MONEY matters

Mark Zaifman's thoughts on money, global economic trends and politics
Boomers Crave Freedom; Retirement, Not So Much
Mark Zaifman   |    Tue, Sep 24, 2019 @ 09:00 AM

As many of my boomer clients get closer to that ‘magic’ number of enough savings to become financially independent, the concept of retirement, even just using the word ‘retirement’, is causing many to question what comes next.

Just last week, I came across a recent tweet written by Carl Richards. He’s the New York Times money sketch guy who writes a weekly column about behavioral finance.

5 Tips for Managing your Cash Flow in Retirement During a Recession
Mark Zaifman   |    Mon, Jul 01, 2019 @ 03:31 PM

The latest economic guessing game these days is predicting when the next recession will occur in the U.S.

Last week, I had the opportunity to attend a mid-year market outlook conference at Charles Schwab headquarters in San Francisco.  There were four panelists; two from the equity side and two from the bond side of the investment world. Liz Ann Sonders, the Chief Investment Strategist for Schwab, was on the equity ‘team’. All four panelists agreed on two major themes; the global economy continues to slow down, and that a recession starting in early 2020 is a very likely possibility.
Women & Money & the Fear of Being a ‘Bag Lady’
Mark Zaifman   |    Fri, May 31, 2019 @ 10:31 AM

“Despite the good withdrawal rate, I still fear some catastrophic situation and imagine sitting on the curb as a bag lady!  That, of course, requires a therapist--not a financial planner, eh?”

 (This blogpost appeared four years ago, but it bears repeating.)

The above quote comes directly from a client, let’s call her Mary (not her real name) responding to an article I emailed her about the 4% withdrawal rule in retirement.

How to Get Used to Hearing the “R” Word
Mark Zaifman   |    Tue, Apr 30, 2019 @ 08:30 AM

Imagine you just left your job/business/practice for the last time after an illustrious career of 42 years. Today was your last official day of working for money and tomorrow, as the saying goes, is the first day of the rest of your life.

A week has gone by since your last day of work. You’ve been super busy, you’re still waking up at 6:30 a.m., still following a tight to-do schedule, so the sense that you’re no longer working hasn’t really sunk in yet.

More Time or More Money - Which Road Do You Take?
Mark Zaifman   |    Tue, Mar 26, 2019 @ 10:42 AM

Imagine you’ve been following a customized financial plan diligently for the past 10+ years. I say 10+ years and not 20 or 30 years, because truth be told, in my experience as a financial planner specializing in retirement planning, most people don’t buckle down and take retirement planning seriously until they’re about 10 years away from this major milestone in life.

Now imagine the number, the number that’s been in your head, in your dreams, the number you’ve known about and thought about, the number that represents your financial independence, your financial freedom from ever having to work another day for money has been reached. Now what?

The Ultimate Decision Before Retiring - When is Enough, Enough?
Mark Zaifman   |    Thu, Jan 31, 2019 @ 10:44 AM

It’s the million dollar question and also one of the hardest questions to answer before you retire: When is enough, enough?

If you asked me that question back when I was a young and ambitious entrepreneur, striving yet never arriving, my answer most likely would have been never. You could never have 'enough'. Back then, I was a true believer that the sky’s the limit when it comes to earning money. More income meant more toys to buy, and anyway, how could one ever have enough?

You Won’t Run Out of Money in Retirement - Now What?
Mark Zaifman   |    Fri, Nov 16, 2018 @ 10:35 AM



You’ve made it to the ‘finish line’. You’re financially independent and retirement beckons. You’ve diligently saved for decades, and now retirement is no longer a fantasy -  it’s as real as it gets.

Now, instead of adding to your savings, you enter the phase of your life where you begin withdrawing from your savings. You keep telling yourself you have enough money saved up to live the retirement lifestyle you imagined.

Plan For Retirement Before, Not After You Retire
Mark Zaifman   |    Thu, Sep 06, 2018 @ 12:28 PM

According to the AARP, 10,000 baby boomers are turning 65 every single day, and this is expected to continue into the 2030s. This means that nearly seven baby boomers are turning 65 every minute.”

If you’re a few years away from retirement, the day will soon come, when after a lifetime of squirreling away money and delaying gratification, the ‘distribution phase’ of your financial life will begin.

It's Time to Stop Giving Your Power Away Around Money
Mark Zaifman   |    Tue, Jul 03, 2018 @ 10:24 AM

For years I’ve witnessed how we give too much of our power away when we visit our Doctor’s office. Instead of asking why they recommend we do x or y, we blithely follow whatever recommendation is made. After all, they’re the one with MD next to their name, so who are we to question their instructions?

Why You Need to Know Your Legacy Plans Before you Retire
Mark Zaifman   |    Wed, Jan 31, 2018 @ 11:41 AM

The dictionary would define 'legacy' as:

a gift or a bequest that is handed down, endowed or conveyed from one person to another. It is something descendible one comes into possession of that is transmitted, inherited or received from a predecessor.

A financial planner would define legacy simply as:

"the amount of inheritance you plan to leave to your heirs and or charities/organizations upon your passing.

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