It seems that everywhere you turn, there is talk about the market. Discussions about nest eggs disappearing and 401(k)s declining are springing forth around the office water cooler and even in the grocery store check-out line. However, one place this discussion does not seem to be taking place is around the dinner table.
In a recent Fidelity survey of 502 couples, it was concluded that although this recent economic down turn has altered most people’s view of retirement, the majority of couples are not in agreement when it comes to their retirement plans. The survey was drawn from couples between the ages of 45 and 72 with a household income of at least $75,000 and investable assets of $100,000 or more. Although almost everyone surveyed agreed that their retirement plans had to be adjusted, it appeared that the participants were not in agreement with their spouse as to how it should be adjusted.
The survey showed that only 38% of the couples make decisions together regarding their retirement savings plans. More revealing was that only 15% were confident that in the event of their death, their spouse would be able to take over the responsibility of the family’s finances.
Even some of the most basic financial planning and goal setting issues illustrated how divided they were. Of those surveyed, 60% had a different target for retirement age, while 44% disagreed on whether they were planning to work during their retirement years. However, both men and women agreed that they would have to delay retirement for at least one year.
With so much news and commentary about the economy and stock market bombarding us from every angle, this is a prime opportunity to discuss your financial goals with your spouse. Deciding when retirement will take place and how much income you will need from your investments are essential for you to have a successful retirement plan.
Use this opportunity to review your retirement plan allocations and your individual and joint brokerage accounts together, as well as your IRAs. Discuss if the last 18 months have changed the way you think about the next 30 years. Do you have different feelings now about decreasing your spending or increasing your savings? Do you feel now is the time to take more risk in order to take advantage of market downturns, or do you feel like a more conservative approach is the key? Deciding how much risk is needed to meet your goals can only be achieved when you have agreed upon your goals.
If you are like the 40% of high net worth individuals that have attempted to navigate through this turmoil alone, you may wish to seek the advice of a professional when mapping out your retirement plans.
This most recent market crisis could actually turn into a golden opportunity for you. Discuss your basic financial goals and objectives together. Afterwards, implement them into a workable retirement plan. When you and your spouse work as a team, meeting your retirement goals will be much easier to accomplish. If you want to discuss your retirement plans with a professional or need assistance setting a workable plan, contact Henssler Financial at 770-429-9166 or at [email protected]