Personal Retirement Strategies

Today’s Retirement Realities

Risks abound for today’s retiree. To name only a few: high healthcare costs, low interest on fixed income investments, the possibility of outliving your money, and increasing longterm elder care costs are a few. Future retirees are also likely to face major changes to Medicare and Social Security. At the same time, those who have prepared wisely for retirement are enjoying themselves more than ever. For these seniors, travel and leisure are a large part of life after the working years. Our solutions help make these golden years as carefree as possible.

An effective approach is one we call the bucket plan — not to be confused with your bucket list. Here’s how it works.

We help you calculate your annual income needs. Accounting for inflation, we gauge how much money you’ll require over a five-year period. We then divide your assets into five-year blocks — or “buckets.” Each bucket offers specific saving and investment options, according to the amount of time remaining before that bucket will be used. Working this way compartmentalizes risk. We strive to provide a peace of mind — although market and interest-rate volatility are present we work to lessen those risks with your five-year retirement income bucket. Contact us today for more details on this powerful income-management strategy.


Maximizing Pensions

The golden era of the pension in corporate America is over. No longer are employers willing to guarantee income for life. Pensions for government employees, police, fire fighters, and teachers still play a large part in their retirement plans. But the unfunded liabilities in pensions funds for teachers and city, county, and state workers reach into the trillions of dollars1. We believe that those plans may not last for those workers for very much longer. Regardless of the source of your pension, you may have some decisions to make — and possibly soon. We can’t predict the future but we can provide you with options. Please take a moment to read our piece on how we can help you maximize your pension.


Rollover Basics

Retirement, a job change, the loss of a job — any of these common experiences can trigger a retirement plan distribution. Your options include leaving the assets in the current retirement plan, rolling them over to a traditional IRA, converting them to a Roth IRA, or taking a direct distribution. Your personal circumstances dictate which option is appropriate for you. The right choice could include a combination of these possibilities. We’ve included an article to clarify the options. Contact us today for further assistance.

Rollover Considerations: Before rolling assets over from a qualified plan, you should consider various factors. These factors include but are not limited to: Investment Choices, Fees and Expenses, Services provided under each option, Penalty-Free withdrawals, Required minimum distributions, and Tax considerations. Please speak with a tax professional and/or a financial professional about your personal situation.


Choosing the Right Approach

No retirement plan is perfect; having no plan can be worse. The first step in wise planning is understanding how much you need to retire when you want, how you want, and where you want. Any of the numerous retirement planning calculators on the Internet require you to input information to calculate an answer. If that information doesn’t accurately reflect your financial needs and wants, then the calculations are worthless. We can help you formulate the answers that fit your life so you can set retirement goals in a meaningful way. Then we’ll help choose the appropriate way to meet those goals and adjust course as needed.

“We can help you formulate the answers that fit your life.”

We can help you formulate the answers that fit your life. Roth. Traditional. 401K. SEP. SIMPLE. Annuities. Life insurance. All these vehicles can help you achieve retirement independence. What separates them are tax structures, potential contribution limits, costs and fees, and potential benefits including income and investment guarantees. These variables can make all the difference. Which option is right for you depends on your circumstances today and how things may be expected to work out in the future. Your trusted advisor can provide exceptional value in this connection. Let’s consider an example.

Sally worked hard all her life and saved diligently in her company’s 401K plan. Sally is now age 75 and has been required to take money from her IRA for several years now. Let’s assume her account value is $750,000. Using the Uniform Lifetime Table to calculate how much Sally must take from her account, we get $32,751. Sally’s husband Bill also has a retirement plan. In our example, one of them has a pension and of course both enjoy Social Security benefits as well. If we also assume that the couple has standard deductions for income tax purposes, the couple might have a larger tax bill than they expected when they first started contributing to their retirement plans. Perhaps Sally and Bill could have done something different from the beginning to mitigate their taxes in retirement. Contact us first; we can help you consider these scenarios and find what makes the most sense for you. This example is for illustrative purposes only and there is no guarantee that similar results can be achieved.