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How to determine your retirement goals

Mediafeed Logo By Valerie Zell of Mediafeed | Slide 1 of 7: The median retirement account balance for all working Americans is $0, and half of those households are over age 55 (not a typo). But it’s not just a problem for the Boomers. Research has also uncovered that 95% of Millennials are not saving enough for retirement. (Also not a typo.)It’s a bleak picture, to be sure. But when reality hits hard, motivation can follow. And no one wants retirement to just become one of those things that our parents and grandparents used to enjoy, back in the day.On average, Americans spend 20 years in retirement. If you earn $75,000 a year when you retire and want to keep the same salary, you’ll need a total of $1.5 million squirreled away.This is the part where many people might utter the word “impossible.” But if you start saving for retirement now, and make your retirement contributions just as mandatory as your electric bill, that number can start to look a little less intimidating.In fact, just using a retirement calculator can put you in a better position than many Americans — fewer than half of them have done the math. And once you have your own enormous number, it can get easier to break it down into smaller, more attainable goals along the way.To be sure, though, the road to retirement is paved with homework and sacrifice. It’s estimated people need 70% to 90% of their pre-retirement income to maintain the same standard of living after they stop working.So perhaps more than any other financial decision you’ll make, reaching personal retirement goals takes diligence, preparation, planning for the “what if’s” and lots of willpower.It may seem overwhelming, but it can help to start by determining your retirement objectives. Then you can find your own personal way to crush them. Everyone’s financial situation is different, and this plan is not the only solution out there, but here is one possible way you might go about determining your goals. Related: When can I retire? This formula will let you know

Americans aren't saving for retirement like they should

The median retirement account balance for all working Americans is $0, and half of those households are over age 55 (not a typo). But it’s not just a problem for the Boomers. Research has also uncovered that 95% of Millennials are not saving enough for retirement. (Also not a typo.)

It’s a bleak picture, to be sure. But when reality hits hard, motivation can follow. And no one wants retirement to just become one of those things that our parents and grandparents used to enjoy, back in the day.

On average, Americans spend 20 years in retirement. If you earn $75,000 a year when you retire and want to keep the same salary, you’ll need a total of $1.5 million squirreled away.

This is the part where many people might utter the word “impossible.” But if you start saving for retirement now, and make your retirement contributions just as mandatory as your electric bill, that number can start to look a little less intimidating.

In fact, just using a retirement calculator can put you in a better position than many Americans — fewer than half of them have done the math. And once you have your own enormous number, it can get easier to break it down into smaller, more attainable goals along the way.

To be sure, though, the road to retirement is paved with homework and sacrifice. It’s estimated people need 70% to 90% of their pre-retirement income to maintain the same standard of living after they stop working.

So perhaps more than any other financial decision you’ll make, reaching personal retirement goals takes diligence, preparation, planning for the “what if’s” and lots of willpower.

It may seem overwhelming, but it can help to start by determining your retirement objectives. Then you can find your own personal way to crush them. Everyone’s financial situation is different, and this plan is not the only solution out there, but here is one possible way you might go about determining your goals.

Related: When can I retire? This formula will let you know

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