Family relationships give us purpose and great pleasure in our daily lives. They also come with financial obligations and commitments. These commitments shape our character and give us pride in being able to share our successes with the ones we love.
Prevention is better than cure.
I have had the fortune of working with families at every stage in life. Each stage has its share of exciting anticipation as well as anxiety and concern. Uncertainty is part of life but we can think through the issues and put preventative measures in place.
No matter the level of wealth there is always anxiety about maintaining a level of lifestyle and a strong desire to never need to rely on family members for assistance.
- Are your assets balanced against the opposing forces of inflation and market risk?
- Is insuring your nest egg a good idea or is it an unnecessary expense?
- Will your spouse or children know how to manage things if you become incapacitated?
As you approach retirement it can be very difficult to determine how much you really need to have saved and how to restructure your assets before walking away from a steady paycheck. Some won’t formally retire but plan to ramp down their earnings potential.
- Have you saved enough to maintain your current lifestyle through life?
- What can you do between now and retirement to examine all opportunities?
- How will you manage your nest egg and how should it change going forward?
- Will you receive a retirement package and how do you best maximize your benefits?
- How do you intend to spend your days in retirement?
Taking Care of Parents
People are living longer and many were not prepared for a 30 year retirement. They were too conservative or aggressive with their money and / or incurred unanticipated health issues. Welcome to the sandwich generation.
- How do you manage to take care of your parents and your children at the same time?
- Which obligations come first and how do you prioritize and manage each need?
Studies show and anecdotal evidence supports most families feel an obligation to support our children and grandchildren through college.
- How do we save for college and retirement at the same time?
- Which one comes first?
- How can we efficiently allocate between the two?
I’d like to help you in these endeavors and plan through the issues. Let’s have a dialogue and discuss what makes your situation unique. We can create a customized plan to prepare for the future and give you confidence that no matter what’s happening you have a partner and plan to help you to deal with what comes your way.
Case Study: Deb & Peter
Deb and Peter are in their 40′s and have 4 children between the ages of 1 and 10 years of age. Deb desires to work part time so she can focus more on the kids. They would like to plan around the drop in income and wanted to discuss how to manage both retirement and education goals at the same time.
Deb and Peter have never developed a budget that worked for both of them. They were living paycheck to paycheck. For years, they’d been trying to save for a family vacation but when it came time they never had any savings. Deb was worried that they would not have enough money to retire, and Peter was frustrated because there was never enough money to do the day-to-day things they enjoyed. They knew they had to start planning to pay for their kids’ college education, but they weren't sure where the money would come from. They both felt they had a solid relationship but financial insecurity was a constant source of marital strife.
We started by discussing all of Deb and Peter goals and prioritizing them. They had good income, a collection of IRA’s, Insurance, and other investments. We forecasted all of their goals with a range within ideal and acceptable scenarios. Based on the conclusions we were able to map out a strategy to develop a savings plan, restructure their balance sheet and start pursuing each objective in a coordinated manner.
I showed Deb and Peter how much money Peter would have to make if Deb worked part- time and helped them implement a budget system they could follow. We created a spreadsheet that projected their net worth and liquid assets would be worth over the next 3-5 years. Now they had greater clarity of what their finances would look like in the immediate term.
After an analysis of their insurance needs, I found Deb was over insured and should transfer her overage to Peter’s policy and referred them to an insurance broker who shopped the policies to get the best pricing. They were under insured for liability purposes and I referred them to a broker to manage the gaps between their umbrella and auto coverage. And finally, I referred them to an accountant who would be proactive and call them with tax planning ideas.
Deb and Peter now have greater financial clarity and peace of mind. They are finally in control of their finances because they are making decisions aligned with their priorities and things that really matter to them.