The 11 Biggest Retirement Lies We Tell Ourselves
8. I need to get my kids through college first and then I can focus on my retirement.
Yes, college is a big expense, and you should definitely save for it. But if you don’t save the full amount for college, you can always fall back on financial aid. Grants, scholarships and student loans can help pay your child’s way. (Learn here how best to save for your child’s college education and learn to open a college savings account with this checklist.)
When it comes to your retirement, however, there are no loans. All you’ll have to live on is what you’ve saved. For that reason, saving for retirement should be your top financial priority–always. Any leftover money you have can go toward college savings. (Find out here how to prioritize retirement against your other financial goals.)
9. I am going to lose money so why invest it in a 401(k) or IRA?
Yes, the market is not reliable from year to year. But, historically, over long periods of time, it has returned about a 7% annual return on investments. You’re not going to get that with a savings account–and, in fact, you won’t even beat inflation if you stash your money in a savings account.
10. I’ll start saving when the market improves.
No one can predict the market. No one. So you cannot time your investments perfectly so that they only ever go up. But if you invest regularly over decades, your investments, like the general stock market has done historically, should experience more ups than downs. So, invest for the long haul, and don’t fret over minor dips now. If you do, you’ll be missing out on amassing tens of thousands of dollars later.
11. I plan to keep working even during retirement.
According to the Chase/LearnVest study, 17% of women believe they can do this (as do 14% of men). You may love your work, and it may be the kind of work you can do even when you’re less spry. But what if you can’t find work, or what if you have health problems that prevent you from working?
While you can hope for a best-case scenario, it isn’t wise to base your plan around one. Sock away some money now so you’re ready for whatever may come your way. Even if you’re healthy enough to work past the typical retirement age, you’ll probably want a vacation now and then!
No More Excuses
If you’re fully convinced to let go of all these retirement lies, take our Retiring in Style Bootcamp. In ten days, you’ll visualize your future retirement, learn what accounts you need, find out the total amount you need to save and more.