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Living the life you want when you retire

Life after work offers the chance to do the things that mean most to you.

Whether you're wanting to retire altogether, go part-time, or reset your career, making plans early can give you the best chance of living the life you want.

What do you want to do?

Seeing a colleague retire, or speaking to others about their plans can be a trigger to think about your own future.

The more you can picture what you want, the better chance you'll have of making it a reality.

Here are some things to think about.

Working life

Do you want to give up work completely, or go part-time? Do you want to set up your own business, or do something completely different?

Whatever you'd like to do in the future, try to start working towards it as soon as you can. That might mean saving or investing more money to become gradually less reliant on a salary, or starting to hone other skills. If you fancy taking up writing, you don't have to wait until you retire to enrol on a writing course.

Living situation

Are you happy with where you're currently living, or would you want to move back to your home country? Or to another country altogether?

If you want to stay where you are, would you keep the home you've got or downsize? If you're looking to move, could you potentially make some money on the property you're selling to go towards your retirement?

Take note of what aspects are important to you, such as proximity to family and amenities, or climate.


Do you have a burning passion you'd like to pursue? Maybe you want to explore more, and experience new places, cultures and activities? Or maybe you want to move home and spend more time with loved ones?

Family and loved ones

Do you want to be able to spend more time with your family, whether that's children, grandchildren or your parents? And will you need to provide any financial support for them?

It's important to consider the balance between being able to provide financial support for your family, and trying to free up enough time to spend together.

When do you want to retire?

You might not plan a hard stop to your working life. Instead, you might see yourself gradually tapering off, and doing more of what makes you happy as you grow more financially independent.

Having a rough timescale for when you'd like to slow down, or stop work, can give you a target for when you want to become financially independent.

This might be hard to picture when you're in your 20s or 30s. But the sooner you start to save, the more options you'll give yourself in the future.

How much will it cost?

Knowing how much you'll need to live on when you stop working, or work less, is a key part of planning for your future - and that means being realistic about the kind of lifestyle you want to have.

Our retirement planning calculator can help you estimate how much you might need to invest to reach your retirement goals.

Are you setting enough aside?

Use our living in retirement calculator to estimate what you could have for retirement if you were to retire at your current age. You'll then be able to see if you need to step up your savings efforts. The key is to take action now. Hopefully, you'll have many years ahead of you and a lot of good living to be done.

Explore more

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