Before we continue on in the discussion about protecting the assets, I would like to discuss how to accumulate them. As we have discussed in the past, we need to be disciplined in accumulating money for retirement or any other reason. We need to set aside money for ourselves on a weekly basis so that we can have an income when we retire. Unfortunately, many of us never learned the importance of saving, nor did we learn how to be disciplined. Social security alone is not enough to retire, but it could be a nice supplement to our retirement account.
We have learned from the many economic crises and depressions that we have experienced in the United States that we need to be more disciplined about saving, and we need to make more sacrifices if we are going to be able to save money for retirement. Because of this lack of discipline, many of the Baby Boomers do not have a retirement plan. Consequently, some will need to work to support themselves during their retirement.
Even so, we should still try to save money in the event of an emergency. The first thing to do is to accumulate an emergency fund in a savings account, approximately $2000 or $3000, in case the car, refrigerator, or washing machine break down, or we have to take an unexpected trip somewhere. Charles Farrell in his book, Your Money Ratios – 8 Simple Tools for Financial Security at Every Stage of Life, has developed ratios to determine how much money to save on an ongoing basis for retirement. He recommends saving 12% of you salary per year and accumulating twelve times you annual salary as a retirement fund. After setting aside the emergency fund, we can begin to accumulate retirement money.
A close examination of the budget will reveal where we are spending money and whether or not we need to adjust the budget in order to save twelve percent. By keeping track of money spent and deciding what we can eliminate from our spending, we will find the twelve per cent to move into a retirement pan. We can begin a plan at work, or if self- employed, we will have to begin a plan on our own, through a bank, or an insurance company.
Once the plan is in place, we should purchase a life insurance plan to cover other expenses, such as estate taxes, and final expense benefits, so that the spouse will not have to use the pension plan proceeds to pay for these expenses.
In conclusion, accumulating money for retirement, and protecting the income with life insurance are wise decisions for those who desire to live comfortably during retirement.