Nightmare, Burden, Normal, or Dream: What Kind of Retirement Do You Want?

Nightmare, Burden, Normal, or Dream: What Kind of Retirement Do You Want?

Chris Hogan is America’s voice on retirement. He helps spread Dave Ramsey’s message of financial hope to audiences everywhere. An engaging and humorous speaker, Chris is an expert on subjects like mortgages, healthcare and investing. He knows how money works, and he has a passion for helping families prepare for retirement. Chris has become a sought-after speaker who loves to challenge, empower and inspire audiences. His new book, Retire Inspired: It’s Not an Age; It’s a Financial Number hits shelves in January. Here is an excerpt from Chapter 2 of his upcoming book. Retirement is a lot like a multiple-choice test. The question you have to answer is, “What kind of retirement do I want to have?” You have four options. Assuming you still have time to work and to save between now and retirement, you can only pick one. Which would you choose? Here they are: Option 1: The Nightmare Retirement The Nightmare Retirement option sounds ominous and scary—because it is ominous and scary. People in this scenario have no money saved and no options for income. They may be physically incapable of working, have no relatives to care for them, and have to depend entirely on Social Security and other government programs. This option means you will face the realities of poverty from housing to health care and even basic needs. Option 2: The Burden Retirement Like The Nightmare Retirement, the Burden option leaves you with no savings. You’re unable to work, and you can’t make it on your own. However, things are little easier here because others—probably your adult children—can help support you. People with this...
40-Something? How to Make the Most of Your Retirement Savings

40-Something? How to Make the Most of Your Retirement Savings

Stroll down the birthday card aisle, and you’d think life ends at 40. But the truth is, you’re on the verge of a major upswing. According to the Census Bureau, household income peaks between the ages of 45 and 54. So does that mean you can finally buy that boat you’ve always wanted? Well, that’s one way to look at it. But we have a better idea: Why not use it to build a bigger future? The Retirement Income Gap Many Americans head into their high-earning years with a ho-hum approach to retirement saving. A recent Vanguard report shows that voluntary 401(k) participants between 35 and 44 years of age only invest 6.3% of their income on average. The average deferral rate grows to just 8.7% in the 55–64 age range. That’s far below the 15% that Dave Ramsey recommends you invest for retirement—and it’s having a real effect on household income. Census data shows that household income loses half its heft by the time most Americans retire at 65. That kind of pay cut makes it hard to afford the same lifestyle you enjoy today—much less live out your retirement dreams. But that’s not all. Social Security makes up more than half of household income for the 65 and older crowd, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO). That’s a scary thought considering the questionable future of Social Security. It’s time to change that equation. Your income is your most powerful wealth-building tool. You have the chance to move your future in a whole new direction. Don’t let your most profitable years pass by without taking full advantage of the opportunity to build...