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7 Steps to a Happy Retirement

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You wouldn't dream of running a marathon without undergoing months of training. Or heading into the wilderness without making sure you have adequate provisions. Or betting your life savings on a business venture you haven't thoroughly researched.

But when it comes to entering retirement—when a failure to plan can have devastating consequences—a surprising number of people are unprepared. More than half of workers older than 55 haven’t developed a plan for paying themselves in retirement, according to a recent study by Ameriprise, and almost two-thirds haven’t identified which investments they’ll tap first. Many wait until they’ve set their retirement date to put together any kind of plan at all.

Planning late is better than never planning, but your chances of a secure retirement will improve if you start making decisions and checking items off your to-do list at least a year out. Take a look at seven big issues you'll face as you transition into retirement.

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