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Layin’ It on the Line: What to know about planning for retirement in Utah

By Lyle Boss - Special to the Standard-Examiner | Apr 26, 2023

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Lyle Boss

Editor’s note: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Social Security was not taxed in Utah as income.

Planning for retirement is a crucial step in securing your financial future. Whether you’re just starting your career or nearing the end of it, it’s never too early or too late to start planning for retirement. In Utah, there are several factors to consider when it comes to retirement planning, including taxes, health care costs and housing expenses.

1. Start early: The earlier you start saving for retirement, the better off you’ll be. Even small contributions to a retirement account can add up over time. If your employer offers a 401(k) plan, consider contributing as much as you can, especially if they match a portion of your contributions.

2. Consider tax implications: In Utah, retirement income and Social Security benefits are subject to state income tax. However, Utah’s tax rates are relatively low compared to other states. You may want to consider contributing to a tax-deferred retirement account, such as a traditional IRA or 401(k), to reduce your taxable income during your working years and defer taxes until you withdraw the money in retirement.

3. Plan for health care costs: Health care costs can be a significant expense in retirement. Utah has a relatively healthy population, but health care costs still tend to rise with age. Consider purchasing long-term care insurance to help cover the cost of nursing home care or in-home care, which can be expensive.

4. Factor in housing costs: Housing costs can vary widely in Utah, depending on where you live. If you plan to stay in your current home in retirement, be sure to factor in property taxes, maintenance costs and any necessary renovations to make your home more accessible as you age. If you’re considering downsizing or moving to a retirement community, research the costs and amenities carefully to ensure it fits your budget and lifestyle.

5. Work with a financial advisor: A financial advisor can help you develop a personalized retirement plan that takes into account your unique needs and goals. They can help you calculate your retirement income needs, choose the right investments and make informed decisions about Social Security and Medicare.

6. Consider part-time work: If you’re approaching retirement age but don’t feel ready to fully retire, consider working part-time or starting a second career. This can help supplement your retirement income and keep you active and engaged in your community.

7. Make a budget and stick to it: Creating a budget is an essential part of retirement planning. It can help you track your expenses and make informed decisions about how to allocate your retirement income. Be sure to include all of your expenses, including housing, health care and entertainment.

8. Stay active and engaged: Retirement can be a great opportunity to pursue new hobbies and interests. Staying active and engaged in your community can help you stay healthy and happy in retirement.

Planning for retirement in Utah requires careful consideration of several factors, including taxes, health care costs and housing expenses. Starting early, working with a financial advisor and creating a budget can help you achieve a comfortable and secure retirement. Remember, the key to a successful retirement is careful planning and a commitment to making informed financial decisions.

Lyle Boss, a native Utahn, is a member of Syndicated Columnists, a national organization committed to a fully transparent approach to money management. Boss Financial, 955 Chambers St., Suite 250, Ogden, UT 84403. Telephone: 801-475-9400.


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