Retirement Education

Aging in Place: a Guide to Living Well in Retirement


The term “aging in place” refers to how retirees wish to remain in their homes for their entire retirement, however long it may last. Aging in place is a growing trend and increasingly important for millions of Americans.

On the other hand, it’s also a hard goal to achieve. One major moving target in retirement is how our health needs evolve as we age. These changes can be especially impactful if we move into health situations requiring assisted living or other long-term care support.

According to a U.S. News & World Report survey, 9 in 10 adults aged 55 and up said it’s an important goal for them to be able to receive this care in their own homes, where they are comfortable and familiar, if at all possible. In this article, we will discuss aging in place and some other things to keep in mind, including:

  • What you should know about it,
  • Ways to create a sustainable plan that can make it possible, and
  • Potential pitfalls for planning for aging in place.

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What Is the Rule of 85?


If your employer offers a guaranteed pension plan, then you may wonder whether it’s possible for you to retire early and still get your full pension benefits. Many pension plans follow the Rule of 85, which says that if your age and years of service to your employer total at least 85, then you can retire early without giving up any of your pension benefits.

This calculation is by no means universal. That being said, it’s probably among the most common formulas you will find in the pension arena today. In this article, we will go over the Rule of 85, how it works, what its limits are, and how you can use it in your retirement planning for income and other financial goals.

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Creditor Protection in Retirement: What to Know


As retirement nears, it’s natural to think about whether you have adequately protected your money. After all, you have carefully saved and built up your nest egg over your working life. Protecting your money from creditors is only too real of a concern should a financial disaster happen.

The good news is, yes, most of your retirement assets are protected in one way or another. The bad news is that the protection is mostly a matter of state law. As a result, the details depend on where you live.

In this article, we will talk about the various creditor protections that you may have in retirement. Keep in mind that this is general information and isn’t intended to be legal advice. If you have any questions about your personal situation, talk to your financial professional and to an experienced attorney.

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SECURE Act 2.0 – Key Provisions and How They Affect Retirement


The SECURE Act 2.0 is now law. In December 2022, Congress passed and President Biden signed this sweeping legislation that effectively overhauls much of the retirement landscape in America. The bill’s key provisions are centered around required minimum distributions, when they must be taken, and some changes to workplace retirement plans and retirement accounts.

On top of RMD changes, SECURE Act 2.0 also contains a great many changes to Roth savings accounts and how they can be used. The Roth rules have been expanded in an effort to increase current tax revenue, as Roth accounts are always funded with after-tax contributions.

Here, we will examine the key provisions of SECURE Act 2.0 and how they might affect retirement for you as well as your loved ones.

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Pension Alternatives – What Are Your Options for a Secure Retirement?

pension alternatives

Are you looking for alternatives to a pension plan for guaranteed income in retirement? Perhaps you have a pension plan and worry about its future ability to make good on promised payments.

Pensions are becoming increasingly rare in corporate America today. Many private-sector employers have replaced pension plans with 401(k) or other profit-sharing plans to cut costs.

But if you are lucky enough to be privy to a pension plan, it’s important for you to know how it works, what you will get from it, and effective pension alternatives. And if you won’t be getting a pension, going over your alternative options can help you make well-informed decisions about retirement.

Let’s get into a deeper dive on pension plans, alternatives that are available and will pay you guaranteed income for life, and how these options look in the full spectrum of retirement planning.

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How Do Pensions Work?

how does a pension work

Are you counting on a pension when you retire? Are you familiar with how it works? In this article, we will give a quick overview of how a pension plan works, different types of pension plans, and how payments from a pension plan to retirees work.

Once you have a better understanding of how your pension works, you will be in a better position to make well-informed choices about your overall retirement. That can include whether other sources of retirement income will help you reach your goals. Read on for a deeper dive into the basics of a pension plan and how it works.

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Wealth Protection: What You Can Do to Preserve Your Family Assets

We all have spent most of our working lives hearing advice to save and plan for retirement. But retirement isn’t just about gathering assets for later years. It’s also about protecting them from loss.

Here are some practical wealth protection tips and strategies that you can implement to preserve your hard-earned assets.

What Is Wealth Protection?

Wealth protection in the financial industry refers to wealth management strategies and tools to help individuals, families, and businesses protect their assets. Everyone needs to put protective measures in place to deal with unexpected events, which will undoubtedly occur.

You will face various potential threats to your financial well-being throughout your life. These risks involve potential harm to your retirement plans and your estate plan. You will also want to manage your liability risk, whether professional in your career or at home in your family.

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Different Types of Bonds Explained: Municipal and Corporate Bonds

Editor’s note: This is part 2 of a series on different types of bonds. Here is part 1 of this series on government bonds.

Bonds and other fixed-interest assets play a valuable role in modern retirement planning. They help balance market risk, create retirement income streams, and keep overall volatility in a financial plan at bay.

Bonds assure that you will be paid interest during their term. Then once the term is over, they repay the original investment, or principal, back to the investor. The ability of a bond to meet these obligations is backed by the financial strength of the bond issuer.  

In this article, we will go over different types of bonds offered by a municipality or a corporation. Before going into further detail about different kinds of bonds, here is a quick sum-up of a bond’s basic features.

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Different Types of Bonds Explained: Government Bonds


Editor’s note: This is part 1 of a series on different types of bonds. Here is part 2 of this series on corporate and municipal bonds.

Bonds are a core staple of many financial strategies today. They are among the different types of fixed-interest instruments that can be used for generating retirement income, balancing out risks held by other assets, and smoothing out volatility in general.

With a bond, someone has a guarantee that they will be paid interest during its term. Once the bond matures, the principal is paid back to the bondholder. The ability to meet these obligations is backed by the financial strength of the issuer of the bond.

For this reason, government bonds are generally considered to be a type of bond with lower risk than others. After all, the government has the authority to raise taxes and print money to meet its obligations.

There are different types of bonds, and they vary in a number of ways: length of term, interest rates, and the type of issuer, to name a few. It’s helpful to know at a high level about these different bond types and how they might play out.

Here is a breakdown of the different types of bonds and what they involve. In this article, we will go over various types of government bonds available.

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A Quick Guide to Social Security Taxes in Retirement

A Quick Guide to Social Security Taxes in Retirement

When calculating individual benefits, the Social Security Administration draws on up to 35 years of personal earnings history. To receive Social Security benefits in the first place, you have to work at least 10 years. Therefore, it’s not that surprising that many people see their benefits as something they have earned.

Yet each year, Uncle Sam collects a share of people’s benefits through income taxes. You may have to pay taxes on as much as 50%-85% of your benefits, depending on how much income you report to the IRS. Read More

Next Steps to Consider

  • Start a Conversation About Your Retirement What-Ifs

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    Start a Conversation About Your Retirement What-Ifs

    Already working with someone or thinking about getting help? Ask us about what is on your mind. Learn More

  • What Independent Guidance
    Does for You

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    What Independent Guidance
    Does for You

    See how the crucial differences between independent and captive financial professionals add up. Learn More

  • Stories from Others
    Just Like You

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    Stories from Others
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    Hear from others who had financial challenges, were looking for answers, and how we helped them find solutions. Learn More

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