Keep an eye on your investments for retirement
You should regularly check and adjust your investment portfolio, just like medical checks to make sure you are healthy. It’s important to do it to make sure your investment portfolio suits your retirement needs as you grow older. So, when is a good time to do this?
- Life changing events: You should change your retirement plan if there are big changes in your life. Getting married, buying a house, switching job, unemployment or long-term illness will affect your retirement plan.
- Economic and financial issues: Changes to the economy or financial sector can affect the investment market or industry in a big way. For example, the United States' move to return interest rates to more normal levels will affect stock prices, bonds and the property market. Therefore, it is wise to check whether you should change your investment plan.
Aggressive or conservative?
Assets have different risks and returns. The type of assets you have affect how much risk and what kind of return you can expect. There are, generally, three kinds of investment portfolios: aggressive, balanced and conservative.
Tips for checking and changing your investments
- Risk and return are not the only factors
There are many types of investments. Aside from risk and return, you should also consider an investments liquidity; whether it will provide steady income; if it is a form of insurance; and how it fits in with your estate planning. For example, most people think property can bring you a high return. But the cost of a property transaction is high, and it can take time to sell. Bonds provide a steady income, but stocks are easier to sell.
- Check your MPF
Your Mandatory Provident Fund (MPF) scheme is part of your retirement plan, so you need to think about this when looking at your investments.
- Higher returns, greater risk
If your retirement savings are not enough, you could make more high-return investments – even if the risk is greater. Returns on your investment, however, are closely tied to the economy. If the economy is weak, a 2% to 3% return is unlikely. Therefore, you may have to consider other options, like retiring on less money, cutting back on spending, saving more, or even retiring later.
- More retirement plan ideas
Nowadays there are more retirement options to choose from, such as annuities and reverse mortgage schemes. You should study them and see whether they meet your retirement needs, including whether an option may further diversify your investment portfolio.