Retirement Readiness Guide by Paul Fair Associates

By requesting this Retirement Readiness guide you have taken the first step to take a more active role in managing your money and your financial future. Today it is unbelievable to hear just how busy people are. Many of our retired clients tell us they are busier now than when they were working. Taking time to manage your finances often gets pushed to the bottom of the to-do list. For over 25 years we have worked with hundreds of clients helping them prepare for what we call the second act of their investing lives. The first act is what you did up to this point – saving and investing for your retirement. Now the hard part begins. As you transition from working and saving into retirement and spending, you will be faced with some of your most difficult financial decisions.

  • How can I withdraw money for retirement in the most tax-efficient manner?
  • When should I begin collecting Social Security?
  • Should I roll over my 401k?
  • How do I make sure my spouse and other beneficiaries are taken care of when I die?
  • Can I retire?
  • How do I invest differently now that I need to start taking money out?
  • Am I spending money too fast for it to have a good chance of lasting for the rest of my life?
  • What does front-end loading my retirement mean to my overall retirement plan?
  • What is the best pension option to select for the retiree, spouse, and family?
  • Should I be concerned about long-term care, especially as I get older?

Get a sneak peak at the guide below!

Please Note: All information presented in this Retirement Readiness Guide is for general discussion purposes only and should not be construed as the receipt of, or as a substitution for, personalized investment advice from Paul Fair or Paul Fair Associates, LLC (PFA). Please consult a professional for your specific needs.


STEP 1: GETTING ORGANIZED
1-retirment-carIn this section you will begin to organize all of your financial information so that you can make better decisions about your retirement. On the following pages are some basic worksheets designed to help you organize your financial information in a way that will be useful in making all of your future decisions regarding your retirement.

In This Section You Will:

  • Organize your financial information
  • Complete your income and expense worksheet
  • Gain insight on your annual retirement cash-flow needs
  • Find out if you are you spending too much
  • Learn how much money you can spend in retirement
  • Determine how much money you need to support your desired retirement lifestyle
STEP 2: WHAT WILL YOU DO IN RETIREMENT?

retirement

On the following pages are some worksheets designed to help you think about what you will do in retirement on a day-to-day basis. The transition into retirement is more than just living without your paycheck; it’s also about what you will do with all of the extra free time you are going to have.

In This Section You Will:

  • Complete your perfect retirement day worksheet
  • List your retirement dreams and wishes
  • List projects and goals you want to accomplish
STEP 3: CREATE YOUR PLAN FOR INCOME

2-retirment-step-savingsIn This Section You Will:

  • Learn why now, more than ever, it’s important to create a plan for income.
  • Learn the difference between an accumulation portfolio and a withdrawal portfolio.
  • Learn why the sequence of your returns may be more important than the average of your returns.
  • Learn how to build a plan to create lifetime income.
  • Invest in a way that will give you the greatest probability of success.
  • Keep enough cash and liquid assets to reduce the chance that you will be selling in a down market.
  • Create a re-balancing strategy

Retirement used to be easier. If you retired during the 80’s or 90’s, retirement was probably easier. Interest rates were high, so for many investors all they had to do was buy some FDIC-insured CDs from the bank, or some treasury bonds, and they were all set. They had the income they needed and their money was safe. Investing in the stock market was good, too. Since 2000, things have been different. Today, interest rates are at some of the lowest levels in history. If you relied on that money to cover your retirement living expenses and took withdrawals when the market was down, you forever and permanently locked in those losses. The money’s gone and even if the market recovers you won’t be able to get it back. That’s why you need a strategy for your retirement income. The problem is, most people don’t have one. Even most financial advisors are still giving advice based on old rules that simply don’t work anymore.

In this section you will learn about why you need to have a plan for income and why the sequence of returns may be more important than the average of your returns.

STEP 4: MAXIMIZE THE TAX BENEFITS OF YOUR RETIREMENT ACCOUNTS
4-retirment-step-open-401kIn This Section You Will:

  • Learn four ways to get money from your retirement accounts before age 59 1/2 without a penalty.
  • Discover what your options are for your 401k, 403b, 457 or other retirement plan when you retire or change jobs.
  • Learn the pros and cons of rolling over your 401k.
  • Learn four options to maximize the tax advantages of your retirement accounts.
  • How you may be able to take advantage of an in-service withdrawal.
  • Learn what you need to know about required minimum distributions after age 70 ½.
  • Decide which pension option to choose.

If you are retiring before age 59 1/2, you may need to give some special thought to how you are going to fund your retirement until your reach age 59 1/2. Learn about some options on how you can access your money early or more importantly how you can access your money without paying a penalty.

What to do with your 401k, 403b, 457 or other retirement plan when you retire or change jobs?

Learn more about my recommendations for you by viewing the Retirement Readiness Guide.

STEP 5: DECIDE WHEN TO TAKE SOCIAL SECURITY
7-retirment-step-ssSocial Security is an important component to most people’s retirement income strategy. For many, it may be the single largest source of consistent monthly income in their retirement. Unfortunately, most people don’t really understand how Social Security works. For years you have contributed money into this program, whether you wanted to or not; now it’s time to collect. We want to help you maximize the Social Security benefits for you and your family.

In This Section You Will:

  • Learn the basics of Social Security
  • Learn your three basic options on when to collect your benefits
  • The five key factors in deciding when to collect your benefits
  • What you need to know about working while collecting benefits
  • Learn how your benefits are taxed
  • Learn how to maximize your spousal benefits
  • Discover a unique hybrid strategy through a case study example
  • Learn how survivor benefits work, and how to maximize them

Your Social Security Benefits will be primarily based on two things:

  • How much you contributed to Social Security while you were working
  • What age you will begin receiving benefits

Learn more in the guide NOW!

STEP 6: LONG-TERM CARE (LTC)
6-retirment-step-pensionLong-term care (LTC) refers to a continuum of medical and social services designed to support the needs of people living with chronic health problems that affect their ability to perform everyday activities. Long-term care services include traditional medical services, social services, and housing. LTC benefits generally cover in-home, assisted living and nursing home (skilled) care. One of the biggest issues facing people as we age is inflation, particularly the cost of long-term care compared to the average rate of inflation. Healthcare inflation is rising at the rate of 6-9%, if not higher, compared to the inflation rate of the general economy of 2-4%. In other words, the cost of care is outpacing inflation rate of the general economy. So where will this leave people in the future as life expectancy continues to rise? If your assets are growing at 1-3% after inflation, how will that affect your ability to pay for healthcare expenses 10 to 20 years from now?

Learn more.

STEP 7: PLAN YOUR LEGACY
6-retirment-step-pensionIn This Section You Will:

  • Learn how to set up your retirement accounts with proper beneficiary designations.
  • Learn the difference between per stirpes and per capita.
  • Learn your options for inheriting an IRA from your spouse.
  • Learn how to properly set up an inherited IRA account.
  • Learn some common mistakes to avoid when choosing beneficiaries.
  • Learn what you need to know about naming a trust as beneficiary.

Chances are, you will still have money left in your retirement accounts when you pass away. How you set up your beneficiary designations will not only determine who will get the money, but possibly how and when it will be taxed.

STEP 8: AUTOMATE YOUR RETIREMENT
8-retirment-step-retirementIn This Section You Will:

  • Learn how set up and automate your main checking account
  • Set up direct deposits for all or most of your monthly income
  • Set up automatic billing for most of your monthly expenses
  • Keep track of monthly inflows and outflows using the worksheets on the following pages

Learn more in the retirement readiness guide or contact us today.