The Green Zone Newsletter - September 2023

Lauren Smith |

Over the past several months as we've been talking to various clients, we are hearing some recurring themes and questions... and sometimes even potential mistakes we help guide clients away from.

Today, I'm sharing a few high-level takeaways about some of the money mistakes we see folks make in retirement so you can work to avoid them:

Retirement Money Mistake #1: Spending More Than You've Budgeted For

In your retirement plan, you will end up with various projections for when you can retire, how much cash flow you'll have, what type of budget you should adhere to, etc. But it can be difficult to go from having a full-time career that allows you to spend money without a second thought to needing to potentially temper spending levels in retirement. Sometimes, retirement planning is the first time our clients have had to create and stick to a budget (even if it's a robust budget). Other times, the thrill of retirement induces folks to spend more extravagantly than they ever have as they look for excitement in their golden years.

Whatever the case may be, the most common mistake we help clients avoid is overspending. In our practice, we do this by developing truly personalized and comprehensive financial plans, projections and budgets for our clients and offering regular check-ins to help them monitor their cash flow.

Retirement Money Mistake #2: Taking Up Investing As Your New Part-Time Hobby

Faced with a lot of extra time and a constantly available news cycle, some retirees decide it's a great idea to "play the markets" on their own. While this may sound like a fun hobby, being new to investing or potentially having an overconfidence in how it all works can lead to classic investment errors such as investing too aggressively, chasing "hot tips," over-concentrating assets in a single company or sector, or even excessive trading that cuts into returns or increases taxes owed.

We encourage our clients to avoid turning their wealth into a game or a hobby and instead, to trust their team of financial professionals to help guide them in their efforts. We develop thoughtful investment strategies and financial plans very intentionally. But if our clients have new ideas they'd like to incorporate or want to feel more involved, we are happy to make that happen... as long as it's done so strategically and in alignment with their big picture goals.

Retirement Money Mistake #3: Making Emotional Decisions To Change Up Withdrawal Strategies

With each and every one of our retirement plans we develop, we create a withdrawal strategy that helps guide our clients in taking out funds from their various retirement accounts to create their retirement income. These strategies take into consideration our clients' health and life expectancies, income timing needs, how various accounts may be taxed depending on when and how much you pull from them, etc.

But some folks come to us after hearing what a friend or family member is doing, convinced that must be the right move for them as well. Or after reading an article on the markets, they will all of a sudden feel strongly about changing things up.

While these may not be bad thoughts, we take any new information and ideas and make sure to run the numbers so that we can actually see what consequences they may have. Because we believe that retirement planning is like a Rubik's Cube: each component is a dynamic thing and when moved, it will affect each and every other part of that plan. We can certainly pivot with clients' changing wishes, but always want to do so in a thoughtful, prudent way.

If any of these topics resonate with you or if you simply want to have a conversation about your current financial situation, please don't hesitate to reach out. To make things easier for you, you can click here to find a time that works for you.

Furthermore, if you happen to know someone who isn't a current client but could benefit from a second opinion or an experienced perspective on their financial matters, please don't hesitate to share this email with them. I am more than happy to extend my assistance to those seeking informed guidance.

Until next month,
Jeff & the Green Financial Group Team

Upcoming Dates: Key Dates To Remember

  • Monday, September 4 - Labor Day (GFG Office & Markets Closed)

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