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Retirement Planning Checklist

Here is a retirement planning checklist to use as you chart your course to the best time of your life. A checklist gives you a list of things to be remembered as you go through your planning process.


  1. Reduce or eliminate your debt
  2. Create an emergency cash reserve
  3. Apply for any financing, such as, a home equity line of credit, before you retire - even if you don't use it, you will have it readily available should you need it
  4. Determine the best day to retire to maximize your employer benefits before you retire
  5. Control your spending and identify additional expenditures you will have once you retire, such as, travel, etc.
  6. Decide on the lifestyle you plan to have in retirement
  7. Evaluate your pension plan payment options - lump sum, annuity, etc.
  8. Calculate how long your money will last - a financial adviser can help you with this
  9. Inform your insurance agent that you will no longer be working - your auto insurance premium will probably be reduced
  10. Document any email addresses and contact information, as well as, events stored in your calendar and special websites in your bookmarks
  11. Decide if you should rollover your 401K to an IRA
  12. Review your Social Security statement to ensure your reported income is accurate
  13. Determine when you should apply for Social Security benefits
  14. Understand what your health care coverage and cost will be after you retire
  15. Determine when to apply for Medicare
  16. Become aware of the Required Minimum Distribution, that generally is required once you turn 70 1/2 years old, and the tax burden associated with it
  17. Determine if you will need an income stream beyond your pension, Social Security benefits, and savings
  18. Update your will and do your estate planning - powers of attorney, beneficiaries on retirement accounts, etc.
  19. Consider the need for Long Term Care
  20. Enjoy the rest of your life

A retirement planning checklist can help you feel more in control of your retirement planning process.

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