From understanding MSY to thinking about social security, retirement can feel like going back to school. There are new retirement terms to understand and new concepts to grasp – and while you may have a very clear goal of what you want your retirement to look like, the roadmap to getting there can seem blurry. So how do you navigate between early retirement and early retirement? Bringing in a financial professional can be a good way to implement strategies to maximize your retirement savings and make sure you don’t neglect your options.
“No one cares more about your money than you – and that’s exactly why a financial advisor can be of help,” says Abe Ashton, founder of Ashton & Associates in St. George, Utah. “A financial advisor doesn’t have the emotional investment you have, so they can offer you a broader perspective and come up with scenarios you may not have considered. Here are five key topics to discuss with a financial professional.
1. When to retire and how to assess retirement income
When it comes to retirement, a year or two can make a big difference in terms of your future retirement budget, says Brandon Bowen, CEO and founder of Bowen Financial Group in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. A financial professional can help you assess the impact of your retirement goals on your planned retirement budget. A financial professional can also help you understand how Social Security will play into your monthly budget. “Social Security benefits and spousal benefits can be complex, and I’ve seen this especially with higher incomes,” Bowen explains. “I had a client with a large portfolio who came to see me. His wife assumed, since she had mostly stayed at home, that her Social Security benefits would be minimal. But when we analyzed the numbers, we found that she was entitled to more than she thought she could receive from her Social Security spousal benefit. Having a financial professional taking care of all the numbers can give you a clear idea of how much retirement income you need and how much you could earn.
2. The best way to give a financial gift to children or grandchildren
Maybe you want to help your kids with down payments or give your grandchildren a substantial gift to spend on school fees. If so, a financial professional can test these possibilities and help you find the best course of action to make sure you don’t compromise your own retirement goals.
A financial professional can also help assess and determine the optimal time to give this gift, says Jon Hicks, director and CFO of J. Hagan Capital. “It may be that a year or two later makes the most sense, depending on market conditions,” Hicks explains.
The tax implications of gifts also vary, and a financial professional can work with your tax professional to define your options. While some are aware of the current $ 15,000 tax exclusion, grandparents who jointly file a return may take advantage of an exclusion that allows them to contribute a one-time sum of $ 150,000 into a tax-advantaged 529 plan over a period of time. five years old and categorize it as a gift.
3. Plan the legacy you want to leave
Update your estate plan? It might be a good idea to bring in your financial professional, who can point out any areas that you may have overlooked. “For example, I have clients who want to make sure their children are taken care of in their wills, so I might recommend that they take out a permanent life insurance policy, depending on their situation,” said Brandon Bowen, CEO and Founder of Bowen Financial. Group in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. Talking about the inheritance you want to leave in addition to the retirement goals you have now can help you ensure that your assets are structured to meet that goal while protecting your inheritance no matter what upheavals in life. will have in store for you over the next few decades.
4. Make a distribution plan
Minimum Required Distributions, or RMDs, are mandatory from age 70 and a half, but how do you plan to use these distributions and what makes the most sense when it comes to your retirement goals? A financial professional can help you create an RMD game plan, whether it’s using them in a non-retirement account (and deciding what type of account it might be) or using the returned. A financial professional can also help you understand the landscape of RMDs, which can be withdrawn differently for IRAs and 401 (k) (whereas Roth IRAs do not require an RMD as long as the owner is alive). If you have an HSA, a financial professional can also help you assess how best to use those funds, making the most of the money you’ve saved.
5. A smart strategy to downgrade
If you still have a mortgage, does it make sense to pay off your house? If you are considering downsizing, what is the best way to manage the income from the sale of your family home? What if, after a few years of retirement, you feel that your retirement savings are not as strong as you would have hoped they would be? “A financial advisor can help you make a plan – without panicking,” Hicks explains of retirement real estate decisions. “There are so many different paths to financial security, and each has something that works for them. What we want to do is find the right lane for you, without it making you feel like you’re always jumping from one lane to another due to market conditions. This includes helping you feel fully in control of your next steps and your next adventure.
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