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Funding Retirement: Opportunities vs. Challenges

The choices for retirement savings are extensive and can be overwhelming. And when it comes to retirement planning, inaction can be as bad as making a bad investment decision. One of the most common fears, public speaking, may now be eclipsed for many with the fear of outliving their money. According to the Internal Revenue Service, there is a litany of retirement plan options; however, for each option there are rules and regulations that may appear to be onerous, complicated and confusing. Unfortunately, if a plan is selected and then implemented incorrectly, fines or other negative effects may be assessed to the plan or even the individual investor.

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Social Security: Understand Your Options, Plan Properly to Access Benefits

Social Security was enacted in 1935. The program is officially known as the Old Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance program (OASDI). After earning 40 quarters, an individual at retirement age is eligible to begin collecting a benefit. Retirement benefits depend on your age at retirement. If you begin receiving benefits before your normal or full retirement age (FRA), you'll receive a reduced benefit. Four out of five future retirees agree that the Social Security system needs change. Many are fearful that benefits will be reduced and are unaware of the basics regarding their eligibility, participation and the monetary benefits of their Social Security profile. Sadly, 55 percent believe that Social Security will be their primary source of income in retirement.

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Lulled Into a False Sense of Security

Finding and Communicating Effectively with Financial Advisors

Less than 50 percent of the U.S. population consult and hire a financial consultant. There is a myriad of answers for why this may be. Those who do work with a financial professional have an expectation of certain results. If the goals are realistic and not achieved within a given time period, a client should obtain a clear explanation as to why discussed benchmarks were not reached. Additionally, a planner should convey concise and easily understood explanations of any suggested changes going forward. There are times where nothing should be done. Open communication is an essential part of the financial planning process.

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You’ve Saved It; Now It’s Time to Spend It Wisely

Consider Your Options for Accessing Retirement Funds and Minimizing the Tax Impact

Time can be your nemesis or friend, depending on when you start your journey. The journey is saving for retirement, and research clearly shows the earlier you start the better your chances of having enough money when you need it most. Conservative estimates have shown that a couple, with their anticipated life expectancies, will require more than $260,000 from age 65 on to cover their medical and healthcare-related expenses. Retirement may be a lauded goal, but getting there, keeping and enjoying what you saved, and leaving a legacy involves some effort!
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