• September 14, 2017
  • Posted by GE Credit Union

How to Increase Your Savings After Retirement

Retirement is often seen as a financial "finish line" of sorts, but in many ways, it is actually the beginning of a new phase of life. As any retiree will tell you, post-retirement life requires just as much financial discipline as the decades that preceded it, but once you're no longer actively working, how can you make sure the funds you've accumulated will go the distance? Below are some handy tips to help you maximize your savings after retirement.

1. Decrease your housing expenses

While it is extremely common for retirees to want to continue living in their current home after retiring, it might make sense to consider downsizing to a smaller home to decrease your housing expenses. Not only will this save you a substantial amount of money on your monthly mortgage payment (if your home is not yet paid off), but it can also decrease the amount of money you spend every month on utilities and upkeep. The savings realized from making this transition can boost your monthly bottom line.

2. Consolidate your retirement accounts

Perhaps you worked for a number of different companies during your career, each of which had a different retirement plan (and account). For the sake of cutting your account fees and expenses (as well as simplifying the recordkeeping aspect of your finances), it might be worth it to consider consolidating your retirement savings into only one or two accounts.

One of the most popular ways to accomplish this is to enroll in a rollover IRA, which will allow you to aggregate all of your assets under one umbrella. Just be sure to compare fees and expenses between retirement plans to see which one offers the most cost advantages.

Consolidating accounts can also help in terms of meeting Required Minimum Distributions, i.e., the minimum amount of funds that must be withdrawn from your retirement account(s) each year. Maintaining fewer accounts will simplify the process of calculating these minimum distributions, which will help you avoid potentially hefty penalties and allow you to keep more money in your pocket.

3. Reduce extra expenses

One of the great things retirement affords is more time for you to reflect on what's really important. When you take an inventory of the things you own, you might discover there are several items you no longer really need, but are costing you money every month just to keep them. It might be a second car, a fishing boat, or some other possession that requires a regular cash outlay for maintenance and upkeep. Consider selling these types of large items, and possibly hold a garage sale to turn some of your other unwanted items into cash, which you can then invest into your retirement fund.

4. Explore ways your money can make money for you

Look into the different ways you can leverage your savings to produce regular income for you. For example, General Electric Credit Union offers a Thrive Money Market Account, which allows you to earn tiered dividends based on your balance. By simply placing a portion of your retirement funds in this type of account, your money can earn money for you, enabling you to maximize those retirement dollars.

Retirement is an exciting new chapter of your life, and while your daily activities may change, the need for solid money management will still remain a top priority. Use the tips outlined above to help you maximize your savings after retirement, so you can enjoy everything your golden years have to offer.

If you have questions, the CFS Registered Representatives at General Electric Credit Union are happy to help.

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