It seems that life used to be plainly segmented. First we got educated, then we worked, then we retired.
Financial plans followed suit: first we accumulated during our working years, then we spent in retirement – hopefully, not running out of money before we died.
Increasingly in the 21st century, life is sliced and diced. Periods of education may happen at any age. People remake themselves to meet the needs of the marketplace, or their own preferences. Stretches of leisure may be mixed in with periodic bouts of consulting or other work in the golden years.
Some people choose to retire to volunteering or a new business venture or employment in a more enjoyable field, or seasonally, or part-time. There are a lot of ways to live life these days.
In addition to changing lifestyle patterns, people are living longer than ever before.
In this new environment, financial plans and planning need to be more flexible, and serve different purposes. The key theme: flexibility.
1. Investment products that tie your money up for years are less appropriate than before, as changing circumstances could mean an unforeseen need for liquidity.
2. The accumulation of funds in traditional retirement accounts still makes sense. Adequate funds make work optional in later years, or enable volunteer work or even a business start-up.
3. It may pay to pay more attention to tax brackets, as shifting circumstances could change tax status from year to year. Techniques to take advantage of low-bracket years may reduce lifetime total income taxes.
The key, of course, is not what the trends are or what many people are doing, but what YOU want to do. Clients, if you would like to talk about this or anything else, please email us or call.
Content in this material is for general information only and not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.
All investing involves risk including loss of principal. No strategy assures success or protects against loss.