Retirement Answer Man

How can building an income floor ease your worries about life without a paycheck? If you are worried that having a 2-year cash reserve won’t give you enough security then you may want to build an income floor to help ease your concern. Over the past few episodes, we have been discussing how to live life without a paycheck and you have learned how to build a bucket system. But some of you may feel that this isn’t quite enough to help you weather the times of market uncertainty. Listen to this episode to hear how building an income floor can give you more peace of mind.

8 ways to make retirement too complicated

Do you like to make easy things difficult? We often make retirement more difficult than it needs to be. Here are 8 ways people often complicate retirement.

  1. We make decisions in isolation. We don’t think of the broader perspective of our financial lives when making a financial decision. We focus on tactics rather than the big picture. It’s important to have a process that follows a system that creates a strategy that leads to tactics rather than the other way around.
  2. You have too many accounts. People collect things over time and that includes 401K’s, and IRA’s and various other retirement accounts. Make life easier by consolidating your accounts.
  3. You may have too many investments even in one account. Having too many investments makes managing the risk/return allocation too difficult. Think, does this extra investment add value? Does it serve a purpose in the overall scheme of things?
  4. You may have too many advisors.
  5. You chase the markets. Are you chasing investments as the market fluctuates? It creates a lot of unnecessary activity. It may feel like you are more in control, but it actually makes things more complicated.
  6. You change your process too much. The key to having a solid process is to only have one. You can’t hop around. Stick with one process. It can evolve but don’t change gears completely.
  7. You think more information will give you more clarity. But more information can actually be very distracting.
  8. Overplanning and analyzing are not giving you more clarity.

How do you refill your bucket in bad years?

After listening to this month-long series on how to live life without a paycheck you know how to fill your bucket with 2 years of cash reserves. But is 2 years really enough? What do you do in the bad years? What happens if the markets take a turn for the worse? Here are 3 ways that you can adjust your approach.

  1. You could batten down the hatches. Slow down in your wants and wishes categories to reduce discretionary spending. Fund your base lifestyle only.
  2. Ramp up pretirement. Focus on your human capital until the markets bounce back.
  3. Readjust your long term goals. Agile retirement planning is all about making adjustments along the way.

What is an income floor?

What if you want more clarity? If you still feel that 2 years of cash reserves won’t be enough to give you the peace of mind you need then you can create an income floor for the following 3 years. An income floor overlays on top of your cash reserves. The income floor is built by bonds that mature like a ladder or it can be created by ETF’s or other funds. An income floor can give you more room for success by reducing your risk of overspending and reducing your behavioral risk.

How do you determine whether you should add this income floor on top of regular cash reserves?

Do you feel like you need an income floor? You can think about the level of your base needs that are funded by social capital. Social capital is guaranteed income sources like social security and pensions, income sources that don’t depend on the markets. The higher amount you have here the more confident you may be with only 2 years of cash reserves. You can also consider what level of human capital do you have like income from consulting or royalties. It is also important to consider how well funded you are. If you are underfunded then you will definitely need human capital. Learn how to create your system and keep your rhythm on this episode of Retirement Answer Man.

OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN

HOT TOPIC SEGMENT

  • [2:55] Do you like to make easy things difficult?

PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT

  • [14:52] Is 2 years enough cash?
  • [19:10] How do you refill your bucket in bad years?
  • [20:44] What is an income floor?
  • [23:24] How do you determine whether you should add this income floor on top of regular cash reserves?

THE HAPPY LAB SEGMENT

  • [28:01] How do you maintain sanity in the chaos?

TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT

  • [29:15] Identify 1 thing that you are overcomplicating

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

Rock Retirement Club

Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That

BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney

Work with Roger

3-video Series: 5 Minute Retirement Makeover

Roger’s Retirement Learning Center

The Retirement Answer Man Facebook Page

 

Direct download: RAM262.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CST

You may have heard me talk about the bucket system on previous episodes. People often wonder how they will tap into their funds when they retire. They wonder if they should just sell assets when they need some money. Well today, I teach you how to live life after your paychecks stop coming. You’ll learn the process on how you create your own bucket system so that you can create your own steady paycheck. Are you ready to learn how to set up your retirement paycheck so that you can be intentional about creating a great life? Listen to this episode to learn how to build your own bucket system so you can rock retirement.

5 retirement tidbits that I have picked up along the way

Working with retirees causes me to do a lot of research about retirement. Here are 5 tidbits I have learned over time.

  1. Our perception does not always line up with reality.
  2. Loneliness will shorten your life as much as smoking and drinking. Loneliness is scary because it creeps up on you. It is so important to continue to generate new friendships and connections. Friendships increase the quality of your life.
  3. Transitioning from the accumulation phase of life to the decumulation phase can be a challenge. You can look at the decumulation period like a vegetable garden. You have watered your garden over the years and now it is time to harvest.
  4. Spreadsheets can’t give you the whole picture. Many of you are orderly people that like to research and plan. Just remember that the art of all of this planning gets lost in spreadsheets. Retirement is so much more than just numbers on a page.
  5. Extensive social media use can lead to depression. Remember that what people post on social media is a fictionalized version of their life. Its like looking at the cover of a fashion magazine, all glossy and perfect. This is not the reality of people’s lives.

What is a bucket system?

In the past people just sold assets as they needed when they retired. But there is a better way to organize your finances. A bucket system creates cash reserves to fund consumption over and above what you keep in your normal emergency fund. It is the process by which you create your own paycheck in retirement. You create a payroll ‘bucket’ funded with 2 years of spending needs. You set up a way to pay yourself on a regular basis into your checking account. Creating a bucket system gives you clarity when you wonder where the money will come from in retirement. It can help you navigate this major change in your life. Listen to this episode of Retirement Answer Man to learn more about creating a bucket system to fund your retirement.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of the bucket system?

The bucket system has both advantages and disadvantages. Having this system in place can help you control your spending. Oftentimes when people retire they have a lot of liquid assets on hand, maybe even more money than they have ever had access to. Couple that with newly acquired free time and you could run into a big problem. The bucket system helps control a natural flow of money into your checking acount. It helps you work in an automatic fashion. The bucket system also provides visibility in a volatile world. It can give you some leeway to make adjustments as you need them.

If you have a growth mentality the bucket system may seem inefficient. When the markets are hot you can feel like you are missing out. This cash flow system can force you to be more conservative that you may want to be. On the other hand, 2 years of cash reserves can feel a bit tight in a major financial crisis like that of 2008.

How do you set up a bucket system?

How do you put this bucket system together? First of all, you need 2 years of your base needs that you have already counted the cost for. You also need 1-2 years of your wants and wishes. When setting up your bucket, remember your social payment and your income from other sources. You can subtract these from how much you need in your account.

Step 1 - to identify the deficit after adding up your various income.

Step 2 - fund your cash reserves by creating a payroll account. Pro tip- don’t have it in the same place as your checking account.

Step 3 - set up a payment system from your cash reserve payroll account to your checking account.

By creating a bucket system you recreate that rhythm you get from having a paycheck. You want to have that rhythm in place so that you don’t have any missteps.

OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN

HOT TOPIC SEGMENT

  • [3:02] 5 Retirement tidbits that I have picked up

PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT

  • [14:37] What is the bucket system?
  • [16:55] How does a bucket system help you control spending?
  • [18:34] What are the disadvantages to the bucket system?
  • [20:44] How do you set up a bucket system?

THE HAPPY LAB SEGMENT

  • [25:43] Understand how to communicate with those you love

TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT

  • [28:02] Go tell your loved ones that you love and appreciate them
  • [28:41] Fund your emergency fund

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

BOOK - The Noticer by Andy Andrews

Rock Retirement Club

Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That

BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney

Work with Roger

3-video Series: 5 Minute Retirement Makeover

Roger’s Retirement Learning Center

The Retirement Answer Man Facebook Page

Direct download: RAM260.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am CST

Now that you have your buckets full do you think the retirement planning is over? Sorry, but no, it’s not. 6 months later you have to do it all over again. The problem is life keeps changing. Expenses keep changing. So how do you overcome this? How do you constantly adjust? Constantly adjusting to new conditions is what retirement is. Agile retirement management means you can’t put financial management on autopilot. Learn how to set yourself up for success so that you can make the best of the only life you have on this episode of Retirement Answer Man.

How to set yourself up for success in managing change

Working with an advisor is like working with a doctor who is trying to diagnose an ailment. The doctor is really smart and well trained to try and figure out what is wrong and what the best course of action may be. But only you know your body. The same is true with your finances. A financial advisor is very well trained and can help you plan your future, but only you know what is truly right for you. When you abdicate everything to an advisor it can lead to poor solutions that aren’t in your best interests. Financial advisors have never dealt with the baby boomer generation before, so they are working with a blank slate.

Delegation vs. collaboration

One way to take more control of your finances is to collaborate with a financial advisor rather than delegate all the financial decisions. Collaboration means that you aren’t handing over all the control. It means that your retirement planning is an ongoing project. The client works alongside the advisor in a collaborative role. You are the expert in you. You know what your needs, wants, and fears are. And only you understand your changing priorities. An advisor has gained wisdom over time. They are the expert in the journey, you are the expert in you. Don’t delegate your retirement planning, collaborate.

What happens once you begin to drain the cash reserves that you have set up?

It is important to make sure the wind is at your back. Your cash reserves don’t have to be just sitting there doing nothing. They could be in a high-yield money market account, CDs or high-quality short-term bonds. You should also think about the different tax types of accounts from which you will fill your bucket. You have much more control now over which tax bracket you will be in. Filling your buckets from the right sources is important in controlling how much you will pay in taxes, not just now, but in the years to come as well.

How do you refill your buckets?

It is important to refill your buckets twice a year. Its good to revisit your finances in retirement every 6 months since this is all new to you. After a while, you might find your sea legs and fine tune your spending. But life has a way of throwing us curve balls just when we think we have things all figured out.

How do you refill your buckets if the markets are performing poorly? If the markets take a nosedive it is important to mitigate the damage. There is a reason that you count the costs as needs, wants, and wishes. If the markets aren’t doing so hot you can slow down your discretionary spending. You can also decrease how often you refill the buckets in order to let the markets bounce back. Learn how to manage your money in retirement so that you don’t just survive retirement, but rock retirement on this episode of Retirement Answer Man.

OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN

HOT TOPIC SEGMENT

  • [5:23] How to set yourself up for success in managing change with an advisor
  • [9:50] Delegation vs. collaboration

PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT

  • [12:40] What happens once you begin to drain the cash reserves that you have set up?
  • [17:32] You have much more control now over which tax bracket you will be in
  • [21:14] When should you refill your buckets?
  • [23:00] How do you refill your buckets if the markets are performing poorly?

THE HAPPY LAB SEGMENT

  • [25:56] Add some time in your calendar

TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT

  • [28:17] Schedule sometime next week to work on you

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

Rock Retirement Club

Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That

BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney

Work with Roger

3-video Series: 5 Minute Retirement Makeover

Roger’s Retirement Learning Center

The Retirement Answer Man Facebook Page

Direct download: RAM261.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CST

Everyone’s biggest worry is if they will have enough money in retirement. Are you prepared to live life without a paycheck? Over the next month, we will explore how to get you ready to live your life without a paycheck. A paycheck can be like a security blanket and learning to live life without it can be scary. That’s why it’s important to prepare for life without a paycheck now. Learn how to make sure you have enough money in retirement by listening to this episode of Retirement Answer Man.

Is your paycheck your superpower?

Do you remember your first paycheck? Do you remember the power you felt when you had that money in your hands? Your paycheck equals power, so what happens when it disappears? With a paycheck you earn money, you can save money, and watch your wealth grow. Once your paycheck disappears it can be like stripping away a superpower. Your wealth begins to dissipate as you withdraw from your savings each month. This can scare anyone. Learn how to gain your powers back by planning for life without a paycheck.

Don’t fall for the scarcity mindset

Many people enter a mindset of scarcity even if they have plenty of money tucked away for retirement. A scarcity mindset can zap away all your fun retirement plans. There is a tipping point at which you realize that you won’t run out of money. Unfortunately, by the time this usually happens, most are too old to really enjoy their money. Learn how to manage your money in retirement so that you can partake in all the retirement fun on this episode of Retirement Answer Man.

Is your systematic withdrawal strategy your behind the times?

The first step in learning how to live without a paycheck is to plan how you will pay for your lifestyle. In the past calculating your retirement was a simple math equation. Figure out how much you have and divide equally to plan your yearly withdrawal amount. This system of retirement planning is one-dimensional and antiquated. It may not serve your ideal retirement lifestyle very well. A one-dimensional withdrawal strategy could lead to underspending in the go-go years. Is your withdrawal strategy set up to ensure that you can make the most of your retirement?

Why you need an agile retirement plan to manage money in retirement

With an agile retirement plan, you don’t have a set withdrawal ratio each year. Some years you may have a 10% withdrawal ratio and then there will be others in which you have a 2% withdrawal ratio. Gone are the days when you simply sell stocks when you need the money. You can now create clarity on how you will pay for your retirement lifestyle. With an agile retirement plan, you can plan each year differently. Do you want to take all the grandkids to Disney World, or plan an epic trip around the country? Will you have a low key year after a year of spending big? With an agile retirement plan, you can take advantage of the go-go years to spend big when you have the opportunity.

OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE RETIREMENT ANSWER MAN

HOT TOPIC SEGMENT

  • [3:02] Your paycheck equals power

PRACTICAL PLANNING SEGMENT

  • [10:05] A systematic withdrawal strategy can be dangerous
  • [15:19] We need a withdrawal system that gives us more clarity
  • [20:13] Over the next few episodes we’ll be talking about creating these systems

THE HAPPY LAB SEGMENT

  • [21:28] Find people that you resonate with

TODAY’S SMART SPRINT SEGMENT

  • [22:25] How will you pay for retirement?

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

Rock Retirement Club

Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That

BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney

Work with Roger

3-video Series: 5 Minute Retirement Makeover

Roger’s Retirement Learning Center

The Retirement Answer Man Facebook Page

Direct download: RAM259_1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CST

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