Countdown to retirement

For a smooth ride to retirement, take these financial steps when you have 10 years, five years and one year to go.

  • By Eileen Ambrose and Sandra Block,
  • Kiplinger
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For most of your life, retirement may seem so far off that you give it only a passing thought when glancing at your 401(k) statement. Your twenties, thirties and forties are likely preoccupied with more-pressing life events — building a career, getting married, buying a house, raising children and saving for college.

But once you enter your fifties and retirement is no longer a fuzzy concept looming on the horizon, it’s important to make sure you’ll be prepared for the day when you wrap up your career and move on to the next phase of your life. As retirement comes into focus, use this list of financial steps to follow 10 years, five years and one year before retirement to prepare for the transition. For each time frame, we’ve also listed key moves to make in your portfolio.

Countdown to retirement: 10 years away

Now that you’re only a decade away from retirement, it’s time to start getting specific about what that will mean for you. Read Countdown to retirement: 10 years away to review important financial steps to take, including a portfolio checkup, when you have 10 years to go.

Countdown to retirement: 5 years away

At 5 years from retirement, you can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Read Countdown to Retirement: 5 years away to help you plan and maintain the retirement lifestyle you want, including a portfolio evaluation with five years to go.


Countdown to retirement: 1 year away

With a year to go before you retire, it's time to take steps to manage your affairs. Read Countdown to retirement: 1 year away for a checklist of what you'll need to tackle first, including a portfolio review, 1 year out.


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© 2019 The Kiplinger Washington Editors, Inc.
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