Debt can be a burden at any age, but it can be an especially heavy weight in retirement. Making monthly debt payments can leave you with less money to cover necessary living expenses. Focus on paying off these bills if you want to retire without debt.
If you can eliminate this debt, you will likely cut out one of your biggest expenses and free up more income in retirement. If you are still many years away from retirement, you might benefit from refinancing to a shorter-term mortgage — such as a 15-year loan. If you are closer to retirement age, make additional payments on your current mortgage and pay it off faster. Credit card debt
Credit card debt typically carries a high interest rate, so get rid of it. Use an online credit card calculator to see how long it will take to pay off what you owe based on the monthly payments you make. To boost payments, cut your expenses and find ways to increase your income — such as by getting a second job or renting out a room in your house. Student loan debt
You might be able to refinance your loans to get a lower interest rate and shorter repayment term. Doing so will help reduce the total amount of interest you pay and can help you pay off your loans faster. Companies such as SoFi and CommonBond offer loan refinancing.
You don’t want this debt to be hanging over your head while you are in retirement, she added.
If you think you won’t be able to afford your car payments when you retire, consider trading in your pricey vehicle for a more affordable one. Look for a car you can buy with cash or with a smaller loan that can be paid off quickly.
Use the money you save with a smaller car payment to pay down other debts.
You might be able to negotiate your medical bills and lower the amount you have to pay. Use free resources such as the websites Healthcare Bluebook or New Choice Health to find the cost for certain medical procedures and learn if you were charged more than the going rate. Politely push for a discount if the rate you were charged is higher than the average.