The Six W Questions of Retirement

by Craig Moser on April 12, 2019

Do you remember learning the six “W” questions in grade school?  They are: Who, What, When, Where, Why and How.  You probably remember these, but do you know the Six W Questions Retirement?  Answering these questions help you determine the retirement lifestyle you want to achieve.

1. Who do you want to spend retirement with?

One of the great joys of retirement is  that you can spend more time with  the people you love. So ask yourself:  Who are the people you want to  spend time with? Your spouse? Your  grandchildren? Old friends? People in  your golf club, acting class, or church  group? Whatever you decide will help  you answer the next question.

2. What do you want to spend retirement doing?

If the answer to the “Who” question is  your grandkids, then the answer to  the “What” question may be, “I want  to spend my time teaching my  grandchildren how to fish.” If “Who”  equals your spouse, then “What” may  be, “re-living our honeymoon.” The  combinations are almost endless!

3. When do you want to retire?

A very important question. Have you  always dreamed of retiring early, or are  you someone who would rather work for  as long as possible? The answer will  determine how much you’ll need to save  for retirement, when to take your Social  Security benefits, and so on.

4. Where do you want to retire?

Some people stay put after they retire;  others move somewhere far away.

Again, the answer to this question is  largely affected by your answers to the  first two. Maybe you’d rather live closer  to other family members. Maybe you’re  looking for a different climate. In the end,  you should retire to wherever will best  allow you to do what you want to do,  with the people you want to do it with.

5. Why do you want to retire?

You should never retire just because  you’re 65, or because you don’t know  what else to do. People who make that  mistake often find retirement to be  unfulfilling. Instead, ask yourself why  you want to retire. Is it because you  want to broaden your horizons and  grow as a person? Is it so you can finally  write that novel kicking around in your  head? Whatever the answer, simply  having an answer will lead to a happier,  more fulfilling retirement experience.

6. How will you pay for retirement?

Retirement creates a massive lifestyle  change, one that will be quite upsetting  to your finances if you don’t prepare  for it. The good news is that once you  answer the first five questions, you’ll  be well on your way to figuring out the  sixth. That’s because determining  Who, What, When, Where, and Why  can help you approximate the total  cost of retirement. Once you know  that, you can figure out how much you  will need to earn, save, and invest.

If you need help figuring out the How of your retirement, we would love to help you create a retirement plan.  Feel free to give us a call at 336-448-1086, send an email to, or schedule your appointment today!

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