A lot goes into the decision to retire. And when retirement coincides with a move out of state, life can grow challenging at best. Yes, the process may be something you’ve looked forward to for a long time, but the long list of things to do to make it a reality can quickly cut into your enjoyment if you overlook some of the most important tasks.
Retiring may be the easy part. Moving out of state brings on its own share of stress. Add in the nuances of a move from the mainland to Hawaii and you’re a prime candidate for overwhelm. Yes, you’ll have to decide what furniture to pack up and move, and whether to transport your cars or sell them and buy new in Hawaii once you get there, but those are simply logistics issues.
Have you considered these?
New State – New Income Tax Rules
Have you familiarized yourself with the tax laws associated with Hawaii? Chances are there will be a variety of changes in the way you filed taxes in the state you are currently living in, and the way you will file in Hawaii. Itemized deductions in your current state may not be itemized deductions in Hawaii. State taxes on things like retirement income and interest income may differ from state to state.
Look into how Hawaii differs from what is currently offered in your own community, asking the tough questions before you make your move. In some cases you may wish to handle your retirement income in a different way. Or change out some of your investments to provide different assets and resources. While this post isn’t meant to offer financial advice, it is a reminder to do your due diligence during your retirement process to ask the difficult questions to your financial adviser and your HR department as you make the transition.
Estate Laws May Change
Do you live in a community property state? Does your state view common law as law? Different states have different ways of approaching a couple’s wealth in cases of divorce or death. What you may have assumed was covered where you currently live may change substantially when you move to the Big Island.
There are many rules that apply to the assets you hold both as a couple and as individuals. If you haven’t set up an estate plan and understand all of the nuances associated with your personal situation, consider doing so as a part of your retirement process. Make sure you confer with someone knowledgeable with Hawaiian laws and can help you set up a proper plan to carry out your wishes.
Review Your Estate Plan
Do you have power of attorney in place? How about living wills? Each of these documents should be reviewed by a lawyer knowledgeable with Hawaiian law because states differ greatly in the documentation needed for each.
The great majority of people who decide to move in their retirement years do so to enjoy the same or even a better standard of lifestyle than was possible in their original state. But looking at your retirement income is only a small piece of the puzzle. If you don’t take everything into consideration – from state laws to retirement planning – you may miss a large piece of the puzzle that can cost you severely in your retirement enjoyment.
If you need help choosing the right home here on the Big Island, I can help. I’m also happy to share my resources to help you answer the most important questions you have about making the move to Hawaii. Give me a call today.