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Perfecting Your Retirement Game Plan: Timing Matters

November 08, 2023

Retirement is a significant milestone that often comes after decades of hard work, financial planning, and personal sacrifices. The timing of your retirement can have a profound impact on the quality of your life in your later years. Too early, and you risk running out of money; too late, and you might not get to enjoy the fruits of your labor as much as you'd like. So, how do you strike the perfect balance? Let's review some critical considerations for timing your retirement effectively.

Understanding Your Financial Picture

Before deciding when to retire, it's crucial to have a clear understanding of your current financial situation and future income streams. A comprehensive financial plan should include details about your assets, liabilities, potential growth in investment accounts, and future expenses.

Health Considerations

Health is another essential factor in deciding when to retire. Early retirement might be a good choice if your health is declining and work is taking a toll on you. However, retiring early can also mean giving up employment benefits such as health insurance. Make sure to calculate these costs and consider alternative options like Medicare.

Market Timing and Sequence of Returns Risk

Some may suggest retiring when the market is high to maximize your retirement corpus. However, it's essential to understand the "Sequence of Returns Risk." This refers to the risk of receiving lower or negative returns early when making withdrawals from your investment portfolio. Such a sequence can deplete your savings faster than if the series is reversed. A well-diversified portfolio managed by a seasoned financial advisor can help mitigate this risk.

Social Security and Pension Benefits

The timing of retirement can significantly impact the amount you receive from Social Security or pension benefits. Waiting until full retirement age (typically between 65 and 67, depending on your birth year) will allow you to receive 100% of your Social Security benefits. According to the Social Security Administration, for every year you delay retirement past your full retirement age up to age 70, your benefit will increase by approximately 8%.

Emotional and Psychological Readiness

Finally, retirement isn't just a financial decision; it's emotional and psychological. Ensure you have a plan for spending your time, whether traveling, picking up new hobbies, or spending time with loved ones.


Timing your retirement is a complex decision that should consider multiple factors, including your financial situation, health, market conditions, and emotional readiness.

If you have questions about timing your retirement or need to develop a comprehensive financial plan, the experienced team at IM Wealth Partners is here to assist you. Contact us today for a complimentary consultation.