Financial Wellness @ Work

Retirement Planning, Dougie Style!

One thing I love about my colleague and friend, Doug Spencer, is his ability to make the complicated simple. Take retirement planning for example. Some people approach retirement planning as though it involves complicated math, an ability to predict the future, and an ounce of luck.  Read more

How the IRS Can Help You Save More For Retirement in 2015

It has often been said that the only constant in life is change. As a parent, I find that change is both exciting and scary as heck because you never know what lies around the corner. This statement about anticipating change definitely remains true when the IRS is concerned.  Read more

Be Long Term Careful

One of the questions I get asked frequently by people who are on track to retire is if they should buy long term care insurance (if they don’t already own it) or if they should cancel it (if they already own it).Lately, that has been a very difficult question to answer.  Companies that offer long term care insurance are raising premiums, sometimes very substantially, and there are no guarantees that they won’t go even higher in the future.  So if you are considering purchasing a LTC policy or cancelling your existing LTC policy, what are some things that you should factor into your decision? Read more

Shave Your Budget, Not Your Moustache

A recent Wells Fargo study found that 31% of survey respondents do not think they will have enough money to “survive” on in retirement, yet more than half say they plan to save later for retirement in order to “make up for not saving enough now.” If we have learned anything from Aesop’s fable regarding the ant and the grasshopper, it’s that waiting until later is NOT a good strategy. This is especially true when it comes to saving for retirement. Read more

Living Longer May Not Be All Good News For Women

According to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics, Americans are living longer—o.1 years longer to be exact—as the national life expectancy has reached a new record high of 78.8 years. Women, with an average life expectancy of 81.2 years, live on average 4.8 years longer than men, at 76.4 years. While some may see this purely as a blessing, it does present a financial challenge for today’s women. Namely, women may need to save more for retirement than men in order to account for these additional years. Here are five things women can do to help address this added financial challenge: Read more

Are You Afraid of Your Student Loan Debt?

What’s really scaring you this Halloween? If you have student loans,  getting that bill might rank pretty high on the list. After all, no one likes owing tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars  that will seemingly take forever to pay off. That doesn’t mean paying off your student loans should be your only or even top financial priority though. Here are some other goals that you might want to prioritize first. Read more

Why Wait Until Next Year to Plan Your Future?

It seems like every fall I try to take some time to enjoy a few minutes of solitude and reflect on the experiences of the current year. This is also a time where I usually acknowledge that the to-do list that I created earlier in the year still reveals some unfinished business. As a financial planner, I’ll admit that this includes some things on my family’s financial planning checklist that still need some attention.  Read more

Social Security Myth #5: You Only Receive A Spousal Benefit If You Are Married When You Retire

In my last blog post, I addressed the myth that Social Security benefits are based on an accumulation of assets and that collecting a spousal benefit would reduce the amount a spouse would otherwise be eligible to receive. This brings up another myth that is circulating out there that suggests that one has to be married in order to collect a spousal benefit. That is not the case. Read more

Can The IRS Help You Save For Retirement?

Saving for retirement is a must these days and retirement confidence in general is pretty low. Our recent retirement preparedness study revealed that only about 20% of employees feel they’re on track to reach their desired income in retirement. In order to bridge this gap, it’s no secret many of us need to save more.  Read more

Social Security Myth #4: Collecting a Spousal Benefit Reduces the Amount Your Spouse Will Receive

One of the most valuable aspects of the Social Security formula is the accrual of spousal benefits for couples that have been married for at least one year at the time they file for benefits. However, some think of these benefits as a pool of money that somehow is split between the two of them. For this reason, they sometimes fall under the misconception that if one of them starts to collect a spousal benefit, the other’s benefit will be reduced. Read more