Are You Truly Ready for Retirement? 20 Questions to Ponder

Retirement might be the golden period you’ve been waiting for, but before diving in, it’s essential to ask the right questions. With these 20 probing queries, we’re here to help you gain clarity on your retirement readiness.

1. Ready to Let Go of Your Professional Role?
Before bidding adieu to your career, evaluate if you’re genuinely ready. If there’s a hint of hesitation, perhaps it’s worth exploring a new role or postponing your retirement slightly.

2. How’s Your Health?
Your well-being is paramount. Before retiring, maybe schedule a thorough health check-up to understand where you stand.

3. Saved Enough?
Retirement without adequate funds can be stressful. Ensure your savings align with your retirement vision. If not, it might be worth revisiting your investment strategies. Keep working! Pay off your debt first.

4. Calculated Your Retirement Income?
A clear idea of your post-retirement income can ease many anxieties. Chart out your expected cash inflow to avoid surprises later. Err to the high side. We illustrate retirement projections to age 95. Don’t run out. 🙂

5. Checked Your Pension’s Commuted Value?
Unsure about your pension value? Now is the time to touch base with your employer for clarity.

6. Weighed the Tax Implications?
Before deciding, ensure you’ve understood all tax nuances of your retirement plan. Engaging with a tax consultant can be enlightening. Understand what qualifies for “income splitting” and how that works. We usually advise deferring CPP & OAS. You’ll live to 90. Would you rather gov pensions in your 60s or your 80s. Imagine gov pensions, inflation protected, when you’re really old. [Birthday gifts for the grands.]

7. Ever Wondered About Your Lifespan?
This might sound philosophical, but it’s essential for financial planning. Gauge your potential lifespan through online tools or with a certified financial planner.

8. Dreamt of Your Retirement Goals?
Retirement is a long vacation. Like any holiday, it’s worth outlining what you hope to achieve and experience.

9. Decided Your Retirement Residence?
From sticking to your current home, transitioning to an assisted living facility, or even exploring vibrant retirement communities, your choices are plenty. We never recommend reverse mortgage due to high internal interest rate BUT maybe if you’re in your 80s and short of cash, you should explore that rather than live like a rat.

10. How Will You Spend Your Free Hours?
Traveling, volunteering, cultivating hobbies – the world is your oyster in retirement! For inspiration, check out our curated list of retirement activities.

11. Got Your Healthcare Directives Ready?
This ensures your medical wishes are honored. If you haven’t got one, now’s the time! Watch out when you retire. If you have a group health plan at work, you can convert that to a personal plan WITHOUT medical questionnaire. You have 30 days.

12. Updated Your Beneficiaries?
Life changes, ensure your beneficiary forms are current and reflect your wishes. Don’t leave money unwittingly to you Ex.

13. Got an Estate Plan?
Engaging with a financial planner can simplify this otherwise complex process.

14. Evaluated Your Life Insurance?
Protecting your family with sufficient life insurance is crucial, especially if uncertainties arise. Permanent insurance is expensive at first, but the premium never goes up. Additionally, you can “overfund” then draw a pension later in life.

15. Sure You Won’t Outlive Your Savings?
Consider annuities which can be a wise strategy to guarantee income. We have placed annuities for parents of a child, or adult child, who is bad with money. Picture this, son / daughter spends everything. Parents want to provide for him / her. Solution? An annuity that pays $xx per month. He / she cannot access the principle, i.e. the loot.

16. Drafted Your Will?
This is the foundation to ensuring your assets are distributed as per your wishes. Only 40% of Canadians have wills. Got one.

17. Charted Your Financial Roadmap?
If not, we at Pension Solutions Canada are here to guide you step-by-step.

18. Planned Your Funeral?
It might seem grim, but pre-planning can significantly ease the burden on loved ones. Easy to do, i just set mine up for $3,200, payable monthly over 12 months with no interest.

19. Thought About Your Spouse’s Care Post Your Time?
A living trust can ensure they’re well taken care of in your absence. If you own a LIRA or LIF, that transfers to your partner / spouse and unlocks. So, he / she get an RRSP or RRIF and access to the money.

20. Reached Out for Professional Advice?
Your retirement deserves expertise. Connect with our Certified Financial Planners to carve out a plan tailored just for you.

Ready To Take The Next Step?

Retirement is a milestone, deserving of meticulous planning and foresight. The more you’re prepared, the more enriching this phase becomes. At Pension Solutions Canada, we’re dedicated to guiding you toward a joyous retirement. Ready to embark on this journey? Schedule a 15-minute call with us today!


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