Everyone is probably familiar with the adage, “the only constant in life is change.”
Change is inevitable and is constantly reminding us that we must not only accept change but should prudently prepare for changes we know are coming in our lives.
As we age, we often become more resistant to change. “Changing gears” late in life can cause anxiety, even sleepless nights. Most people spend their entire adult lives accumulating assets (envision a hamster on a wheel), giving little thought to the asset distribution phase in retirement.
No longer having a steady paycheck in order to build your assets can be a game-changer.
Over the years, we have helped many clients successfully transition from the “earning” years to the distribution years.
Very little is written about the critically important process of transitioning from wealth accumulation to wealth distribution. How can you be sure your assets will last over your lifetime?
While there are no hard and fast rules, below we have outlined several steps to consider:
1. Assemble your professional team.
As with any new stage of life, there may come changes and new opportunities in your tax, investment, and estate planning.
2. Update your financial plan.
A financial plan is a living document that should change with each stage of life. When entering the distribution phase, it is important to provide your Advisor with updated goals, timelines, income sources, etc.
There are many ways to draw down your assets after retirement. Should you first draw from a Traditional IRA, a Roth IRA, or a personal investment account? When should you begin taking Social Security benefits? Should you consider reducing your risk exposure? These are just a few of the questions we help clients work through during their transition to retirement.
3. Revisit your plan regularly.
Envision a cross-country trip with every minute scheduled carefully in your extensive itinerary. A day in New Orleans, 2 days at the Grand Canyon, a quick stop at the World’s Largest Ball of Yarn in Cawker City, KS. You get the idea. Would you then crumple the itinerary and toss it into the backseat as you head out on your journey? Of course not! Chaos would ensue.
Yet, this is what happens when we do not utilize our financial plan as the working document it is intended to be. Your Financial Planner is there to help navigate every step in your lifelong journey.
As mentioned earlier, this is only a sampling of some thoughts pertaining to retirement planning. And rest assured, as you reach this milestone in your life, Greenwood Capital will be here to assist you. So in the meantime, enjoy the journey and as always, please contact us if we can assist you in any way.