may leave them in a situation that prevents them from enjoying a high quality of life. The transition to retirement is filled with many issues. For more information in this topic, click here.
What are some of the steps that baby boomers can take to plan for retirement years? When is the best time to put these steps into action and who should you talk to ?
The answer is to take the action immediately when you still can and are of sound mind. Involve your family in the decisions and make sure that they are informed of your intentions and desires. Typically this is done through what is called a living will. This is a document prepared by you and your lawyer that provides instructions to your caregivers while you are still alive regarding who should look after your finances and more importantly make decisions about your health care. A power or attorney or living will is a legal document and should be given to your family or at least the person you designate as the person who will look after you when you cannot.
You may also include specific instructions about health care, your financial situation and what is to be done with your home, car etc while you are incapacitated. Take into account the availability of the person you appoint. a Family member who is thousands of miles away vs. one that is living in the same town seems more practical. Do they have the right attitude and are they sufficiently mature to handle the decisions that are needed?
There is no sense in appointing someone who is of the same age or older than you are. Someone who is younger and has a higher probability of being available when needed is probably a better choice than your older brother or sister or an older attorney.
Finally baby boomers need to also plan financially for the time frame when they may have higher health related bills. Work with a financial adviser to ensure that you are positioned for both the healthy years as well as the unhealthy years.