Retirement should be mostly fun and games. But that doesn’t mean it takes some work (pun intended) to get there. Here are two key financial habits that you should have nailed down before you retire. Adopt these strategies and retirement will be as fun as you want it to be.


A budget is key for any time of life, but it’s especially important when you retire. When you’re done working, you’ll be on a fixed income and likely have some hefty medical costs to deal with. You’ll also likely have some different priorities than when you were working. You might want to travel. You might want to downsize your home. Whatever your post-work life looks like, getting into the habit of budgeting now will be helpful down the road. That way, when you do retire, it will be much easier to navigate your expenses and shift spending to what you value.

An Eye on The Big Picture

Once you retire, you will need to be careful about your spending. You’ll get a portion of your income from Social Security and a portion from your savings. In order to make your retirement as enjoyable as possible, you need to play the long game. That means budgeting, reducing expenses, and making mindful withdrawals on your retirement accounts.

One way you can keep your focus on the big picture? Adhere to the four percent rule. As USA Today notes, the four percent rule refers to only withdrawing four percent of your retirement account balance during your first post-work year. After that, you adjust and increase the withdrawals to account for inflation. It’s easy to think that retirement will be short, but the reality is it will last for many years. Keep your focus on the big picture to make sure it’s everything you want it to be.

Chris O'Shea via SavvyMoney