Teachers are a particular case when it comes to retirement, mainly because their income sources are different from that of other professionals. Financial planning will vary based on what type of school you teach in, and the location you’re in, how much you have will also have a lot to do with how you take advantage of your contribution plan.
Ana Fajardo is a Sr. Retirement Specialist in Miami who works with clients in the school system. She weighs in on what teachers should be asking themselves so they don’t have to worry about their future.
A major part of reaching your retirement goals is simply being aware of all your options. Many teachers wait until they’re nearly ready to retire, only to find that they only utilized a small percentage of the resources that were available to them.
Ana Fajardo recommends working with a retirement counselor long before you reach the end of your tenure. She says that teachers may be able to recoup unused sick time or collect the vast majority of their former salary. The right formula can make it possible to fund any retirement goal they had in mind. Her job is to inform teachers about both the advantages and disadvantages, so they feel comfortable moving forward.
Retirement doesn’t always go the way you planned, and not always for stereotypical reasons either. Some teachers might want to take a part-time gig, creating a new income source that they didn’t plan for originally. Some retirees crave nothing more than a modest lifestyle for themselves, but then find themselves wanting to pay for their grandchild’s education. Some think that they’ll want to invest in real estate during their Golden Years, only to discover that the responsibilities of real estate are more than they have the time or motivation for.
Ana Fajardo says that it’s not always possible to know how you’ll feel about your retirement until you’re knee-deep in it. Though, there are ways to work out the most likely answers to these questions, so you can work backward from a financial perspective.
Retirement planning is all about getting ahead of the events that can compromise what you’ve worked so hard to build. For instance, are you prepared for the financial costs associated with long-term illness or injury? Would the right insurance policy be able to assist you in the case of never-ending medical bills? Have you considered how a familial emergency would put a strain on your finances and what that would mean for your everyday needs?
Ana Fajardo works with people from all backgrounds to not only answer these questions, but to pose new ones based on anything from personal preferences to unseen complications. Her priority is to help people think through all of this now, so they don’t have to puzzle through it all later.
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