Finances weigh heavily on many people’s minds, but more than half have never talked to a financial adviser, according to a new national poll conducted for the Indexed Annuity Leadership Council.
Among the highlights of the survey of 3,017 adults, including 605 retirees and 1,664 people who are employed:
• 45% of employed adults plan to retire before age 67; 18% plan to retire at 67; 21% plan to work until 70.
• 56% of employed adults say they will have to keep working for financial reasons; 45% want to stay active; 34% enjoy working; 32% want to get more benefits.
• 54% of all those polled say they have never spoken to a financial adviser.
“This tells me is that we might have a retirement crisis on our hands from the standpoint of people not preparing,” says Jim Poolman, executive director of the Indexed Annuity Leadership Council.
“One of things this project does is highlight the need for people to do long term financial planning, especially retirement planning.”
Certified financial planner Jeff Rose of Carbondale, Ill., says he’s amazed at the number of people who come into his office who are five years from retirement and have never met with a financial adviser.
“It surprises me because I realize that there are so many little things that could have been improved on their financial situation if they’d seen an adviser,” he says. “If they’d made tweaks to their 401(k) or had someone review their IRAs, theoretically it could add up to tens of thousands of dollars,” says Rose, founder of Goodfinancialcents.com.
“I’ve talked to people who had the same investment for two decades and not realized that it was a really bad mutual fund,” he says. “It’s really frustrating and disappointing because their 401(k) will probably be their largest income-producing asset in retirement.”
“You have an annual health checkup, so why wouldn’t you have an annual financial checkup?” Rose says.
Certified financial planner Mike Patton, president of Integrity Wealth Management in Baton Rouge, says people “should carefully project how much they need to accumulate and create a working budget to test the amount they can safely withdraw to meet their expenses in retirement.”
A bigger nest egg would allow retirees to travel more, which many want to do. The survey found 59% of retirees say that traveling is the thing they most wish they could afford to do more.
Traveling is big among retirees who can afford it, says Nancy Schlossberg, 85, ofSarasota, Fla., author of Revitalizing Retirement and Retire Smart, Retire Happy. “There are several topics of conversation: One is where have you been? And the other is where are you going?”
Retirees often want to do adventure travel or do something new and interesting that they can talk about, she says.
Contributing: Nanci Hellmich
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