10 Questions to Ask Yourself When You’re 10 Years from Retirement

Insight | by Tom Tracy
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As you approach retirement, it’s crucial to ask yourself some important questions to ensure that you are fully prepared and have a robust financial plan in place. By taking the time to consider these ten questions, you can gain clarity to help you make informed decisions.

1. What does retirement look like for me?

Retirement is no longer one-size fits all. Do you want to continue working part-time, start a business, travel extensively, find a cottage by the sea or engage in volunteer work? Clarifying your retirement goals will help you structure your financial plans accordingly.

2. When do you want to be financially independent?

Even if you plan to continue working and never retire it’s important to set a date/age when you have the financial option to stop working. You need to be financially independent, and you need options.

3. Where do you want to retire to?

Consider factors such as climate, cost of living, access to healthcare, and proximity to family and friends.

4. How much income do I need to be financially independent?

As a rule of thumb, aiming for a retirement income that is approximately two-thirds of your final salary is a good starting point to sustain your lifestyle.

5. Gross wealth required to provide that income?

Multiply your projected annual income by 25 for an indicative estimate of the size of capital pool required.

6. What currency issues will I need to address?

Currency is complex. You might for example be earning in Swiss Francs, have pensions in Pounds Sterling, and be retiring in Euros. Take advice to ensure that you don’t get caught out.

7. Health?

Healthcare expenses can have a significant impact on your retirement finances. Evaluate healthcare options available to you, such as private health insurance or government schemes, and incorporate these considerations into your retirement plan.

8. Look after loved ones?

Structure your pension and assets appropriately as part of estate planning to ensure a smooth transfer of wealth, avoiding probate and unnecessary taxes.

9. How do I avoid giving my loved ones a financial headache?

Simplify matters for your loved ones by organising your financial records, ensuring clear documentation of assets, and providing them with access to critical information. Planning for your later years will involve considering potential long-term care needs. Support your loved ones by exploring options such as long-term care insurance and lasting power of attorney. A financial advisor can assist you with financial management and planning.

10. Where is my money?

As an expat you’ve likely accumulated an array of investments, PEPs and ISAs in the UK, a Third Pillar Pension if you’ve worked in Switzerland, a ‘super’ in Australia, and/or a 401k if you’ve spent time in the US.

You’ll need to consolidate all your pensions and disparate investments, then put them together in a way that optimises their growth, flexibility, and currency options – and importantly, do so without tripping up the tax man.

Bonus Consideration:
What is the ‘Plan B’!

After all that planning, life happens! Children move, people get divorced, there are health issues, and elderly parents need support. In short, change happens.

Forth Capital has been helping expats achieve financial independence for two decades. We are experts in international financial planning and wealth management, and specialists in international pensions.

We can work with you through these 10 questions to help you build a robust financial plan that will look after you, wherever in the world you are, and whatever the weather!

To book an initial consultation with one of our advisers, contact us today.

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