Heading into retirement? Be sure to ask yourself these four questions first.

2 minute read

You’ve been saving throughout your working life. After all that hard work, retirement is approaching and you have some decisions to make.

When you begin to draw income from your savings, you must be strategic to take advantage of the features designed into Canada’s retirement programs. So, where to start? Ask yourself these four questions to ease your mind and ease your transition into retirement:

1. What will my advisor do to help me create a smart retirement income plan?

This is for those who have their retirement funds invested outside of Kindred (strange as that may sound!)

You may have heard lots of advice about investing over the years, however, now you need to disassemble all of your hard-earned assets. There can be tax implications and other issues at play, so you need to take your money out in the smartest way possible. This means you need to work with someone who is comfortable discussing retirement income planning.

2. In what order should I access my retirement savings?

Think of your retirement fund like a combination lock. You know the numbers, yet the sequence of the numbers is key.

Your retirement numbers are your sources of income, such as your RRSP, pension, Canada Pension Plan (CPP), or TFSA. Now you need to determine when and how to access these funds to get the most from your retirement fund. For example, you receive more money from CPP if you wait until age 70, and registered funds need to be accessed with a plan in mind to make tax-smart withdrawals.

3. What if the markets are down when I want to draw retirement income?

Your retirement is coming, no matter what happens in the market.

To ensure that you can take money from your retirement fund without locking in market losses, it may make sense to set up a one-to-two year cash wedge. That means part of your savings (i.e., a piece of the pie) is invested in a cash asset that won’t be affected by the ebb-and flow of the market.

4. Do I really need a formal financial plan?

A well-thought-out, written guide for your retirement income plan is essential.

You need documentation that outlines how and when you will pay yourself in retirement. A written financial plan gives you a map for planning ahead and staying on track, even if you need to make occasional changes to account for life’s twists and turns.

So how can you ensure you have answers to these four questions as you head into your retirement? Work with a financial planner who has experience in retirement income planning. A financial planner can set you on the right track to manage your risks as you approach retirement, they’ll work with you to create a written financial plan – and retirement income plan – that allows you to retire with confidence.

The concepts of stewardship and generosity are central to Kindred’s philosophy of wealth and investing practices. We help members connect their values and faith with their finances, offering investing products such as GICs and mutual funds, and services such as holistic financial planning and wealth management, which offers more specific tax advice and advanced financial planning.

Speak with a member of our Kindred Wealth and Investment Team.

Kindred Credit Union

At Kindred, we believe you have a better choice for banking. We believe values and faith are central to life, and financial decisions are not values-neutral. In fact, we think financial decisions can impact the world in amazing ways—so our values are integrated into everything we do. We call this Banking with Purpose.

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