How much money do you need to retire?

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Deciding on how much money is needed to support a retirement is a bit like asking a surgeon what is his best operation. It all depends on what the individual needs. One rule of thumb is retirees can support themselves on around 70% of their work salary, and another cautions retirees to spend only 4% of their investments annually to keep from running out of money.

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Retiring without having any idea of how much money you need is a recipe for failure.


Retirees need to look at all sources of their income to determine how much in savings and investments they need in order to retire. Pensions, Social Security and earned income all lower the total amount of savings needed for retirement.

Time Frame

It is never too soon to look at one's budget and project out how much money is needed to retire. At the minimum, planning should start at least five years before the desired retirement date.


The services of a flat-fee Certified Financial Planner can help many people focus and plan on how much money is needed to retire. Planners work with their clients to develop a plan to allocate monies among the proper mix of stocks and bonds to provide sufficient retirement income.


Having a firm, financial plan in place in advance makes the often stressful event of transitioning between work and retirement easier.

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