Issues To Consider For Today’s Newest Retirees
According to recent research conducted by Harris Interactive, among the most recent group of retirees:*
• 38 percent say they wish they had waited to begin drawing Social Security
• More than 25 percent delayed retirement because of health care expenses
• 32 percent say health problems keep them from living the retirement they expected
• Of those without health problems, 86 percent say they can’t afford to do the things they thought they would do in retirement
This survey indicates that many of today’s newer retirees may not have an adequate retirement income strategy for health care expenses. One possible consequence to not having enough retirement income is that you may end up spending down more of your principal assets — and then you may not be able to leave as much of an inheritance as you planned.
Therefore, it’s a good idea to develop your retirement income plan in concert with your estate plan. This may mean placing a greater focus on protecting and leveraging your current retirement assets. With these components in mind, consider these tips for developing your retirement income and estate plans:
1. Plan for unknown expenses, such as those that accompany health issues, early retirement, disability, death or even a longer life than expected. This means considering how you will pay for long-term care, long-term housing and how to generate lifetime guaranteed** income streams.
2. Update beneficiaries. We get so caught up in weddings, births and funerals that many times we forget how new circumstances can impact previous beneficiary arrangements. Each year, make a point to review your beneficiary designations for bank accounts, investment accounts, retirement accounts and insurance policies. Remember: These account documents supersede any instructions you may stipulate in your will.***
3. Plan for taxes. When it comes to your estate plan, consider utilizing a trust to transfer assets and real property to help avoid potentially higher taxes.
Your financial professional can help you with retirement strategies using insurance products such as annuities. In addition, a qualified estate or tax attorney can assist with developing contingency plans to help you both enjoy the retirement lifestyle you want and leave a legacy to provide for loved ones.
Our firm assists retirees and pre-retirees in the creation of retirement strategies utilizing insurance products. Our firm is not permitted to offer, and no statement contained herein, shall constitute tax, legal or accounting advice. Be sure to speak with qualified professionals before making any decisions about your personal situation. Our firm is not affiliated with the U.S. government or any governmental agency.
*Nationwide Financial, “many Regret Decision to Take Social Security Early,” June 4, 2014; http://www.nationwide.com/about-us/060414-nf-social-security-survey.isp.
**Guarantees are backed by the financial strength and claims-paying ability of the issuing insurer.
***LegalZoom, “Does a Last Will & Testament Supersede Other Documents?” http://info.legalzoon.com/last-testament-supersede-other-documents-24532.html, accessed Sept. 29, 2014.
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