As we reach mid-life, we start to contemplate retirement. Important questions are:

  • Am I ready to retire?
  • How will I spend my time?
  • Will my life still be purposeful?
  • How will life differ with my spouse/my children?
  • Can I afford to retire?
  • Should we downsize our house and cars?

Some Financial Tips
  1. Update your budget as your spending habits and expenses will differ.
  2. Decide when to apply for public pension benefits. There are various pension plans: the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), Old Age Security (OAS) and the Quebec Pension Plan (QPP). Lower income seniors may also qualify for Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS). The retirement pension paid under the Quebec Pension Plan is part of the basic income that a person can receive as early as age 60 if he/she contributed to the Plan. For information, check out  and
  3. You may be eligible for tax credits. Call to find out.
  4. Check if your insurance plan will meet your needs.
  5. Learn how your pension is affected if you wish to work part-time.
  6. Think about pension income sharing with your spouse to minimize tax expenses.
  7. Designate a power of attorney to manage your money should you become mentally/physically disabled. Update your will to ensure your wishes are honored.
  8. Find out about housing options for seniors.

On an Emotional Note
Simplify: You will still have a 24-hour day. Be efficient when cleaning the house, buying groceries, mowing the lawn and going to the doctor/dentist. Allot time to spend with family/friends, on education, adventure, community, hobbies, travel, and health. 

Have specific plans: Make new plans. Actively pursue your new goals. Maybe you would like to volunteer at a non-profit, assist the elderly, teach younger people your trade, participate in more sports, etc.

Retire to do something: Retiring to avoid a job is a recipe for disaster. Retire to pursue things that you are passionate about and follow your dreams.

Dream big: When you dream big, it changes how you think and act. It inspires those around you. What are your dreams? What is your vision? Don’t just settle!

Keep learning: There are plenty of free or low-cost courses that universities offer.  Whether it is history, geography or arts, take advantage of learning time. Perhaps you always wanted to learn a new language, take pottery or painting classes, or wish to travel to Europe. Learning new things is a key element to an interesting, rewarding retirement. It helps keep your mind sharp, provides an opportunity to meet new friends, as well as a sense of accomplishment. Be a lifelong learner.

Remember to spend your time wisely. Enjoy retirement life to the fullest; you deserve it!