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Supplemental income in retirement

If you already have permanent life insurance, you may have access to cash value that you can use for income in retirement. Additionally, maintaining life insurance in retirement can help you pass on benefits to your family and community.

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Retirement savings calculator

Learn how much you'll need to maintain your lifestyle in retirement.

Retirement planning FAQs

The five steps of retirement planning3
Retirement planning has several steps. The end goal is to have enough money to quit working and do whatever you want. Our aim with this retirement planning guide is to help you achieve that goal.

Step 1: Know when to start retirement planning.
The earlier you start planning, the more time your money has to grow. That said, it’s never too late to start retirement planning. Even if you haven’t started saving for retirement, don’t feel as if your ship has sailed. Every dollar you save now will be much appreciated later. Strategically invest, and you’ll begin to catch up.

Step 2: Figure out how much money you need to retire.
The amount of money you need to retire is a function of your current income and expenses—and how you think those expenses will change in retirement. The typical advice is to replace 70% to 90% of your annual pre-retirement income through savings and Social Security.

Step 3: Prioritize your financial goals.
Generally, you should aim to save for retirement at the same time that you're building your emergency fund, especially if your employer has a retirement plan that matches a portion of your contributions.

Step 4: Choose the best retirement plan for you.
If you have a 401(k) or other employee retirement plan with matching dollars, consider starting there. If you don’t have a workplace retirement plan, you can open your own traditional IRA or Roth retirement account.

Step 5: Select your retirement investments.
Retirement accounts provide access to a range of investments4, including stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. Determining the right mix of investments depends on how long you have until you need the money and how comfortable you are with risk. Generally, the idea is to invest more aggressively when you’re young, and then slowly dial back to a more conservative mix of investments as you approach retirement age.

  • You can put the money into a retirement account that's offered by your employer, such as a 401(k) or 403(b) plan. These plans are great deals because the money may grow tax deferred until you withdraw it in retirement. 
  • You can put the money into a tax-advantaged retirement account of your own, such as an IRA. IRAs offer similar tax advantages to 401(k)s, though some of the eligibility rules differ.
  • You can put the money into a regular investment account that doesn't have tax advantages.5

You can access the cash value in your policy to supplement your retirement income. This can be particularly helpful if markets fall and you don’t want to deplete your portfolio.

Learn more

It's always useful to learn a little more. Take a look at these helpful insights.

Retirement savings calculator

Learn how much you'll need to maintain your lifestyle in retirement.

1 All guarantees are backed by the claims-paying ability of the issuer.

2 Accessing cash value will reduce the available cash surrender value and death benefit.

3 Tina Orem, “5 Steps to Retirement Planning in 2021: An Introduction & How-to Guide,” Nerd Wallet, May 7, 2021.

4 Securities products and services are offered through NYLIFE Securities LLC (Member FINRA/SIPC), a Licensed Insurance Agency, 51 Madison Avenue, New York NY 10010. NYLIFE Securities LLC is a New York Life Company.

5 “Ultimate Guide to Retirement:-Where Should I Put My Retirement Money,” CNN Money,


Want to learn more about retirement planning?

A New York Life financial professional can help determine what’s right for you.