Enjoying Retirement

Ages:

Dan (67), Kathy (62)

 

Why They Reached Out:

  • To develop a relationship with a trusted advisor

  • Help with tax planning

  • Make sure they had “enough” assets to last the rest of their lives.

  • Create an investment plan so they can sleep better at night

  • Talk about long-term care planning

Dan and Kathy's Story

Dan worked as a manager for a large employer and handled the family finances. Kathy worked at a local non-profit. Money stresses Kathy so she let Dan manage the finances for the family but since he is so busy, she pays the month to month bills.

Dan and Kathy learned the value of hard work from their parents and while they live in a modest house and were able to put their children through college, they don’t drive luxury cars or live in the most expensive neighborhood. By living within their means they have accumulated $2 million in their 401(k), 403(b), IRA and Roth IRA accounts.

Dan feels that he has done a good job but managing money causes more stress than enjoyment. He would rather garden and work on projects on their 50-year-old home. Kathy would love to travel the US and just feel secure so they could eventually help their children and grandchildren have an easier life.

Dan and Kathy's Questions

Dan did not understand what it meant to work with an advisor. He heard that many do not return phone calls or provide advice on financial topics besides investments. He had a few questions such as:

  • If suddenly I am not here, who can Kathy turn to for advice?

  • Are we minimizing our taxes in the best way possible?

  • Since we are retired but don’t have a pension, do we have enough money to last the rest of our lives?

  • Should we put all our savings in the stock market? It scares both of us when we see the market goes down 40%. What about bonds? Are annuities a good fit?

  • Our parents are aging, we can barely keep track of our investments, can someone provide us advice on their situation?

  • Should we have wills or trusts?

  • What happens if we need long-term care? Does long-term care insurance make sense?

The Results

Dan and Kathy met with 3 advisors, one was a large national firm that promised they are the best investment manager but doesn’t provide comprehensive advice and in-person meetings. The second advisor just wanted to sell more life insurance. They wanted someone to listen to them and take time to get to know and educate them before they committed to a long-term relationship. They wanted to feel that the advisor was focused on them and not his own interests.

  • In collaboration with Dan and Kathy, we organized all of their financial information online where both Dan and Kathy can see their net worth, retirement projections, spending and insurance in real time.

  • After organizing the financials, we collaborated with their CPA and implemented tax strategies such as annual Roth conversions before Dan had to start taking RMD’s from his retirement plans. We also helped them understand how new tax laws impact them.

  • To create a reliable income stream, we helped them understand in plain-english how to take withdrawals from their accounts in the most tax efficient manner.

  • We helped them draft the appropriate estate documents and talked about long-term care insurance options.

  • We meet 3-4 times per year to make sure they are informed and they can confidently travel the US without worry.

  • Dan is no longer stressed about his parent’s finances. We helped him organize their financial information and understand the accounts, then we made sure their estate plan and beneficiaries were titled properly so if Dan becomes executor, he will have a simpler estate.

Today Dan and Kathy are grateful they reached out to us. They spend all of their time gardening, working on house projects, traveling the US and visiting their children and grandchildren.

Our relationship is built on trust, not transactions, and they know that whenever they have a question, they can call our office anytime and have a return call that same day. They know that we proactively schedule meetings and phone calls just to check-in and know all about their family and their dreams for the future.

Most importantly, as their advisors, we encourage them to live life to its fullest.