When to retire?

by Diane Leitner
(Hershey, PA)

I plan on retiring at the end of 2013. I will have 20 years with my company and I will be 63 years old. Should I retire at the end of the year or go into 2014 a few months and then retire?

Wendy: This is really a personal decision... I'm not sure it really matters, financially (for just a few months).

For every month you work longer, you knock off a month from 35 years ago. Social Security uses 35 years of earnings to calculate your monthly amount... (if you don't have 35 years, you do get $0 credit for those years... so then its a great idea to work longer).

If pension plus Social Security meets your needs, and you have some in savings for down the road, maybe you are ok. If you need to take withdrawals right off the bat for your monthly expenses, maybe its best to put that withdrawal off, even just a few months. Every penny counts!

Finally... make sure you are mentally ready. I thought I was ready for FIVE years, but somehow couldn't' walk out that retirement door. Suddenly, as retirees had told me for many years, I was ready and I knew I was ready.

Many aren't quite ready... they have nothing to do, suddenly, and depression hits. So LOOK for new hobbies and new lunch partners now.. while you still are employed so that doesn't happen to you, later...

One more thought... Do You -- retire late in the year, when you don't have to go out into the cold and can remain at home nice an cozy? --OR-- retire in the spring time, when its nice and sunshiney outdoors to welcome you into retirement, and lots more to do too?

No simple answers... but lots to think about!
More Retirement Advice here!

Best Wishes!

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