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11Jan
Money… From Source of Stress to Valued Resource
Intergenerational Planning

Money… for many of us….is a complex, controversial and sometimes competitive topic.  While each generation has its distinct challenges, money can also be the number one stressor for individuals, couples, and families.

In this blog, I explain how each generation relates to money, how money stresses the generations, and offer solutions to the crushing stress factor.

Let’s begin with the World War II Generation or those born between the years of 1925 and 1942.

For many in this generation, also called “The Silent Generation”, money was associated with the deep scars of scarcity created by the Great Depression.  Therefore, the emphasis was on saving and always spending less than they earned.  This generation was largely content with keeping one house for as long as possible and keeping cars and other possessions until they wore out.  The primary money motivator for the WW II Generation was to replace scarcity with “having enough” or sufficiency.

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20Dec
Women and Social Security
Retirement

Did you know that 55% of Social Security beneficiaries are women?

Social Security is important for all seniors, but it’s a particularly valuable program for women for a combination of reasons.

  1. The Social Security Administration data continues to indicate that, on average, women have shorter lifetime work histories than men.  This is true in spite of the growing number of women in the workforce.
  2. Next, because women still tend to outlive men by an average of 5 years, they will receive payments longer than men. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and  Prevention)

Unfortunately, the widow will receive only one Social Security check.  While it represents the larger of the two checks that the couple had received, this reduction in income is still significant.  As of December 2015, retired male workers were receiving an average benefits check of $1,500 per month, compared to $1,182 for women.  (Source: www.ssa.gov)

This is depicted in the chart below.

(Credit also to the Motley Fool “6 Social Security Facts you’re Probably Not Aware of”, Sean Williams, September 15, 2016.)

This is one of the reasons that the Resonate team specializes in working with women.  Whether married, never-married, partnered, divorced, or widowed, we welcome you.  We know how to take the complicated issues and make them clear and understandable; we are committed to working in your best interest, and are excellent at helping create a plan and pathway to get you from “where you are to where you want to be”.   We provide financial peace of mind so that you can relax and enjoy life.

Let’s talk!

Barbara A. Culver
CFP®, ChFC®, CLU, AEP®
Resonate, Inc.

(513) 605-2500

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30Nov
LGBT Financial Experience
Planning for the LBGT Community

Prudential Insurance Company recently published the 2016-2017 results from the “LGBT Financial Experience” survey.

keep-calmThe top financial concerns are:

1.  Am I saving enough for retirement?
2.  What impact does inflation have on my retirement goals?
3.  What can we expect in terms of health care costs in retirement?

Our own conversations with clients add this important dimension:

When we are ready, how do we find “gay friendly” retirement communities?

If you have similar questions and concerns, let’s talk and begin to create choices and solutions now.

If you have questions that are more of a legal or tax nature, our virtual team will join in the conversation.

The important thing is to take action and start the conversation with us now.

Barbara A. Culver
CFP®, ChFC®, CLU, AEP®
Resonate, Inc.
(513) 605-2500

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18Nov
The Most Overlooked Issue in Retirement Planning – Parts 4 & 5
Health Care Costs

question-markWhat will you pay for health care in retirement?

This is the final installment of the blog series.  See previous posts from Nov. 2nd and 14th.

Here is the third factor that influences what you will pay for health care in retirement:

Your Source of Coverage:

Some Americans are still fortunate to have a certain percentage of their health care benefits provided by their former employer.

For most Americans, this is not the case.

Most retirees need to choose between an Original Medicare, plan which includes buying supplemental Medigap insurance, OR to choose a Medicare Advantage Plan.

Here’s a chart comparing the two:

medicare-chart-resized

(Source: Merrill Lynch)

The fourth and fifth factors of heath care premiums in retirement are:

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14Nov
The Most Overlooked Issue in Retirement Planning – Parts 2 & 3
Health Care Costs

question-mark

What will you pay for health care in retirement?

In Part One of this series, I shared that Fidelity research suggests that a 65-year old couple retiring in 2016 will need an estimated $260,000 to cover their retirement health care costs.  Please reference the entire blog dated Nov. 2nd.

In addition to your own genetics and health history, five factors will have a significant influence on your overall costs for care.

In this blog, I cover the first two factors:

Where You Live:

While Medigap and Medicare Advantage plans are offered in each state, the premiums can vary by as much as 30%.  (Source: HealthView Services.)

Here is their research on the 10 states with the highest cost for Part B, Part D and supplemental insurance for a 65 year-old person.

State First Year Total Over 20 Years
1. Florida  $3,710  $152,184
2. Michigan  $3,707  $152,175
3. Maryland  $3,695  $151,438
4. Massachusetts  $3,686  $151,110
5. Nevada  $3,682  $151,014
6. Louisiana  $3,651  $149,661
7. New Jersey  $3,683  $148,865
8. Illinois  $3,595  $147,203
9. Texas  $3,592  $146,969
10. Indiana  $3,549  $145,235

Source: FA Magazine

If you want to check out rates for where you live, go to the Medicare Plan Finder and enter your information.

Here is the next factor that will influence your retirement health care expenses:

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02Nov
The Most Overlooked Issue in Retirement Planning – Part One
Health Care Costs

Whquestion-markat will you pay for health care in retirement?

Fidelity research suggests that a 65-year old couple retiring in 2016 will need an estimated $260,000 to cover their retirement health care costs.  Please note this represents a $15,000 increase from the 2015 estimate of $245,000 shown in the chart below.

Source: Fidelity Investments

health-care-graphWhile we know this can only be an estimate, here is how the costs break-down:

  • About one-third of the cost is for Medicare Part B (doctors’ services and out-patient care) and Medicare Part D (prescription drugs).  Even the most healthy of Americans incur these costs.
  • Then consider the out-of-pocket expenses of such things as hearing aids, increasing dental costs, and eye care.
  • Of course, the most expensive potential cost of all is the need for care at home or in a facility.  These expenses can easily crest $150,000.

While this information begins to address the importance of including planning for health care in retirement, each individual’s situation is unique.  Let’s talk about your situation and be sure that we plan correctly to meet your life and legacy goals.

Barbara A. Culver
CFP®, ChFC®, CLU, AEP®
Resonate, Inc.

(513) 605-2500

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21Oct
The Gift of Experience
Intergenerational Planning

gift-boxThe longer I am in this business, the more opportunity I have to see the results of our thinking and work manifest into clients enjoying a well-planned retirement. I also am privileged to share in the sacred parts of life transitions and the passing on of a treasured legacy.

We regularly talk with our clients about the two legacies we all create…. One is the legacy we live each day and the second is the cumulative result of the daily Living Legacy wrapped up in our Leaving Legacy.

This writing by Wayne Mueller beautifully describes the process we are grateful to share with our clients and their families. (Excerpted from A Life of Being, Having and Doing Enough by Wayne Muller)wayne-muller

We make only one choice.

Throughout our lives, we do only one thing- again and again, moment by moment, year after year. It is how we live our days, and it is how we shape our lives.

The choice is this: What is the next right thing for us to do? Where, in this moment, shall we choose to place our time and attention? Do we stay or move, speak or keep silent, attend to this person, that task, move in this or that direction?

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17Oct
Investing for Women
Investing

investing-for-womenThe August-September issue of the Morningstar Magazine for professional advisors has an interesting interview with Sylvia Kwan.  Sylvia is the chief financial officer of Ellevest – a company that specializes in investing for women.

Here are some of their positions with which your Resonate team agrees:

  1. “Investing shouldn’t be unisex.” Women’s investment preferences and goals are often different from men’s.  These preferences need to be heard, acknowledged, and factored into the investment portfolios.

  2. “Women working outside the home experiences more wage losses than male counterparts.”  This is due to taking career breaks to honor family commitments and due to the ongoing gender pay gap. Couple this with women’s actuarially longer lifespans and there is an obvious need for custom planning for women.

  3. “Life changes are a certainty.”  While we may not yet know what will change (health, issues with aging parents, divorce, special needs of children), we are committed to continually building our relationship so that we are there when you need us to again listen and provide appropriate (although different) recommendations.

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04Oct
Resonate’s Enhanced Services
Intergenerational Planning

Richness of Life

 

 

As a natural result of our clients’ busy lives, it is becoming increasingly clear that planning to meet their life and financial goals is rapidly becoming more complex.

Therefore, to act on our dedication and commitment to our clients, I am pleased to share that we have enhanced our services to include the following:

  1. Tax strategies designed to optimized the tax efficiency of a retirement portfolio both current and in the future.
  2. An annual Medicare check-up.  Whether you are currently covered with Medicare or you know someone who is, here are items that need to be updated each year:
  • A change in prescription medications;
  • Gradual increases in the Medicare gap filler or Part D premiums;
  • If a current carrier has discontinued the Medicare Part C or D plan;
  • A change in legal name;
  • A change of residence.
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22Sep
Rise of the Robo-Advisor
Blogs / Articles

robo-advisors I am increasingly reading about the “Rise of the Robo-Advisor” and thought some recent information might interest you as it did me.

For those of you who might not be familiar with the concept, Robo-Advisors are computers programmed to create investment portfolios.  They tend to be most popular with younger investors.

Did you know that, a “decision to protect its investors by Betterment, (a large Robo-advisor) resulted in Betterment temporarily suspending trading the morning after the Brexit vote?  “This decision, made on only a 2% drop in the market, disappointed and surprised many Betterment users. “

(Source: “Betterment’s Brexit Shock” by Suleman Din Techzone Financial Planning August 2016)

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