5 Things to Do Every Decade for Financial Success

Allison Kade

5 Things to Do in Your 50s …

1. Chart Your Course

As you look back on your illustrious career, also look back on any retirement plans you may have had at former jobs. When you’re in your 50s, retirement should become something of a single-minded obsession. Consider consolidating your various 401(k)s and retirement plans to get a clear picture of how much you’ve built up.

2. Assess Your Retirement Income

Do you plan to keep working through retirement or will you have other sources of income, such as investments? Start by identifying these sources during retirement, and then take an honest look at some of the risks you could face. Do you understand how inflation will impact your retirement savings? Have you accounted for potential health care costs that could crop up in your later years?

3. Pay Off Your Mortgage

Depending on your other financial obligations in this decade of your life, see if you can free up additional funds to help kick your mortgage sooner rather than later, saving on the extra interest payments and easing your mind.

4. Invest in Your Home

Whether you want to increase your home’s value on the market or simply enjoy where you live, take the time, effort and, yes, maybe even the money to make those improvements and upgrades you’ve always wanted.

5. Prepare Your Asset Allocation for Retirement

You’re still a while away from retiring, but investing wisely is all about time horizons. If you’re thinking of taking your retirement funds out within the next 10 to 20 years, you need to start tweaking your asset allocation accordingly. In other words, it’s smart to invest in aggressive, risky things when you’re younger, but when retirement is within sight, you’ll want to segue to more conservative choices.

  • christine

    This article is a bit misleading in that you assume that life is a straight trajectory…

    • Kcheme

      I can’t agree more!  My husband is still in college at 32, so those loans will not be paid off in our 30s.  I had a kid when I was 18 and opened up a college savings plan when she was 2 and I was 20.  Good thing I didn’t wait till I was in my 40s to get my kid a 529, she’ll be done with college by then!!  Good advice, but kick the assumptions about age and position in life.

      • Vonettadevo

        Totally agree. Of course people need to plan ahead and be smart but they don’t need to stress out about reaching these milestones at a different time frame. While it would be ideal if everyone’s life worked out so perfectly, that doesn’t happen for many people.