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Category: Retirement Planning

Talking About Childhood and Retirement

Talking About Childhood and Retirement

Last week, I was interviewed by my good friend and fellow advisor, Justin Castelli on his All About Your Benjamins podcast. I’m thankful for that opportunity, not because we discussed retirement (which we did), but because he wanted to chat about my childhood. Justin and I had previously shared an offline call where we happened to chat about how I grew up and he encouraged me to share my story as it’s probably relatively unique – or at least not…

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Finding Fulfillment in Retirement

Finding Fulfillment in Retirement

A couple of months back, I had a conversation with Fritz Gilbert, the writer and owner of the retirement blog, The Retirement Manifesto. I’ve been a reader of his for quite some time as his posts are always insightful and entertaining. His writing offers particularly useful perspectives for me thanks to his willingness to share all that he’s going through as he is going through it. I reached out to him via phone to gain some wisdom on a variety…

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Increasing Your Odds of Retirement Success

Increasing Your Odds of Retirement Success

Recently, I was asked a great question: “What is the #1 thing I can do to increase my odds of retirement success?” Most people are inclined to focus on the portfolio since it gets all the love and attention in retirement planning – how can you optimize your portfolio, pay less in taxes or squeeze out more return?? But when it comes to retirement planning, often the easiest way to increase your chance at retirement success is to concentrate on…

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How to Invest For a 30+ Year Retirement

How to Invest For a 30+ Year Retirement

A couple of weeks back, I had the pleasure of chatting with Taylor Schulte, CFP® on his retirement podcast, “Stay Wealthy.” Taylor is a highly respected retirement expert, so naturally, I was excited to have a public chat about a topic we are both passionate about. On the podcast, we discuss my post, A Portfolio Strategy for 30-Year Retirements, to include the following topics: Why living longer should be a goal to strive for and why you’ll probably live much…

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A Retirement Trial Run

A Retirement Trial Run

I’m on vacation in the Outer Banks this week and I was planning to skip a week of writing the blog, but I couldn’t help myself. Something surprised me prior to leaving for our trip. Before we started the long drive, my wife informed me that I haven’t taken a full week off since my youngest son was born – he is almost three. Before I get emails about needing more work/life balance, anyone who knows me well knows it’s…

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Why I Prefer Dividend Income Over Total Return in Retirement

Why I Prefer Dividend Income Over Total Return in Retirement

The one constructive response I received on the article, A Portfolio Strategy for 30-Year Retirements, was the preference for total return versus dividend income. If you haven’t read it, I’d encourage you to do so now as what follows will make much more sense. Before we dive in, let’s first define total return investing. Total return investing is the idea that there is no preference for investment gains, whether via dividends or growth of underlying capital. The thought process here…

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A Portfolio Strategy For 30-Year Retirements

A Portfolio Strategy For 30-Year Retirements

PLEASE NOTE: This is a long post, but I passionately believe that if retirees have any chance of getting things right, they must properly understand all the underlying assumptions they are making in their retirement planning decision process. And because I view the subject(s) of this particular article to be so important, I wanted all the thoughts in one place instead of being spread amongst three or four individual posts – especially since these issues are inseparable in nature. If…

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The World is Changing For the Better & Why It Matters To You

The World is Changing For the Better & Why It Matters To You

I wanted to draw your attention to a few graphs, all of which come from OurWorldInData.org via this article, “The short history of global living conditions and why it matters that we know it” by Max Roser. I have a simple question for you at the end. Question to Ponder: Despite “what we think we know” about the world, these are the prevailing trends. For me, this begs the question – “If these are the trends, what do you think…

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Why Average Market Returns Mean Nothing

Why Average Market Returns Mean Nothing

David Hultstrom of Financial Architects puts out a great quarterly newsletter for financial advisors (and a great one for investors as well). In the most recent version of his advisor newsletter, he posted the following chart below with some great commentary that I wanted to share with you. The average compound return (i.e. geometric) is 9.75% (red line). Only in 1992 did an annual return round to 10%. In only 5 out of the 93 years was it even within…

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An Easy to Understand Guide to Required Minimum Distributions

An Easy to Understand Guide to Required Minimum Distributions

Despite the fact that Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) impact everyone above age 70.5 with a tax-deferred investment account balance, there is still a surprising amount of confusion around the subject of RMDs and how to calculate the distribution required. Before I get to the actual calculation, I’ll briefly address some frequently asked questions about RMDs many retirees may be curious about. What is an RMD? This is the mandatory minimum withdrawal that must be taken from tax-deferred retirement accounts starting…

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