Get in the game: Your official retirement playbookGet in the game: Your official retirement playbook

If you’re planning to retire in the next few years, it’s time to assess your finances…and start planning for your life of leisure. As an AOPA member, you may have to take some more time to consider your financials to maintain the lifestyle and activities you have grown accustomed to. Take a few pages from our playbook to get started.

Play one: Look at your assets
Take an inventory of your savings—retirement plans, bank accounts, and investments—to determine how much money you’ve accumulated over the years.  

Play two: Determine how much money you’ll need
See how much money you’ll collect each month from Social Security and your pension, if you have one. Estimate your expenses, and see how much you’ll need to supplement your income. Then take into consideration money you’ll spend on other things—hobbies, entertainment, travel, etc. Consider your aircraft storage and maintenance needs as well, along with any license or medical certificate renewals. 

You can use any number of online calculators to get a ballpark estimate. If your savings fall short, increase the amount you save, if possible. Be sure you’re taking full advantage of your retirement plan at work. Speak to a financial advisor or stop by your local bank to ask about other options that may be available to you. 

Play three: Manage your debt
It’s important to eliminate as much debt as you can, before you stop working. Do what you can to pay down your mortgage. Try to pay off any credit cards and personal loans. Consider, too, loans you may have co-signed for a child.

Play four: Decide how you’ll spend your time in retirement
Getting your finances in order is an important part of retirement planning. Equally important is deciding how you’ll spend your time. If you’d like to volunteer, think about where and how often. Perhaps you’d like to continue working part-time. What options are available to you? Is there a hobby you can turn into a small income? If you enjoy playing the piano, for instance, you may enjoy giving music lessons. As an AOPA member, you can help others by assisting with flight planning, pilot license preparation, and aviation advocacy issues. 

Play five: Protect your spouse and family
At retirement, you’ll lose the benefits your employer has provided. And that may include life insurance. Most understand the importance of having protection when their families are young. But life insurance can provide an important role in retirement as well. The death of one spouse affects the finances of the one left behind. Even though living expenses may remain the same, Social Security and pension payments will reduce. Life insurance can help offset the income lost. If you don’t have your own life insurance, it makes sense to purchase this coverage now. If you wait until later and your health changes, you may find it difficult to get or afford. As an AOPA member, you can expand coverage for your spouse as well through the 50+ Term Group Life Insurance Plan.

If life insurance is missing from your retirement playbook, take advantage of the options available to you as an AOPA member. We take the work out of searching for a trusted insurance partner…and finding coverage that meets your needs and budget. Many insurance carriers exclude any type of aviation-related accident from their policies, and as an AOPA member you want to be sure you’re covered when you need it most. Learn more about your AOPA life insurance options.

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