Many people head toward retirement as part of a couple. But that doesn’t mean that spouses are working together as a team.
Only one-third of couples have even discussed retirement planning, according to a study by consultants Hearts & Wallets. Asked how much money they think they will need for retirement, 47% of couples disagree, Fidelity recently found. And men and women often have different interests in later life, with far more men than women engaging in sports and outdoor activities, and far more women than men getting together with friends and family, according to TIAA research.
Getting on the same page about saving and planning for post-career life is critical for couples in their 50s, for whom retirement is suddenly not that far away. “Eighty percent of reaching your goal is defining what your goal is and having a plan for speed bumps that could derail you,”says Michael Brady, president of Generosity Wealth Management in Boulder.
Your fifties may provide an opportunity to turbocharge savings, as you’ve advanced in your careers and put the biggest money obligations to your children behind you. Or your finances may be pinched by new challenges, like a career setback or obligations to aging parents. If you are remarried, you may be recovering from the costs associated with your divorce. A lot is at stake.
Here are seven smart moves you can make at this stage of life that will help you transition comfortably to the next one.