Question: I am accepting an early retirement offer from a long term employer of 24 years. In March 2023, I will retire and receive nine months’ salary on top of my benefits. During this time I will be looking for another job of 30-40 hours per week. I would like to do this in order to invest some of the salary I will get. I have approximately $113,000 in my 401(k) and will also be looking to invest. I have no other savings or checks, and I’m 60 years old. I need advice on whether it would be beneficial for me to hire a financial advisor other than the one I have with a large investment firm through my current employer. (Looking for a financial advisor, too? This tool can help match you with a counselor who may meet your needs.)
Answer: While it may be beneficial for you to work with a financial advisor outside of your employer, this is not always the case. “It really depends on the costs of the business and the advisor, their fiduciary obligations that they may or may not be, and how reliable they are. If the cost is low, work as a fiduciary, and have a notable planning designation, it could be a great fit,” says certified financial planner Philip Mock at 1522 Financial. , but if this is not the case, you may want to find a counselor elsewhere.
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For his part, certified financial planner Joe Favoretto at Landmark Wealth Management says he recommends meeting with your current advisor and discussing your situation along with your long-term goals to see if they qualify and have done a good job up to this point. “If you’re not, and you’re looking elsewhere, I’d suggest using whoever you choose exclusively because you want your financial plans to be one coherent strategy, and having competing advisors can sometimes create more problems than you can solve,” Favorito says. (Looking for a financial advisor? This tool can help match you with a counselor who may meet your needs.)
No matter which advisor you choose – or if you go it alone – you have a number of things you’ll want to keep in mind here. “I want to know what your net monthly expenses are in retirement in dollars today, if you have any projected pensions in the future, and if not, what Social Security is like at 67 and 70. I also want to know when you would like to have a choice leaving work, but all of these questions come with assumptions, and my biggest concern is that you haven’t saved enough to leave when you want to,” says certified financial planner Adam Koss at Libertas Wealth Management.
In fact, Koss says there are two possible scenarios here. “My guess is that you will either need to save as much as you can between now and full retirement, or I hope you will be a relatively frugal individual. An example would be if your Social Security reaches $3,500 a month and your total retirement savings grows to $150,000 between now and retirement at At age 65, you can only expect a lump sum of $500 per month from your retirement portfolio, which puts your total monthly retirement income at about $4,000 per month,” says Koss.
The good news here is that this may be enough for you, and that you plan to continue working and earning money that you can use to increase your retirement funds. And if you decide to go the financial advisor route, that person can help you invest your earnings and come up with a solid plan to ensure a smooth retirement. Make sure that anyone you work with has the ability to handle–or knows someone they can recommend–not just investment advice, but all the other issues that become paramount as you approach your senior years. “That means estate planning, insurance planning, and tax planning,” says Favorito.
Another thing to consider: Advisers say you should plan on having some liquid savings in case of emergencies. “Your question about not having any other savings means you definitely need an emergency fund,” says Mok. Professionals advise setting aside between 3 and 6 months of living expenses in an emergency fund, regardless of whether you’re nearing retirement.
You should also consider when you will get Social Security. If you retire at your full retirement age (66 if you were born between 1943 and 1954 and 67 if you were born between 1955 and 1960), you will receive the maximum benefit. It’s best to delay getting Social Security for as long as possible because benefits increase by a percentage each month you delay starting after your full retirement age.
If you can’t find a job you want because of a looming recession, it might make sense to get into the gig economy and work wherever you can to earn extra money.
Looking for a new consultant? Consider checking out professional planners using the National Association of Professional Financial Advisers (NAPFA) online tool as hiring a personal financial planner is highly recommended in your situation, as it is likely that the person assisting with your retirement plan at work does not have the capabilities and the license or legal capacity On providing the kind of advice you’ll need. (Looking for a financial advisor? This tool can help match you with a counselor who may meet your needs.)
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