So you want to retire early? Follow these steps to success.

So you want to retire early? Follow these steps to success.
06 Apr 2016

There are two main components to a successful retirement, “emotional” and “financial” preparedness. Having both at retirement is the ultimate goal. I see people who are ready to retire emotionally, they just don’t have the money. I’ve also seen the other side of that equation. To retire early it’s even more important to have both. Here are a few steps to follow:

1) Reduce or eliminate as much debt as possible. Not only can debt be a massive emotional burden, it can often cause cash flow (financial) stress as well. So we suggest trying to pay off all debt prior to retirement. A small mortgage payment is OK; we just don’t want clients stuck with credit card debt, auto loans and the like.

2) Have “buckets” in place to coincide with the Premier Bucket System (PBS). This idea is to segment your money into responsibilities as opposed to looking at your money as one big pile of cash. This not only works well in times of investment chaos, (emotional) but can really help with liquidity needs (financial) as well.

Premier Bucket System Handout

3) Have a “plan”.  I mean literally. No successful coach goes into any athletic endeavor without a game-plan, nor should you. A written Financial Plan will validate what you are already doing well, expose areas of concern, and help come up with solutions.

4) Learn to enjoy your money!  I mean really enjoy. Please don’t become so consumed with achieving great wealth that you allow your money to control you. As I often say, “You don’t want to become a financial hoarder, do you?”  We are taught to save and invest but, unfortunately, we are never encouraged or educated on how to enjoy our money.

These simple steps will help you achieve a successful retirement. Remember, retirement is much more than about money. Your quality of life is much more important than your quantity of life!

Good luck!


Jeffrey Johnston

Jeff has over 30 years of experience in the investment industry. He currently holds his FINRA Serices 6, 63, 66, 7, 24 & 51 licenses with LPL Financial as well as his health and life insurance licenses.