About the Living Expense Reductions forecast in the Lifetime Planner

The Living Expense Reductions chart shows the years in which you'll need to reduce your discretionary spending to afford your scheduled savings contributions.

There may be some years in which you'll have difficulty saving the amount you specified on the Savings & Investments pages in the Lifetime Planner. This might be due to unusual expenses, such as paying for your child's college tuition. It's also possible that the numbers you've entered don't quite work. If that's the case, it's OK. Many of the numbers in your plan are estimates you can change. For example, this would be the case if you start with your income, then subtract taxes, loan payments, life insurance payments, and savings contributions, and there isn't quite enough money left to cover your living expenses.

For those years in which the Lifetime Planner knows you're trying to save money but don't have quite enough, it assumes you're committed to your savings plan and therefore reduces your discretionary living expenses. To change the percentage of your living expenses you'd be willing to cut in those years, on the Tools menu, click Settings, click Planner settings, and then adjust the percentage under Discretionary Expenses.

If there are just a few years in which reductions in living expenses occur, or the magnitude of the reductions is small, don't worry. You'll probably be able to spend close to the amount you've planned for your expenses and still meet your savings contribution amounts. On the other hand, if there are many years in which the Lifetime Planner is reducing your living expenses, or the magnitude of the reductions is large, your savings plan may be unrealistic. To adjust your yearly living expenses estimate, go to the Expenses pages in the Lifetime Planner. To reduce your planned savings contributions, go to the Savings & investments pages in the Lifetime Planner. To view a forecast chart, see the related topics below.