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Want the Good Life? Know the Answers for Planning Your Retirement

b2ap3_thumbnail_Retirement-5.jpgA surprising number of Americans do next to nothing to prepare for retirement. For those that do make efforts to put their money to work in investments for retirement, the process often causes confusion. According to Money Magazine, planning your retirement isn’t getting any easier – and most adults don’t have a full set of answers.

Decades ago, it was common for a worker to retire on the pension plan at their place of employment. These plans have fallen out of favor with a majority of American businesses, which means that you are having to do a lot more work on planning your retirement than the generation of workers before you.

As noted in Money Magazine, with 64 percent of households within five years of retirement, it’s more important now than ever that Americans find the answers to their questions. A financial research firm, Hearts and Wallets, did a study recently that found the percentage of households so close to retirement has jumped by 10 points in just two years. Furthermore, the research indicates that Americans believe retirement planning is the most difficult among 24 other financial tasks.

What’s the biggest obstacle to understanding retirement? For many people it’s knowing when exactly they will retire. The Hearts and Wallets study found that 61 percent of those surveyed said they didn’t know when they would retire. For nearly everybody else, planning for retirement is difficult due to not knowing how long a lifespan will be after retirement.

Another area that confuses Americans, and understandably so, is figuring out the minimum distributions from retirement accounts, deciding where to invest, and when to start investing. These are aspects of planning your retirement that could use the help of a professional investment advisor.

Hearts and Wallets didn’t touch on the mortality aspect of planning for retirement. However, due to the advancements in medical technology and ingenuity, we’re living longer. In 1950, women could expect to see age 71 whereas men were looking at 65 as their average life expectancy. Today, women can expect to live to age 81 and men to age 76. These are things to take into account for retirement that your parents or grandparents didn’t probably consider as heavily.

One of the tools you can use in your retirement planning is Social Security. While this isn’t likely going to be the bulk of your income for your retirement years, if approached correctly, you can have thousands more dollars in Social Security benefits coming to you over your lifetime.


To get the answers to your Social Security questions and to clear up confusion about your retirement planning, come to Family Investment Center where professional and experienced advisors are ready to guide you through the process. (Plus, we don’t operate on commission – instead we’re motivated by you reaching your goals!)

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