January 24, 2012
Joe Tomlinson, a regular contributor to Advisor Perspectives, recently chaired an actuarial working group that developed a series of Decision Briefs on retirement issues. These briefs, linked and summarized below, are now available to Advisor Perspectives readers and other interested parties.
Financial advisors mainly help clients with investments. Their clients, however, face other financial planning issues, and the arrival of retirement typically involves making numerous decisions. These briefs provide useful information to professionals who work with clients on the verge of retirement – especially financial advisors, accountants and lawyers. This work was sponsored by the Society of Actuaries, the professional organization that represents 22,000 actuaries in North America.
The briefs cover the following topics:
- Big Question: When Should I Retire? – This brief covers key questions that need to be considered when timing retirement, including examples illustrating the financial benefits those who delay retiring may enjoy.
- When Retirement Comes Too Soon – Recognizing that expectations are often upturned by unplanned early retirement, this brief addresses things to consider when that happens.
- Women Take the Wheel: Destination Retirement – This brief deals with special issues that confront women, who typically live longer than men and are likely to spend time as widows.
- Deciding When to Claim Social Security – When should you claim Social Security, and what may be the impact of your decision? This brief also addresses special issues for couples.
- Designing a Monthly Paycheck for Retirement – This brief deals with replacing a regular paycheck, and various options for taking withdrawals from savings or employing products with longevity guarantees.
- Treating Asset Allocation Like a Roadmap – This brief focuses on the tradeoffs and risks when you settle on a mix of asset classes to invest in.
- Securing Health Insurance for the Retirement Journey – This one addresses the Medicare choices individuals face beginning at age 65 and options for supplementing Medicare coverage. It also reviews the health insurance challenges that face those who retire before age 65.
- Taking the Long-Term Care Journey – Perhaps the biggest risk faced by retirees is the need for long-term care. This brief describes the relevant financial and non-financial considerations, including questions about whether to buy insurance.
- Where to Live in Retirement – Although housing decisions are typically reached later in life, major lifestyle and financial issues are involved, so it pays to plan early. This brief also addresses special housing issues confronting the elderly.
- Estate Planning: Preparing for End of Life – This brief recognizes that estate planning is not just for the wealthy, and that there are key issues for everyone
- Finding Trustworthy Financial Advice for Retirement and Avoiding Pitfalls – It is not easy to find high-quality, unbiased financial advice at a reasonable cost, and this brief provides suggestions to help avoid the pitfalls.
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