Aim before you pull retirement trigger

Aim before you pull retirement trigger

Now where were we?
That’s right, last month we heard how mob boss Jack Marlone wants to retire but has no friends, no plan and no guidance to get there. We’ve already hit the first two rules:
1. Know your life expectancy.
2. Deal with your debt.Now for the rest: 
Save it for someone else
Rule No. 3 is to save early and save often.
Assume that you can never save enough, and you might be close to being prepared for the day you retire.

Marlone has saved enough to retire comfortably, through means that were questionable at best, but he has the dough.
By a rudimentary measure, as­suming a flat annual withdrawal rate of 4 percent, he might not only preserve his life savings, but he might also grow his nest egg to account for greater withdrawals in later years when inflation begins to diminish his purchasing power.
Marlone keeps his lady happy with the promise of a generous payout at his death.
If you’re looking to leave a legacy to be proud of, you can either go easy on your portfolio in the early years of your retire­ment or consider purchasing a life insurance policy to provide for your family after your death.
As too many investors know, retiring before a market crash can send you back to work shining shoes part time in the train station, lamenting hav­ing left your cushy gig in the white-collar world too soon. So I often guide my retiring clients toward conservative investment strategies to help protect their portfolio, and sometimes rely on insurance-based income strate­gies that place the investment risk in the hands of the insur­ance company.
While Marlone thrives in a world of cut-throat, risky bets of all sorts, he isn’t one to shoulder needless risk.
If he’d come into his nest egg through legal means, he might consider something called a sin­gle- premium immediate annuity to offset his recurring expenses in retirement.

And you never saw it coming
Rule No. 4 is to clearly under­stand the variables that threaten your retirement plan.
Walking dimly lit streets in a blighted city makes a man a vulnerable target. Too many of these unknown threats can make a man queasy.
With a little planning and a lot of consideration, the dangers lurk­ing in the expanse of your retire­ment can be safely navigated.
The burgeoning national debt makes a strong case for future tax hikes, skyrocketing health care costs show no signs of abat­ing, and don’t discount the effect of inflation on your purchasing power. By no means are those all of the threats cloaked in the shadows, but they are certainly a few to factor into your long-term planning.

Find your guy (or gal)
Marlone doesn’t eat alone.
He saves a seat for his goon in case some wiseacre gets crafty and chooses to knock him out of the game early; in fact, Jack’s security detail might be the only guy he trusts.
The shame of it is that the muscle of Marlone’s operation is no Einstein. This leaves Jack in a tough spot because without a trusted adviser he’s left to craft a retirement income strategy absent a professional’s input. Re­member: Even the best gumshoedoesn’t crack a case alone.
Find an adviser you trust, who has the education, credentials and good name around town to help you craft and review your retirement plan and income strategies.

Final word
I don’t do the three-martini ­lunch. I only eat alone, and I cer­tainly don’t leave my back to the door when I’m slurping down oysters in a downtown eatery.
When I can, I take precautions.
There’s no shame in that.
When I’m ready to walk away from my working life, even if I was in the dirty business of catching criminals, reeling in hucksters and roughing up tight­lipped thieves, I’d be ready for what’s coming. When it comes to retirement, it’s never a bad idea to put a plan in place before pulling the trigger.
With any luck, I’ll be back on another Sunday, with tips and tricks to help you find your own way Into the Noir.

Anthony M. Conte, MSFS, CFP is a manag­ing partner with Conte Wealth Advisors LLC in Camp Hill, 717-975-8800, tony. Reg­istered Representative Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research Inc., a broker/dealer, member FINRA/ SIPC. Investment Advisor Representative Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor.
Cambridge and Conte Wealth Advisors LLC are not affiliated.

The opinions expressed in this column are solely the writer’s and do not reflect the opinions of The Patriot-News. Before acting on financial advice, readers should consider whether it is suitable for their circumstances and consider seeking advice from a financial or investment adviser.