Archive for the 'General Retirement' Category Page 2 of 12

Measuring the Importance of Doing What You Want

Success is in the Eye of the Beholderfisherman

The New York Times, November 5th, 2013

A thought for you all to chew on: What is your plan for retirement?  And, for once, try not to think about the financial aspects of it.  Don’t focus on the “get my house paid off”, or the “map out what how I’m going to utilize my social security”.  Try to think about how you want to spend the excess of free time that’s coming to you that you haven’t had since you were young.  How do you measure the importance of doing what you want to do, in practical terms?

Some might aim high and say “I want to travel the world.”  For others, not having to set your alarm clock on a daily basis might seem a worthwhile goal.  Few would probably respond by saying “I want to be a Millennial!”  None the less, read the article listed below to understand what one man meant when he said just that.  It might just change your outlook on your retirement.

2013 Changes to the Reverse Mortgage Industry

Reverse Mortgages Get a HaircutReverse Mortgages, November 5th, 2013

As you may or may not be aware, the Reverse Mortgage industry has gone through a significant makeover in the past year.  While the basics of the Reverse Mortgage are still the same, additional regulations have been passed by the Federal Housing Authority as a direct response to the rate of home defaults going up.  This has changed the amounts that you can qualify for and how you can receive your proceeds.

For those who are not familiar with the Reverse Mortgage program, it is a way for those of the age of 62 and over to cash in on some of the equity in their homes, and use that money in any number of ways.  You must first use it to pay off your remaining mortgage balance or any liens secured by your home (if you have either of these) which can relieve yourself from having to make monthly mortgage payments.  And if you have no mandatory financial obligations, you can have it broken down into monthly payments being sent to you, set up a line of credit that grows over time, or even put the money in your pocket for a rainy day and use it at your discretion.

Read the article at the link listed below to find out more about the new regulations and how they have changed the Reverse Mortgage industry.

Options Available in Assisted Living

Deciding on Assisted Livingolder man on couch with family-Square

The New York Times, October 16th, 2013

If and when a time comes in an elderly person’s life where they are physically incapable of taking proper care of themselves on a day to day basis, steps need to be taken to ensure that, one way or another, the person gets the help that they need.  This can present hardship to all parties involved.  More often than not, it’s the elder person’s children or other family members or friends who want to make sure that the person who took care of them for so long is now properly taken care of.

Often times, that family member or friend’s vision of proper care may differ vastly from the elder person’s vision of the same.  Many of the people in this unfortunate position may be averse to assisted living, even if it’s in their own home.  They may look at it as a stranger coming into their home as opposed to someone who can help.  If moving into an assisted living facility is what looks most beneficial, they may be opposed to that as well, not wanting to leave the only place they’ve called home for so many years.  Read the article at the link listed below to find out for information on the options available to people on both sides of this difficult equation.

What Are Your Healthcare Options?


Healthcare is again in the news and many people are feeling confused by the amount and variety of information being communicated. Here is what you need to know about Medicare, Obamacare and Medicare Supplemental insurance.

  • Obamacare: Obamacare is the commonly used name for the Affordable Care Act.  This act is designed to make healthcare affordable for everyone and extend coverage to those that do not have it today.If you are already eligible for or receiving Medicare, it does not change your coverage or costs. Likewise, if you are insured by an employer, Obamacare does not apply to you either.

    However, if you are without insurance or are self insured and under the age of 65, then you may want to explore the Affordable Care marketplaces. There could be an insurance plan that meets your needs. This may be of great interest to many older Americans who retired before the age of 65 and are now living without health insurance due to the expense or because they were previously denied coverage because of pre existing conditions. The Affordable Care Act is designed to meet the needs of people like this group.

  • Medicare: Medicare is a government run insurance program for people 65 and older. Almost everyone 65 and over enrolls in Medicare Parts A and B which cover basic medical care.
  • Medicare Supplemental Plans: Medicare Parts A and B do not cover the costs of all medical needs. Many older Americans opt to sign up for additional coverage with a Medicare Supplemental Plan. There are many different plans. It is important to evaluate your supplemental coverage each year to minimize your out of pocket healthcare spending. As we mention below the Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment begins shortly.

Baby Boomers Entering Retirement

Time for Baby Boomers to Grow UpBaseBall-Square

USA Today, October 21st, 2013

As hard (and in some cases, as depressing) as it may be to believe, many of the people from the so called “Baby Boomers” era are turning 65.  And “Boomer” or not, many seniors are having a tough time making the transition from employee to retiree.  The struggle can range from anywhere between planning out your retirement finances, all the way to finding things to do to fill your newly wide-open schedule.

Not to fear retirees!  There are many different kinds of services available to you to help you get into your retirement groove.  From talking with a retirement coach to help set goals and make plans for your retirement, to speaking with a certified senior adviser to help inform you on things like senior housing or health care, you have options.  Read the article at the link below to learn more about the services that are out there to help you maximize your comfort in retirement.

Are Women Better Investors Than Men?

Women Smarter in Investment DecisionsSeniorWoman

The Washington Post, October 11, 2013

Is it time for men to have a nice big slice of humble pie?  A new study by a University of California professor is showing that women make more lucrative investment decisions when it comes to the stock market.  Could this be true?  Or is this just another one of the age-old “Anything you can do I can do better” arguments?

Unfortunately for the men, hard facts are a little difficult to dispute.  Over the course of this seven year study, Professor Terry Odean watched over stock picking by gender closely.  Her findings might be surprising to some (We’re talking about you, Warren Buffett!)  According to the study, female investment groups outperformed others by 4.6%, and women in general outperformed their male counterparts by 1.4%.  Read the article at the link listed below to find out more as to why women are

Can You Buy a New House Using a Reverse Mortgage?

Using a Reverse Mortgage for a Home PurchaseReverse Mortgages

The Wall Street Journal, January 29th, 2013

What is a Reverse Mortgage?  Many of us have seen the commercials on TV, Fred Thompson or Henry Winkler singing the praises of the many benefits of the program.  Yet public opinion of Reverse Mortgage still seems to be, as a general statement, negative.  Why is that?  If someone as universally loved as the Fonz thinks that it’s good enough to put his name on it, then why do so many still have a less than positive outlook on it?

It’s probable, in this blogger’s opinion, that it’s a lack of education on exactly how the Reverse Mortgage program works.  For example, did you know that you can get a Reverse Mortgage lump sum or line of credit whether or not your home still has a mortgage balance on it?  Or how about the fact that you can utilize a Reverse Mortgage in the purchase of a new home?  The latter, in particular, seems to be possibly the least well known aspect of the program.  Read the article at the link below to learn more about how you can get yourself into a brand new home in a brand new location, and not have to make any monthly mortgage payments after moving in.

Using a Reverse Mortgage for Purchase

Learning About the Economy

Understanding How the Economy Workswall, September 22, 2013

Almost everyone is aware of how important it is to make a financial plan for your future.  And in most cases, it’s not just your future, but the future of you and your family, and for some, your business.  And while financial planning is a many-headed beast, the hero cannot vanquish the beast without understanding its nature.

It’s important to know how the economy works in order to best determine the financial plan most suited to you and yours.  But there are so many different aspects to the economy that even just the word “economy” can be intimidating.  And although you would have to go to school for years to really understand all of the in’s and the out’s of our economy, it’s still important to have at least a basic understanding of it.  Follow the link listed below to a video that gives a pretty thorough overview of how the economy works, in a way that is easy for almost anyone to understand.

Free Online Course to Teach You About Retirement Finances

Masters Course in Finance Available Online

The New York Times, October 11th, 2013

Most of us could potentially benefit in any number of ways from going back to school.  The biggest motivation to do this for the majority of us would probably be to make more money.  But if you’re not ready to enroll for the Spring semester, what if there was a class that you could take to teach you more about what you can do with the money that you already have?  And what if you could do that from the comfort of your own home?

A finance professor at the Stanford Graduate School by the name of Joshua Rauh had a revelation.  He realized that his graduate-level course on the finance of retirement and pensions could be beneficial to more than just his students.  This is why he decided that he was going to make it available to any who are interested.  To maximize availability, it was going to be a free course and it would be offered online.   Read the article at the link below from the New York Times on the perks of what Professor Rauh’s class can offer to your average person, and how you can sign up!

Can You Teach a Young Dog New Tricks Too?

Is Our Youth Finally Learning?

Market Watch, October 24th, 2013

In today’s high expense society, an alarming percentage of seniors are having a difficult time transitioning into their retirement years, financially speaking.  More and more are struggling to make ends meet on their 401K’s and Social Security alone.  And while many people in this age bracket like to talk about the “ignorance of youth,” is it possible that our younger generations are taking notice of the struggles they see their parents and grandparents are going through?  And beyond that, is it conceivable that they are actually taking pro-active steps to make sure they don’t face the same hardships?

A new study conducted by Wells Fargo & Co. says yes.  While 75% of people in their 40’s and 50’s are saying they regret that they have not started saving for retirement sooner, 34% of people in their 30’s stated that they already have a written retirement plan in place.  A pretty impressive number when compared to the 24% of those in their 40’s.  Read the article at the link below to read more about how our young people seem to be wising up to the need to plan ahead.

NewRetirement Blogs Home