Are we prepared for retirement? According to Forbes , that’s a resounding no—at least to 55% of American households. That’s right—the article points out that more than half of the US population has not put a dime towards their retirement.
Yes, emergency and tragic circumstances may be to blame. But the article goes on to state that shrinking pensions and a reliance on Social Security are also reasons for consideration.
If you find yourself in this position—on the brink of retirement with a savings account of $5—know that you can still create a plan and make retirement a viable option.
Read on to learn crucial tips you can use so that you can add more to your savings and not have to work for the rest of your life.
1. Start Saving NOW: Face the Reality
Even if you can only allot $100 a month to your retirement, it is better than nothing. For some, people put off saving for retirement because they don’t want to face the fact of a challenging transition—from working to not working, from being more physically independent to eventually relying on others.
While these fears are normal, it is important to face them by starting to save. You may find that putting in that first $100 breaks that barrier and helps you come to terms with this.
2. Don’t Invest in Unreliable Stocks
If you are approaching retirement, the last thing you want to do is invest in risky stocks. At this stage in your career, you do not have the time to build your funds back up after suffering a financial loss.
If you are considering investing in the stock market, speak with a reliable financial professional to determine what reliable stocks you can invest in.
A conservative approach in this regard, most often than not, is the best route—especially if you need to set aside more funds for your retirement.
3. Diversify Your Portfolio
There are several savings options you can use—Roth IRA, traditional Roth, 401(k), etc. Know that all have pros and cons, which is why it is important that you do your research.
For instance, funds in a Roth IRA  are able to grow tax-free but are not tax deductible. To learn more about these financial options, we recommend that you speak with a reputable financial professional.
4. Consider What Healthcare Options Are Available for Retirement
According to CNN Money , a 65-year-old couple who are healthy spends roughly $266,600 for healthcare during retirement.
This number, of course, will most likely increase as the couple ages. With the high figures to begin with and those numbers only rising, it is safe to say, healthcare is a key priority for seniors, if not the top.
For that reason, it is important to speak with healthcare professionals to learn about how to choose your health insurance company , as well as do your research on healthcare options—such as different Medicare packages—so that you are prepared for retirement.
5. Create a Financial Plan
Integrate all of these options—diversified portfolio, income allotment, investing in stocks, healthcare options—in a financial plan.
Having some financial structure will help you stay on track and get you that much closer to achieving your financial goal.
We recommend that you conduct research and speak with a financial professional  so that you create a personalized financial plan that aligns with your retirement situation and goals.
Saving for retirement doesn’t have to be a drag, but it is a necessity. If you feel you are behind in the retirement-saving game, know that it is never too late to start now. What other retirement tips do you have? Leave a comment.