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Contemplating Retirement – Richard and Diane, seeking the confidence to retire

Richard and Diane built their nest egg with a diligent approach to saving. Despite their relative affluence, they were having hard time contextualizing their wealth and were uncertain if it was “enough” to maintain their dignity and independence throughout their lifetimes.

To compound their worry, the portfolio they had was a self-managed and seemingly random collection of retail mutual funds held at nine different custodians, some of which they maintained in a separate IRA with a broker referred to them by their neighbor. There existed no coherent strategy for their investable assets and the result was a portfolio highly concentrated in the stocks of large U.S. companies and long-term corporate bonds. Richard and Diane were admittedly unaware that nine different large U.S. stock funds did not constitute diversification, and that they were taking on more risks and higher expenses than is warranted to accomplish their objectives.

After sitting down with Richard and Diane and listening to their concerns and income needs in retirement, we formulated retirement projections to show how a properly diversified portfolio can provide retirement cash flows more reliably than a handful of stocks.

Additionally, during the planning process we proactively advised on Lump Sum vs. Monthly Pension distribution options, optimal Social Security Income claiming strategies, reducing their lifetime expected tax liability with strategic Roth IRA conversions, surrendering an expensive and unnecessary Variable Life Insurance policy, navigating the complexities of their Employer Retiree Health Insurance coverage, and facilitating the purchase of an RV to travel around the United States.

The storyline above approximates a subcategory of the broad client demographic with whom we work. This parable does not portray a specific Rockwood client, but is intended to convey a typical client relationship. Nothing contained herein represents a statement of a client's experience with or endorsement of our firm.