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Retirement Planning Blog

on 09 December, 2015

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In the past, we’ve covered some of the financial challenges seniors are likely to face in retirement. In turn, these hassles have played a role in shaping Americans’ retirement expectations. One of the growing trends is post-retirement employment.

At present, many people have a shortfall in retirement funds. For instance, the Boston College Center for Retirement Research found many Americans were greatly underprepared. According to the center’s data, as of 2013 half of American households didn’t have enough money to sustain their current standard of living in retirement.

Despite this challenge, many Americans believe working longer will help cover the shortfall. This belief is increasingly giving way to a new expectation: that post-retirement employment in itself is enough to make up for not having a retirement plan. But the truth is many factors can unbalance this approach and lead to unnecessary financial hardship.

on 21 October, 2015

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Retirement security continues to be a pressing concern for Americans. But many people aren’t taking steps to prepare themselves. In late May 2015, The “Report on the Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households in 2014,” published by the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors, offered many concerning insights into this landscape. 

In the study, 31% had no retirement savings or defined-benefit pension. It was reported 39% of those surveyed have “given little or no thought to financial planning for retirement.” Moreover, these trends were somewhat reflected in people’s expectations for the future. The study showed 26% said their retirement plan consisted of working as long as possible. Likewise, 12% said they never planned to retire, and 45% reported they would work somewhat to keep money coming in.

on 25 November, 2015

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The holidays are around the corner. It’s getting closer to cherished times with family and friends. But for many Americans, this memorable period comes with its own stresses. Apart from the “typical” hustle-and-bustle, the holiday season itself presents many financial pressures. 

As we’ve covered before, seniors already face a number of challenges in retirement. Say your family is living out-of-state. If finances are already tight, travel could be costly and difficult. Like seniors, working Americans have their own difficulties, too. Many households struggle with just having enough retirement funds as current household expenditures take priority. For instance, in a 2014 study by, over 33.3% of American workers didn’t have any retirement savings.

on 16 October, 2015

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In a prior blog, we’ve covered what a dream retirement lifestyle may look like. Other discussions have centered on the importance of planning for retirement or the array of retirement vehicles available. But what about the process of retirement planning itself?

Retirement planning isn’t limited to just people and their advisors. When someone reaches retirement age, support networks become important. Responsibilities shift. Family members are actively involved in their parents’ caretaking. Or they may take on the role of caretaker for their parents.

on 18 November, 2015

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In the past, we’ve discussed how not planning for retirement comes with downsides. But what if you’re just a few years from retirement? Or what if you and your partner already are retired?

on 30 September, 2015

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In prior blog posts, we discussed the importance of preparing for retirement. After all, it’s a critical component of a secure post-retirement lifestyle. Having an effective, personalized retirement plan will help bring lasting peace of mind. 

Unfortunately, surveys continue to show Americans have strong anxiety about their retirement. A recent PricewaterhouseCoopers survey report offers insights into current levels of retirement confidence. In the 2015 Employee Financial Wellness Survey, retirement confidence was stronger than last year’s survey. 57% said they weren’t confident they’d be able to retire when they wanted to – down from 60% in 2014 and 65% in 2013.

on 05 November, 2015

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In a prior blog post, we discussed the importance of discussing financial matters with the family. When it comes to retirement lifestyle needs, it’s important to take heed of potential pitfalls as well. There are a number of challenges which could impact seniors’ financial security.

Greater generational wealth, increased life expectancy, and technological innovations all have exercised a heavy hand on the retirement planning process. Now there are more years for which seniors should plan financially. But what are some of the challenges which can impact retirement security?

Let’s take a closer look at some of these potential pitfalls below.

on 25 September, 2015

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In previous blog posts, we’ve discussed topics such as the growing appeal of fixed index annuities. Changes in the American retirement landscape, such as the shrinking availability of defined-benefit pensions, is prompting many workers and retirees to investigate alternative retirement income vehicles. As a result, total fixed index annuity sales in 2014 shot up 104.3% from total sales figures in 2004, according to Beacon Research ($47 billion in 2014 versus $23 billion in 2004).

But what, then, about CDs? How do fixed index annuities stack up against them? To get a comparative overview of both financial solutions, let’s cover some history as well as key differences.

on 29 October, 2015

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When it comes to retirement planning, there's no shortage of financial advice. But there’s hardly any such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution for everyone. As we have emphasized before, any strategy must make sense for your financial picture. And for that matter, any financial recommendation should always be in your best interest as a client.

These dynamics bring up the value of transparency. Financial decisions are life-impacting. They are hardly small matters. At the point-of-sale, people rely upon the word, knowledge, and expertise of the financial professional with whom they’re working.

in Annuity
on 16 September, 2015

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In previous blog posts, we’ve discussed financial products offered by insurance carriers, such as annuities. But what if an insurance company fails? What then happens to your money in the annuity or financial solution issued by that insurance carrier?

In the context of “Safe Money” – or money you can’t afford to lose – it’s worthwhile to discuss bank failures as well as insurance company failures. After all, bank options and annuities are two ways of preserving your wealth from the effects of market downturns. They’re means of keeping your hard-earned money safe.

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