Navigating Pitfalls_square

Navigating Pitfalls

11/22/2023 Written by: Kristine Simmons

Much is written about the classic financial mistakes that plague start-ups, family businesses, corporations, and charities. Some classic financial missteps have been known to plague retirees, too. Becoming aware of these potential pitfalls may help you to avoid falling into them in the future.

Managing Social Security. Social Security benefits are structured to rise about 8% for every year you delay receiving them after your full retirement age. Is waiting a few years to apply for benefits an idea you might consider? Filing for your monthly benefits before you reach your full retirement age can mean comparatively smaller monthly payments.1

Managing medical costs. One report estimates that the average couple retiring at age 65 can expect to need $315,000 to cover health care expenses during their retirement, even with additional coverage such as Medicare Part D, Medigap, and dental insurance. Having a strategy can help you be better prepared for medical costs.2

Understanding longevity. Actuaries at the Social Security Administration project that a 65-year-old man has a 34% chance, and a 65-year-old woman has a 45% chance to live to age 90. The prospect of a 20- or 30-year retirement is not only reasonable, but it should be expected.3

Managing withdrawals. You may have heard of the "4% rule," a guideline stating that you should take out only about 4% of your retirement savings annually. Each person's situation is unique but having some guidelines can help you prepare.

Managing taxes. Some people enter retirement with investments in both taxable and tax-advantaged accounts. Which accounts should you draw money from first? To answer the question, a qualified financial professional would need to review your financial situation so they can better understand your goals and risk tolerance.

Managing other costs, like college. There is no "financial aid" program for retirement. There are no "retirement loans." A financial professional can help you review your anticipated income and costs before you commit to a long-term strategy, and help you make a balanced decision between retirement and helping with the cost of college for your children or grandchildren.

 

1 SSSA.gov, 2023
2 Fidelity.com, 2023
3 LongevityIllustrator.org, 2023

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