Do I have enough savings for a secure retirement?


Do I have enough savings for a secure retirement?
  1. Do I have enough savings for a secure retirement?
    money.cnn.com
    Figure out how much you need to cover your retirement living expenses and still have some assurance that you won't deplete your savings too…
    Personal Finance
This couple set sail for retirement This couple set sail for retirement

I think you need to frame this issue a little differently. The amount you should have is pretty much a moot point right now as you've already retired. So the more pertinent question is how much can you withdraw from your nest egg each year to cover your retirement living expenses and still have a reasonable level of assurance that you won't deplete your savings too soon?

Your first step toward answering that query is to determine how much you're actually spending each year, and the best way to do that is to create a retirement budget. You can make a budget with pencil and paper, but I think you're better off using an online budgeting tool like BlackRock's Retirement Expense Worksheet, which allows you to enter some 50 separate expense items in eight categories, including household and medical costs as well as expenditures for discretionary outlays like travel and entertainment.

Your budget doesn't need to be accurate down to the penny, and you can always update it later as necessary. But do the best you can so that your budget reflects your actual spending as closely as possible.

Related: How much will I need for retirement?

Once you have a decent idea of how much you're spending each year, you can move on to seeing how likely it is that your nest egg will be able to support you the rest of your life if you continue your current level of spending. An online tool like T. Rowe Price's retirement income calculator can help you estimate that likelihood.

The calculator employs Monte Carlo simulations to estimate the probability that income from Social Security plus withdrawals from your nest egg will be able to generate enough income for you to maintain your expected spending for the rest of your life.

(The tool's default assumption is that you -- or in your case either you or your husband -- will live to age 95. You can choose a different age, but I consider 95 a reasonable assumption given today's longer lifespans. If you like, you can get a more nuanced take on how long you might need your savings to last based on your age, sex and state of health by revving up the Actuaries Longevity Illustrator tool.)

If after going through this process you find that the chances that the combination of Social Security and draws from your nest egg are uncomfortably low -- I'd say you want your chance of success to be at least 70% to 80% -- then you can re-run the analysis and change a few assumptions to see how much your odds of success improve.

Not surprisingly, you'll find that scaling back your spending will boost your odds of success the most. You may also be tempted to invest more aggressively in hopes of earning a higher rate of return on your savings that, in turn, could support a higher level of withdrawals from your nest egg and more spending.

But be careful. Devoting a higher portion of your savings to stocks can leave your nest egg more vulnerable to market downturns and potentially increase the risk of running through your savings too soon.

And even absent a serious market setback, investing more aggressively may not boost the chances of your money lasting the rest of your life as much as you might think.

Besides, there are other moves you can make that can be more effective than taking on more investing risk. For example, you might check out sites like RetiredBrains.com and Retirementjobs.com for part-time work that can generate more income. If you own a home, you might also consider tapping into the equity by taking out a reverse mortgage or downsizing to smaller, less expensive digs to come away with a chunk of extra cash that can supplement your nest egg.

If you're really worried that you might run through your savings while you've still…

  1. Girl Scouts celebrate 100th anniversary of cookie sales

    SacBee- Personal Finance
    01.23 / 06:18 sacbee.com
    Elizabeth Schmid considers selling cookies her second-favorite thing about Girl Scouts. It's a close second, but the Bridge Creek Middle School seventh-grader ranks riding horses at Camp E-Ko-Wah near Marlow … Click to Continue…
  2. 5 Ever-So-Simple Strategies for Paying Off Debt in 2017

    Credit.com - Personal Finance
    01.23 / 06:05 credit.com
    Want to pay off your debt and save more money in 2017? You’re not alone! According to one survey of Google search data, searches for “Spend Less/Save More” were up 17.47% from 2016. Want to achieve your get-out-of-debt goal? If so, we recommend trying one of the five strategies here. 1. The Debt Snowball This... Read More The post 5 Ever-So-Simple Strategies for Paying Off Debt in 2017 appeared first on Credi…
  3. America Ferrera on activism and art

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.23 / 06:03 latimes.com
    Sundance 2017 updates: 'The Big Sick,' from Judd Apatow and Kumail Nanjiani, emerges as a film to watch and sells for $12 million Jan. 22, 2017, 9:51 p.m. Though the March on Main is still very much on the minds of the filmmakers and attendees of the Sundance Film festival, attention has…
  4. So far, so good in burn areas

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.23 / 04:13 latimes.com
    Storm slams Southern California: Roads flooding and warnings issued around the region Jan. 22, 2017, 8:05 p.m. The National Weather Service is warning that the storm hitting Southern California on Sunday could be the strongest since 2010. The heaviest rain is expected this afternoon and…
  5. Patriots are back in the Super Bowl after beating Steelers in AFC title game

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.23 / 03:00 latimes.com
    The NFL forced Tom Brady to sit out the first four games of the season, punishment for his role in an alleged football-deflating scheme. That did not stop Brady and the New England Patriots from returning to the Super Bowl. The veteran quarterback looked as poised and polished as ever…
  6. Aziz Ansari took to the 'SNL' stage and delivered some stand-up logic to Trump

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.23 / 02:23 latimes.com
    “Saturday Night Live” couldn’t have planned a better guest host for its inaugural-weekend show than Aziz Ansari. Or at least that’s the conclusion many came to after the writer-actor-comedian delivered the opening monologue. Ansari, who made a name for himself as Tom Haverford on “Parks and Recreatio…
  7. Dramatic scenes in Malibu hills

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.23 / 01:09 latimes.com
    Storm slams Southern California: Roads flooding and warnings issued around the region Jan. 22, 2017, 4:59 p.m. The National Weather Service is warning that the storm hitting Southern California on Sunday could be the strongest since 2010. The heaviest rain is expected this afternoon and…
  8. Rains bring a Disneyland miracle: Small crowds, short lines

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.22 / 23:56 latimes.com
    Southern California weather updates: Roads flooding and warnings issued around the region Jan. 22, 2017, 3:17 p.m. The National Weather Service is warning that the storm hitting Southern California on Sunday could be the strongest since 2010. The heaviest rain is expected this afternoon and…
  9. Tito Ortiz wins 'by choke,' ends career

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.22 / 06:48 latimes.com
    Tito Ortiz capped his legendary mixed-martial-arts career Saturday night with a fitting, impressive submission victory, and insisted the end is real. The Huntington Beach product reversed out of chokehold danger applied by rival Chael Sonnen and forced Sonnen to tap out by rear-naked…
  10. Lindsey Vonn, back from injuries, gets a Cup win

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.22 / 06:11 latimes.com
    Lindsey Vonn is back on top in just the second race of her comeback from a knee injury and a broken arm.  The American edged defending overall World Cup champion Lara Gut to win a downhill event in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, on Saturday and claim career victory No. 77, moving her within …
  11. The Latest: Former CIA chief says Trump should 'be ashamed'

    SacBee- Personal Finance
    01.22 / 05:49 sacbee.com
    The Latest on President Donald Trump (all times EST): 12:15 a.m. Former CIA Director John Brennan says President Donald Trump "should be ashamed of himself" for his behavior at CIA … Click to Continue…
  12. Chelsea Handler and the women's march

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.22 / 04:58 latimes.com
    Sundance 2017 updates: The Women's Protest March descends on Park City Jan. 21, 2017, 8:55 p.m. Many of the attendees of the Sundance Film Festival are sharing in the national protest movement and marching in support of women's rights down Main Street. And that's just one of the things…
  13. Lakers rookie Brandon Ingram beefs up his stats with improved play

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.22 / 01:55 latimes.com
    Brandon Ingram is 19, and he still needs to add muscle to his wiry 6-foot-9, 190-pound frame, but the rookie forward and second overall pick in last year’s draft is beginning to show he belongs in what Lakers Coach Luke Walton commonly calls “a grown man’s league.” After averaging 7.3 points and…
  14. Adam Hadwin shoots a 13-under 59 to take lead at PGA's CareerBuilder Challenge

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.22 / 01:54 latimes.com
    The temperature barely climbed into the 60s on a spectacular, clear afternoon in the desert after two rainy days. Adam Hadwin stopped counting at 59 — 13-under-par 59, that is.  The 29-year-old Canadian shot the ninth sub-60 round in PGA Tour history and the second in 10 days to take the th…
  15. Abraham Lincoln was at the women's march in Washington. See who else was there

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.22 / 00:41 latimes.com
    Women's marches live updates: Millions march in L.A. and around the world following Trump's inauguration Jan. 21, 2017, 4:34 p.m. A day after the presidential inauguration of Donald Trump, millions nationwide and around the world marched in support of women's rights. • Huge crowds converge on f…
  16. Ex-House Speaker Dennis Hastert paid sex-abuse accuser $1.7 million to stay quiet. Now he wants the money back

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.22 / 00:04 latimes.com
    Imprisoned former House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert has asked a judge to not only reject a sexual abuse victim's breach-of-contract lawsuit, but also to make the man pay back $1.7 million in secret hush-money payments. In response to the lawsuit and in his counterclaim, Hastert denied that the…
  17. Even in New York, hardly anybody ever saw a day like this

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.21 / 23:27 latimes.com
    Women's marches live updates: Millions march in L.A. and around the world following Trump's inauguration Jan. 21, 2017, 3:14 p.m. A day after the presidential inauguration of Donald Trump, millions nationwide and around the world marched in support of women's rights. • Huge crowds converge on f…
  18. Call to arms from the National Mall: 'Tweet all people kindly'

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.21 / 22:49 latimes.com
    Women's marches live updates: Millions march in L.A. and around the world following Trump's inauguration Jan. 21, 2017, 2:48 p.m. A day after the presidential inauguration of Donald Trump, millions nationwide and around the world marched in support of women's rights. • Huge crowds converge on f…
  19. Here's an aerial view of the massive turnout at the women's march in L.A.

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.21 / 22:13 latimes.com
    Women's marches live updates: Millions march in L.A. and around the world following Trump's inauguration Jan. 21, 2017, 2:09 p.m. A day after the presidential inauguration of Donald Trump, millions nationwide and around the world marched in support of women's rights. • Huge crowds converge on f…
  20. 'We're all in the same boat,' John Lewis tells rain-soaked crowd in Atlanta

    LATimes-Personal Finance
    01.21 / 21:36 latimes.com
    Women's marches live updates: Hundreds of thousands march in L.A. and around the world following Trump's inauguration Jan. 21, 2017, 1:33 p.m. A day after the presidential inauguration of Donald Trump, hundreds of thousands nationwide and around the world are marching in support of women's…