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As our lives are changing so is the definition of retirement.

September 09, 2020

Retirement Planning Today - Scooter

Retirement Planning Trends That Have Changed Forever

There was a time (not too long ago) when people thought of a career as settling in with one company and working there for 30 years. Just a single generation before my time, building a successful career meant staying long enough to “move up the ladder” and changing jobs was considered something that was done only when it was necessary. Once a person reached retirement age, they were expected, and sometimes even forced to stop working. Retirement meant quitting.

Funding our future isn’t what it used to be.

Today, fewer companies provide pensions for their workers. And, even if they do, it’s less valuable because people change jobs much more often. Successful people often build their careers by working for shorter periods of time then moving on to the next level at a new company. They are always looking for a better opportunity.

Defined contribution plans (like 401(k) plans) have replaced pensions in most cases, and workers are responsible for their own future. Additionally, current evidence is pointing toward a very different Social Security system for future generations. 401(k) plans have become the norm and have put the responsibility and choice of investing for retirement back on each individual.

Saving for retirement is not the only responsibility for each person. Where pensions are generally professionally managed, most 401k and 403b accounts put the responsibility of choosing the right retirement investment strategy on individuals as well.

With the burden for both retirement savings, as well as investment management, the pressure is on for today's workers. Working with a financial advisor who is a Certified Financial Planner to provide personalized financial advice may help reduce some of the stress that some people experience. And some retirement plans also offer Self Directed Brokerage Accounts which can be managed by an investment advisor.

We’re living longer – Not just staying alive. But LIVING.Retirement Planning Today - Gym

Thirty years ago how many 70-year-olds do you remember working out at the gym, or running marathons, or starting a whole new career? Today we have a different perspective on what is normal in our sixties and beyond. Instead of quitting, many “retirees” find themselves wondering “what’s next?” They are looking for fulfillment, and they see new possibilities in their new stage of life.

People over sixty are competing in elite adventure races, and setting new records for marathons. They are starting new careers with a focus on unrealized dreams, or simply shifting to a lower gear while staying busy. Retirement is no longer about quitting your long-held job and spending the remainder of your days sitting on the porch. It’s about finding out what’s next, and although it’s different for everyone, it’s usually NOT quitting.

Creating the freedom to choose our future lifestyle is all about choices we make today. 

Retirement Planning Today - Flower ShopFor many people, working deep into their 60’s and even 70’s will be their reality. The key is that they make a conscious choice, based on their own vision of the future, while understanding the pros and cons of their decisions. This is where creating a comprehensive financial plan can make a big difference.

Going through the process of planning out your financial life doesn't mean sacrificing more today, so that tomorrow you can rest. It is about creating a clear understanding of how the decisions made today will affect the future, and coming to terms with that. Is it more important to live more today, or save more for later? There is no "right answer" to that, there is only "your answer."

We understand this new dynamic in retirement planning and love the role we play in helping people get where they want to go.

It feels great to help someone see what’s possible. We have found that people tend to prefer a “counselor” more than they need a number cruncher. They want a person they can sit with, and bounce ideas around. They want an empathetic shoulder to cry on when times are tough. And, when things are going well, they want to share their joy and excitement about the possibilities. They need a human being to translate all the data and stand shoulder-to-shoulder with them as they navigate uncharted waters of the modern retirement. 

So, what’s your version of retirement? Do you make a career change? How do you design your retirement plan so that you can feel rewarded?

Want to bounce some ideas around? We're ready when you are. 😊