Retirement – A Pause Before Your Next Adventure

Baby boomers are rewriting the rules of retirement. Few envision living a second act mirroring that of their parents. While mom and dad were satisfied with more time on the links and taking life easy, this generation has something different in mind. They will always make time to relax but that is not the main ingredient in their recipe for a fulfilling retirement.

Most of us first entering retirement initially focus on decompressing. After a stressful often times all-consuming career it is important to take a break. No one can run at 110 percent all the time. Our bodies and minds do better when given time to recharge.

Catch your breath. Take time to reflect upon a career spanning decades. It’s likely you have identified certain things you never want to do again. You now know better what motivates you, what gets you exited and ready to rumble. You may have discovered interests you never knew we had, perhaps a hidden passion or two waiting to be explored. Each career is a continuing education, a journey that comes to an official end with retirement. Or does it?

After reclaiming a certain life balance more and more boomers are looking ahead. What do I want to do next? Baby boomers are taking time to be introspective, to examine the life they have lived and imagine what could be. Retirement affords an opportunity to reset, to research and then embark on any of a myriad of possible new adventures. For the able bodied and mentally active retirement is far from the final destination.

Some open their new chapter with a part time job or second career doing what they genuinely care about. If money is not the main issue a new gig can be something they love perhaps similar to my working part time at a wine tasting room. The more adventurous may go so far as to start their own business utilizing skills learned during their career or even something all-together unrelated.

Not all will answer the “what do I do next” with a job. The beauty of this time in our lives is when it comes to how we choose to channel our energies we do not have to follow any script. We can be creative. We can paint outside the lines. We can satisfy our curiosity and try multiple things. We can do what we want with our time. Once the job you have to do is behind you are free to explore or create the “job” you want to do.

When I first retired (unplanned as it was) I was a bit nervous. Without the job, I was not sure what meaningful activities I would engage in. After the initial shock wore off I began to consider my options. I looked into those areas that had interested me in days gone by. Eventually I figured out a routine that occupied the hours and left me feeling somewhat satisfied at the end of the day. But something was missing – there had to be more.

Finding a part time job doing something I enjoy was the perfect solution. Not too many hours, no stress, working with people I like, learning about something I have always been interested in and engaging with happy folk typically vacationing or just celebrating life. I look forward to my next shift – a feeling long missing from those years spent navigating my career.

Retirement is only the beginning. Rather than view it as the end of the show it might be better seen as an encore. There will never be a more perfect time to uncover your particular interest/passion/dream and go for it. There is so much more to do and to be and retirement offers the freedom to explore. Rather than call it quits baby boomers are making their second act a finale worthy of applause.

LoveBeingRetired.com

Get Your Property to Do More for Your Retirement

Written by Sally Perkins

The economic crisis of ten years ago put a lot of things in perspective. One of the ways it changed retirement is by putting property assets on the same level as stocks and bonds because investors regard property as more stable. You can get properties to work harder for you in your retirement but be prepared, 43% of spending for those aged 75 years or older is on annual home-related expenses.

It can be difficult, but there is a lot of potential for return on investment if you manage your property intelligently. Whether you are a real estate mogul with several rental properties or just working with your home, there is more you can do to bolster your retirement funds.

Refinancing

For those with mortgages, it can be worth looking at refinancing to get a better interest rate. After so many years in the work force, those retiring or soon to retire often have much better credit scores than those they had when first mortgaging their homes.

Once your payments are down, you can use the savings to help pay off the principle. The sooner you can pay off the mortgage the sooner you can put the property to work increasing your income. To find out just how much money you can save try using a mortgage calculator.

Downsizing

Leaving a home that you have lived in for years can be tough, but scaling back to a smaller home has some serious advantages financial and otherwise. As we retire, our needs change and the homes we live in are no different. Maybe the kids have moved out, you don’t use the pool much anymore or your knees just don’t appreciate those stairs.

Not only can downsizing your home better meet your needs, but you’ll save a lot of money on maintenance and utility costs not to mention a reduction in property taxes. You can use the money that you save to reinvest and increase your income or just use it to prepare your new home for your new way of life.

Take Action Early

Many mortgages have strict lending requirements about work. Typical requirements include having to show that you have been employed for the last two years. You can explain away some of these requirements or find mortgages that aren’t so strict but those might be more expensive options. The easiest way to avoid that headache is to take action before you stop work if you have the opportunity.

Make Your Retirement Investments Help Each Other

Mortgage companies usually require higher down payments and interest rates for properties that the owner does not plan to occupy. Down payments can reach 30 percent of the price or more. Perhaps you don’t have the funds for a down payment of that size but you can use your IRA funds to help. Since the money in a Roth IRA has already been taxed, if you use it to buy property all of the equities and earning from it can grow tax-free.

Do the Homework

With all the extra time afforded by retirement, you can do valuable additional research. Finding out potential costs like insurance, mortgage fees, taxes and possible maintenance costs will help you make informed decisions about the viability of individual properties. As in business, income properties are about balancing expenses and revenue.

Research can also help you decide on an area or property in which to invest. Learn the local occupancy and price trends. Area real estate agents, publications and even small local banks are all excellent sources of information. You might even find that getting loans from local banks is a better route than the big banks because the smaller banks have more knowledge and interest in their area.

Gifting Equity

Gifting property equity to your children, their spouses or grandkids can be an option that helps you avoid some tax situations. It is possible to move real estate equity to your kids year by year with no tax liability. There are annual limits but with enough management and recipients you can transfer quite a bit every year and it adds up. It is best to refer to a tax professional to be certain what will work best in your situation.

Diversify

While it is true that property investment can add to your retirement, it shouldn’t be the only thing working for you. Diversification of your funds into 401(k)s, IRAs and the like is still sound advice even in these uncertain economic times. Trust in real estate is high but diversification can prevent you from losing all of your income should the market fall in a particular sector.

Maximize Your Property’s Output

Retirement is a time to relax and enjoy life, but if you want to keep your income high to support your new lifestyle, a little bit of work is required. Property investment, in particular, requires some doing. Using a bit of time, effort and the advantages of being retired you can put your property to work funding your retirement.

Dealing With Home Emergencies After Retirement

Written by Joshua Nelson

You’ve finally made it to retirement, and you’re ready to revel in your “golden years”. You have some plans on how to spend your time and manage your retirement income, but a lot of question marks still remain.

It won’t be as easy to take care of DIY home improvement projects. But when emergency-level projects are thrust upon you, you can’t afford to delay attending to them. Sure, you’d rather spend your time sitting by the seashore, fishing and enjoying the weather in some vacation paradise.

But realistically, you’re aware that accidents, emergencies, and urgent home repairs are sure to crop up from time to time.

Here are seven of the most common types of home emergencies you need to be prepared to deal with effectively and efficiently as you enter retirement:

  1. Plumbing Emergencies

A home emergency that is potentially the most devastating and difficult to deal with has to do with plumbing. A badly clogged toilet, drain, or pipe that drain decloggers and plungers will not cure, a broken or burst hot water heater/system, or an out-of-sight leak from a plumbing pipe that is softening your drywall and flooding your floor are only a few of the possible scenarios.

Water damage, backed up sewage and wastewater, the spread of dangerous pathogens, and the creation of a slip-and-fall hazard are some of the dangers plumbing “gone wrong” can bring in its wake.

If you don’t possess the tools and know-how for rapid plumbing repairs, or if you don’t want to be bothered with it now that you’re retired, be sure to keep the number of a 24/7 emergency plumber, such as PlumbingFix, always handy.

  1. Outbreaks Of Mold And Mildew

Sometimes in the wake of a flood or simply due to too much moisture or condensation accumulated in certain areas of your home, you may suddenly spot mold and mildew growth.

Mold shouldn’t be taken lightly. It not only makes your walls, ceilings, baseboards, or other affected area look unappealing, it is a genuine health hazard. Black mold especially can cause serious lung infections, exacerbate asthma, irritate allergies, and violent coughing episodes.

Try cleaning away mold or mildew yourself first, using bleach water, a stiff-bristled brush, gloves, and a protective mask. But if the mold is too extensive, too hard to reach (in an attic, cellar, or hard-to-access crevice), or continually reoccurs, it’s time to call in the professionals. Keep an emergency number for a reputable mold removal and remediation company, like RestorationElite, in your personal contacts book.

  1. Power Brownouts

Losing power for extended periods of time is potentially dangerous for anyone, but it is especially hard on children and on the elderly. You don’t want to needlessly risk your own safety and that of family by being taken by surprise by a brownout.

First of all, have a well thought out plan of action. Contact family and friends to let them know you’re safe. Check on the neighbors. Know where the nearest emergency shelter is located. But also be sure to keep such items as these ready at hand:

  • A gas-powered generator. Choose a model that has wheels and is lightweight and easy to move. And don’t forget to stay stocked up on fuel.
  • Electric indoor-grade space heaters, fans, and cooking equipment to run off your generator.
  • A battery-powered emergency radio, with an extra set of unused batteries.
  • Non-perishable food products and bottled water.
  • Warm clothes and blankets.
  • A back-up supply of basic medicines, any necessary prescription meds, and a first aid kit.
  • Candles and flashlights (with extra batteries).
  • Cash you can live on temporarily. ATMs and in-store card scanners may all be temporarily down.
  • Books, board games, or anything non-electronic that will make the time pass.
  1. Broken HVAC System

Especially in extreme climates and particularly for the elderly, having a heating or air conditioning system fail can be a serious or even life-threatening event (in conjunction with a power outage or natural disaster.)

Signs your HVAC unit may need a repair or need to be replaced include: it runs but with little production, it fails to consistently turn on, unusual sounds are emanating from the device, or the unit is leaking water. The last sign specifically calls for professional intervention.

  1. Gas Leaks

An unnoticed gas leak is an extreme danger. Fires, explosions, or gas poisoning are all possibilities, depending on the type of gas, quantity of gas, and what the gas comes into contact with.

If you even suspect you smell gas, move quickly to shut off your gas supply at the meter, open up doors/windows to create ventilation, and shut down all electrical devices. Next, call a licensed gas fitter to inspect your home, detect and eliminate any gas leaks.

  1. Locked Out

While it might be surprising, around a third of U.S. adults have been locked out of their home at one point or another.It often happens when taking out the garbage or coming home from a night out on the town. About one in ten have been locked out while in their pajamas (or worse)!

Solutions include hiding a spare key in a potted plant, under a rock, or some other unsuspected location, giving your neighbor a spare key (if you trust him/her enough), and investing in a “smart lock” and always taking your smart phone with you.

  1. Damaged Roof

Roof repairs are easily among the most urgent of all home repairwork. Ice dams in the winter and clogged up gutters in the fall can push water up your roof and down through any leakage points.

If you spot even a small leak, attend to it quickly or call in a roofing contractor to help. An annual roof inspection with minor repairs will do much to prevent leaks and warn you when a new roof put on will have to be installed.

We’re aware that retirement translates to not having to worry so much anymore. However, planning out strategies to dealing with these emergencies will provide you with the much needed peace of mind.

Joshua Nelson is a super-connector with ManageBacklinks.io who helps businesses with building their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. Joshua frequently writes about the latest advancements in the SaaS world and digital marketing.