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There are two parts to your financial life. We like to compare the accumulation and distribution phases of retirement to climbing Mount Everest and show how it may provide some insight into planning your financial future.
Accumulation phase: The accumulation phase of retirement is the building and saving of your money in anticipation of retirement. Everyone’s climb up the mountain is different but the similarities are clear. You’re trying to save as much as possible so you have enough retirement money or pension income to meet your income needs in retirement.
Most of our clients are at or near the end of the accumulation phase and are transitioning into the distribution phase of retirement. You have saved your money, contributed regularly and invested appropriately. Now it is time for the important transition from Accumulation to Distribution. Meeting with a professional advisor to help you put that plan in place can provide you the knowledge and guidance you need and help you to continue feeling confident when encountering potential retirement road blocks. We touch base with our clients regularly and review their financial plan, make any necessary adjustments, and then the climb can continue.
Distribution phase: Once you reach retirement – the top of your Mount Everest – it’s definitely something to celebrate, but what about your way down? Are you accounting for possible risks, which will be different than the risks from the ascent up the mountain? What is your approach to this next stage, and what is the best way to designate your assets to meet the competing needs of lump sum withdrawals, income and protection against the expenses associated with Long Term Care.
When we meet with you to help you plan this part of the climb, we’ll first discuss what is the best way for you to maximize your Social Security and/ or Pension benefits. Then we’ll make recommendations to effectively designate your assets for specific uses while always keeping our eye on most tax-efficient way to use your money.
Once you have a strong income plan there are two key risks that can throw a wrench into your lifelong plan. The first risk, and one most people are keenly aware of is the ever-increasing cost associated with Long Term Care expenses. The other risk is significant loss of your money in the markets early in retirement. This is known as Sequence off Return Risk. Both risks can destroy a solid income plan. We work with you to help protect against those risks using the latest strategies available in the marketplace. It’s essential to designate every single asset you have for a purpose in retirement.
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