Imagine your  life away from the hustle and bustle  of your everyday job, taking in  that picturesque landscape, finally spending quality time with family or just taking in the memories of a life well lived. These are the things we dream about when we imagine our retirement. . However, how retirement ready are we?

In Kenya, data from the Retirement Benefits Authority (RBA) indicates that less than 20% of the working population is enrolled in formal pension schemes. This means that an estimated 10 million people (in formal employment) & the remaining majority in the informal sector have no pension plan in place for their retirement years. This is a an alarming statistic given the fact that we are living longer and therefore require even more financial support in our golden years.

It is no wonder that for many, as retirement draws closer so does anxiety. Most people approaching retirement age, wonder, “How will I live with no active income?”Some even end up making their children their retirement plan, particularly in the African context. As much as it is virtuous for your children to  take care of you as their aging parent, this should not be the one and only plan you have going into retirement.This can only result in a  burdensome relationship and consequently, a stressful retirement that falls short of expectations..
At ICEA LION, we believe retirement is not the end of the road, but indeed a road to new beginnings. Retirement is life’s vacation! You deserve  fulfilling golden years and so here are tips that will set you on the path to a good retirement.

Settle your debts before retirement

It might seem like a no-brainer but paying off debts well into your retirement is not a good idea. Whether it is a car loan, mortgage, SACCO loan or credit card bill, make sure you have a plan in place to settle these prior to retirement.. Start with the most expensive as you trickle down to the least pressing debts.

Reconsider your risk tolerance

Sometimes the biggest risks are often the ones that come with the biggest rewards. If you have a high risk appetite, , you might want to avoid taking larger gambles asyou near your retirement. It is a good idea to take up the high-risk investments in your early to mid-years and play it safe towards the end. This is because you don’t want to lose money when your retirement isimminent..

Prioritize healthcare

A good health care plan starts with healthy habits. Health should always be a priority even as you enjoy many of life’s offerings; from your youth, pick up a healthy lifestyle and your future you will thank you.

Furthermore, as you age it is important to recognize your health needs will be more critical compared to your younger days. You can shop around for a post-retirement medical savings product to help you build a fund to take care of your medical expenses in retirement.

Decide the ideal retirement location

Bahamas? Zanzibar? Diani? Mashinani? Even the city? There is no wrong or right place to retire. It is all up to you to decide where your ideal retirement home will be. We advise that you are mortgage/rent free by this time.If you set your eyes on travelling you can move into a smaller house so you can re-purpose your budget towards travel. If the costs of a certain area are not entirely favorable, different towns have different living expenses. A new town also has the novelty factor hence you can retire surrounded by an entirely new and exciting culture.

Structure Your Finances for Retirement

It is a good idea to determine your daily living expenses & compare that to your retirement income or total retirement savings goals. Even if you have retirement income from a pension, we greatly recommend you find alternative sources of income. Unfortunately, in some cases, this may call for scaling down on your luxuries; although if you plan well you can avoid compromising on your desired quality of life. Live within your means, avoid borrowing & remember that the simplest joys in life need not be expensive.

Got any questions on retirement? Talk to us today on 0719 071 999 or email us on contactcentre@icealion.com to find out how you can start planning your retirement.