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What Retirement Choices Do You Really Have?

Many people in our community and throughout the country are experiencing the harsh reality of changes happening in the corporate world. Oftentimes, employees have done everything right — worked hard, made some sacrifices, embraced new opportunities in a different part of the country, moved up the proverbial ladder — and are now 10 or 15 years from retirement. Instead of finishing their careers as planned, their jobs are moving and they are faced with two choices: take a separation offer and leave the company or stick around and compete for the new jobs available.

Change is never easy. Even if the job change situation wasn’t a complete surprise — after all, it was happening to many co-workers — when the official notification is delivered, an individual will likely experience a wide range of emotions. Once a person comes to grips with the fact that their fear is now their reality, it’s time to adjust and take action. We’ve all heard the saying, “Life is 10 percent of what happens to you and 90 percent of how you react to it.”

 

So, how does someone make the best of the hard choices available? How can they take the buyout and still have enough money to get the last two kids through school and retire with anything like the plan they’d been working with for most of their adult lives?

 

There are two prevailing questions that need to be answered:

1. How do they cover the gap for income and health care before retirement accounts are accessible, Social Security benefits are elected, and Medicare coverage begins?

 

2. With years of extra retirement, how do they ensure that they don’t outlive their retirement funds?

 

The first step is to talk to the human resource department. Some find that if they have many years of service and are over 55, they still qualify for a pension, as well as access to retiree health care coverage. They may also be lucky enough to be offered a modest severance package that can be added to their retirement funds.

 

However, the next question is the most challenging. Let’s say that their investments have done well over the years and their company retirement accounts are fairly substantial. How can these funds turn into a sustainable income source that will replace the paycheck they had relied on for so many years?

 

Everyone’s situation is different, and there are numerous questions to be answered and various decisions to be made. To feel secure in making the decisions that will craft the “new life plan,” it is crucial to seek the help of a professional with experience helping others in similar circumstances. It is important to have someone familiar with the particulars of an individual’s retirement package, as well as having the technological tools to provide a stress tested retirement income plan.

 

That’s the important part of having a great financial advisor that will listen to each person’s unique story, along with their questions and concerns. At the end of the process, people need to have a comprehensive financial plan that gives them confidence and peace of mind to know that they are in control and can handle this bump — albeit a big bump — in the road. Perhaps this forced change will actually lead to something even better. “When one door closes, another one opens.”

 

Krista McBeath is a chartered financial consultant, a licensed insurance advisor, a fiduciary, and an experienced tax advisor who specializes in financial planning, investments, taxes, and insurance. McBeath Financial Group’s Technology Empowered Advisor Method (TEAM) is a financial planning process that integrates the personal touch of a relationship-based advisor with high tech — software tools to assess a client’s current portfolio and then analyze options from a variety of financial vehicles. Phone 309-808-2224 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for appointment information.

Advisory services are offered through McBeath Financial Group and Motiv8 Investments, LLC. McBeath Financial Group and Motiv8 Investments, LLC are not affiliated. Insurance products and services are offered through McBeath Financial Services, LLC. McBeath Financial Group and McBeath Financial Services, LLC. are affiliated.


 

 

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