If you’re nearing retirement, you’re probably looking forward to a more relaxed pace of life with more choices in your lifestyle. You may keep on working at a job you enjoy, cut back your hours, travel the world or stay active as a volunteer — provided you have the financial ability to support the next chapter in your life.
In the past, many retirees were able to put their financial planning on autopilot, purchasing conservative, income-generating assets like bonds. But in today’s low interest rate environment, that approach may not produce enough income to support your desired lifestyle. At the same time, the financial markets have become more volatile.
When interest rates are low for a long period, many “conservative” investors who need or want income make the mistake of taking on significantly higher risk hoping to improve their potential returns. Of course, while these higher-risk assets are in positive territory, those investors feel comfortable. But when the market cycle ends, as every cycle does, many investors panic and sell at the wrong time.
Perhaps even more important, retirement lifestyles have become more flexible. You may want to work part time for a year or two, or spend a year…