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Retirement Answer Man

Author: Roger Whitney, CFP®, CIMA®, RMA, CPWA®, AIF®

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A top retirement podcast. Roger Whitney, CFP®, CIMA®, CPWA®, RMA, AIF® guides you on how to actually do retirement well financially and personally. This retirement podcast isn't afraid to talk about the softer side of retirement. It will teach you how to retire with confidence. Two-time PLUTUS winner for best retirement podcast / blog and the 2019 winner for best financial planner blog. This retirement podcast covers how to create a paycheck, medicare, healthcare, Social Security, tax management in retirement as well as retirement travel and other non-financial issues you'll need to address to rock retirement. Retirement isn’t an age OR a financial number. It’s finding that balance between living well today and feeling confident about your retirement. It’s about gaining more freedom to pursue the life you want. Join the rock retirement community at
406 Episodes
Over the past several episodes you have learned so much about tax planning in retirement. You learned why tax planning is important, all about the hidden tax bombs, and tools that you can use to defuse those tax bombs. Now it’s time to incorporate all of this newfound knowledge into your retirement plan. Andy Panko from Tenon Financial joins me once again to discuss how to incorporate tax planning into your retirement plan. Press play to hear how you can create a retirement plan that incorporates tax planning. How to become comfortable with uncertainty Oftentimes people are looking for a hard and fast rule to follow to make their retirement plan foolproof; however, there is no magical number or rule to create an iron-clad retirement plan. We can’t predict the unknowable, so we have to become comfortable with the uncertainty that retirement brings.  To help you conquer that uncertainty, it is important to build a process that will help you make better decisions. The way that you can do this is by creating a retirement plan of record and testing projections and what-if scenarios. By setting up a decision-making framework, you will be able to manage your retirement finances in an uncertain world.  Tax planning is a way to optimize your retirement plan Before you can start tax planning you need to ensure that you have the basics in place. As long as you can first map out the fundamentals of retirement planning like your expenses, your retirement paycheck, and your asset allocation you will then be able to optimize your retirement journey with tax planning. Remember that tax planning isn’t the main part of retirement planning, it is simply a way to enhance your retirement experience and financial plan in retirement.  Choose a retirement planning tool and stick with it There are plenty of tools on the market that can help you create your retirement plan and projections. In the Rock Retirement Club we use the paid version of the New Retirement Calculator, but there is also a free version that you can use. You may be happy by creating a simple spreadsheet to help guide you. Just like there is no perfect retirement plan, there is also no perfect retirement planning tool. Whatever you decide to use, stick with that tool the way that you stick with the same scale to check your weight. You don’t want to flip flop back and forth between different calculators since the numbers may not look the same.  Make an educated guess Even though you can’t predict what will happen in the future with tax legislation, you can make educated guesses about what would work best for you based on your own situation. Educated guesses are not just guesses. By using your retirement plan of record and modeling what-if scenarios you know that you are doing your best to make the best decisions for your retirement. Your decisions won’t always be the ‘right’ decisions, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t plan in the first place.  By creating a retirement plan of record and making projections you will be able to create a model that you can work from. Staying agile is the most important way to establish a successful plan so that you can rock retirement.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [4:30] Build a process to make better retirement decisions [7:52] Create a resilient plan [11:11] What if scenarios are important to creating a retirement plan [17:35] Educated guessing is a big part of retirement planning [24:24] Action items [30:05] How to choose a financial advisor or tool to help you plan TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [31:40] Start the process of getting a plan of record in place Resources Mentioned In This Episode Tenon Financial BOOK - Thinking in Bets by Annie Duke BOOK - How to Decide by Annie Duke The New Retirement Calculator Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Roth conversions, HSAs, pension choices, risk management: these are the topics of today’s listener questions.  Susan, Gina, IM, and Daniel all submitted their questions to me via and you can too! If you have any retirement questions, or even if you simply want to leave a comment about the show, click on the link to present your question.  Whether you are looking to learn more about HSAs, Roth conversions, or evaluate your pension choices, listening to other listeners’ questions can help you learn how to frame your own questions and consider your options by always keeping your goals in mind. How to evaluate the best way to take a pension? Susan recently asked her financial advisor how she should take her pension and wasn’t satisfied with his answer.  There are several options to choose from when deciding how to take a pension. One choice is to take the pension for a larger monthly sum for the duration of the pensioner’s life. Another option is to take a smaller amount over the course of the lives of both the pension holder and their spouse. A third option is to opt for a lump sum payment and forgo the monthly payments altogether. When making this decision there are a few ways to evaluate your choices. Create a what-if scenario to help you compare all the options. Then evaluate them next to your retirement plan of record. Listen in to hear how I perform this exercise with my clients.  HSAs after age 65 HSAs are amazing tools that can help you reach your retirement goals. Gina’s question is about HSAs after age 65. She is still employed and plans to continue working for a few more years. She would like to continue to stay enrolled in her high deductible insurance plan so that she can continue to contribute to her HSA, but she isn’t sure how that would affect her Medicare choices.  This is a great idea but navigating these waters is tricky since the rules surrounding Medicare are so complicated. Making a mistake could lead to a gap in coverage or even a lifetime penalty on parts B and D premiums.  You’ll first want to check the rules surrounding your Medicare eligibility with your employee health insurance provider. Next, you should contact a Medicare navigator like Boomer Benefits.  Should IM roll over her 401K to a Roth if she is worried about financial protections? IM writes in with a question about rolling over a 401K to a Roth IRA. She is worried about losing ERISA coverage when transitioning this money. ERISA stands for the Employee Retirement Security Income Act which was put in place to protect workers’ retirement plans. 401Ks are covered under this federal law; however, the protections for IRAs vary wildly from state to state.  The first thing to do when considering this question is to check on the rules governing Roth IRA protections in your state. Next, you’ll want to evaluate your personal financial risk and how important this kind of coverage is to you.  Make sure to scroll down to the bottom of the show notes to check out all the links to the resources mentioned in this episode. OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN LISTENER QUESTIONS [4:41] Which pension choice best suits Susan’s needs? [13:40] A question about HSAs after age 65 [17:23] Do the risks associated with Roth IRAs outweigh the benefits? [22:12] Daniel has a few Roth conversion questions [30:22] Daniel has a few HSA questions Resources Mentioned In This Episode YouTube episode with Andy Panko on retirement tax bombs Boomer Benefits BOOK - Retirement Planning Guidebook by Wade Pfau Interview with Wade Pfau The Retirement and IRA Show Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Are you worried that you won’t be able to live the life of your dreams in retirement? This is one of the main issues facing many people on the cusp of retirement. That’s why I created the Retirement Answer Man Show. I want to help you find the confidence to truly rock retirement. One way that you can become more confident in your retirement plan is by utilizing the tax planning tools that are available to you. Andy Panko from Tenon Financial is here to help you identify all the tools available in your tax toolbox. Press play to open up your tax toolbox and see what is inside. Opening your tax toolbox  Before you can pick up a tool from the tax toolbox you must start with a broad understanding of your tax situation both now and in the future. This means that you’ll have to do some educated guessing to figure out what your future tax situation will be. Projecting your tax situation out 10 or 20 years down the road won’t be an exact science, so don’t try to make it so. More accuracy doesn’t mean more precision in future tax planning; there are too many factors at play. Simply because your tax situation won’t be exactly the way that you estimate it to be doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take the time to map it out. You must take this step to get the framework you need to make educated decisions. This framework will be your basis for making practical decisions. 4 useful tools in your tax planning toolbox Fill up your tax brackets. If you retire before you start taking Social Security you may find yourself in an unusual situation. You may not have any income and therefore you won’t have a tax bill! Rather than marveling at this newfound freedom from the taxman, you may actually want to realize enough income to stay within the 12% tax bracket. By paying a bit in taxes now you could be utilizing an opportunity to lower your lifetime tax bill. Remember that those tax-deferred accounts are sitting there waiting for you to pay taxes on them when you reach age 72.  Do Roth conversions. While you’re filling up the lower tax brackets you can convert your tax-deferred assets to Roth. The money will continue to grow, but you’ll be able to rest easy knowing that the taxes have already been paid. By performing Roth conversions you'll ensure that you won’t have all of your assets in tax-deferred accounts waiting for your RMDs. By converting some of your assets into Roth you’ll provide yourself with more flexibility, control, and optionality.  Tax-loss and gains harvesting. Tax-loss and gain harvesting is a little-utilized tool that applies to brokerage accounts when you sell a position and realize a gain or a loss. You can use these gains and losses strategically to optimize your tax situation. Listen in to hear how this tool could work for you.  Qualified charitable donation. If you are charitably minded QCDs are a great way to give to your favorite charity and save money on taxes at the same time. The trick with QCDs is that they must transfer directly from the IRA custodian to the charity.  In retirement, tax planning isn’t the same as in your working years. You need to plan ahead so that you can optimize your lifetime tax bill. Next week you’ll learn how to incorporate all of these tools into your retirement plan so that you can avoid those tax bombs. Don’t miss that episode so that you can build a retirement plan that will give you the confidence to rock retirement.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [1:30] Financial planning should be a collaborative process [7:25] Opening your tax toolbox  [13:29] Filling up your tax brackets should be your first tool [21:44] Roth conversions [29:39] Tax-loss and gains harvesting [39:36] Qualified charitable donation TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [42:03] Map out your future income and build a net worth statement Resources Mentioned In This Episode Tenon Financial Jordan Peterson Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Do you feel like you are late to the ball game in saving for retirement? Have you ever wondered if an annuity could take some of the stress out of writing your own retirement paycheck? Are you trying to figure out the best way to self-fund long-term care for you or your spouse?  All of these questions come directly from listeners like you. If you have questions about retirement, Fridays are a great time to tune in. We are now releasing 2 episodes a week: one focused on the monthly theme and the other focused on listener questions.  If you have a query of your own question head on over to to submit your retirement questions.  How to maximize retirement savings after getting a late start Catherine writes that this podcast has helped her get over the shame and frustration of not prioritizing her retirement savings earlier. Now that she has worked her way through those feelings she wonders what the best way to increase her retirement savings would be after getting a late start. Catherine is maxing out her 401K, and her husband has a simple IRA and no access to a 401K. However, if he could convince his partners to switch to a 401K he could max out the contributions and begin to expand their savings.  Another way to get plenty of bang for your buck is to use an HSA. Many people don’t consider the HSA as a retirement account, but it can be a great way to help play catch up. You can contribute up to $7200 per year to your health savings account if you are enrolled in a high deductible insurance plan. Not only do you get to use pre-tax assets, but you can invest those assets to use in retirement. If you invest your HSA aggressively, it can become like a supercharged Roth IRA. Would an immediate annuity be a good idea for Mary? Mary is considering purchasing an immediate annuity with the proceeds from the sale of her house. She would like to receive between $1000-2000 per month from the $300,000 profit. A single premium immediate annuity (SPIA) could provide this kind of stable return, but before she jumps into such an arrangement she should consider the pros and cons of this type of annuity. The pros and cons of purchasing a SPIA One of the main reasons that people consider purchasing an annuity is their ease. With the SPIA Mary won’t have to manage her investments or worry about the markets. She’ll be receiving a guaranteed income for the rest of her life. There is definitely an advantage to this kind of simplicity.  On the other hand, if she passes away shortly after purchasing the annuity then the money will not be hers to pass on to her heirs. By giving up her $300,000 and committing to an annuity she loses out on optionality. One way to combat this would be to make sure to have liquid assets on hand in case of an unforeseen event. Press play to hear my thoughts on purchasing an annuity and to learn how to self-fund for long-term care. OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN LISTENER QUESTIONS [2:57] Getting over the regret of not saving better sooner [10:06] Tom wonders if there will ever be an audiobook version of Rock Retirement [11:46] Would an immediate annuity be a good idea? [17:34] How to best self-fund for long-term care Resources Mentioned In This Episode Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center  
Have you been incorporating tax management into your retirement plan? If you have, you won’t want to miss this series, and if you haven’t, you definitely won’t want to miss this series.  Last week we set the stage for this retirement tax planning series when we discussed how planning for taxes can work within your retirement plan. This week we’ll make you aware of the hidden tax bombs that could wreck your retirement plan. In next week’s episode, we’ll learn which tools you can use to defuse those tax bombs, and then in the last week of this series, we’ll learn how to integrate those tax tools into your retirement plan. My goal is to give you an organized way to incorporate tax planning into your overall retirement plan which is why I have invited retirement tax expert Andy Panko from Tenon Financial to join me to discuss the nuances of retirement tax planning. If you are ready to learn about the hidden tax bombs that are awaiting you in retirement then press play now.  Required minimum distributions, the tax bomb that begets other tax bombs When you contribute your taxable income into a 401K, 403B, or other tax-deferred accounts your taxable income is reduced in the year that you make that contribution. However, many people forget that they are simply deferring that taxable income until later. Remember that taxes are never a question of if you will pay them, it's always a matter of when. Required minimum distributions (RMDs) are the government’s way of insisting that you pay the piper.  RMDs begin at age 72 and at that time you must take 3.9% out of your tax-deferred accounts at this time. The percentage that you must take from these tax-deferred accounts grows each year. The best way to defuse this bomb is to project the total that your tax-deferred accounts will grow to so that you can get a feeling of how much you will need to withdraw when the time comes.  Yes, Social Security can be taxed! Did you know that Social Security is taxable? It has been since 1984 and up to 85% of your Social Security benefit can be taxed. Just how much is taxable depends on your other sources of income. The more gross income you have, the bigger percentage of your Social Security benefit will be taxed. If you are curious about the percentage of your Social Security income that could be taxed then make sure that you are signed up for the 6-Shot Saturday newsletter.  Do ACA subsidies fit into your retirement plan? If you are in need of health care before the age of 65 you may want to use The way the marketplace works is by using a tax subsidy system. If a person makes between 1-4 times the poverty level ($17,000) then they can qualify for tax subsidies on a sliding scale. If you can keep your income below the threshold, then you could qualify for the ACA tax credits. Keeping your income low needs to be balanced with the rest of your retirement goals which is why it is important to have a retirement plan of record.  There are several more tax bombs out there ticking away. To learn what they are you’ll have to press play to listen. If your interest in retirement tax planning has been piqued by this series and you want to learn more, check out Andy’s Taxes in Retirement Facebook group. With over 16,000 members, this group is a great way to exchange ideas with others who are on the same journey.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [2:50] RMDs are the first tax bombs [11:30] Social Security is the next tax bomb [15:46] Will Social Security go broke? [21:41] Taking advantage of the ACA subsidies [31:00] When you need to watch out for IRMAA [37:50] Do you need to be careful of NIIT? [38:55] A change in marital status could surprise you TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [44:29] Understand the important numbers sheet in the 6-Shot Saturday email Resources Mentioned In This Episode Tenon Financial Andy’s Taxes in Retirement Facebook group Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Are you a bit behind on your retirement savings and wondering how you’ll ever be able to retire? One of our listeners feels the same way. In this Listener Questions episode, I’ll answer his question as well as how to handle net unrealized appreciation (NUA), how to shift retirement savings after a job loss, and we’ll wrap it up by discussing the ramifications of taking Social Security early. We’re trying a new format this month and releasing 2 episodes a week. On Tuesdays, we’ll release the main segment which focuses on the theme of the month, and on Fridays, you’ll hear listener the questions. Make sure to check out all the episodes and let us know if you like the new structure. Change is hard! October has been a month full of change for me and change doesn’t always go smoothly. Not only am I publishing 2 episodes per week, but I’ve stopped drinking alcohol and started exercising in the mornings rather than in the afternoons.  Any time you bring about changes to the rhythm of your life it can be a challenge. This is why the transition into retirement can bring such trepidation. Even if something new seems daunting, with practice over time the situation will improve. The more you practice the bigger your muscles will get. With a bit of research, planning, and action, you can learn how to create a paycheck for yourself in retirement, how to tackle your taxes, and how to navigate the healthcare system. Listening to retirement podcasts like this one is a great way to get started.  How to go from zero to retired Not everyone has a 7 figure retirement portfolio, in fact the majority of the population finds themselves wondering how they’ll ever be able to stop working. One listener asks how he’s supposed to be able to catch up on retirement savings at age 50.  The first thing you need to do if you feel behind in your retirement savings is to acknowledge and accept where you are. The next thing you need to understand is that there is only so much catching up that you can do at this point.  Social Security will be a large part of your retirement equation After you realize that there is only so much you can do it is time to figure out how to maximize your Social Security benefit. There are a couple of ways that you can do this. The first one is to work longer so that you can increase your benefit.  The next idea is to navigate when would be the best time for you to file for your Social Security benefit. If you take it early at age 62 you may see your benefit decreased by 30%. Waiting until the full retirement age at 66 or 67 will ensure that you get your full benefit amount, and each year that you wait to file your benefit will increase by 8%. The beauty of Social Security is that it is adjusted each year for inflation and it lasts for the rest of your life. Retirement is about living out the best version of yourself To create a retirement plan you can live with, you’ll want to increase your income and decrease your monthly obligations as soon as possible. Identify which bills you can pay off and try using the debt snowball method to pay down your debts. The less you can live on the more prepared for retirement you will be. Try to create a living environment that doesn’t require a lot of money.  Remember that rocking retirement isn’t about spending loads of money, it’s about creating an environment where you can live the best version of yourself.  If you have a question to ask head on over to to send a written question or leave a voice message.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN [5:00] How to go from zero to retired in 10 years [12:08] How to handle net unrealized appreciation (NUA) [20:23] How to shift retirement savings after a job loss [25:25] The ramifications of taking Social Security early Resources Mentioned In This Episode Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Tax planning in retirement isn’t the same as in your working years. This is why we are dedicating an entire series to helping you understand how to manage your taxes in retirement. To help me navigate this complicated topic, I’ve invited retirement tax expert Andy Panko to join me for the whole month-long program. Over the course of this series, you’ll learn why tax planning is important in retirement, which tax land mines to look out for, what tools to include in your tax toolbox, and how to integrate tax planning into your retirement plan. Are you ready to dive deep into retirement tax planning? Press play now to learn why tax planning in retirement is so important. How does tax planning change in retirement? In your working years, tax planning isn’t that complicated. Since your income is based on your wages, you don’t have much control over your tax bracket. However, in retirement, you can control your tax bracket from year to year. Chances are, you have been contributing to tax-deferred accounts like 401K, 403B, or IRAs for much of your life. These have been wonderful vehicles for retirement savings that has allowed you to defer a bit of your taxable income. Now that you are coming to retirement age, it is time to pay the tax man. These retirement distributions will be taxed, but when you decide to take them is up to you--up to a certain point. Use long-term tax planning to save money in retirement In retirement, there are multiple tax planning opportunities that you can take if you plan for the long term. Since you have more control over your sources of income, you have a tax advantage that you didn’t have in your working years. This can make planning complicated and challenging; however, with a bit of research and practice you could end up saving thousands of dollars over the course of your retirement. Taxes aren’t the only thing to consider in retirement Don’t let the tax tail wag the dog. Even though it is important to consider your taxes in retirement it is also important to remember that taxes are not the end all be all of retirement planning. What Andy and I are trying to do is to help you build a framework so that you can consider your tax planning in an organized way. When you come up with a strategy to guide your decisions it will help make the complicated world of tax planning a bit easier to digest.  Check out this episode on YouTube Did you know that we are now recording the Retirement Answer Man as a biweekly show? Make sure to check back in on Friday mornings to hear the Q&A part of the show. You can also watch this episode in a video format on YouTube so that you can see the charts and tables that we share. When you are done listening head on over to and scroll down to the bottom of the homepage to sign up for the 6-Shot Saturday newsletter so that you can receive the worksheets mentioned in this episode OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [2:33] What are the changes in taxes in retirement? [7:00] Think long-term when tax planning in retirement [11:36] Taxes are important but not the end all be all [17:17] Trying to understand the tax system TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [28:26] Pull out your tax return to find your AGI Resources Mentioned In This Episode Tenon Financial  Andy’s Taxes in Retirement Facebook Group Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
If you are the non-planning type, it can be easy to worry about whether your retirement plan is on track. How are you supposed to know what is going on and whether you should have the confidence to know if your plan is working? On this episode of Retirement Answer Man, you’ll learn 5 things that you can check periodically to give you an idea if your retirement plan is on the right track. If you are wondering how to investigate whether or not your retirement plan is on track, then make sure to listen to this episode to learn what you need to know.  Where does confidence come from? The whole point of retirement planning is to give you the confidence to live life in your retirement without worry. Before you create your retirement plan you need to understand what it is that will give you confidence in that plan.  Confidence comes from understanding. To understand your plan you need to first set your goals. What is your vision? Once you have a vision of your ideal retirement then you can deconstruct that vision to map out your journey. That journey will take you from the current version of yourself to the future you. To map your journey you need to have clear action items to lead you along each step of the way.  There is no need to look around at others on their journey since each one is personal. Your retirement journey is yours alone.  5 things you should track to feel confident in your retirement plan Have your goals changed? Assess your goals with your significant other or advisor to make sure they still reflect what you really want. Are you still aiming for the same target? Is this still the life you want to build or has anything changed?  Check in with your spending. How is your current spending relevant to your overall plan? Track your spending goals to see if they are still relevant. At the end of each year look back at what you actually spent your money on. You’ll want to make sure to track how you did relative to your plan. Sometimes you may deviate from the plan a bit, but by tracking you can identify trends over the long term. Tracking can help you to tease out opportunities and risks Is your plan still feasible? Should you make a change? Big expenditures can pop up, the market could go down, expenses could go up: all of these things could change your plan’s feasibility. One way to check to see if your plan is still feasible is to track your withdrawal ratio. This is the percentage of your assets that you take out of your portfolio each year. Tracking your withdrawal ratio can help you recognize whether your retirement plan is sustainable. Listen in to learn what else you should consider to ensure that your plan will actually work. Make sure your retirement plan is sustainable. Is it resilient? Do you have enough financial nutrients in the near term, midterm, and long term? Check out last week’s episode to hear more about how to plan for the short-term, mid-term, and long-term in retirement.  Focus on the WHAAM. Think about what you should do next. Then figure out how to do it, get accountability, take action, and finally, achieve momentum. In your retirement planning, think about how you can shift your focus to best serve yourself. If you want to ensure that you will rock retirement, then continually check in with these 5 areas. Are you ready for more Retirement Answer Man? For the past 7 years without fail, we have brought the Retirement Answer Man to your earbuds on a weekly basis. That is about to change. Starting in October we will be splitting the podcast into two separate parts released on two different days. Coming on Tuesdays you’ll hear the Q&A part of the show. On Fridays, we’ll focus on the monthly theme.  This split will allow us to dive a bit deeper into our monthly topics and answer more of your questions. It will also allow you to decide to listen to what you want to hear. We value your feedback, so please let us know what you think of this new setup.    OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [6:25] A triathlon story to illustrate how humans overcomplicate things [14:40] Where does confidence come from? [16:13] 5 things you should track to feel confident in your retirement plan LISTENER QUESTIONS [27:00] How does Josh designate pretax and post-tax contributions when they are commingled [33:26] How to understand the options to deal with precious metals COACHES CORNER WITH BW [37:31] What do people need to know about retirement planning the non-financial side of retirement? [39:26] How will you spend your days in retirement? TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [43:34] Get answers to the 5 things we covered Resources Mentioned In This Episode Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
As the non-planner of your family, you may not be interested in all the nitty-gritty details of retirement investments, but it is important to know the basics. That’s why today we will cover the main concepts about investing your assets. Hopefully, my nutrition analogy will help make these financial concepts more understandable. Press play to hear what you need to know about investment basics for the non-planner.  Investing in retirement is all about solving for risk Last week you learned how inflation and market volatility are the two risks to overcome when investing in retirement. Solving for these risks are the most important part of creating a retirement portfolio.  To explain retirement investing, I like to think of nutrition. When you eat you solve the problem of being hungry now, but you also solve the problem of getting nutrients to your body to help ensure that you stay healthy in the future. Investing also serves to help you in the short and long-term. How are you nourishing your investments in the short-term and the long-term? With every meal you eat you are investing in your short-term energy. The vitamins and minerals that you may take help you invest in your long-term health. We keep enough cash and bonds on hand to sustain ourselves for the next 1-5 years and protect from market risk.  Stocks and real estate investments can have ups and downs which can be scary in the short term but in the long-term they help to hedge against inflation.  Ask your financial planning partner how you are nourishing your investments in the short-term and the long-term. The building blocks of investment It is important to learn the building blocks of retirement investing. Building a retirement portfolio is much like building a meal. There is the salad, the main course, and the dessert. Short-term investments are the funds that you plan to use within 1-5 years, mid-term investments will be used within 5-10 years, and long-term investments are funds that you don’t plan to use for more than ten years. Listen in to learn how these different investments are like building a meal. Be sure to join us in October for the Taxes in Retirement series Make sure to join us next month as we dive into taxes in retirement. We have certainly covered this topic before, but a lot has changed since the last time we discussed taxes. We’ll explore proposed tax law changes and discuss how that could affect you and your retirement.  Andy Panko from the Taxes in Retirement Facebook Group will join me over the course of the entire series. If you are really looking to nerd out on taxes, then don’t miss the episode with Wade Pfau who joins me to discuss his tax management academic research. If you are a part of the RRC you’ll get the added benefit of having both of these guests in the Clubhouse for meetups.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [3:30] An investment analogy [10:04] How to invest for the short and long-term [18:25] The building blocks of investment Q&A WITH NICHOLE [22:51] What are some solutions to the Social Security funding problem [29:19] The Rock Retirement book has been helpful to Steven [33:32] Why I haven’t covered the sale of a business to fund retirement [35:25] Will Jim’s retirement strategy work? TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [40:24] Think about how you will pay for life in the short-term, mid-term, and long-term Resources Mentioned In This Episode Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Are you the person in your family that stays away from financial planning? Do numbers and financial jargon put you to sleep? If so, this is the right retirement planning series for you. This episode is the third in the Retirement Planning for Non-Planners series. In this series, I explain what you need to know without all the financial lingo so that you can understand the most important aspects of retirement planning.  In this episode, Fritz Gilbert from The Retirement Manifesto blog joins me to discuss the basics of retirement planning risks. Listen in so that you can understand what to look out for in retirement planning. This is a financial jargon-free series If you aren’t interested in finance it can be difficult to discuss retirement planning with someone who is. They start throwing terms like RMD, sequence of returns risk, and the 4% rule. When people start using these terms it can be easy to become overwhelmed. The purpose of this series is to empower you so that you can have an understanding of what is happening with your money to help make better choices. My goal is to explain retirement planning in a non-geeky way that anyone can understand. What are the financial risks in retirement? Retirement brings different types of risks for your money. Essentially there are two types of risks to be aware of: short-term and long-term risks. Think about a teeter-totter. On either side of the teeter-totter, you have your short-term risk and your long-term risk. The short-term risk is losing money today and the long-term risk is losing money in the future. You need to come up with a solution that balances both of these risks without tilting too much to one side.  We lose money in the short term through market risk. If the market takes a tumble, you could lose a significant portion of your savings. The solution to that is to take all of your money out of investments and have it sit in cash. Unfortunately, this solution to the short-term risk doesn’t work in the long term.  The long-term financial risk is inflation. You may have noticed gas prices or food prices increasing over time. This means that your dollar today won’t be worth the same as your future dollar. As prices increase the value of your money decreases. We combat long-term inflation risk with investing, however, this solution puts us at risk in the short term.  How to balance retirement risk To balance both sides of the risk spectrum it is important to think about how much money you will need to support your lifestyle in the near future. You’ll want to consider how much cash you should have on hand if the market drops. This will help you mitigate the short-term risk while at the same time leaving the rest of your savings to grow in the long term. The goal of balancing these risks is to have the confidence to have money to spend next year and also to spend when you are 80. OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT WITH FRITZ GILBERT [2:30] Financial lingo can be intimidating [6:37] Short term risks [10:47] Inflation is a long term risk [18:37] How to deal with spending shocks [25:55] Understand what types of questions to ask [28:39] Catching up with Fritz in retirement LISTENER QUESTIONS WITH NICHOLE [38:24] 6-Shot Saturday drama [42:15] Should Shari take the lump sum or an annuity? [48:20] How do I feel about LIRPs? [54:36] What are the non-financial boundaries of a fiduciary? [1:00:24] A question about my pronunciation of words [1:02:47] A proposal for changing the GAA acronym TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [1:04:34] Organize the strategy that best works for you Resources Mentioned In This Episode Retirement Manifesto Retirement Planning for Non-Planners - start with this first episode Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
When you hear financial lingo do you immediately begin to tune out? Does retirement planning make you nervous? If so, this is the right series for you. You’re listening to a 5-part series on retirement planning specifically designed for non-planners.  The goal of this series is to educate you on retirement planning without all of the confusing lingo. We’re going to keep it simple and focus on teaching you the most important aspects of retirement planning. If you haven’t listened to episode 393, go back and check it out so that you can understand how to begin planning for retirement.  You only need to focus on the important aspects of retirement planning There are many retirement planning geeks out there that love to focus on the economy, markets, and business cycles. They relish mapping out different Roth conversion scenarios to reduce their RMDs. But if you aren’t a planning geek, talking to those people can make retirement planning seem overwhelming.  You’ll be happy to learn that to successfully plan for retirement you don’t need to have a degree in economics, you just need to make sure that you focus on the most important things. That is what we are doing here today. I’m here to help you understand what the most important aspects of retirement planning are.  Can your retirement dreams come true? During the previous episode, you created a vision of your ideal retirement. Now it’s time to see if you can make your retirement dreams a reality. The biggest question everyone has in retirement planning is will I run out of money?  The answer is, no one knows. The economy, life’s surprises, and people’s perpetual habit of changing their minds make it impossible to be sure. There are too many unknowns to be certain about the future. However, it is okay to have that uncertainty.  If you can get a good approximation of a retirement plan then you can make adaptations to your plan as life unfolds. I use agile retirement management to help my clients make adjustments to their retirement plan when life shocks or bad markets disrupt their plan.  Where will your retirement income come from? When planning your retirement you’ll want to consider the income you will receive from Social Security, pensions, or even part-time work. The rest of your retirement income will need to be covered by your retirement savings.  There are many software tools that can help you plan your retirement. It is important to use a retirement calculator to estimate how much money you will need to live out your retirement dreams. In the Rock Retirement Club, we use the New Retirement Plus Calculator. A retirement calculator can give you a long-term projection of your retirement income needs.  Have your first 5 years of retirement income readily available While retirement planning software can help you plan out the long-term, you’ll want to understand where your money is coming from in the near term. You should have the next 5 years of spending readily available in accounts that aren’t exposed to the winds of the economy like money market accounts or CDs.  Listen in to learn what the most important aspects of retirement planning are so that you don’t get worried about getting caught up in the small details that don’t matter as much.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [3:51] Can you safely pay for your dream retirement? [6:55] Where will your retirement income come from? [13:45] Recheck your retirement compass periodically LISTENER QUESTIONS [19:31] Does it make sense to make after-tax 401K contributions? [23:14] How to estimate MAGI for an IRMAA appeal? [28:12] Can you start Social Security benefits from one spouse early and then wait for the other spouse’s benefit? [29:35] Should I open a non-retirement account? TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [33:45] Understand the resources you have available to use in retirement Resources Mentioned In This Episode Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Do your eyes glaze over when your significant other starts talking about money? Or maybe you are single and you know that retirement is coming soon, but you simply can’t get motivated to plan it out? Or perhaps you are the planner of the family and you would like your partner to take an interest in what lies ahead in retirement? If so, then this is the series for you! Those of us who are into retirement planning can quickly overcomplicate things, but to someone that is new to all this or not really into this planning stuff, retirement planning can be overwhelming. In this Retirement Planning for Non-Planners series, I will introduce you to retirement planning in a lingo-free way that won’t put you to sleep.  The objective of the Retirement Planning for Non-Planners series My goal for this series is to give you the power to participate in the retirement planning process. If you are planning your retirement on your own I want you to understand what you need to take care of and understand the basics without becoming overwhelmed. You’ll learn the fundamentals and be able to discuss retirement planning in an educated way. Are you ready to get started? Press play now! What do you envision yourself doing after your working life? What do you want for your life after work? Have you thought about this question? This is actually one of the most difficult questions to answer, but it is also the basis for retirement planning. It can be challenging to consider your life after work. There are so many options to consider and you are starting with a clean slate. Many of us treat this question the way we chose a major in college or our first job. But you don’t have to take this so seriously. Your life will not be ruined if you don’t get this question right. Since we use an agile approach to retirement planning, if you want to switch gears you can. Consider your future life after your working years. What can you imagine? The retirement fundamentals Once you know what you want to do in retirement, the next question is can you afford it? After you discover whether you can afford your dream life then you need to learn how to pay for it. You’ll want to find out how you actually create a retirement paycheck. The last question we’ll consider is how to gain the confidence to make it all work. You must have confidence in your plan to rock retirement.  Over the course of this series, we’ll be taking a look at these questions so that you can build a retirement plan that works for you.  Set your retirement goals To prepare for your retirement you’ll need to forecast your spending. To do so, can create different levels of spending. Your must-haves are things like housing, electricity, water, gas, and food. These barebones expenses are nonnegotiables. In the next category, put the things you would like to do in retirement. Maybe you would like to play golf once a week, travel once a year, or eat out a few times a month. The last level is your unspoken dreams that you like to think about but you may have never written down. This is your opportunity to think big. You’ll want to group these different types of spending so that you can have an idea of how much money each type of retirement would need.  Listen in to hear why this type of exercise is so important in your retirement planning. You won’t want to live a life of regret thinking about what you might have been able to do had you thought bigger when planning your retirement.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? [2:55] What are the fundamentals of retirement planning? PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [5:49] What do you want? [8:34] Setting retirement goals [13:45] Don’t let someone else dictate your life [18:51] What will you do every day in retirement? LISTENER QUESTIONS [22:29] When to apply for Social Security [23:32] How to reduce the effect of inflation in your 5-year income floor [27:48] How to get started early in retirement planning and saving [34:30] My own plans for retirement TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [39:48] Think about your must-haves, like-to-haves, and cool-to-haves Resources Mentioned In This Episode Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
You may notice that this is an extra episode this month. I wanted to make sure that we mark a special ending to the August Women, Money, and Retirement series, so at the beginning of the month I reached out to some amazing female financial professionals. I asked them all for a piece of financial wisdom to share with other women. You can hear their fantastic insight by pressing play now.  Cristina Guglielmetti’s words of wisdom Cristina Guglielmettti from Future Perfect Planning offers suggestions about making 401K contributions. She recommends that you update your contributions regularly, especially if your salary has increased.  Set a goal for yourself. How much would you like to save each year? Are you reaching that goal? If your goal contribution is more than your current contribution then changing it immediately could eat into your take-home pay and disrupt your budget. Instead of trying to achieve your goal contribution all at once, try increasing your contribution rate a little at a time.  Then set a reminder for yourself to increase your contribution quarterly until you reach your target percentage. This way you won’t feel the decrease in take-home pay all at once.  Small, repeatable changes are easier to keep up with which makes it easier to maintain your financial plan. Listen in to hear what else you can do to increase your retirement savings.  Jane Mepham shares financial advice passed down from her mother Jane Mepham from Elgon Financial Planning grew up in a different country in a male-dominated society which meant that she had to learn a lot to get ahead in life. When she was young, her mother shared financial advice that she uses even to this day. She knows that attitude is the key to mastering money and it will determine the strategies and tactics that you will use to plan your retirement. Enjoy these words of wisdom from her mother.  Make sure you can support yourself financially. You don’t ever want to have to rely on someone else to support you.  Don’t eat your future today, however enticing it is. Regardless of how tight your budget is, prioritize saving for the future.  If something affects you on a daily basis it is important. You need to know enough about it to make independent, smart decisions.  The way you spend your money should align with your values Stephanie Sammons from Sammons Financial and Stephanie McCullough from Sofia Financial have similar advice. They want you to identify what is most important to you. They both stress that you need to define your values so that you can align your spending to reflect what you value the most. All your money decisions should be in alignment with your values and your life.  Many people often separate their financial decisions from the rest of their life, however, money is connected to everything we do. By aligning your financial life with the rest of your life you will give meaning to your money.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN WORDS OF FINANCIAL WISDOM FROM THE EXPERTS [1:20] Cristina’s recommendation [3:13] Jane Mepham’s words of advice [6:25] Stephanie Sammon’s proactive step to improve your financial life [9:26] Stephanie McCullough  Resources Mentioned In This Episode BOOK - How to Be Here by Rob Bell  Retirement Money Gal podcast Take Back Retirement podcast Sofia Financial - Stephanie McCullough Sammons Financial - Stephanie Sammons Elgon Financial Planning - Jane Mepham Future Perfect Planning - Cristina Guglielmetti Rock Retirement Club
We have given the entire month of August to the ladies! Since this is the last Wednesday in August, it is the last episode that we are dedicating to the theme of Women, Money, and Retirement. However, that doesn’t mean we’re going to stop taking questions from women. This is simply the last episode to focus solely on women’s questions. We want to ensure that no matter who you are, you have the confidence to rock retirement.  Make sure to come back next month for the series, Retirement Planning for Non-Planners. This series will speak to those who have little interest in retirement. That means we’ll take out all the jargon and focus on the basics of what you need to know. Even if you don’t want to dive into the day-to-day details, it’s important to have an understanding of how to build a retirement plan. If you have any questions related to this theme please ask them at  What does it mean to put the “I” in retirement? We’re closing out this month with an episode titled, How Do I Put the I in Retirement? But what does the I in retirement really mean?  Over the course of the retirement planning process, most people focus on their financial situation, but it is more important to understand what you want to do in retirement. When planning your retirement, you are planning the next stage of your life and you have the opportunity to remake yourself to be anything you want. This is a fantastic time to uncover your deepest desires and make your voice heard.  Live a life true to yourself The most common regret that people have at the end of their lives is that they wish they had lived a life true to themselves. Many people simply do what is expected of them without ever thinking about what they want for themselves.  Retirement is a fantastic time to set aside what others expect of you and explore what you genuinely want to do.  Since the human condition tends to work in moderation, sometimes you have to peel away the layers to get to the bottom of what you want. Don’t stuff down your needs, dig deep to discover your true self. Have you lived a life true to yourself or do you have a hard time voicing your desires?  How to define what you really want Peeling back the layers can be a challenge, but to live a life true to yourself you’ll have to define what you want out of life. If you don’t voice your desires you’ll never be able to achieve your dreams.  Think about what you have always wanted to do that you haven’t had the time or space to think about. If you don’t have a clear vision yet, that’s okay, take the time to consider this question with wide-eyed curiosity. Retirement is a time of experimentation, so if you haven't completely defined what you want you’ll soon have an opportunity to further explore your desires.  If you have a partner, explore this question with them in little conversations over time. Those little conversations can lead to big ideas and create the space to open up a world that you might not have dreamed of before.  Once you have dreamed up your ideal retirement then you can see how your financial situation fits. You don’t want to go at this from a different perspective. First dream big, then work your retirement plan around your dreams.  Why join the Rock Retirement Club? The Rock Retirement Club has everything you need to create your retirement plan. When you join the club, you’ll gain access to education and tools to help you build your own plan.  Not only that, the club gives you access to a team of professionals that are dedicated to helping you rock retirement.  Last, but certainly not least, you’ll become part of an amazing community. The RRC is filled with a community of like-minded people who all want to rock retirement. When walking through a huge life change it helps to connect with those who are a bit ahead of you on the same journey. Come check out what the Rock Retirement Club is all about.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? [5:40] What does the I in retirement mean? [13:15] You have to speak up and voice what you want LISTENER QUESTIONS WITH TANYA [19:20] What should you be doing within 6 months of retirement? [20:55] Making decisions immediately after the loss of a spouse [22:52] How to balance the load of caregiving [28:14] How to divvy up parental support between siblings [33:22] How to bring up retirement planning without the jargon [35:13] How to deal with an unexpected divorce in retirement TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [43:35] How will you put the “I” in retirement? Resources Mentioned In This Episode Thinking Ahead Roadmap BOOK - Moving Forward on Your Own by Kathleen Rehl BOOKS - Suddenly Single Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Women ask many types of questions that men don't, which is why we’re dedicating this entire month to a series on women, money, and retirement. This series gives you the space to dig in, have your voice heard, and your questions answered.  You’re listening to the 3rd episode in this series and today we’ll be answering so many of your questions. Tanya Nichols from Align Financial joins me once again to add her womanly input and expertise.  There are a lot of women out there with similar concerns. Are you one of them? Find out if your burning questions about retirement have been answered on this episode of Retirement Answer Man. The Rock Retirement Club can help you build confidence in your retirement plan Are you looking for a way to build your confidence in your retirement plan, or maybe you're just looking for ways to create a retirement plan. If so, the Rock Retirement Club is the right place for you.  The RRC provides you with everything you need to educate yourself to build your retirement plan, allowing you to rest easy. By joining the RRC you’ll have access to on-demand courses, education, and tools so that you can learn what you need to know to rock retirement.  Join now to gain access to this information and our knowledgeable team of experts. In the clubhouse, you can ask questions from our experts and enjoy conversations with hundreds of more people who are riding the same retirement wave. The Rock Retirement Club is a great place to share inspiration and get ideas to create the retirement of your dreams.  Should single women with no children consider long-term care insurance? Several women have asked about long-term care insurance. Navigating long-term care is a major concern for women that have no close family or children. They see long-term care insurance as a way to help pay for their care when they may no longer have the capacity to represent themselves.  When looking for a long-term care insurance plan, be sure to specifically look for a plan that features a care navigator. Another possibility is to hire a care navigator out of pocket who only works for your interests. This representative can help you navigate the system so that you know that you will be cared for.  Long-term care navigators are an emerging field, so it can be hard to find someone that specializes in this industry. One way to find this type of representative is to talk to long-term care providers or even your state health department. Have you ever considered hiring a care navigator for your declining years? What kind of questions do you have about retirement?  In this episode, we answer many of your listener questions like what is the difference between a trust and an estate, how to prepare to deal with financial issues during cognitive decline, where to get cash from during the go-go years, the best way to navigate healthcare before Medicare, and many more. Listen in to hear if your pressing questions have been answered. If you have any more questions that weren’t answered in this episode, make sure to join the live meet-up on August 26 at 7 pm CDT. This live webinar will be about an hour long and I’ll be joined, once again, by the lovely Tanya Nichols. We’ll answer your questions live in real-time. These webinars provide a relaxed atmosphere where you can learn the answers to your questions and maybe even hear answers to questions that you haven’t even thought of yet. OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN LISTENER QUESTIONS WITH TANYA NICHOLS [5:30] Don’t miss the live meet up on August 26 at 7 pm CDT [6:37] Long term care insurance for those with no close family [11:00] Trust vs. estates [11:50] How to deal with financial issues during cognitive decline [16:11] Where to take cash from in the go-go years [19:02] How to navigate healthcare before Medicare [26:35] How do you calculate the 4% rule? [30:28] Spend less money than you make [32:07] What to look for in a bond TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [37:22] An update on my smart sprint from last week [41:13] Look at your net worth statement history Resources Mentioned In This Episode Align Financial Don’t miss the live meetup on August 26 at 7 pm sign up here Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Welcome back to the 2nd episode of the Women, Money, and Retirement series. All month long we will be discussing issues specific to women in retirement. Since I am not a woman, I have invited Tanya Nichols from Aligned Financial to co-host the show with me throughout this series. Tanya is here to provide a woman’s perspective and to help me answer your questions. If you are a woman you won’t want to miss this series that is created especially for you  What does it mean to rock retirement? If you have listened to the show before, you know that I frequently use the phrase rock retirement. I even wrote a book called Rock Retirement and I created the Rock Retirement Club, but what do I mean by rocking retirement?  When you are rocking retirement that means you are using your resources to live your best-imagined life. I want you to use the assets you have to design your ideal life in retirement. There are so many decisions to make in retirement. Many people mistakenly think that their financial decisions are separate from their life decisions, but life and money are never separate. Your money should be helping you to create the best life that you can imagine.  How do women excel in retirement planning? Men and women have different strengths and weaknesses in just about every area of their lives. This is no different in financial planning. As financial advisors, Tanya and I see the differences between the sexes every day. These differences are generalizations, but we have noticed that women excel in several areas of financial planning.  Women are more comfortable with vulnerability; they don’t try to control the uncontrollable. Women look ahead toward the outcome. Women realize the value of collaboration.  Women are more thorough and take more time to make decisions.  Women don’t mind speaking openly about their worries. Think about yourself. How do you excel in financial planning? Is it in one of these areas or in another way? How to confidently plan for retirement when you don’t have much to start with Debbie is worried about retirement. As a single woman without a huge retirement portfolio, she feels overwhelmed and doesn’t know where to start. She feels that financial advisors are only for the wealthy, but she knows that she must start learning about her finances somewhere.  The good news is that Debbie is listening to a financial podcast! That means that she has already started educating herself. Unfortunately, the financial planning industry hasn’t done a good enough job of successfully reaching average income earners. However, this doesn’t mean that financial planning is only for the wealthy.  In addition to listening to retirement and financial podcasts, there are other ways that people can educate themselves in these matters. Garrett Planning Network and XY Planning Network are 2 networks of more affordable financial planners that work on a monthly subscription basis. Listen in to hear more resources that can help you gain the confidence to truly rock retirement.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? [1:10] What does rocking retirement mean? PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [3:34] What do women excel at in retirement planning? Q&A SEGMENT [11:04] Women are less prepared for retirement than men [17:12] How to tackle the feeling you aren’t good enough [19:15] How to generate an income stream in retirement [22:20] Are there common pitfalls for women in transition periods? [27:27] A Social Security planning question [33:14] Who gets to keep a death certificate? [36:28] Make sure spouses communicate regularly about finances TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [38:43] Chat with your spouse about your net worth statement and financial plan Resources Mentioned In This Episode Episode 310 - The Pie Cake Social Security Calculators Aligned Financial Garrett Planning Network XY Planning Network BOOK - The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center  
With the financial industry being dominated by men, it makes sense to dedicate time to focus solely on financial issues related to women. Since I am not a woman and can’t speak personally about these issues, I have invited my good friend, Tanya Nichols from Align Financial, to help me tackle this month-long series on Women, Money, and Retirement. Tanya is one of Investopedia’s Top 100 financial advisors and she and her firm work mainly with women.  I’m excited to have Tanya help me explore this area further. We can tackle your questions and you can gain the confidence you need to live the life you want in retirement. With a bit of education, anyone can learn how to manage their finances in retirement. 3 financial power moves women can take now Women often have their own set of issues surrounding money due to traditional gender roles and a misogynistic financial services industry. But once women face these issues head-on they can trample these hurdles and take control of their own financial situation. Learning these 3 power moves can help you take charge of your financial life. Anyone can learn about money. In years past, finances were often left to the husband to control, so the financial industry has typically been dominated by men. The financial services industry likes to make money sound much more complicated than it is, but financial planning is actually a lot like project management. Learning about money is just like learning about anything else and you can learn about money just as well as you can learn about fitness, nutrition, or child-rearing. You can learn to plan your finances regardless of your background. So if you have an interest in your money, then dig in and start learning.  Think of yourself first. Do you often put your family’s needs ahead of your own? Women often sacrifice their entire lives for the ones they love. If you can acknowledge that you should consider yourself first when it comes to finances then you can begin to plan a life that is true to yourself. Before making financial decisions think to yourself: is this at the expense of something that is important to me? You have a rightful seat at the financial advisor’s table and an equal seat at the financial table of your marriage. It is no secret that the finance industry is dominated by men and even has a history of misogyny. You should never have to earn your seat at the table to talk about your money. That seat is already yours. Don’t put up with anyone diminishing you or dismissing your concerns.  What to do if someone diminishes your questions or concerns Unfortunately, women’s questions and concerns are often dismissed in financial settings. If this happens to you make sure to address the situation immediately and clearly state how and why you feel diminished or dismissed.  If the professional you’re working with doesn’t respond in a satisfactory manner then go somewhere else. It is important to find a financial professional that you can trust. They need to be able to listen to you and hear what your priorities are. Have you ever felt slighted by a financial professional? If you can’t find the right person to work with, don't be afraid to DIY your finances. With a bit of education, managing your own finances is totally doable. Own your awesomeness. You can plan your retirement just as well as the next person. OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [3:30] A disclaimer [6:33] 3 power moves for women [14:50] A 3 step process if someone diminishes your role LISTENER QUESTIONS [19:45] How do bond funds work? [23:22] What to do if almost all your cash is in a 401K [29:30] Should she consider putting her dad in a nursing home? [32:47] Decisions that couples make in their 50s and 60s will affect the women later [35:37] How will I be cared for if my husband dies first? TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [39:11] Plan your seat at the table Resources Mentioned In This Episode Align Financial My Fitness Pal Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Choosing the right withdrawal strategy is a big part of rocking retirement. Knowing how you will withdraw your money each month will ease the pressure that comes with leaping into retirement and boost your confidence. The right retirement withdrawal strategy for you may not be the same as the one your friend uses, the one you just read about, or even the one your advisor recommends.  On this episode of Retirement Answer Man, we are wrapping up our 4 part series on retirement withdrawal strategies by learning how to build a framework to find the strategy that fits your individual needs. Press play to hear how to piece together the information you have learned in the past 3 episodes to create your own income distribution plan so that you can gain the confidence to really rock retirement.  Changing the language you use could change your mindset about retirement Planning retirement can be like planning to have kids. You don’t often think of the sticker shock that comes with it. Learning that a comfortable retirement might cost you $5 million might give you heart palpitations. But just like with having kids, you don’t have to pay that amount all at once. This amount is spread out over the years and you have control over how much you may spend. This is why it is important to get into the right mindset.  One way you can change your money mindset about retirement is to reframe the way you word things. Yes, you are choosing a retirement withdrawal strategy, but the word withdraw means to take away. That isn’t the most attractive thought.  A better way to think about your financial capital is to realize that it is simply deferred income. You have been deferring this income for decades and the time has finally come to access the income that you have already earned. A simple change in wording can completely change your mindset and help you rock retirement. To choose the right withdrawal strategy, first, consider your financial situation  The first step to take to build your retirement withdrawal strategy is to consider your retirement situation. Think about whether your retirement is overfunded, constrained, or underfunded. To do this, compare your retirement liabilities to your resources. Consider all of your sources of income including your social capital, human capital, and financial capital.  Next, you’ll want to consider the different withdrawal strategies that you have learned about over the past 3 episodes. If you consider each of those retirement withdrawal strategies as being on a dial from 0-10 you can then place your financial situation on that dial. Chances are you land somewhere in the middle of the dial rather than on either extreme. This means that you may want to take a moderate approach to income distribution. Listen in to hear where each withdrawal strategy lands on the dial and how that could affect your personal income distribution plan.  Don’t ignore the qualitative aspects of retirement Not everything in life is about numbers and this is true for retirement as well. This means that you’ll need to consider more than just your finances to create your retirement withdrawal strategy. You’ll want to consider your age, life expectancy, and health. Do you need to fit as much living as you possibly can in the next few years? Or do you need to make your money last on the chance that you live to be 100? In addition, you’ll need to consider your family situation. Are you single or married? Do you have children? These external factors will also play a role in your income distribution plan.  One last consideration is your personality profile. You may need more security even if you are overfunded. Every person has their own risk tolerance threshold. Whichever way you choose to distribute your income in retirement, you need to feel comfortable and confident so that you can rock retirement. Press play now so that you can learn what you need to know to develop your retirement withdrawal strategy.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [4:00] How do you find the strategy that fits for you [7:31] The language you use to describe things really matters [10:00] Think about this in an organized way [17:55] What to take into account to help you evaluate all the aspects [24:01] How does your social capital fit into the equation? ANDY PANKO INTERVIEW [30:21] Why do people have so many questions about this? [34:20] How does Andy approach this question with his own clients? [36:54] How does Andy deal with tax planning in retirement? [44:46] Don’t let the internet scare you into doing something you don’t need COACHES CORNER WITH BW [48:38] Choosing the right strategy can give you the permission to spend [52:08] How BW chose his withdrawal strategy TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [59:35] Map out how you think about your quantitative and qualitative aspects of retirement Resources Mentioned In This Episode Check out the Facebook Live in Andy’s Taxes in Retirement group  Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
When it comes to creating your retirement withdrawal strategy there is no one-size-fits-all solution. You have to determine what is right for you. That’s why we have been exploring different withdrawal strategies this month on the Retirement Answer Man show.  If you missed the last couple of episodes go back and listen to learn about the safety-first strategy and safe withdrawal rates. On this episode, we are digging into asset-liability matching. Press play to learn more about this hybrid approach to withdrawing your assets in retirement.  What is asset-liability matching?  Asset liability matching is a term that is used in the pension planning world, but you can use it to describe your own assets and liabilities. Your liabilities are your spending or the debts that you need to cover. Your assets are your financial capital. If you prefer, you can also think of your 401K as deferred income rather than as your investment assets if that helps you come to terms with spending it.  Basically, asset-liability matching is when you match up your deferred assets with your consumption to make sure that you have your spending covered in retirement.  Where does this strategy fall among the retirement withdrawal strategies? On one end of the spectrum, the safe withdrawal rate strategy skims along the top of your investments. It only dips into them as needed. On the other side of the coin, the safety-first approach prefunds all or the majority of your retirement journey.  Asset liability matching falls somewhere in between these two extremes. I may be biased towards this approach since I use this structure coupled with agile retirement management with my own clients. Since I value flexibility in retirement, this withdrawal strategy fits my ideology.  Start thinking about which way you lean on this spectrum, so you can begin to build your retirement withdrawal strategy framework in the next episode. What's your baseline? To execute the asset-liability matching strategy, you’ll first need to establish a contingency fund or a standard emergency fund as a buffer. The next step is to plan your spending over the first 5 years of retirement including your tax estimates.  Once you isolate how much you’ll need from your financial capital, then you can build an income floor. The rest of your assets can then go into a core, growth-based investment portfolio. With this strategy, you’ll get a mix of protection against sequence of return risks in the near term and a hedge against inflation in the long term.  What are the benefits of asset-liability matching?  This is a good strategy to use if you value optionality. Since retirement is such a big life change it is nice to have a lot of liquidity early on. Retirement does not simply mean that you stop working. Your entire life changes and it can be difficult to understand how it will change when you are in the planning stage. Having this liquidity in the income floor can give you confidence and flexibility as you navigate this momentous life change.  Another benefit of asset-liability matching is that you mitigate the sequence of return risk. Having an income floor in place can give you many options if the world falls apart early on in retirement.  You may want to pivot to a safety-first approach or safe withdrawal rate as you age, but asset-liability matching gives you plenty of room to adjust while you are figuring this whole retirement thing out.  I am naturally biased towards matching assets to spending since this is the strategy that I use with my clients, but there is no single best withdrawal strategy to use in retirement. You’ll need to consider what is right for you. Make sure to listen to all 3 Retirement Withdrawal Strategies episodes to consider which strategy fits your needs and come back next week so that you can learn how to create a framework to navigate this crucial piece of retirement planning.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? [2:30] What is asset-liability matching? PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [6:39] Where does asset-liability matching fall in line with the other withdrawal strategies? [9:20] What is a baseline? [12:50] How will you find adjustments along the way? [13:43] What are the benefits of this strategy? LISTENER QUESTIONS WITH NICHOLE [19:15] How to calm the worry about retirement [25:21] Do I take the pension or the lump sum?  [29:55] What happens if your money management platform gets hacked? TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [35:42] Do you know of a void in your first year of retirement? Resources Mentioned In This Episode Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
One of the biggest questions of retirement is how to withdraw your money. You can’t have a successful retirement without first planning how to withdraw your money. That is why we are discussing different retirement withdrawal strategies this month. Last week we covered the infamous 4% rule and today you’ll learn about the safety-first approach. In our next episode, you’ll hear about a hybrid approach and in the last episode of this series, you’ll discover how to build a framework for your own retirement withdrawal strategy. Are you ready to educate yourself on the various ways that you can withdraw your money in retirement? Press play to get started.  What is the safety-first strategy? In the previous episode, you learned about a safe withdrawal strategy using the 4% rule. Whereas the 4% rule is a portfolio-based strategy, the safety-first strategy takes the opposite approach. Safety first ignores safe withdrawal rates and asset allocation. Instead, it focuses on creating income sources via various guaranteed income vehicles. The idea behind the safety-first approach is that retirement is too important to have variables like sequence of return risk that could ruin your retirement.  How to implement the safety-first approach  Since you only get one shot at retirement, the safety-first method secures a base income by using the assets you have. Prioritization is a key component to safety first. The first thing one must do to utilize the safety-first approach is to calculate your base needs over the span of your lifetime. Once you have this number, then you’ll subtract the income from your social capital so that you can see what’s left. With safety-first, you will secure your base needs by utilizing bond ladders or income annuities. After creating your income floor, then you can focus on building your contingency fund to help with life shocks. Once both of these bases are met then you can focus on any other retirement goals you may have.  What are the advantages to safety-first? The first advantage that comes to mind with safety-first is peace of mind. By using the safety-first approach you won’t have to worry about the markets because you know that no matter what happens your base needs will be met. Another advantage is that this approach is easy to manage. There is not much to do after you have the plan in place but collect your monthly paycheck which makes this plan ideal for later in life. One more advantage is that since your needs are met you can focus on being more growth-oriented with the rest of your portfolio.  The disadvantages of this approach The main disadvantage that I see with this approach is the lack of flexibility. If you have listened to the show before, you know that my methodology is all about staying agile. People change their minds a lot and life can completely change after retirement, so tying up your assets in an annuity can take away the power to change your mind. Another downfall to safety first is increased inflation risk. Most annuities do not adjust for inflation, so if there are any spikes in inflation you could be at risk. Listen in to discover if the safety-first approach is the right one for you.  OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT [1:30] What is the safety-first strategy? [4:35] What are secure assets? [8:06] When to implement the safety-first strategy [10:20] Advantages and disadvantages to the safety-first strategy LISTENER QUESTIONS [17:55] How should I incorporate an inherited IRA into my retirement plan? [20:10] Taxes and Roth conversions [23:45] Does the 4% rule take into account social capital?  [24:54] How do bonds work? [28:38] A pro-rata question TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT [30:40] Do a basic calculation to figure how much of your base needs will be covered by guaranteed income sources THE FEEDBACK BOOTH [32:43] Women run the finances too [34:35] My 3rd attempt to discuss financial planning fees Resources Mentioned In This Episode Wade Pfau BOOK - Safety First Retirement Planning by Wade Pfau Michael Kitces Rock Retirement Club Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney Work with Roger Roger’s Retirement Learning Center
Comments (5)

Martin Dieu


Jun 10th

Elizabeth Ann Cobb

when you cover Medicare please include a caution people with health benefits through their pension plan about changing to a plan through a navigator. By changing to one of these. their costs could increase because they could loose the financial assistance the health benefits through their pension provides. Navigators are typically not trained to ask the questions necessary to determine if a person has health benefits through their pension.

Jun 10th


When, not if, a crash happens. Coronavirus is the when. Let's see Trump brag his way out of this. This is going to wipe us all out.

Feb 29th


When I started listening to these "Live" series, my fist thought is he should be applied for Social Security Disability. Everyone in this situation should. I just stated listening to this 2nd podcast, so I'll see if you bring this up. Hope so.

Sep 19th

John B

The "rule of 55" can occur anytime in the YEAR that you turn 55.

May 14th
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