At 68 years old, I have no investment whatsoever. My $80,000 apartment is paid off and I have $60,000 in savings. Am I too late?
It’s never too late to start investing and managing your money. But I don’t want to downplay it. If you plan to invest for retirement, the ball rolling in your late 60s certainly limits your options. So let’s discuss some of your choices. (If you have additional questions about investing or retirement, this tool can help match you with potential advisors.)
Consider alternative forms of income
With limited savings, you probably can’t afford to ignore Social Security benefits and other sources of income. If you haven’t taken your Social Security benefits yet, keep in mind that waiting until age 70 will maximize the benefit you receive.
It’s also worth exploring other ways to maintain your income in your golden years. Can you continue to work in your current position, find a part-time job or consult on the side?
Postponing full retirement will increase your short-term cash flow, allow you to plan for a shorter retirement period, and may give you room to save and invest. (If you have additional questions about maximizing retirement income, this tool can help match you with potential advisors.)
Paying off your house is great, but consider other cost savings
The fact that you own your $80,000 apartment outright is commendable. And depending on your location, there may not be many other properties in a lower price range. So you may have limited options to downsize or find a cheaper home.
But consider other steps you can take to cut costs when it comes to transportation, travel, food, and other expenses. With minimal savings, you need to keep a close eye on expenses.
If you are ready to be matched with local advisors who can help you achieve your financial goals, start now.
Determine the appropriate allocation of assets
If you plan to have your $60,000 for the last several decades after retirement, it’s worth evaluating an appropriate investment balance that allows for short-term, medium-term liquidity as well as long-term growth. If you keep 100% of your money in cash, it typically can’t keep up with inflation and will cause your nest egg to lose value over time.
Working with a financial advisor can help you build a portfolio and project retirement expenses and income needs into the future. A holistic advisor may also be able to help you process the tax implications of your income and retirement projections.
Depending on your financial situation, consider whether you qualify for a financial advisor or even pro bono financial assistance from a source such as the Financial Planning Association. (If you have additional questions about investing or retirement, this tool can help match you with potential advisors.)
It’s never too late to start investing, but starting in your late 60s will affect the options you have. Consider social security strategies, sources of income, and appropriate asset allocation. A financial advisor may be able to help you map out your investment and income plan for decades to come.
Tips for finding a financial advisor
Finding a financial advisor doesn’t have to be difficult. SmartAsset’s free tool pairs you with up to three vetted financial advisors serving your area, and you can interview your advisor matches for free to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
Consider a few advisors before choosing one. It’s important to make sure you find someone you trust to manage your money. As you consider your options, these are the questions you should ask an advisor to ensure you make the right choice.
Susannah Snider, CFP® is SmartAsset’s financial planning columnist, answering reader questions on personal financial topics. Do you have a question you would like to see answered? Send an email to AskAnAdvisor@smartasset.com and your question may be answered in a future column.
Please note that Susannah is not a participant in the SmartAdvisor Match platform and is an employee of SmartAsset.
Photo credit: ©Jen Barker Worley, ©iStockPhoto/Moon Safari, ©iStockPhoto/Milan Markovic
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