Writing Out Your Retirement Goals

Before you begin looking for a financial advisor to advise you on retirement investments, it helps to write out a list of retirement goals. The writing exercise forces you to think both concretely and abstractly about what kind of budget you will live on during your retirement. As an example of how this exercise can help you, this article provides a discussion of 3 thought-provoking questions for future retirees.

1. How much monthly income do you need to live on during retirement? This is a big question. You can start by thinking about the age you want to retire and how long you think you might live. For example, if you retire at 62 and live until 92, you have 30 years for which to save. If you retire at 70 and plan to live until your early eighties, you might only have 10 to 15 years for which to plan. You cannot predict the age you will die, but you can choose a ballpark number of years and calculate the necessary investments accordingly. Other considerations are how much you will need for living expenses. For example, you should know if your current mortgage will be paid off prior to retirement.

2. Will you be financing college education expenses in your retirement? This is a huge question because it depends on how old your children are. Some people also want to fund the college education of their grandchildren. To make this dream a reality, you have to carefully estimate how much you could pay for each child or grandchild and when you would need that money available in the future based upon their chronological ages.

3. What about medical expenses? Some adults approach retirement with prior knowledge about recurring medical expenses such as high blood pressure medication, diabetic supplies, and chiropractic care. When you plan for retirement, you need to include monthly income for prescription medications, doctor visits, and other recurring medical expenses. Many seniors have to work part-time during their retirement just to afford their medications because they did not anticipate the rising cost of Healthcare in the 21st century.

As you continue to brainstorm and write down your retirement goals, you have the option to revise your list. You can also return to a financial planner again and again to realign your investments with your financial goals. Retiring in a lifestyle you have always dreamed about can become your reality. You have to plan and save early and resist the urge to cash in investments before you retire.

For over 20 years Pamela has been helping women improve their personal and financial wealth through solid financial life planning. Pamela’s education and training enable her to help clients successfully navigate through the myriad of financial decisions they face during their lives. She focuses on helping her clients meet their financial needs and help them work to achieve financial security and greater retirement readiness.

Pamela has become a strong voice in the area of personal finance for women. Her knowledge in this area has made her a sought-after speaker. She has been quoted in articles in various financial publications.

Throughout her financial services career, she has acquired several client service and financial planning awards. She has membership in the Million Dollar Roundtable (MDRT). Membership in MDRT is a highly recognized mark of excellence and limited to only the most successful in the financial services profession. This places Pamela among the top professionals in the global life insurance and financial services industry. Pamela was featured in the Women in Wealth section of Fortune Magazine November 2020 issue as a top Wealth Manager in the Washington DC metro area.

She successfully completed the demanding requirements to receive a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor certification through the College of Financial Planning. Pamela also holds a Behavioral Financial Advisor designation, awarded to advisors who have undergone training to learn to help clients make financial decisions using a rational, values-based approach. Behavioral Financial Advisor’s integrate techniques founded in traditional finance, psychology and neuroscience to positively influence clients’ spending and saving behavior in the presence of challenging emotions.

Pamela is married, lives in Chantilly, VA and has three children. She devotes her free time to her family, her church, enjoys reading and loves to sing.

Securities offered through Securities America, Inc., a Registered Broker/Dealer, Member FINRA (SIPC). Advisory services offered through Securities America Advisors, Inc., a SEC Registered Investment Advisory Firm, Pamela Sams, Investment Advisor Representative.