The Setup:

Before we start up a new financial series, Ben’s going to open up the mailbag and answer a few questions from listeners that address retirement checklists, military pension benefits, and consolidating all of those retirement accounts you own.

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Click the timestamps below to skip to a specific topic in the episode.

The Combination and Key Points: 

It’s time to take a short break from our financial series and open up the mailbag and find out what’s on the mind of our listeners.

Every month or so we like to pull out a handful of questions in the inbox and answer them for the podcast. On this episode, we’ll be covering retirement planning in your final year of work, how to correct a pension mistake, and why it’s important to consolidate your retirement accounts.

Before we get rolling, let’s roll out a new feature called ‘Financial Dictionary.’ This is a short segment where we will define important financial terminology that you’ve probably heard but might not completely understand. We begin with tax-loss harvesting. So what is it? Why is it important? And should you be doing it?

2:35 – Financial dictionary: Tax-loss harvesting

The first email question we have asks about the final year of work and what should be on the list of items to cross off. We have this conversation with clients often and work with them on a number of items that are pressing as retirement approaches. It’s always best to get started as early as possible but a year gives you time to take care of the essential areas before you make the transition. One spot we recommend focusing on first is health insurance and long-term care, and Ben explains why that’s important.

5:43 – Mailbag question: I’ll be retiring in one year. What’s on the list of things I need to do before I officially walk away?

The next question comes from a listener whose spouse has a military pension but it will stop when he dies. We all make decisions in the moment that might not benefit us later in life and sometimes we’d love to turn back time and make a change, but that’s not reality. How you react and adjust is just as important as the original decision, and in this case there are things she can do to address this retirement challenge moving forward.

8:54 – Mailbag question: My husband’s military pension is a very nice monthly benefit but I don’t get any of it after he dies. It’s nothing we can change now so how do we address this problem moving forward?

Finally, we get an anonymous email from a listener dealing with an overflow of retirement accounts and investments. As you’ll hear, this couple has over 15 different investment accounts and that can be a real challenge to try and manage. It’s hard enough to remember the login to every account so imagine how difficult it is to actively evaluate every investment. The key is consolidation and we’ll discuss how to do that and what that process would consist of.

11:25 – Mailbag question: I’m a little overwhelmed by how many accounts we have. We’ve moved around to a lot of different jobs. Between my wife and I we have 6 401ks, 3 IRAs, 2 Roth IRAs, 2 small pensions, a 403b, and individual stocks. How much do you think we can consolidate and how will that all work?

Thanks for listening to another episode of Unlocking Your Financial Future. We’ll talk to you again next week!



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