Retiring from the military can be a daunting prospect for most veterans. Not only will you be swapping your military boots for civilian shoes, but also you may feel like your finances are going to suffer as a result.
If you have completed your minimum 20 years of service then you will already have the security of a military pension plan, which will assure you of regular income for the remainder of your life, however if you think that you will still feel the pinch, then here are a few ideas that you may want to consider.
Injured in service? See if you qualify for VA disability benefits
From loss of limbs to tinnitus and PTSD, VA disability benefits are designed to recompensate you for injuries or conditions which were either caused or exacerbated by your military service.
There are many factors which determine your eligibility for compensation, along with a certain level of math to calculate your “efficiency level” which is what dictates your compensation. If you head over to the Chisholm, Chisholm and Kilpatrick website, there is a great VA benefits calculator which will help you easily work out what you may be entitled to.
Depending on your circumstances, not only might you be eligible for a recurring monthly payment, but you may also qualify for additional compensation.
Take advantage of veteran perks
Aside from standardised benefits and pensions, there are plenty of places which offer specific discounts to military benefits, as a way of thanking you for your sacrifices and years of service. From tourist attractions to retail stores, a wide range of outlets are more than happy to provide a reduced rate to those that have retired or been discharged from the military.
Aside from this, there are also benefits to remaining in the vicinity of a military base; following your retirement or discharge you will still be able to access military shops, gas stations, appliance outlets and more which will give you access to great discounts and some items tax-free. In this instance, every little helps, and these simple savings can help to improve your bottom line.
Consider rolling over your pension
If you plan on returning to a civilian job after you retire from the military, then it may be prudent to not start taking from your retirement fund straight away.
Most military members utilise the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), which enables them to save for retirement. Once you leave the military you could do one of three things; leave the funds where they are, roll the funds over to an individual retirement account, or roll the money over to your new employer’s pension plan.
By not taking your retirement funds straight away, it gives you an opportunity to assess the funds required to finance your lifestyle, thus giving you an indication of how long you would need to continue in a civilian job to live out the rest of your life comfortably.