Planning for Military Retirement and Dreaming of Financial Freedom


The idea of military retirement can be an exciting and a scary thought. Whether you are getting out at 20 years on the dot or 26 years you have something a lot of civilians don’t have. The option to continue working and have dual retirement pensions.  This provides veterans with a unique situation when determining how to save for retirement.  Sitting down prior to retirement with a Financial Planner is highly recommended when sorting out your own future. One plan does NOT fit all. There are numerous options out there. For those looking to retire now or save for retirement the plan you choose is based on a lot of things. Just to name a few; future income needs, your health and what you have already saved. We wanted to provide you with a general idea of what the process would look like when planning for your Military Retirement when meeting with your Financial Advisor whether they work with companies like USAA or another Financial Service Firm.   Sitting down with a licensed and seasoned Advisor, you might go through a process such as this:

First, though you need to ask yourself the following: And if you haven’t already asked yourself this, your Financial Advisor SHOULD be asking it.

How do you envision your future?

How do you see yourself living after your separation from the military? Will you find work again? Will your spouse work? Do you want to travel?  What expenses do you currently have and what are your future requirements? Example: Children’s college education, Weddings, etc.  Figuring out what your needed income will be to live is important to have written down. Many financial advisors now have tools to plug in all these numbers and to forecast what you will need to have saved in order to live the life you dream of. To have that “financial freedom”. Knowing these things is also CRUCIAL if you’re planning to become a veteran-owned small business owner.  If entrepreneurship is something you’re dreaming of or preparing for HERE’S a great resource to read.

Once you’ve answered the above questions, here’s the general process you should expect.

Establish your plan

Sitting down with a financial planner you are then able to discuss your military retirement. The goals you’ve envisioned and together, you can design a plan that will align with that lifestyle you hope to have or continue with.  They may also suggest if you don’t already, connecting with attorneys, accountants. This will be where you can also ask any questions and really get a confident idea of if what you dreamed of can be a reality.

Execute your plan

Once you’re ready to move forward, accounts are opened TSP plans are rolled over into Individual Retirement Accounts with more options and fewer restrictions and the plans you’ve sat down and discussed will begin their implementation process.

Manage your plan – and life.

Now, it’s time to LIVE. Monthly, Semi-Annual meetings will be done to check on your plans progress. Getting customized reports are to be expected to show that progress. During this time, changes in your life may happen and discussing those changes, whether good or bad is incredibly important to discuss. At this time of your life,  big decisions such as purchasing a vacation home, a boat, selling a property, paying for a wedding or changes in additional income can alter the forecast of what you have spent time planning significantly. Don’t feel a bother to discuss these changes even if you feel they may be small.

There are many facets of retirement and saving for your future and accounting for life and money. Establishing a plan is the only way to keep track of it all.  There are tons of experts out there that want to help provide clarity in your life as you move into your new journey after serving our country. Many of them can also guide you on entrepreneurship as well.

If interested, here’s a great podcast to listen to directly by a Veteran on Financial Independence. We hope you enjoy it!

Veteran On The Move

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