9 Reasons to Revisit your Retirement Plan

Courtesy of Fidelity Investments, Posted 10 Nov 2014

An annual review will keep your retirement plan on track as your financial priorities change and you make progress toward your goals. However, certain circumstances may necessitate a special review. Get in touch with one of our advisors if any of the following situations arises for you:

  1. Your marital status changes (marriage, cohabitation, separation or divorce).
    At the very least, it is likely you will want to update beneficiaries of your plan, or make adjustments to account for a decrease or increase in household income.
  2. You acquire a new dependant (birth of a baby, adoption, caring for a relative).
    A new baby definitely will mean changes in how much you are able to save each month.
  3. Your spouse passes away.
    Whether accidental or forseen, the death of a spouse will triggor significant changes to your retirement plan.
  4. You change jobs or embark on a new career.
    It may mean more income now, or delaying your retirement for a few more years. Either way, your plan will need adjusting.
  5. You receive an inheritance.
    Usually for the better, an inheritance can change your current financial situation significantly, and therefore affects your retirement plan.
  6. Your income changes (up as well as down).
    Whether it means you are able to save more now, or are making time for more retirement activities now, your income plays a very large role in your retirement plan.
  7. You begin to participate in a company pension plan.
    Each pension plan is different. Sit down with your advisor to discuss how your new pension plan will affect your other retirement savings vehicles.
  8. You acquire or eliminate a significant debt, such as a student loan or mortgage.
    Paying off debts before retirement is usually ideal. Not having mortgage payments to contend with in retirement can allow for more freedom for your money.
  9. You need to access your retirement savings.
    Making a withdrawal from your RRSP, of course, reduces the amount you have earmarked for retirement and the principle on which your plan generates its earnings. Depleting your savings early could have serious negative effects come the time for retirement.

Be sure to consult your advisor before making any alterations to your retirement savings plan. Even a moderate withdrawal from your RRSP, for example, can have considerable tax consequences. Even more serious, unexpected alterations could affect your asset allocation and even hamper your progress toward your long-term goals.

Your advisor can help you explore all the alternatives to meet your immediate need, whatever it might be, and still keep your retirement plan on track. Together, we can decide on an appropriate course of action.