Retirement Planning Checklist

Smart retirement planning looks different for those who are ten, five or even just one year away from leaving work.

Illustration of people planning retirement
(Image credit: Illustration by Cha Pornea)

Ideally, you should start ticking off a to-do list of retirement planning tasks on the day you receive your first paycheck. But in reality, most of us don’t focus on retirement until much later — and that’s fine, as long as you’ve been saving throughout your career. Once you reach your fifties, though, it’s time to start thinking about when you’ll retire, where you’d like to live, and how you’ll spend your time once you stop working.

Retirement planning is in flux

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Sandra Block
Senior Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Block joined Kiplinger in June 2012 from USA Today, where she was a reporter and personal finance columnist for more than 15 years. Prior to that, she worked for the Akron Beacon-Journal and Dow Jones Newswires. In 1993, she was a Knight-Bagehot fellow in economics and business journalism at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She has a BA in communications from Bethany College in Bethany, W.Va.