We spend such a significant portion of our lives working that it’s only right we make the most of our retirement. It’s a period that allows us to relax, travel, enjoy our hobbies and spend some quality time with our nearest and dearest. If you’re fortunate enough to enter retirement ahead of the UK State Pension age of 66, then you’re in a position that many would envy.

But no matter when you give up work, there are still challenges for you to deal with. One of those is financial management and making sure you have enough to support yourself and the lifestyle you want to lead. It can be tricky to navigate, so here’s our guide to help you look after your money and enjoy your later years.

Why is financial management important during retirement?

Without a full-time salary, you may find that your finances are stretched a little more thinly. And if you want to do things like travel the world, you are going to incur additional expenses. Not only that, but it’s likely that you’ll want to provide for the futures of your loved ones, too. All of which means you’ll need to carefully manage your money to ensure you can achieve all of the things you want to.

How to manage your pension

When it comes to managing your pension, it makes sense to take some time to sit down and work a few things out. Make a note of how much you expect to receive, as well as figuring out what you spend on the essentials – for example your home, bills, food and fuel. What you have left over is expendable income, so make some calculations on how much of that you’d like to set aside for luxuries such as holidays and what will be kept in savings for you and/or your loved ones.

Ways you can supplement your retirement income

One way to boost your income is to downsize your home. If you live in a large property – perhaps by yourself or just with a partner – you may decide that you don’t need the extra space and a smaller, cheaper place would be more suitable. Of course, that does involve the sometimes stressful process of selling and moving, so you could consider an equity release mortgage, which enables you to release tax-free funds from your home without having to go to that trouble.

Another option is to look into investments, which will depend on your appetite for risk. Whatever you decide, the most important thing is that you make choices that are right for you. After all, it’s your retirement and you need to be able to enjoy it as much as possible.