THE PROBLEMS WE HELP SOLVE

People often come to us for help in solving problems. Below are some of the more popular problems we help solve.

How much can I spend in retirement?

Another way to phrase this problem is “will I run out of money?” When you were working and had a paycheck coming in each month you knew how much you could safely spend. Once retired, you may need to supplement your social security, pensions, and other steady income with money from savings. You need an income plan that can both help you establish how much you can spend, and provide a way to see if you are on track as the years go by. A good plan may allow you to spend more in the early, more active “go-go” years of retirement, then cut back as you move into the “slow-go years.” Creating an income plan is one of the key things we do for clients.

Do I have the right investments?

In today’s world, we are constantly being pitched a wide variety of investment options. Once you get to retirement how do you know what to choose? It all starts with the income plan. If you don’t have a plan for where the money will come from for the rest of your life how can you begin to know what to invest in? Yet many people we meet with seem to have a “junk drawer” of investment statements, with no idea how they fit into their retirement income goals. We help clients develop a plan, then fund it with investments it calls for.

I’m paying too much in taxes.

We have yet to meet the person that wants to pay more than their fair share of taxes. While working a person’s regular income usually came from a taxable paycheck, you had little control over the taxes you paid. This changes in retirement. For the first time, you may have significant control over where you take the money from and thus how much you pay in taxes. You may be able to balance the withdrawals over time to help minimize your taxable income. You may even be able to “pre-pay” some taxes in a lower bracket using strategies like Roth conversions. We work with a client and their tax preparer to integrate their tax plan with their retirement income plan.

How will I pay for Long Term Care?

The good news is we're living longer. The bad news is it often means we could have increased medical cost. Traditional Long Term Care insurance has gotten more and more expensive. At the same time, newer “hybrid” policies have appeared on the market, opening up options we didn’t have before. We can help you compare your options and decided what strategy might be right for you.

REBALANCING ACT: YOUR ASSET ALLOCATION STRATEGY

Overview A diversified investment portfolio is generally composed of stocks, bonds and cash instruments. The percentage of how much money to invest in each of these asset classes is referred to as an asset allocation strategy. Strategies are often defined to meet an investor’s goals and tolerance for risk, such as conservative, moderate or aggressive — with variations in between. An asset allocation strategy helps an investor design a portfolio built to meet his or her investing time horizon, goals and comfort with risk,as well as have funds available for unexpected expenses. Diversification Note that asset allocation is not the same thing as portfolio diversification; not exactly. You can choose to diversify your assets across a range of asset classes…

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SPRING CLEAN YOUR FINANCES

Overview We tend to get caught up in the day-to-day issues related to jobs, family and home projects. We plan vacations, we plan weddings, we make plans for the weekend. If we spent more than a fraction of that time on financial planning and management, we’d probably all end up in a better place. This spring, in addition to (if not in lieu of) cleaning out closets andthe garage, sprucing up paint jobs and the lawn, consider tackling the chores necessary to clean up your financial picture. This project is likely to be composed of many smaller tasks, from consolidating accounts to throwing away (or shredding) old statements. After all, how many bank accounts does one person need? How many…

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