The Complete Retirement Planner Blog

How Much Cash To Hold In Retirement

As you create a financial plan, major concerns about how much to save, how much you will be able to withdraw from savings each year, how long will your savings last, etc. often take center stage. One facet that doesn't get as much attention is how much money should be kept in cash. Before you retire, a common rule of thumb is to always have at least six months expenses in cash. This is mainly to help protect you if you should lose your job, or incur significant unexpected expenses. But is this enough after you retire?The good news -...

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Be Careful Choosing When To Claim Your Social Security Benefit

Whether you are working on a financial plan, or actually getting close to retiring, one of the biggest decisions you will have to make is when to start claiming Social Security benefits. There are more considerations than you may be aware of, especially if you are married, and choosing the best strategy will require some careful thought. In some cases, it may even be advantageous to use some of your retirement savings (if needed) rather than claiming too soon in order to receive the the largest benefit possible. The following is meant to highlight some of the Social Security rules...

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Inflation Does Not Affect All Expenses Equally

One component that all financial planning tools (even calculators) have in common is that they use an inflation rate as a factor. Some allow you to enter a rate, some assume a rate for you. But how much of a difference does that rate really make in the grand scheme of things? The short answer - it makes a tremendous difference.Financial advisers often suggest using an inflation rate of 3%. I've seen calculators that assume a rate of 4%. The historical rate, over the past 20 years, is approximately 2.16%. So what rate should you use, and how much difference...

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The Impact Of A Higher Inflation Rate For Health Care Costs

While you're still working, your employer generally helps cover at least part of your health care insurance/costs (hopefully!). But the moment that you stop working, you'll be responsible for the entire cost. If you retire before age 65, you will pay full market rates in your area for all health insurance and related costs. The total cost of this coverage could be a far greater than you expect, and you would be wise to research those costs as you create a reliable retirement plan, and before making the decision of when to retire.   Once you are age 65, you...

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It's A New Year - Plan Your Own Path

The beginning of every year seems to be a popular time for reporters to write about retirement planning, and all the steps you should be taking to get yourself into a better financial position. The problem is that all the advice they are offering is exactly the same generic advice they were offering last year. And the year before, and all the years before that. While it may be true that the basic principles of financial planning do not change in any significant way from one year to the next (aside from tax laws and retirement account contribution limits), telling...

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