Do you know your time horizon?
When I sit down with people professionally, the first step is to get to know them. I want to find out who you are, what is important to you, your values, your priorities. Then I will help you understand where you are today, and clarify where you want to be in the future. I find people often know the sort of lifestyle they want to live but they don't know how much it will cost. Then I will help you understand, very specifically, the action steps that you need to take financially to get you from where you are today to where you want to be. The purpose is that you feel confident that you will never run out of money. During this conversation, I will do some calculations and we will look at various different scenarios. How long you are going to live is an important factor, and it is this (and other things) that determines your time horizon. I often say to fit, healthy people, "we have got to plan on you living until 95". The retort comes: "I won't be here at 95!" I say, well, statistics tell us you probably will.
Ben Carlson writes about this in his latest blog. He notes that for women, the ramifications of a longer life are greater. 30% of 50-year old women are expected to see their 90th birthday while only 19% of men are.
"On average, women tend to live longer than men. This means eventually the majority of the assets are going to be controlled by women who outlive their husbands. The antiquated view many people share is that the men handle the finances in a marriage but that’s certainly not always the case (and few people realize that studies show woman are far better investors than men). The financial services industry needs to spend more time catering to women and their needs. They are the ones who will be controlling the bulk of the money and making financial decisions in the years to come."
This is so true. At some point in your life statistics tell us that you will be solely responsible for your household and family finances. It can be a scary place to be if you get there are realise you have no idea what you have and what you don't have.
Ben raises another important point that people very often overlook. That is that when you retire you are not done with investing. At retirement the nest-egg that you have accumulated over your working years then needs to provide for you for quite probably three decades. It's a big job and it needs a plan. And unfortunately walking around with your fingers crossed is not a plan.
Whether you need help working out where you want to go and how you can get there, or you already have your nest-egg and want to feel confident that it will provide for you for the rest of your life, I am here to help. All you have to do is drop me a line and we will go from there.