Are you considering Christmas and the holidays as you plan your retirement?
Christmas and holidays can be a difficult time in retirement if you haven’t put enough aside !
Christmas comes but once a year – but it does come around every year whether you’re prepared for it or not. For many people, it can be an incredibly difficult time of year – especially if you haven’t set aside enough for retirement or aren’t as prepared as you planned to be for your retirement years. Figuring out how much to set aside for retirement is a complicated question. You can’t predict your lifespan – but you can predict your lifestyle, and the holidays are an important part of that.
What Do Your Holidays Look Like?
Do you have a houseful of grandchildren every year at the holidays? Do you delight in spoiling your grandchildren as much as is humanly possible, buying extravagant gifts? If you don’t set aside enough for retirement, you may quickly find that you can no longer buy the gifts you’d like to buy – or in some cases, that buying gifts at all puts a substantial strain on your budget. As you start the retirement planning process, take a look at what you expect your holidays to look like during your retirement years. While you can’t put a price on love, you can estimate what celebrating the holidays the way you would like to will look like, including:
Holiday Events and Traditions
Do you have holiday events that you attend every year? From attending The Nutcracker or visiting your local Theatre Production, you may have rich family traditions that you look forward to sharing with your children and grandchildren every year. Unfortunately, tickets to all those events can add up fast – so make sure that you include a line item in your retirement budget for the events that are most important to you every year.
Most families don’t get smaller as the years go by. Even if you’re fairly sure your children are done having children, your grandchildren will be married and having children of their own before you know it – and as a doting grandparent, you want to be able to spoil them all rotten at holiday time. Take an honest look at what you spend on holiday gifts each year now, and keep in mind that you’re unlikely to want to drop your budget as the years go by.
Travelling for the Holidays
Even if you don’t travel now, you may dream of travelling over the holidays: exploring different corners of the world, having a fantastic holiday season with the person closest to you, or taking the entire family on a trip! If you don’t live close to your children and grandchildren, you may dream of the freedom retirement offers to travel and visit them over the holidays. There’s just one problem: all that travel costs money, and if you haven’t worked it into your budget, you may find yourself unable to go much of anywhere. Consider:
Are you planning to take a plane? Drive across the country? However you get to your destination, you’ll need to pay for the actual cost of your travel – and it can add up faster than you think.
Cost of Lodging
Sure, in a perfect world, you would stay with your kids when you travel to visit them during the holidays; but you don’t want to put them out of their beds, and not everyone has a spare room just waiting for you. If you’re planning holiday adventures with the family, you’ll need to be sure there are enough places for everyone to sleep comfortably.
Food and Entertainment Expenses
Eating is simply more expensive when you travel, whether you’re eating out or stocking the kitchen in an apartment or rental home. Not only that, you didn’t travel all that way to simply sit in your room over the holidays – so make sure you include both food and entertainment in your budget planning.
Retirement planning is a highly individual process – and it’s important to include the holidays in your retirement plans! Whether you want to be able to spoil the grandchildren, travel, or, better yet, travel with the grandchildren, contact Claire (firstname.lastname@example.org) today to learn more about how we can help you plan to make the most of those retirement years.
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