About LoveBeingRetired

Dave Bernard is a California born and raised author and blogger with an extensive 30 year career in Silicon Valley. He has written more than 300 blogs for US News & World On Retirement and his personal blog Retirement – Only the Beginning. He has authored three books: "Are you just existing and calling it a life?"; "I want to retire! Essential Considerations for the Retiree to Be"; and " Navigating the Retirement Jungle". Dave was also a contributing writer for the books 65 Things to do when you Retire (“Positive Aging – Old is the New Young”) as well as 65 Things to do when you Retire – TRAVEL (“Travel to Discover your Family Heritage”). He lives in sunny California with his wife, his Boston Terrier "Frank" and a passion for the San Jose Sharks.

5 Tips for a Healthy & Happy Retirement

Written by Carol Trehearn

Retiring should be an exciting milestone in your life when you get to relax and enjoy the rewards of your hard work. You can also use your retirement to spend more time with your loved ones, pursue your passions, and learn new skills. Retirement should be a happy time in your life, but many older people feel lost during this stage. No longer working can have a big emotional impact and may leave you feeling bored or lonely. Fortunately, there are dozens of steps you can take to ensure that you feel confident and prepared for this exciting new chapter in your life. With that in mind, here are five tips for a healthy and happy retirement.

1. Make your health a priority

In a recent survey, a massive 80% of retirees chose health as the most important factor for a happy retirement. This means that health ranked higher than all other sources of retirement happiness, including financial security, social connections, and having a sense of purpose. Remaining in good health becomes even more important as you get older, as you will be more at risk of chronic health conditions. Maintaining good health is fundamental to a happy retirement, so your retirement plan should include sections on how to stay physically and mentally healthy. You can remain in good physical health in retirement by eating a balanced diet, drinking enough water, and getting the recommended amount of exercise. You can also improve your mental health by maintaining an active social life, challenging yourself, and gaining a sense of purpose and meaning. Make your health a priority in retirement and focus on ways to improve your physical, mental, and emotional health.

2. Gain a new sense of purpose

When you stop working for the first time, it is normal to feel a bit lost and unsure of what to do with all of your free time. Losing a sense of purpose can lead to feelings of depression in older adults. With that in mind, you must gain a new sense of purpose and meaning in your life after you retire. Think about what makes you want to get out of bed each morning and try to make each day meaningful. For instance, you could help take care of your grandchildren or volunteer for a local charity. Experts at seniormatter.com, suggest that retirees can find a sense of purpose by doing daily activities such as walking, yoga, or meditation. Find something that gives you a sense of purpose and invest in the things that will bring your happiness and joy in your retirement.

3. Create a productive routine

One of the benefits of retiring is that you will have greater freedom over your schedule and routine. You will no longer have to get up early each morning and travel to the office to start work at 9 am. Many retirees enjoy this flexibility, although not having a work routine can lead to boredom and restlessness. For that reason, it is a good idea to get into a productive routine and plan things like when you will get up in the mornings when you will eat meals, when you will do activities, and so on. Following a routine will give your life structure and help you become more productive with your time. You can find lots of articles offering advice on how to structure your day in retirement.

4. Plan for financial security

After health, financial security is the most important ingredient for a happy retirement. Failing to plan for your financial future can cause huge amounts of stress when you reach the age of retirement. Make sure that you think carefully about how much money you will need to ensure a comfortable retirement. This should include your basic living expenses such as accommodation and food, along with extra money to fund the lifestyle that you want. Financial experts recommend that you should save around 15% of your salary towards your retirement. However, this goal does also include contributions from your employer. It is always advisable to start planning your finances early to ensure that you have a secure and comfortable retirement. You should also factor future care costs into your financial retirement plan.

5. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

It is natural for seniors to want to be independent in their retirement, but you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help if and when you need it. The majority of seniors begin to struggle with their daily routines as they get older. You might find it difficult to keep on top of your household chores or struggle to get out and run errands, for example. Luckily, there is a wide selection of support available to assist seniors and ensure that they have a safe and fulfilling retirement. If you are finding your daily activities more difficult, then ask a family member or friend if they can help out. Or you could hire a professional career to visit you at home and provide support when you need it. Another great option for retirees is to consider senior living options. According to https://frontiermgmt.com, a senior living community can offer both independent and assisted living, along with recreational activities and social events. Moving into a senior living facility will give you peace of mind knowing that you will be living in a secure and safe environment throughout your retirement.

Conclusion

Retirement gives you the flexibility and freedom to do what you want with your time and maximize the enjoyment that you get out of life. That said, the transition from work to retirement can be difficult, and many people struggle to find a sense of purpose and meaning when they stop working. You should pay close attention to your health and wellbeing and plan your retirement early to ensure that you are prepared for the next chapter in your life. Try some of the above suggestions to enjoy a healthy and happy retirement and get the most out of your golden years.

5 Simple Tips to Reduce Your Taxes and Stress in Retirement

Written by Valentina Wilson

A tax bite can eat up a big chunk of your retirement savings. If you are retired and live on a fixed income, you might want to hold on to your savings as much as you can. However, Uncle Sam is not eager to understand your sentiment. So, if you want to save money on your tax, then you have to apply some simple tips with care.

Tips to Reduce Your Tax Bill for Retirement

You might have painstakingly saved money in your various retirement savings plans throughout your life. But that’s not enough to save you from a big tax bite. You have to apply some smart tax planning tips to save your hard-earned dollars in retirement. Here are a few of them.

1. Relocate to a state where you can save money on tax

If you have never thought about relocating to another state, now is the best time to do it. There is a big reason behind that.

Apart from the federal government, you have to pay tax to the state government as well. Now, if you do not wish to pay tax to the state government, then you can move to a state that does not charge any tax at all.

Browse through the web world and find out the states that do not charge income taxes. South Dakota, Texas, Alaska, Nevada, and Florida are the few tax-free states. If you relocate to these states, then you can reduce your tax bill significantly.

Caution: Look at various factors other than the state tax rules. For example, check out the climatic conditions of the state. Alaska may not have any state tax, but it is quite expensive. The cost of living is high. Plus, it has an Arctic climate with long cold winters. There is snow almost the whole year. Can you survive in this extreme climate? You have to think about your health as well. That is more precious than money.

Some states, like Tennessee and New Hampshire, do not charge income tax. However, they charge tax on dividend income and interest. So, calculate how much you have to pay on tax. The good news is both states are planning to eradicate these taxes soon. Hence do not strike out their names from your list.

Based on your overall retirement income, you have to pay federal tax on your Social Security Income. So, that is the first tax bill you have to pay. But states like Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Montana, New Mexico, Connecticut, West Virginia, Missouri, North Dakota, Rhode Island, and Vermont impose a tax on Social Security benefits as well. Hence, you may want to avoid moving to these states. See also: 10 Best Places to Retire in South Carolina

2. Reduce your expenses to stay in a low tax bracket

If you want to pay the minimum tax, then you have to get into the lower tax brackets. What does that mean? Well, it essentially implies that you have to lead a frugal life and keep your expenses low every month.

How can a frugal life lead to a lower tax bracket? Well, when your expenses are at a minimum level, you will have to withdraw a small amount from your retirement savings accounts every year. This will help you stay in the lower tax bracket.

Leading a frugal life is not as difficult as it may seem after retirement. Health care expenses are costly. But there are various sectors where you can eventually save money. For example, you do not have to go to work now. So you can save money on transportation costs. Again, you can move to a smaller apartment and save money on the maintenance cost.

Develop a budget and find out the areas where you can save money. Change your spending habits so that you can live comfortably without making reckless expenses.

3. Explore tax-free investment options like municipal bonds:

Smart investments help to generate a stable income for retirees. Bonds are a lucrative investment option. They are not as volatile as stocks. So, the chances of incurring a loss are low. They pay you interest, which can be a source of additional income after retirement. But there is one thing that you need to keep in mind. You have to pay tax on the interest income. And if you do not want to pay tax, then you have to invest in municipal bonds.

The best part of municipal bonds is that you do not have to pay Federal taxes. Moreover, if you have bonds issued by your home state, then you can enjoy the entire interest income. There is no need to pay state and local taxes. You can use the money to build your emergency fund and cover your unforeseen expenses. Read also: How to get rich in retirement

4. Take Social Security benefits as late as possible:

Many people take social security benefits immediately after retirement. It is a wrong financial move if they have retirement income from various other sources. For example, real estate, pension, and annuity. An easy tip to lower your tax bill in retirement is to delay your filing for social security benefits. There is a big reason behind it. First, almost 85% of the social security benefit is taxable. So, the longer you delay taking your social security benefits, the more you can save on your tax. Plus, your benefit amount will increase by 8% every year. Hence, you are getting double the financial benefits.

5. Save money on Roth IRA retirement savings plans:

“I love the Roth IRA. Tax-free income in retirement is truly a great deal”. – Suze Orman

There are various types of retirement savings plans. Now you have to choose the one that suits you the best. If you want to avoid paying tax in retirement, then a smart tip is to opt for the Roth 401(k) or Roth IRA. The best part of the Roth IRA plan is that you do not have to pay tax at the time of withdrawing money after retirement. As you can understand, you have to apply this tip at the time of choosing your retirement savings plans. So, analyze the pros and cons of the different retirement savings plans and make a prudent decision.

If you have opted for the 401 k retirement savings plan before retirement, then there is also no need to panic. You can convert your 401(k) retirement plan to an IRA in your gap years (from your retirement age to 70½ years). So you can still get a chance to lower your tax bill.

Final notes

Nobody loves to pay tax. But it is unavoidable. While it is impossible to avoid paying tax altogether, seniors can at least reduce their tax bill and save money with the tips discussed in this article. Still, if you have any more doubts, you can always consult someone who has adequate knowledge on how to get retirement benefits for divorced spouses, how to lower the tax bill on retirement, and how to choose the retirement savings plan.

Author Bio: Valentina Wilson is a writer. She loves to analyze personal financial matters and help others manage their finances in a better way. Traveling is also her passion. She follows more animals on Instagram than humans and her greatest achievement is her blog. She believes that transparency and conversations about money are essential in gaining control of finances.. To connect with her, go to her LinkedIn or visit her blog bestdebtconsolidation.org

Retirement Ages Around The World

Written by Carol Trehearn

As we get older, we start to think about retirement. Not just when we will retire, but how we will, what we will do with ourselves and where we will end up. Around the world, retirement ages are very different, however. Some of us may have to stay working a lot longer before we can get to take some much-deserved time off.

Looking after yourself once you’re retired

While ages may vary across countries in terms of retiring age, we all still have the same concerns when it comes to where we’re going to live and thrive. For some, with lower retirement ages, it’s possible to continue living in our own homes, enjoying our new-found free time and going on holidays, taking up new hobbies or hanging out with friends.

Countries with older retirement ages may not be so lucky. by the time you’re able to retire, you may not want to be fending for yourself or living alone. Places like Brandywine Senior Living make retirement a much more pleasurable option as it provides full care to retirees. With options like this available, retiring can be a hugely enjoyable, and social life experience!

Many actively retired people opt to move home to a different region or even a different country once they have retired. In America, Florida is often seen as the retirement state. Many people move here from other states as retirement income is not subject to taxation. There is no state income tax here either, meaning that retirees who want to take on a part time job to keep them occupied take home more of their money too.

For Brits, Spain is viewed as an excellent place to retire to. Living costs are cheaper, meaning that British retirees find that their money will go further. There is a good healthcare system in place and the UK is only two hours away by plane, which makes visiting friends and family a lot easier. The weather is also a contributing factor, with Spain enjoying a much warmer climate than the UK.

Retirement across the world

When it comes to the differing ages for retirement around the world, a lot of it is actually linked to life expectancy. For instance, with an increased life expectancy in a particular country, by default, the retirement age will also rise, meaning you’re going to have to work that little bit longer until you hit it. Across Europe, retirement is generally 65 years.

Europe

Traditionally, state retirement has been seen as a ‘golden goodbye.’ In the UK, retirement for men was set at 65 in the late 1940s as men lived until the age of 68 on average. This meant that they could enjoy their retirement for three years before they died. However, with people increasingly living longer, the state retirement age has been increasing across Europe to keep in line with this to some extent and to save the governments money.

France, Spain, and Germany are all about to raise their retirement age up to 65-67 with the UK already beating out all of them with an average retirement age of 68. But if you want to see the oldest retirement can go, take a look at Norway that has a retirement age of up to 75 for men!

Asia

Some of the youngest retirement ages can be seen in the Asian continent. For example, in Bangladesh, the retirement age is 59 and in Sri Lanka, people retire at the age of 55.

What about the US?

Currently, the United States is one of the countries that does not split the genders when it comes to retirement. Despite being a rather large country, the retirement age is the same across all states, sitting at 66 years. Unlike some of the other countries that are seeing big jumps, it’s projected the US retirement age will rise to just 67.

Gender dependent retirement age

It’s also interesting to note that the retirement age will also differ depending on gender. For years, women retired at a much younger age than men. However, with the increasing rise in the retirement age, likely, women will soon be retiring at the same age as men. Yet, currently, most countries have a three to five-year age difference in retirement.

For example, Austria’s women can retire at a mere 60 years old, whereas their men have to stick it out until 65! Interestingly, some countries have flipped this around. Australia, for instance, has a retirement age of 58 for men, but 66 for women! However, most countries are planning on phasing this difference out over the years, offering equal retirement across the board.

In the past, a woman’s retirement age was not seen in the same way as a man’s because historically they were less likely to work and more likely to retire when their husbands did. As traditionally women married men who were a few years older than them, this meant that giving them a lower retirement age made sense from this perspective. However, biologically, women have always lived a few years longer than men, which meant that they received a pension for longer than men. From this perspective, it was more expensive for governments to administer.

In the modern age, governments are reviewing retirement ages in line with gender equality rather than longevity or social factors.

Chosen retirement age

It is not compulsory in most countries to adhere to state retirement age. People will receive a state pension at a government set age, but many are choosing their own ways of funding retirements through pensions or investments. This means that they are more able to make their own decisions about what age they retire at, because they are not as dependent on receiving a state income and they can retire early if they want to. It is also common for people to carry on working in retirement. Some people do this as they do not feel physically ready to retire, whereas others want the additional financial security that working in retirement can offer them.