Don't lose retirement income to taxes

The baby boomers - the demographic that brought us rock-and-roll, the peace movement and the personal computer - are turning grey and starting to retire. It's a transition that can mean changes in lifestyle and reductions in income. "It's best to start planning while you're still working," says chartered accountant Robert C. Sealey. Evaluate your finances, project where you'll be in 10 years, and save more. know what your expenses are going be to be compaired to what sources of income you'll have. If you collect Canada Pension before 65 you could lose up to 30% of the total benifit every year before you're 65. When you reach 65, Old Age Security comes into effect, adding about $500 per month.

By December of the year you turn 71 your money from your RRSP's must be converted to a RRIF. Once your 72 a minimum amount must be withdrawn from the RRIF each year, and of course you must pay taxes on it.

Next is claw-backs: The government can start reducing or clawing-back your Old Age Security payments by as much as 15% for every dollar you make after a certain amount. But new rules introduced in 2007 allow spouses to split up to onehalf of qualifying pension income.

Information is power, get a document organizer and put all your informatin about insurance, RRSPs, Wills and living wills in it. Most importantly complete both financial and healthcare powers of attorney. These documents will allow your loved ones to make decisions for you and help you manage your finances.