It’s nearly impossible to determine exactly how much you’ll need to have saved to comfortably live out your retirement years. Taking into account your current budgeting concerns can give you a rough estimate but when surprise expenses pop up they can easily derail your plans. Take a look at these tips that more retirees wish they had taken to help with surprise expenses.
It’s tricky to pinpoint exactly how much you need because you don’t know how many emergencies will arise in retirement or how much they’ll cost. Saving six to 12 months of your retirement living expenses is a good starting point, but some people may feel more secure saving a couple years of living expenses for emergencies. It’s up to you to decide what you’re comfortable with.
You may also wish to purchase supplemental insurance coverage to cover what Medicare doesn’t. This could mean buying a Medicare supplement plan or a Medicare Advantage plan, also known as Medicare Part C plan. Medicare Advantage plans cover everything original Medicare covers, as well as some things it doesn’t. You could also consider vision and dental discount plans, which are not insurance but lower your out-of-pocket costs when you visit your dentist or eye doctor.
You should have appropriate auto and home or renters insurance as well. Life insurance or long-term care insurance is also worth considering if you believe there’s a chance you could one day require long-term care. This can exhaust even the largest emergency funds, so a long-term care policy or a life insurance policy with a long-term care rider can help you get the care you need without depleting your savings too quickly.
Homeowners could also consider tapping into their home equity, but how much this will net you depends on the value of your home and how much equity you have in it. You could use this strategy in combination with the others above if you find you need more money than you can borrow, or you’d rather borrow as little as possible.
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