As much as you no doubt love your career as a healthcare traveler, there will come a time when you’ll want or need to retire.
Read below for several strategies you can start today to help ensure that you’ll be able to retire comfortably.
- Put aside at least 10 percent of your income into a retirement account of some kind. This could be an IRA, 401(k) or some other vehicle. Whether you’re 25 or 65, if you’ve haven’t been doing this, start now!
- Talk to your travel staffing manager to learn about any retirement planning tools and help your firm provides travelers. Many provide travelers with 401(k)s and even match a certain percentage of the employee’s contribution.
- If you’re in your 40s or older and you haven’t yet started putting money aside, see if you can put 15 or even 20 percent aside in your retirement account(s).
- Don’t fret if you can’t put aside 10-20 percent in your accounts: putting aside anything is better than nothing.
- Pay off debts as soon as possible. Many people swear by the “snowball” method, in which you take one debt and pay extra on it, while continuing to pay the minimum monthly amount on all the others. Once you pay off the first debt, you take the extra you were paying on it and add it to the monthly amount on your next debt (while still paying the minimum on all the others). Once you pay off the second debt, you take all the funds you were using monthly to pay the first and second debt to pay the third, and so on.
- Some experts recommend that you work on paying off the debt with the highest interest first. But others believe you should start with your smallest debt amount because paying it off relatively quickly can be a huge boost and help keep you going.
- Once any consumer debt (credit cards, car payments, etc.) are paid off, consider paying off your mortgage, if you have one. Mortgage payments are among our largest debts and having that debt paid off by the time you retire will cut down considerably on how much you’ll need to save.
- Purchase a car with the plan to use it until it dies. A car’s value depreciates considerably just by driving it off the sales lot. Maintain the car regularly and you can expect to keep it running for at least 100,000 miles or more.
- If making payments on a car now, once the car is paid off, keep making those payments, but make them to yourself. Setting aside $300 or more a month in a savings account for four or five more years (you’re going to keep the car until dies, remember), means that you could easily have enough saved to pay for a good, used car (one that will last another five to eight years with proper maintenance) for cash. Imagine having NO car payment! It definitely can be done.
We know that it’s hard to save money today. There’s always something that needs your attention and the type of attention it needs usually means spending money, sometimes considerable money. You will get older and with good luck, you’ll reach an age when you no longer want to or can work. Save up for that time now.