GIRARD, Ohio (WKBN) – When you think of planning for retirement, many times, it’s about saving money. But, there’s much more that goes into it than just saving.

“If you want to be individually solvent, you wanna be able to have freedom to enjoy yourself… Freedom demands responsibility, and if you want to be free during your retirement years to enjoy yourself, to not be a burden on society, to not be a burden on your family, somebody’s gonna have to do something,” said Mark Wagner, president and founder of American Atlantic, LLC, and author of “Building Financial Fences.”

With the third week of October being “National Retirement Planning Week,” Wagner talked to First News about some of the things to think about when planning for retirement.

“Social Security planning is a portion of that… When do I turn on the Social Security? It makes a big difference, for tens of thousands of dollars you can have over your retirement period,” Wagner said.

Wagner says some other things to think about when planning for retirement are estate planning and who will get your property once you pass away, long-term care costs like nursing homes and medical care, finances such as mortgages and monthly costs, and making sure beneficiaries are up to date.

Wagner says the earlier you begin planning, the better. That includes accounting for any money that you intend to use for travel or beyond paying bills.

“So the sooner that you can start investing like with the IUL, the IRAs the 401ks, the more you have, the more you’re gonna be able to do something with later,” he said.

We broke down some numbers that show how that money would need to be stretched out over your retirement.

The average life expectancy in the U.S. is 78 years. If you retire at age 67 with $500,000 saved, you would have to make $500,000 stretch 11 years. 

This would average out to you having around $45,000 a year.  

But, if you live past 78, you have to stretch it further. Let’s say you live to be 90. That would give you about $22,000 a year to spend. 

Is that enough?

Wagner says there are several ways to save for retirement. 

“Your IRA is your individual retirement account… Then your 401K is usually where you work. They have a program set up where the companies will match for you,” he said.

Wagner said there is also the option of an index universal life insurance. This is a type of permanent life insurance that also has a cash value component, in addition to a death benefit.

Wagner said it’s also important to remember that retirement saving is different than considering an inheritance for your loved ones. He said often, people are scared to use their retirement funds because they want to save them for their loved ones when they pass. He says that money should come from your life insurance, not your retirement fund.

Counting inflation is also important. As costs rise each year, it’s important to factor that in when deciding how much is enough.