Many Americans are delaying retiring due to the loss they endured with the economic turndown that started in 2008, and they are still recovering. Many people are looking to keep working as long as they can to have enough money for medical, housing and other necessities.

The United States Department Labor reports that fewer than half of Americans assessed what they need to retire. This is leaving them to struggle later in life due to failing health and medical costs. Planning retirement is scary due to the unknown, but if you have a plan in place look out for mistakes early on before the plan becomes derailed.

Here are a few pitfalls we make when planning retirement. Looking to make sure you’re connected to a good financial advisor, refraining from relying too much on returns, making risky moves, or not utilizing tax breaks can harm a potential solid plan. Another subject to consider is Social Security, as many people believe it will be bankrupt by the time they’re ready to retire.

Carl Edwards is a financial planner and wrote that the time is crucial to develop a plan of action and to watch your steps. “Financial planning for retirement has always been a daunting prospect; the current landscape simply makes your preparation that much more crucial in using your assets well.” People need to be careful not to be over optimistic on rates of returns.

TIME Money offered this could leave you with regret, and a sense of false security.

“Shooting for higher returns always involves taking on more risk, which raises the possibility that your aggressive investing strategy could backfire and leave you with a smaller nest egg than you expected. That can be especially dangerous when you’re on the verge of retirement.”

If there is SS, if you can, hold out long enough so you can max benefits. Retiring before 62 will give you the lowest monthly benefit. Look at 66 or older to cash in. This can be especially true for widows. Take a part-time job that can tie you over until you can take advantage of SS. If you’re under reporting taxable income as a self-employed person, this could hurt you in the end. Steve Vernon from CBS Money Watch explained:

“I know a number of self-employed people who've minimized their Social Security taxes over the years and are now reaching their retirement years with little or no retirement savings and severely reduced Social Security benefits. Now they regret this strategy and will need to keep working indefinitely." Also, awidow can receive the full Social Security benefit, but it depends on the timing. They will get the full benefits when they reach the maximum age for SS. The Social Security Administration explained that we earn one credit per $1,260 of wages earned. You can earn up to four credits in a given year by hitting the $5,040 mark.

Find a good financial advisor by asking people already connected. Try for at least four, so you can pare the list down once you meet them. Once you find one, ask questions on the demographics they serve and the average net worth of their clients. They should give you information that will help your individual goals—short and long term.

CNBC reported: “The advisor's plan of action should address both your short- and long-term goals and how you are to go about accomplishing them. For example, if you're looking to shelter current income from taxes while saving for retirement, yearly contributions to a 401(k) plan might make more sense than a Roth IRA.”

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