Retirement Realities – July 2013 Newsletter

We read every day that the average consumer is not adequately preparing for their eventual retirement.  Maybe that comment hits home when you read it or maybe you think they are talking about the guy down the street.  Whatever your reaction, it may be time to consider the realities of retirement and what you can do to protect your future. In the days of Franklin Roosevelt, there was a philosophy called the “community society” where an American worker had a hypothetical three-legged stool to rest upon in retirement.  The three legs consisted of a government Social Security benefit, an employer pension benefit, and an employee’s personal savings.  These three legs were viewed as entirely adequate to fund a retiree’s remaining years, which incidentally lasted only 5-10 years.  As an aside, the third leg, the employee’s personal savings, was really viewed as “gravy” for the extras that might be desired in retirement. Over the last fifty years, times certainly have changed.  Consider the following items which have thrown this philosophy on its ear. Life expectancy has increased dramatically.  The chart below Read on! →

Cheryl Sherrard quoted in Financial Planning Magazine

Cheryl Sherrard quoted in Financial Planning Magazine (July 1, 2013). Group disability is, by far, the way that most people have coverage. It’s often free or available at very low cost, and there’s no medical underwriting involved. But it only goes so far, advisors caution. The benefit can be taxable if an employer pays the premium or if the employees pay it pretax. That could come as a shock to someone who believes they’ll be getting 60% of their salary only to find out that a big chunk of it is taxed. Also, group coverage is based on salary rather than total compensation. Someone whose earnings are based largely on a bonus may find the benefit woefully lacking, says Cheryl Sherrard, director of financial planning with Clearview Wealth Management in Charlotte, N.C. And group disability often places severe restrictions on which type of disability will be covered. The plans usually pay for 18 to 24 months if a person is not able to perform his or her occupation; after that, they typically only continue to pay if that person can’t Read on! →