In life, there are many milestones. From your first love to your first job to the first time your travel out of Singapore, each milestone holds significant importance to you. Among the milestones in life, there is one particular milestone that is especially important, i.e. your retirement.
According to the stipulated Ministry of Manpower (MOM) law, age 62 is the official retirement age for Singaporeans. However, not everyone’s milestone at age 62 is a pleasant one. For some of us, age 62 might be the epiphany moment where we start to regret all the financial mistakes we have made. Here are four common financial regrets that Singaporeans might have when crossing the retirement milestone in life.
Finding a trustworthy financial advisor can be the difference between a happy retirement life and a retirement life filled with financial regret. A trustworthy advisor will perform his/her fiduciary duties to help you make the most of your financial plan so that you can retire in peace. On the other hand, trusting the wrong advisor can lead to frustration and anger when you realize that you can’t make claims on your insurance at the crucial moment, e.g. after a major surgery.
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Everyone wants to be healthy to be able to enjoy their retirement. However, the reality is that, as you age, your body and metabolism no longer functions as well. You might find yourself on more frequent trips to visit the doctor to treat your ailments, be it big or small. This is the moment when you realize that the medical bills start to pile up and eat into your retirement fund.
Your friends or the hospital cashier might remind you that the medical bills can be claimed from your insurance. Unfortunately, you didn’t buy any insurance when you were still young and healthy. Buying it now will cost you a bomb. Not to mention, you might even have some claim exclusions for your pre-existing conditions.
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CPF was designed to help Singaporeans save for retirement. It was designed to act as a base for Singaporeans’ retirement needs. However, this design led to some of our over-reliance on CPF as a mean for retirement.
Instead of supplementing CPF with our own retirement savings, we treat CPF as the ONLY source of retirement savings. The truth is that CPF is only enough for basic needs during your retirement years, especially if you choose the basic retirement sum when you withdraw your CPF savings at age 55. If you wish to have a more fulfilling retirement life, e.g. travel once a month, you need to supplement your CPF with your own retirement savings.
Active income from a job is the primary source of most Singaporeans’ retirement fund. But do you know that only relying on your active income to save for retirement is inefficient? After all, you only have limited number of hours in a day to make active income. Logically, there is a limit to how much active income you can make in a lifetime.
While you earn active income, it is also important for you to invest in the right financial products to make passive income. Unlike active income, passive income allows you to earn without being actively involved. However, one caveat is that passive income is only effective when you have time on your side to take advantage of the law of compound interest.