Denis Cummins

Creating a Retirement Income Plan

retirement planning

Retirement planning is key to a secure and comfortable future. When you transition from a paycheck to living off your savings and investments, having a retirement income plan becomes vital. In this blog, we will walk you through the steps to build a retirement income plan that meets your financial needs, is stable, and supports your lifestyle.

What Do You Need In Retirement

First step in building a retirement income plan is to assess your retirement needs. Consider these:

Living Expenses: Estimate your monthly living expenses, housing, food, utilities, healthcare, and other essentials. Don’t forget to include inflation.

Lifestyle Goals: What lifestyle do you want to maintain in retirement? Will you travel, pursue hobbies, or relocate?

Healthcare Costs: Healthcare can be a big expense in retirement. Consider insurance premiums, medications, and potential long-term care.

Life Expectancy: Estimate your life expectancy based on your health and family history. This will help you plan for a sustainable income through your retirement years.

Review Your Current Situation

Take a big picture view of your current situation. This includes:

Savings and Investments: Review your retirement accounts, savings, and investment portfolios. Calculate your total assets and growth potential.

Debt: List out any outstanding debts and plan to pay them off before or during retirement.

Income Sources: List all potential sources of income in retirement, pensions, superannuation, rental income, and part-time work.


Building a budget is key to managing your retirement income. Your budget should include:

Essential Expenses: These are the necessary expenses, housing, food, utilities, and healthcare.

Discretionary Spending: These are the non-essential expenses, travel, hobbies, and entertainment.

Emergency Fund: Set aside funds for unexpected expenses so you don’t have to dip into your retirement savings.

Get the Most Out of Your Superannuation

Superannuation is a big part of retirement income for Australians. Here’s how you can get the most out of your superannuation:

Contribute Regularly: Make regular contributions to your superannuation account to build your retirement savings.

Take Advantage of Tax Benefits: Contributions to superannuation can have tax benefits. Talk to a tax professional to get the most out of your contributions.

Review Investment Options: Make sure your superannuation is invested in line with your risk tolerance and retirement goals.

Multiple Income Streams

Having one income source is risky. Diversify your income streams to build a solid foundation. Consider:

Annuities: Buy annuities to get a guaranteed income stream for a set period or for life.

Dividends: Invest in dividend paying shares to get regular income.

Real Estate: Rental income from investment properties can provide a steady income stream.

Part-Time Work: Consider part-time work or freelance to top up your retirement income.

couple with financial consultant


Planning your withdrawals from retirement accounts and investments will help you have a sustainable income. Consider:

Withdrawal Rate: Determine a safe withdrawal rate that will last through retirement. 4% per year is a common recommended rate.

Sequence of Withdrawals: Plan the order in which you will withdraw from different accounts to minimise taxes and maximise growth.

RMDs: Know about required minimum distributions from retirement accounts to avoid penalties.

Tax Considerations

Taxes will impact your retirement income. Understand the tax implications of each income source and plan for it. Some strategies include:

Tax-Free Superannuation: Take advantage of tax-free superannuation withdrawals if you are over the age of 60.

Transition to Retirement Pension: Use a transition to retirement pension to reduce working hours and supplement your income without drawing down your superannuation balance.

Capital Gains: Plan your investment strategy to minimise capital gains taxes.

Talk to a Financial Advisor

Creating a retirement income plan can be complicated and seeking professional advice is worth it. A financial advisor can help you:

Personalised Plan: Tailor your retirement income plan to your own needs and goals.

Optimise Investments: Make sure your investments are in line with your risk tolerance and retirement timeframe.

Monitor and Adjust: Review and adjust your plan regularly to accommodate changes in your financial situation and market conditions.

Our Services

At Denis Cummins Public Accountants, we offer:

Taxation: Tax advice and planning to keep you compliant and tax efficient.

Accounting: Full accounting services to keep your financial records accurate and up to date.

Financial Planning: Strategic planning to help you achieve your retirement and financial goals.

Referral Services: Access to a network of other professionals for other financial and legal services.

Get in Touch

Planning for retirement living involves careful consideration and strategic planning. If you have any questions or need help with a retirement income plan, our team at Denis Cummins Public Accountants can assist. We offer expert advice and tailored solutions to help you achieve your retirement goals. Contact us today to book a consultation and find out more.

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