The life expectancy for someone born in 1914 used to hover around 56 years. Today the average life expectancy has increased to 78 years. Not too shabby. The real good news concerns centenarians. These are the folks who are living to be a hundred years. That number is going up by 5.5% each year. According to a United Nations report, in 2009 there were around 455,000 people around the world who reached that mark. By the year 2050, that number could go up to 4.1 million. That is a lot of birthday candles. Will you be ready to live to a hundred?
One of the cool things about retiring is that you can settle down anywhere. Since you don’t have to go to work, what is keeping you at your present location? Sure, friends and family are important, but they can come visit, right? The goal should be to downsize your living and your expenses so you can relax to the max. Want to travel more? You can. Want to take up a new hobby? You’ve got plenty of time. Want to read all the books you’ve been meaning to read? Load up the Kindle. This is your retirement and anything goes, including where to live. Here is iPoll’s round up of some of the best cities for retirement.
Do you work for the weekend? In other words, is your Monday through Friday 9 to 5 routine in place so you can kick back on Saturday and Sunday? Nothing wrong with that. In fact, that’s where many people stand in terms of work attitude (present company included). However, we should also be working for our retirement. Technically, most people take jobs with the hope that some day they won’t ever have to work again. It might be ideal to plan on retiring as early as possible, but still manage to live comfortably. To accomplish that goal you’ve got to engage in some serious retirement planning. iPoll is here to help get your ready for your golden years with these invaluable retirement planning tips:
Tip #1: Start Saving Today
I can’t emphasize this point nearly enough. No matter how old you are, you need to start saving for your retirement today. Let’s break it down. With retirement savings, you have two basic options: an employee plan or DIY. Here’s a hint: you should have both. The employee plan is typically a 401K which has your company setting aside funds on a regular basis. Isn’t that nice? Actually, you’ve earned those funds as part of your salary so it’s not like a total bonus. The great thing about a 401K is that you can contribute as well. In fact, you should match your employer’s contribution dollar for dollar. On the do-it-yourself side, you can open up an IRA. The maximum you can contribute to this tax-free account is $5,500. If you manage to make that contribution for 20 years, you’ll have a nice nest egg of around $110,000. Not too shabby.
Here’s a fun little adventure you can go on: count all of your stuff. Literally. Every piece of everything, visible and hidden away in a closet. Too overwhelming? For most of us, it would be a daunting task. While there is nothing wrong with having a lot of stuff, at some point you might want to consider simplifying your life. That’s where downsizing comes into play. As a concept, downsizing refers to making do with less. This doesn’t mean you have to compromise on your living quarters or throw out all your keepsakes (nobody is taking my lunchbox collection!). Instead, it means making some proactive choices about where you live, which can have a huge impact on the rest of your life. As you think about retiring, downsizing will start to make a lot of sense. Consider the benefits of downsizing your corner of the world:
They say that we should save for a rainy day. I’ve never been a fan of that. Don’t get me wrong; I think saving is a great idea. But why does it have to be for a rainy day? I’d rather save for a sunny day where I can dine outdoors or rent a bike down by the Santa Monica Pier or spend the day at the movies. (Sidebar: Yes, it makes more sense to go to the movies on a rainy day, but on a sunny day you can have the whole theater to yourself!). Of course, the looming shadow of retirement is also a good reason to save. For the record, that “looming shadow” is light years away from me but it makes sense to start putting a little aside now so that I can embrace the golden years with actual gold. At least, “gold” in the form of cash. Enter iPoll’s Mobile Missions. This is the fastest way to bulk up any savings account. The key is to take as many missions as possible. That’s not complicated at all.
Suppose you were inspired by an earlier post this week to start your own home-based business. Well, it’s Friday. Are you ready to expand your business? Okay, that might be too soon, but every business should be looking towards the future. Hopefully, you will put together a business plan that clearly defines your mission. Part of the business plan should include a marketing strategy and plans for future expansion. A potential investor wants to know you’re going to grow. Show that to the money folks and they’ll be happy to come along for the ride. There are some common “triggers” you can look at to decide if your business is ready to grow.
It’s lonely at the top. That’s true for both mountain climbers and bosses. As the head honcho of your start-up business, all the big decisions rest on your shoulders. The hope is that your business is going to grow which means more profits. Before that can happen, however, you might need to hire additional employees. If you have a home base business, then that additional help could be found with just one person, but they have to be the right person. How can you pick the right employee for your business’ needs? iPoll will show you the way.
Are you ready to start your new business? The best thing you can do is keep your day job. Say what? Yes, starting a new business is going to be a drain on your bank account. You’re not going to go from startup to million-dollar profit in a week. You’ll still have personal bills to pay and you don’t want those to fall behind and impact your credit report. That could come back to haunt your business. Instead, try to ease into your business. This is probably easier to accomplish if your new company is going to be based out of your home. At some point, you’ll want to make that leap and quit your day job. Before that can happen, you want to make sure your business is on steady ground with potential to grow. iPoll has some other vital survival tips for your new startup.
Do you dream of someday becoming your own boss? As opposed to winning the lottery or a walk-on part in the new Star Wars film, the dream of a home business is quite obtainable. There are dozens of home businesses popping up every day. Just because you have a home business doesn’t mean you can kick back and take it easy. Yes, the commute might be better but to be a success you’ll still have to put in a 9-to-5 kind of day- and probably much more. The ultimate goal would be that your home business grows so big that you’ll have to move out of your home. To get started, here is a list of iPoll’s best home business startup ideas.
Want to earn money from home? Google currently has about 144,000,000 suggestions for you. Clearly, you can find something in that long list of web pages to make money. Actually, there are two proven methods of earning money from home and you don’t need to do a Google search for them. The first is to start your own home business. We’ll be diving into that topic this week. The second is to answer iPoll surveys. When it comes to making cash from sitting at your computer, nothing beats iPoll. Of course, you can also make money with iPoll by taking it on the road and completing Mobile Missions. I just checked in with my iPoll app and there is a whole slew of new surveys to complete. This is going to be a good week.