You’ve decided to sell your practice and retire. Congratulations!


You’ve run the numbers, and you know you are prepared financially. But are you prepared psychologically?

While relishing the thought of escaping the long hours at the office and dreaming of a carefree life, many retirees underestimate the emotional impact of leaving behind a business, office associates, and clients.

Here are a few potential issues to address as you plan your exit, and suggestions to help lay the groundwork for a successful retirement.

Being an accountant is central to your identity. Who do you want to be in retirement?

  • Make a list of what is most important to you, and visualize a “new you” in roles that don’t center on your work life.
  • Consider ways you might continue to be involved in the accounting industry – on your terms.

You have always been productive, and you can’t imagine not achieving something. How will you replace that sense of accomplishment?

  • Set personal goals for this stage in your life – take up a new hobby, improve your health, perfect a skill, learn a language…whatever inspires you!
  • Explore professional opportunities that capitalize on your skill and wisdom – become a mentor, volunteer, teach or write.

You are accustomed to structure, and a wide-open schedule can be, well, daunting.

  • Establish routines for at least part of your day as you transition from a full schedule.
  • Pull out a calendar and decide what your day/week/month will look like. Fill it in with activities you’ve always wished you had time to do.

You’ve enjoyed the camaraderie of your office and friendships with some of your clients. How will you fill the void?

  • Friendships with former clients and staff can thrive if you make the effort to stay in touch. Plan lunches and other get-togethers soon after your exit to maintain those connections.
  • With the extra free time that retirement affords, you have the opportunity to expand your social network with like-minded people while enjoying your favorite pastimes.

Life transitions can be challenging to navigate, but if you have a well-thought-out exit strategy that extends beyond transitioning to a new owner, you’ll be better prepared for the retirement of your dreams!