8 Important Facts About Retirement Planning

What you need to know

  • You know clients can work past 65.
  • You know retirement income is often taxable.
  • New clients need to know that, too.

Suppose your client doesn’t have enough saved for retirement.

Research shows that the average American has saved $95,776 for retirement, and 1 in 3 Americans have no retirement savings.

If this sounds like your typical new client’s situation, you might consider recommending several options, including working during retirement, downsizing the home, or delaying claiming of Social Security benefits.

You should also make sure clients are aware of the potential costs of nursing care and long-term care, even if that will frighten them.

You might need to educate clients about the need to adjust their savings withdrawal rate as they get older.

With your support, careful planning and a resolve to commit to the plan, they can ensure a comfortable retirement.

Of course, one important consideration is goals, retirement can mean many different things to people.

For some clients, it will be a time to travel and spend time with family. For others, it will be a time to start a new business or begin a charitable endeavor.

Regardless of what approach clients intend to pursue, here are nine things about retirement that might surprise them.

1. There is no age restriction on when clients can retire.

In the past, most people retired around age 65. However, retiring later in life has recently become more prevalent.

In fact, there’s no age restriction on when clients can retire.

As long as clients have the financial means to do so, they can retire at any age.

2. Retirement income can be taxable.

Clients might have to pay taxes on their retirement income, depending on their account type.

If clients have a traditional IRA, they may owe taxes on the money they withdraw in retirement based on their overall income.

If they have a Roth IRA, they won’t owe any taxes on the money they withdraw.

To you, this is likely old news. To new clients, this might be shocking.

3. They might need to adjust their withdrawal rate.

The 65-and-older population is the fastest-growing age group in the United States and has grown by 34.2% over the past decade.

The percentage of the money they can safely withdraw from their retirement account each year depends on several factors, including the size of their nest egg and how long they expect to live.

However, as a general rule, they should withdraw no more than 4% of their nest egg each year.

4. They should consider delaying their Social Security.

Some new clients might dream of retiring and claiming Social Security benefits as early as possible, but they’ll receive a reduced benefit if they start collecting Social Security benefits at age 62.

For example, suppose their full retirement age is 67, and they start collecting benefits at 62. They’ll receive only 70% of their monthly benefit.

If they wait until age 70 to start collecting, they’ll receive 132% of their monthly benefit.

The average Social Security retirement benefit is $1,536 per month or about $19,000 per year.

The maximum possible Social Security benefit for someone retiring at full retirement age in 2020 is $3,345 per month or $39,000 annually.

5. Don’t forget the cost of nursing homes.

Most health insurance plans don’t cover the cost of long-term care, such as the cost of a nursing home.

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