Budgeting

7 Things You Should Do If You Want to Retire Someday

retirement and investing

Joanne Poh

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If you already feel like a corpse at work every day, you probably don’t relish the thought of never being able to retire and sitting in that cubicle till you officially perish. While planning for retirement isn’t exactly the most hip ‘n’ happening thing you could be doing right now, imagine staying in your current job forever and you just might change your mind.

1. Don’t Stop Earning Altogether

If you’re reading this article, the thought of working in your current job until the end of time probably does not give you the warm fuzzies. However, finding ways to earn money that don’t involve your being part of the full-time workforce can hasten your retirement.

If you can tutor students from home, take on a part-time office job or sell magic stones to your fellow retirees, retirement might be within reach.

2. Focus on Investments That Yield Income

When you first start investing, income usually isn’t the first thing on your mind as your main concern is that your investment value swells over time. On the other hand, if retirement is within sight, you’re going to want to ensure you have investments that actually yield a bit of income, such as dividend-paying stocks. Property is nice to have and all, except for the fact that you can’t eat it when you’re starving.

3. Save Like Crazy

Don’t listen to the people who tell you saving is not important, only investing. If you can live like an Arabian prince and still have enough money to invest at the end of the day, then never mind. But for the rest of the world, increasing your savings is the first step towards investing for retirement.

4. Cut Your Expenses

Think about your life post-retirement. Are you frolicking in jacuzzis drenched in champagne at the Playboy Mansion? Then we hate to break it to you but you might never get to the retirement stage.

On the other hand, if you’re disciplined enough to live frugally, retirement might start looking less like a fantasy filled with rainbows and unicorns and more like an actual possibility.

5. Don’t Rush to Withdraw Your CPF Savings

After a couple of decades in the workforce, you start to wonder if your CPF savings have been a figment of your imagination all along, since they weren’t much help that time your credit card got rejected at the supermarket.

Recent official pronouncements that you shouldn’t draw upon your CPF savings at 55 confirm what we knew all along—your CPF savings might be as useful to your retirement as your piggy bank in primary school was to your Ferrari fund. Follow us on Facebook as we keep you up to date on the latest CPF happenings and what you can do with them.

6. Watch Your Investments Like a Hawk

When you were younger, you might not have bothered monitoring your investments too closely, figuring that in the long run they would increase in value. Unless you’re planning on living forever, the closer you get to retirement the closer you should monitor your investments to weed out those that aren’t working before it’s too late.

7. Get Insured

It’s true that when you’re older a lot of things you used to spend on don’t matter anymore. While at retirement age your obsession with collecting anime figurines might have waned (or maybe not), it will be replaced with a more pressing expense—healthcare. Don’t let yourself retire without insurance in areas such as critical illness,  disability or accidents.

What are your plans in the lead-up to retirement? Let us know in the comments!

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Joanne Poh

In my previous life, I was a property lawyer who spent most of my time struggling to get out of bed or stuck in peak hour traffic. These days, as a freelance commercial writer, I work in bed, on the beach, in parks and at cafes, all while being really frugal. I like helping other people save money so they can stop living lives they don't like.