Retirement Planning Tips for Married Couples

7:28 pm Retirement Planning

retirement couple hugging 150x150 Retirement Planning Tips for Married Couples

Commentary From A California Retirement Planning Lawyer

Retirement planning for married couples differs significantly from that for singles, since you are planning for the lives of two individuals – one of who (statistics say the wife) will outlive the other by an average of 5-10 years.

And a lot of couples are not doing it right, since recent studies show the rate of poverty for women over the age of 65 is more than 12 percent, significantly higher than for men in the same age group.

Healthcare costs take a big bite out of most couples’ retirement income, leaving scant resources available for the surviving spouse.  Here are some tips on how married couples can plan strategically for retirement:

Figure out how much retirement savings you need to generate a reliable lifetime income.

Whoever has the higher earnings history (usually the husband) can max out their Social Security benefits by delaying the start date as long as possible.  According to the Social Security Administration, taking retirement benefits at age 70 will double what you would have received if you took retirement at age 62.

Make 401(k) accounts and retirement savings last as long as one of you is still living.

Have a strategy for addressing long-term care expenses.

If the husband has a substantial benefit from a pension plan, take the joint and survivor annuity — most retirees outlive their lump sum payments.

Try to stay in good shape by practicing healthy habits.

Try to retire without a lot of debt – if possible, plan to pay off your mortgage before you retire, since housing is the #1 retirement expense for the majority of retirees.

Contact us today for individualized planning strategies to meet your unique needs.

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