Do you look forward to retirement? If so, you have my deepest sympathies. You see, it breaks my heart to see people spend their entire adult lives working tiressly in stress-filled jobs, always dreaming of the day the can retire to do what they want, when they want, where they want, and with whom they want. What makes me sad is that it doesn't have to be that way.
From the moment you and I left high school we've been taught to do whatever it takes to get the highest paying job possible. After all, the more money you make, the nicer house you can live in, the nicer car you can drive, the nicer clothes you can wear, and the nicer vacations you can take.
The problem with that type of thinking is, if you're spending 40-60 hours per week in a stress-filled job that brings you no joy, allows no creative self-expression, and doesn't serve to solve a problem that's important to you, then is it truly possible to overcome that unhappiness simply by acquiring a multitude of inanimate objects that wear out and become obsolete? Maybe for you, but not for me.
My contention is that the reason people look forward to retirement is because they have painted themselves into a corner with debt and financial obligations. Had they first sought to discover and pursue a work that was well suited to their talents, abilities, values and genuine interests -- instead of buying the American Dream on credit right out of school -- most people would be free to work at what they wanted, when they wanted, where they wanted, and with whom they wanted.
Call me crazy, but I don't ever want to retire, much less look forward to it. Why? Because I enjoy my work so much that I can't imagine life without it. In fact, think about all the accomplished people in our history. Famous politicians, scientists, actors, business moguls, and artists, who in spite of having plenty of wealth to retire on, continue to work until they either lose the ability to perform or until they die. It's because they love what they do, they are good at what they do, they believe in what they are doing, and most importantly, people love, appreciate, and admire them for their work. As a side benefit, people who work past age 65 live an average of three years longer than those who retire at age 65 (see the Life Expectancy Quiz).
If you were to list your top ten reasons to retire, I'd be willing to bet that all of those reasons could be satisfied without having to give up being of value to society. If you learn to become an investor of your time and money, rather than what most people are ... spenders of time and money, and commit to discovering and pursuing a work that doesn't feel like work at all, you too may find yourself never wanting to retire.
In fact, my wish for you is that you eventually discover and pursue a work that causes you to never want to retire either. However, even if you are fortunate enough to find a work that you love, you still must learn to live within whatever means that work provides, and you must prepare for the possibility that you may lose your ability to perform that work at some point in the future. In other words, you still need to plan for retirement ... even if you never want to retire. Hence, the reason for adding a Retirement Planning Calculators section to the site.
This section of free-online-calculator-use.com is dedicated to providing you with easy-to-use financial planning calculators and retirement savings calculators to help you prepare for your eventual retirement. Sadly, most people I know can't tell you what "IRA" stands for, much less have ever spent a single moment planning for their futures. They spend 6-months planning a 7-day vacation, and leave their lives and financial futures to drift aimlessly in a sea of possibilities. Not you though, right? Right.
Below is the current list of retirement planning calculators and Retirement savings calculators, all dedicated to helping you to turn your retirement dreams into realities. Be sure to check back often for the latest additions.
Retirement Saving Calculator
This online calculator will estimate you much you will need to have saved by the time you retire in order to meet your monthly income goal.
Retirement Income Calculator
This online calculator will estimate how much you will need to have saved by the time you retire in order to meet your monthly income goal -- with and without considering the effects inflation will have on your future buying power. Plus, the calculator will also tell you how much you will need to deposit each month in order to grow your retirement savings to the prescribed balance.
Retirement Fund Calculator
This is the most comprehensive of the retirement planning calculators, as it includes options for factoring in inflation, taxes, up to three post-retirement incomes, a one-time benefit, and more. Also includes a printer friendly report.
401(k) Retirement Calculator with Save Your Raise Feature
This calculator will calculate the future value of your 401(k) and the resulting annual retirement income. Includes a one-of-a-kind Save Your Raise feature showing you what could happen if you contributed all or part of your future raises to your 401(k). Also includes options for annual cost of living increases and any employer matching contributions that may apply. The results include a year-by-year salary, contribution, and balance chart that can be opened in a printer friendly window.
IRA Distribution Calculator (for ages 20-69)
This online calculator will forecast the future year-by-year growth of your IRA, along with required distributions once you reach age 70-1/2 (IRA owners ages 20-69).
IRA RMD Calculator (for age 70 and older)
This online calculator will estimate the required minimum distribution factor and amount for the current distribution year (IRA owners age 70 and older).
IRA Withdrawal Calculator (for age 70 and older)
This online calculator will help you to forecast the future year-by-year minimum required withdrawals your Traditional IRA (IRA owners age 70 and older).
IRA Savings Calculator for Tax-Deferred Comparison
This online calculator will help you to forecast the future value of an Individual Retirement Account, and then compare the tax-deferred future value to that of a non-qualifying retirement investment.
Roth IRA Conversion Calculator
This calculator will calculate and compare the net consequences of leaving an existing traditional IRA as is, versus converting it into a Roth IRA. Results include a side-by-side comparison of the two scenarios before, at, and during retirement.
Roth vs Traditional IRA Calculator
This retirement planning tool will calculate a side-by-side comparison between contributing to a Traditional IRA and contributing to a Roth IRA.
Calculate Your Life Expectancy According to the IRS
This calculator uses the Single Life Expectancy Table from IRS Publication 590-B to estimate how long you will live.
Life Expectancy Quiz
This quiz calculates your life expectancy based on your age and 24 questions related your lifestyle, health habits and family history, and then compares your life expectancy with the average life expectancy in the US.
The following is a list of Retirement Planning Calculators that I plan to add to this section as I have time. I'm basically adding calculators to free-online-calculator-use.com in the order from highest demand to lowest demand, so if you see a calculator in the following list you want me to put on the high priority list, please let me know.
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