Accurate Results with a Retirement Calculator


Filed under Planning & Money

Most of us look forward to the day that we can retire. For many of us, we may consider it to be a time when we will finally be able to relax from all of the years of hard work. It is an unfortunate reality, however, that without the proper planning, it can be difficult getting the most out of your retirement years. One thing that you should do to make sure that you can retire comfortably, is to use a retirement calculator.

Very simply, a retirement calculator is an easy way for you to be able to determine how much you need to earn between now and the date that you retire so you can live comfortably for the rest of your life. There are some basic variables that need to input into almost every calculator, and some specific variables depending on which calculator you use. It is important that you accurately provide this information in order to get the most accurate results.

Generally the first information that a retirement calculator requires is your current age and the age that you plan to retire. Try to be as accurate as possible about this information since even a difference of a year or two can make a large difference in the final results. You may want to run the numbers using several possible retirement ages so you can see the impact it will have on the results.

Something else that needs to be considered is whether your current income will remain fairly stable until retirement or if it is expected to change. Although this may be difficult to know for certain, most of us have a rough idea of how stable our income is. If you are far away from retirement, you might want to give this some consideration since your ability to invest for retirement over the long term can make a big difference on how much you’re going to be able to put aside.

Some of other variables that are often required are the percentage of your income that you plan on putting aside as well as whether you’re going to include Social Security and other benefits in your calculations. If the results don’t meet your expectations, you can run the numbers through the retirement calculator again with a some adjustment of the variables. You will see that small differences in each of these variables can make a large difference over time. It can be a very useful planning tool that allows you to see how comfortable you will be after you retire.

Article by M. Paulson

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