What if Retirement Talk Comes too Late?

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September 17, 2020

The Story
Bill and Mary have both led full, successful careers. Their combined salaries support a high standard of living. They consistently contribute to retirement accounts and have assumed that this is enough to carry their standard of living through retirement. When the couple began discussing retirement, they assessed their accounts. The money seemed like a healthy amount. But for a second opinion, they sought our professional advice. When we translated the sum of savings to a monthly budget, Bill and Mary were stunned. The monthly amount was not nearly what they’d thought it’d be.

The Right Questions
It was not the reassuring news Bill and Mary had sought, or had expected. Now approaching their late 60’s, they simply did not have the options or control that they would have had they started asking these questions many years sooner. But, now they knew. After a few more conversations, we helped them see a few paths forward. They still had some power over what
their life looked like. But now, the questions now were: What do you really need? What is your bottom line? And: what are you willing to do to get there?

The Plan
Together, we helped Bill and Mary shape their retirement with what they could control. They built a plan that reduced amenities (such as trading in after several years, instead of a couple) and supplemented their income, by continuing to work with part-time hours. As a result, Bill and Mary have designed a retirement that isn’t exactly as they imagined, but still allows them to live a full life. They have learned that making active decisions empowers them to shape their lifestyle in this chapter of life, and in the next.

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