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Financial Handbook Guide

The Financial Handbook

This 30-page guide is filled with valuable financial & retirement planning information. The goal is to help you get on track for the retirement you’ve always dreamed of.

 

Retirement Strategy : A Personal Account

coinTreeA friend recently told me he’s planning to retire but is worried about his financial ability to do so. When he described his situation, I told him it seemed to me he didn’t have anything to worry about. But, still he’s worried. As luck would have it, I heard a finance professor lecture on retirement income planning the following day. He suggested a strategy that might just help put my friend’s mind at ease. I then also read an article in the Harvard Business Review by Nobel laureate economist Robert Merton touting the same idea. It’s not a cure-all, a panacea or magical solution. As a financial whiz-kid once reminded me, “No financial product has a ‘secret sauce’.”

The concept: use annuities as a key element in your retirement income strategy. Read more

How much do you really need for retirement?

coinTreeIt’s the age-old question: How much should I save for retirement?
For years, financial advisors recommended people save at least $1 million to enjoy a comfortable retirement. But given longer lifespans and concerns about the financial status of Social Security, is that target enough to fund a potentially decades-long retirement?

Maybe not. Read more

5 “BS” Retirement Investing Pitches You Should Ignore

coinTreeYou’re probably already wise to many schemes designed to separate you from your money—emails from Nigerian princes, phishing scams, etc. But does your BS detector go off when confronted with slick come-ones for perfectly legal-but-dubious investments? To see, check out these five pitches that are often targeted to people investing for retirement. Read more

5 Costs to Include in Your Retirement Budget

coinTreeDon’t retire without a plan to pay for these expenses.  Don’t forget to budget for the travel and hobbies you will finally have time for in retirement.  Most people accept that retirement won’t be cheap.  But just how expensive will it be?

Visions of the ideal retirement range from the extravagant pursuit of everything we have dreamed of to frugal plans calculated to stretch the buying power of our hard earned savings. Whatever course we set, we need to accurately estimate and budget for our future. While the final tab will vary depending on your lifestyle, some expenses are shared across the board and need to be budgeted for. Read more

9 Signs You’re Not Saving Enough For Retirement

coinTreeYou might be tired of hearing it, but you know it’s true: You need to start saving for retirement now. If you start saving for retirement today instead of delaying it for a few years, you could add thousands of dollars to your retirement savings.
But perhaps you’re already setting money aside for your golden years. The only problem is you don’t know if how much you’re saving is actually enough to last you throughout retirement. If that’s the case, here are nine red flags that indicate you need to ramp up your savings efforts. Read more

QUIZ: Are Annuities Right For You?

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As traditional sources of guaranteed retirement income — such as pensions — disappear, many retirees are wondering where to turn after suffering through a severe market downturn in the past decade. An annuity may be the answer, but not all annuities are alike, and some may not be appropriate for you.

Take our ten-question quiz, brought to you by Kiplinger, to see how much you know about these products and whether you should invest in them.
Read more

4% Rule? How To Draw Down Your Retirement Savings

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Saving for retirement is challenging, no doubt. But if you want to know what’s really tricky, consider spending that money in retirement. Retirees in the past often relied on a simple rule for retirement income: Draw down 4 percent of your savings every year and you will be all set. But the retirement landscape has changed.
For one thing, people are living longer, and their money has to last all that time. One in four people who are 65 years old today will live to age 90, and one in 10 will live to 95.
Read more

4 Ways To Jump-Start Your Savings

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Struggling to catch up? Here’s how to get your nest egg back on track

Saving for retirement is a lot like dieting. We all know what we should be doing, but actually doing it is hard. It’s much easier to make excuses.
We’re busy. We have responsibilities—to children, to older parents—that compete with our ability to set aside money for our later years. What’s more, wages have stagnated in recent years while the cost of living has continued to climb.
The numbers bear out the challenge: More than half of workers report they have less than $25,000 in total household savings and investments, excluding their home and any pension plans, according to the 2014 Retirement Confidence Survey by the Employee Benefit Research Institute. To be sure, not all of those surveyed had access to retirement plans, and some had incomes low enough to make saving difficult.
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Annuities 101: Is An Annuity Right For You?

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What is an Annuity?

Despite the fact that many people are familiar with the term ‘annuity’, many might not understand what it actually means or how it can be used to help them plan ahead for a successful financial future.

Simply put, an annuity is an insurance product that will pay you income based on money that you have previously put in. An annuity is commonly used as part of a retirement strategy. They are often popular choices for investors who wish to see a regular and steady income stream in their retirement. According to the Government Accountability Office, annuities can be an important part of an overall retirement plan.
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