Well-Educated, But Not When It Comes to Retirement

I am often amazed how bright, well-educated, affluent professionals have little concept of what needs to be considered within the scope of their retirement and future financial planning.

Recently, a friend of mine in his late 50s told me that he was retiring in about a year from his position as a senior executive with a fairly large regional company. He said, “Joe, you’re a CPA. Can you recommend someone who can help advise and manage my investments for retirement?”

I explained that it’s not that simple. I said, “For openers, you need a caring advisor who can address all your financial needs and how they mesh with your lifestyle, your family and your dreams. It’s not just about managing principal and providing an income stream. You need to make sure that you do not outlive your assets, that your spouse and family are protected, that you can handle a long-term care situation, that you can leave a legacy and frankly, that you can fulfill the goals—the bucket list—you and your spouse have set for your retirement years.”

I told him I would help him find an advisor that he and his spouse would feel comfortable with and with whom he could develop a relationship based on trust. In the meantime, I gave him a few websites to browse through for information. I told him an absolute “must check out” was www.lifehappens.org and the pre-retirees/retirees section. People really do need some basic understanding of the options to consider before they even begin the retirement planning process.

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