The one thing you can't afford to do is underestimate your retirement costs

Retirement Expenses That Could Cost More Than Expected

1. Property Tax

You might budget for property taxes based on your current bill. But what if home values in your area increase a lot over time? If that happens, your property taxes could rise.

2. Home maintenance and repairs

As homes age, they tend to require more upkeep and repair work. Be sure to budget for that if you're planning to stay in your home. Also, some of the maintenance you're used to doing yourself could become less feasible as you age and find yourself more limited physically. That's another expense you'll have to account for.

3. Utilities

If you work full-time at an office, you may not spend a lot on utilities during the week. But once you retire, you may be home more often, and that could mean higher heating, cooling, and electricity costs.

4. Food

The cost of food can rise over time due to inflation. But you might also spend more on food by virtue of being home more often. For example, instead of grabbing coffee or a snack from the office break room, you might instead need to head to your own kitchen. And the cost there could add up.

5. Auto insurance

Some auto insurers impose higher premium rates on older drivers, the logic being that they may pose more of a risk. Don't be shocked if your auto insurance rates increase as you get older.

6. Medicare premiums

Medicare premiums can rise from year to year, so they can be difficult to budget for. Plus, higher earners pay more for Medicare coverage, so it pays to see if your anticipated income bracket will result in a premium surcharge. That way, you can plan for the added cost.

7. Dental care

Routine dental care is not covered by original Medicare. Thus, once you retire, it may cost more money than you'd think to get your teeth cleaned regularly.

8. Vision care

Vision care (think eye exams for glasses) is also not covered by original Medicare. Even if you don't wear glasses now, that might change in retirement. Be sure to plan for that cost.

9. Long-term care

Many seniors wind up needing some amount of long-term care, and the cost there may be much more than you'd expect. You can mitigate that cost by securing long-term care insurance ahead of retirement, but it's best to do so in your 50s, when you're more likely to snag a more reasonable premium rate based on your age and health.

10. Taxes

Many seniors are shocked when they realize how much money they owe the IRS. Make sure to assess the various income sources of yours that may be taxable, from retirement plan withdrawals to Social Security.


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