Tips to Ensure Your Retirement Savings Last for Your Entire Life

Regardless of age, most individuals share a common financial goal: to retire with the confidence that they have enough money to last a lifetime. With some smart planning, simple steps and useful tools this goal can be achieved.

The problem is that the anxiety caused by uncertain variables can chip away at confidence quickly. In fact, just three in 10 people say they are very confident they will always feel financially secure, including during retirement, according to TIAA’s 2019 Lifetime Income Survey. Uncertainty about the future of social programs and market performance, concerns about unexpected expenses and investment losses, and fear of saving too little are all major detractors of confidence.

Regardless of your age or where you are in the process of saving for retirement, there are simple steps you can take to increase your financial confidence today.

Secure income for as long as you live

One of the best ways to improve your financial security is by guaranteeing that no matter how long you live, you will receive monthly income that will cover routine costs. Fixed annuities are the only product that guarantees a regular stream of income in retirement that cannot be outlived. They provide guaranteed lifetime income to give workers saving for retirement a method for insulating themselves from financial risks, such as the impacts of stock market volatility, longevity risk and even cognitive decline.

Of those who participate in a company retirement plan, the 2019 Lifetime Income Survey found that nearly seven in 10 (69 percent) cite guaranteed income for life as one of their top goals for their retirement plan and almost half (45 percent) say that guaranteed income for life is their very top goal. TIAA offers fixed annuities that are guaranteed to grow every day during your savings years regardless of market fluctuations and provides guaranteed monthly payments that never run out

Seek professional advice

In order to effectively address financial uncertainty, you should seek professional advice to build a plan and cultivate the skills needed to deal with adverse events or circumstances. A financial planner has important insight that can help you determine the best plan for reaching your goals. In fact, those who rely on a financial adviser express more confidence in their ability to always be financially secure, never run out of money and maintain their lifestyle in retirement than those who do not rely on one.

Everyone’s situation is different, so it’s important to work with someone you trust to provide a personalized plan and unbiased guidance. A financial professional will help to ensure that your investments and savings strategies are diverse to help protect you from market volatility and other uncertainties. Just like eating a variety of wholesome foods to stay healthy, you need a variety of investments — beyond the traditional focus on stocks and bonds to support your financial health. Explore all options, including products with guaranteed payments.

Stick to the plan

Once you have a plan in place, keep your eye on the prize: retiring with confidence. Stay the course and work with your financial adviser who can help answer any questions. If available, always participate in employer ­sponsored retirement plans and take advantage of company match programs to increase your investments. Review your plan regularly and make adjustments as needed. Finally, don’t withdraw any funds from your retirement savings early or you could set yourself back significantly and incur a penalty.

To learn more about how much you should save for retirement and options for how to build a retirement plan that will provide lifelong income, explore the Retirement Advisor Tools at

Guarantees are subject to the claims paying ability of the issuing company. Annuity contracts are issued by Teachers Insurance Annuity Association of America. Any guarantees under annuities issued by TIAA are subject to TIAA’s claims-paying ability. TIAA Traditional is a guaranteed insurance contract and not an investment for federal securities law purposes.

Investment, insurance and annuity products are not FDIC insured, are not bank guaranteed, are not deposits, are not insured by any federal government agency, are not a condition to any banking service or activity, and may lose value.

This material is for informational or educational purposes only and does not constitute investment advice under ERISA. This material does not take into account any specific objectives or circumstances of any particular investor, or suggest any specific course of action. Investment decisions should be made based on the investor’s own objectives and circumstances.

TIAA-CREF Individual & Institutional Services, LLC, FINRA Member, distributes securities products.

Annuities issued by Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America (TIAA), New York, NY.

© 2019 Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America-College Retirement Equities Fund, 730 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10017