We’ve discussed how your career and family affect your wealth plan, but where you live plays a role too. And what do all these factors have in common? They lead to the final stage of your wealth plan - Retirement.
Let’s first explore Home.
Where do you want to live? I have a friend whose wife hates the heat. They spent 10 years in Texas – Oh boy. My wife and I grew up in the town we live in now. The big move for us was to the other side of town.
Today, people move or get transferred all over the world. And many factors can put constraints on your living situation – health reasons, peace of mind, economic conditions. If you can’t handle the heat, don’t move south. If you can't handle the cold, don’t move north. Sometimes health issues come into play here. You must be close to the care you need.
When you’re young, the big question is do you live in a big city? Or a small, rural town?Maybe somewhere in between, like the suburbs? This really depends on your career and your family.
Not all careers give you room to be selective about where you can live, but it’s an important parallel thought-process when determining your career. If you can work from home, you can live anywhere. Otherwise, the question isn’t just “Where do you want to live?” but “Where do you want to work?” Have both in mind when planning.
Now, let’s break down the previous three wealth plan factors and see how they build upon each other throughout the various life stages.
Stage 1 - Just starting out:
We established our passion and are pursuing our career.
We established our "target" family size.
We established where we want to live and work.
Stage 2 - Middle age:
We changed employers a couple times but our career still aligns with our passion; gaining recognition and respect in our industry.
We have a couple more children than we planned but overjoyed nonetheless.
We have moved to a place we never thought we would enjoy, but we love it and are glad we took the risk.
Stage 3 - Nearing retirement:
We have become known in the industry we’re passionate about, and have become a mentor to the next generation in this field.
The children are in college and we are very proud of them – hopefully, they have a passion in mind for careers too.
We love our home and community.
Stage 4 - Retired:
Enjoying our post-career, or Career 2.0.
Enjoying time with the grandchildren.
Thinking about a move to a warmer climate or someplace closer to the grandchildren.
As you can see, Career, Family, and Home play a role at every stage. What also comes in at every stage, but remains in the background, is Retirement.
Retirement planning plays a role throughout all your years, but with different flavors at each stage. At Stage 1 we are trying to figure out why we need to put money aside for something so many years away. It can be hard to think so many steps in advance.
At Stage 2 we are trying to find the money after paying all the bills to set aside for something still many years away. We worry about things like whether we should prioritize saving for the kids’ education, or our nest egg. At Stage 3 we hope we’ve done this correctly because the time for You 2.0 is fast approaching. At Stage 4 – Oh, my! We are here – what just happened?
As much as these stages are different, they are also alike. They key is to stay on track. I have a friend who in high school was the All-State fullback on our football team. When I asked what his plan was after they hiked the ball he said, “Easy. 1/ Get the ball secured. 2/ Find the hole developed by the lineman. 3/ Put your head down and run with everything you got.” Sounds a little like life to me.