At Ascutney Financial Group, we often get the question, “What is the single most important part of building a good retirement strategy?” Our answer is always the same – there is no single part that carries more weight than the other for everyone. It might be helpful to think of your retirement strategy as you would your retirement home. Every home needs a strong foundation, sturdy walls, functioning electrical and plumbing systems, a solid roof, and insurance in place to protect all those things. Imagine having a strong foundation, perfectly functioning plumbing and electrical systems, a roof that doesn’t leak, but the walls are sagging. It would be virtually impossible to live in and enjoy such a home.
Our invested assets are the foundation, our walls represent steady, dependable income, our electrical and plumbing systems enhance how we enjoy our assets and income, and our roof is how we use health care and estate planning strategies to protect it all for ourselves and our heirs.
We spend a lifetime building and improving our retirement strategy. Despite our best efforts, we will encounter unexpected obstacles along the way. Some parts of our retirement approach may be damaged and need repair due to those unforeseen circumstances. The impacts due to Covid-19 seem to be about as good example of life “throwing us a curve” as many of us will see in our lifetimes. Whether it’s due to a job loss or a large decline in our investments, it’s important that we approach the potential damage caused to our retirement strategy with a sense of urgency. Damage to the roof and walls of our house will eventually impact our foundation and conversely a crumbling foundation will cause breaches in the walls and holes in the roof. The same goes for our assets, income plans, health care goals, and legacy strategies in our retirement strategy. It’s impossible to set aside a deficiency in any part of a retirement strategy at still enjoy it as a whole.
The current economic volatility is creating issues and potential weaknesses for many of us preparing for retirement. We are seeing declining assets and a near term fickleness in the investment market. Others are experiencing late career job loss or significant income reduction. While these can be discouraging, they can be addressed with a holistic approach to retirement preparation. There are many products in the financial marketplace that can be used to repair our financial problems, but even the best “building materials,” aren’t enough. Those “building materials” need to be installed by those trained and practiced in the associated craft.
A professional in retirement income solutions can not only help you find the most appropriate products, but also insure they are installed properly within your overall retirement strategy. The damage to your retirement home due to unemployment or asset decline needs expertise. Just like current damage to a home that was built in the 1990’s can’t be rebuilt using dated ‘materials”, repairs to your retirement plan need to be built with modern solutions and according to current “building code.”
Whether you’ve experienced a storm or it’s a matter of wear and tear, its important to review and repair your retirement home so you can enjoy it in its entirety.