Congratulations on reaching your well-deserved retirement years! While this phase of life can be incredibly fulfilling, it's natural to have unique concerns and worries that come with this new chapter. As an experienced financial planner specializing in retirement, I understand that retirees have a range of considerations on their minds.
Many retirees have very important concerns like:
From ensuring a steady stream of income that lasts throughout your retirement to addressing healthcare expenses, estate planning, and managing taxes, I'm here to provide you with expert guidance and peace of mind. Let's work together to create a tailored financial strategy that aligns with your current lifestyle and helps you maintain the quality of life you desire throughout your retirement. Your concerns are my priority, and I'm here to assist in addressing each one of them, allowing you to fully enjoy the retirement you've worked so hard for.
For most of your life, you’ve spent money based on the amount of income you’ve earned. However, retirement calls for a (often difficult) psychological adjustment because you’ll now spend based on your needs, savings and overall comfort level.
The calculations and planning to determine if you have enough money to last can be a complicated exercise. The income you need to generate from your assets is based on things like how much in guaranteed income you have, like Social Security and Pensions, less how much your current are and what your future expenses are expected to be. Then come the unknowns of how long you will live, your health (and costs of healthcare) during your life, market and economic risks, etc. Finally, you need to make assumptions about investment returns you will need and whether the risk level to achieve those returns is appropriate for you.
So the difficulty with answering this question is that there are many estimates and assumptions that are part calculations, but the answer can be as individual as your thumbprint.
If you feel that you may need some help with this, let’s have a conversation. This is what I do every day and I am happy to discuss you situation to see if we should work together.
The old conventional wisdom was that you should invest more conservatively as you age: meaning the percentage of equity holdings (stocks) invested in your retirement accounts should decrease. This strategy is implemented to reduce risk, which is especially critical as soon-to-be or current retirees may lack the luxury of waiting out a market bounce-back following a dip.
However, one of the biggest risks to a financially successful retirement is Longevity Risk. With the general trends that we are living longer, Longevity Risk is considered a risk multiplier. The longer we live, the more we are exposed to the other risks like Inflation, Interest Rate, Health Issues, Sequence of Returns, Market Volatility, etc.
Proper income and investment planning can help focus on how to position your portfolio. The amount of risk you take in your portfolio will be a balance of your Income needs, your liquidity options, the potential effects of various inflation rates and interest rates could have on your financial situation. The other important consideration of your strategies will most likely include how you feel about risk and what adjustments you make based on your emotions.
In 1994, financial planner William Bengen published a study in the Journal of Financial Planning suggesting that retirees could withdraw 4% of their retirement savings annually, adjusted for inflation, and have a high probability of not running out of money over a 30-year retirement period. Bengen's research focused on historical market data and aimed to determine a safe withdrawal rate for retirees.
While the 4% rule has been widely used as a benchmark in retirement planning, there are criticisms and considerations that make it a potentially risky approach:
With the advent of more sophisticated tools and more academic research since his publications, many of the Retirement thought leaders have taken issue with the blanket calculation of the 4% rule.
Conducting a Roth conversion can be beneficial for several reasons. Firstly, it allows you to move funds from a traditional retirement account to a Roth IRA, potentially providing tax-free withdrawals in retirement. If you anticipate being in a higher tax bracket in the future, a Roth conversion enables you to pay taxes on the converted amount at your current, presumably lower rate. This strategy can enhance tax efficiency and reduce your overall tax burden in retirement. Additionally, Roth IRAs have no required minimum distributions (RMDs), offering greater flexibility in managing your withdrawals during retirement. Ultimately, a Roth conversion can be a strategic move for optimizing long-term tax planning and preserving more of your retirement savings.
Deciding whether to do a Roth conversion depends on various factors. Assess your current and future tax situations, considering if you're in a lower tax bracket now than in retirement. If so, a Roth conversion may be advantageous, allowing you to pay taxes at a lower rate on the converted amount. Additionally, consider your time horizon and investment goals, as Roth conversions can provide tax-free growth over the long term. However, it's essential to evaluate the immediate tax implications and potential impact on your overall financial plan before proceeding with a Roth conversion. Consulting a Financial Advisor and a Tax Professional can help tailor this decision to your specific circumstances.
Around the country, attitudes about retirement are shifting.
Every so often, you’ll hear about Social Security benefits running out. But is there truth to the fears, or is it all hype?
A will may be only one of the documents you need—and one factor to consider—when it comes to managing your estate.
No matter what stage of life you are in, let me help you pave the way so that you can live a comfortable life. Together, we can develop your PERSONALIZED financial plan that will help you work toward reaching your goals and protecting you from being severely impacted by potential risks you may face - so that you can look forward to preparing for retirement and living a life with dignity.
To learn more about how I can help you pursue financial independence, please schedule a meeting with me today