Are you planning on bouncing your last check or leaving a big financial legacy? People often fall into one group or the other. We’ll talk about strategies for each. Scot Landborg, host of the podcast, Retire Eyes Wide Open, shares strategies to optimize your financial legacy and ideas to make sure your money lasts through retirement.
Welcome to Episode 10 of Retire Eyes Wide Open. I’m Scot Landborg. On today’s episode, kids, money and your legacy. Do you talk to your kids about money? Do you plan on leaving them anything or want to bounce your last check?
We’ll talk about multi-generational wealth in this episode. We’ll review the week’s news in the Money Rundown. We’ll talk about the best thing I saw this week. And our Scot Strategy Segment and Listener questions are all about your kids and grandkids and if you’re going to leave them anything.
This is Retire Eyes Eide Open!
Kids and Money.
It’s a topic for most every first financial planning meeting I have with people. How many kids do you have and how important is leaving them something? I met with some missionaries recently who you normally would think would be giving people. No. They don’t want to leave their kids anything. They are not planning on leaving the church anything either. They want to bounce their last check! Enjoy their money during their lifetime. They feel like they’ve given enough to their kids and even the church. Years and year and years of work and sacrifice. Now they feel like it’s their turn to enjoy. They’re not alone. I meet with many people that fit this profile. They come with an aggressive position. I want to spend every last dollar. This is very common with people with no kids. They want to maximize every dollar while alive. It’s more common than you think among retirees with kids.
There’s a second group I meet with. A very different group and they’re focused on legacy. They might have millions in retirement savings, a home, a pension. They know they don’t need the money. They know they won’t spend the money. They may only spend $5k per month and their pension and social security cover it. So what do they do with their investments? These two groups are playing a very different game in their retirement. For them, it’s about legacy. It is important for them to leave something. They want to leave a lot. And often they want to start early. They don’t want to wait until afterlife to give to their kids and grandkids. They want to use their assets NOW to support the goals of the family and set up the kids and grandkids for success.
Two very different approaches. And both feel pretty strongly about their positions. Both have their own set of challenges and we’re going to cover more detail in today’s episode.
First – for the one’s planning on bouncing their last check. What are the most important considerations? It’s a tricky thing to spend all your money. I often wish people good luck because it’s not an easy thing to do. You don’t know how long you’re going to live and you don’t have perfect clarity on your expenses moving forward.
If you want to spend it all, if you want to spend your last nickel, here are my top tips:
Later in the Scot Strategy Segment, we’ll be talking about legacy planning for that other group of people. What are some strategies for people that want to leave assets kids and grandkids and want to leave a legacy and what you can do to maximize it. That’s coming up later in the show.
And that’s the money monologue.
Our Money Rundown segment is where we cover the week’s news. There are a lot of media sources out there that are going to help give you updated information about the economy and the markets. My job is to help summarize and synthesize – help pick out a few stories that are most important for you, as a retiree or investor.
Story #1 – Market volatility continues with technology leading the charge downward. The NASDAQ making the biggest move downward from recent highs. Is it time to get out of technology?
Volatility is scary for a lot of people. It should be scary because it’s one of the biggest dangers that you face as a retiree. When you’re pulling income from your accounts you have to be concerned about volatility. You have to have a strategy for managing it. So you are rightfully concerned about volatility and we have a whole episode dedicated to stock volatility. I encourage you to go to our website RetireEWO.com and download it. We talk about strategies for managing volatility. Now for this story about technology, is it time to get out of tech? Absolutely not. You may want to reduce your exposure in some cases if you’ve had too much exposure over time. Technology has really out-paced every other sector since 2008 so it may be time to reduce your exposure slightly. That being said, there are some individual stocks that are on sale. I think you need to look at it. Look at some of those big names in technology that are 15, 20, 30% from their highs and they’re on sale. I don’t think there’s a lot that’s changing to move them from their dominant position. I’d be looking at technology companies that have a dominant position and have little competition. If you can get them 20, 30% on sale, I see that as a buying opportunity. I do not think we’re at the end of the growth story in stocks. I think companies still have a way to move. We're having a little bit of a pull back here because we've had such a Raging Bull higher and because there's some other bigger concerns in the market. We have to look at what's happening with the international emerging markets down over 15% of the year. International down over 10%. US markets are still flat on the year. We’ve retreated from highs but still slightly positive on the year. So think about technology and think about some of those individual positions on a case by case basis.
Story #2 – Oil prices are tanking. Down 27% since the high on October 3rd. Should investors be concerned?
I do think it’s something we have to look at. I wouldn’t be running for the exits right now. I think some of what’s happening with oil has to do with supply and having too much supply. It's not directly impacted necessarily by the economy or what's going to be happening with the economy but it is another indicator and is another thing to keep an eye on it keep looking at. Of concern to me is what's going on internationally. Of concern to me is some of the stuff that's happening with trade. I’m concerned about interest rates rising. I’m concerned about housing slowing. I’m a little bit more concerned about housing than I am about oil prices but these things all combined could face some real strong headwinds for the economy. Any of these businesses that increase their earnings last year very significantly, now they’ve kind of priced in these tax law changes and not expecting quite as much growth in the year ahead. All of these things combined are beginning to cause a little bit more concern about the fundamentals of this economy. It’s something we need to continue to keep a watchful eye on.
Story #3 – Market Stats – Between 6/25/04 and 2/02/07, a period of more than 2 ½ years, no bank failed in the US requiring a bailout from the FDIC (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation). Between 2/02/07 and 12/15/17 (almost 11 years) 531 banks failed and required a bailout, equal to 49 per year or just short of 1 per week (source: FDIC, 09/24/18)
Between June 25th, 2004 and February 2nd, 2007, a period of more than 2 ½ years, no bank failed in the United States, requiring a bailout from the FDIC the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Between February of 2007 and December 2017, almost 11 years, 531 banks failed and required a bailout equal to 49 per year or just short of one per week. So in the lead-up to the 2008 recession, very few banks failed. Since the recession, 531 banks failed. The question is, what do you do with your safe money? It's a big question that I face these days. CD rates are higher than they've been in quite a while. You can get over 2% a year for a 3 year CD. So CDs have come back. Bonds have had a terrible year, down 4%. Past four years have had a real tough go at it. I think the next couple years are going to be very tough. What do you do with your safe money? If you're going to have your money in a bank, make sure you understand the FDIC rules of coverage because banks can go out of business. Especially the smaller ones and really any bank and go out of business. So make sure you're aware of those FDIC insurance limits when you're looking at CDs, savings accounts, checking accounts. Make sure you're aware of it because if we do have another financial recession or a big financial crisis, some of that money could be at risk. Consider diversifying into other low-risk assets. Now there's very little is going to be as low-risk as a CD, but you can have money at different banks and different CDs. You could have your money in something that maybe takes a little bit more rest but helps you diversify so it's not all with one bank, it’s not all with one type of risk. Finding something to do with your safe money is very challenging and if you want to talk more about some of our safe money strategies, I encourage you, go to our website and click on the button “Schedule a Consult”. I'd be happy to sit down with you one-on-one and talk about some of the strategies that were using to help conservative clients maximize their retirement income.
And that’s our Money Rundown for the week.
Best Thing I Saw This Week:
California is on fire. Some of the images and videos of people escaping the fires is breathtaking. Driving down a road that looks like hell. Fire on both sides. Lots of cars driving erratically trying to get out. It’s a scary picture. Hearing about some of the heroes gives you a little help. People pulled from their cars into a Walgreens by firefighters for their best chance to survive. Paradise, California, a city of all most 30,000 gone. 6,500 plus homes. A hundred twenty-five thousand acres. What’s crazy about a tragedy like this is the speed. It’s the unforeseen nature. It's going to bed thinking that you're miles away from danger only to be woken by a neighbor pounding on your door telling you to evacuate. Only minutes to get out and to leave. Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of this tragedy and if you're in a position to help, please do.
Tragedies like this cause me to reflect--to think about how quickly things can change. A life preparing for retirement can change with a health diagnosis. You or your spouse sick or with an illness. Retirement can change if one of your parents gets sick or one of your kids. All the more reason to make the most of every moment. As we’re in this holiday season, be thankful. Make the most of your retirement, each good day that you have. Because life can get challenging. We’re not promised anything. Living the best retirement is about doing more of what you want, more or what brings you joy and happiness, more of what brings you relevance and purpose. Build a retirement plan so you don't have to worry about the numbers, so you don't have to worry about running out or having enough. Life has plenty of other things to worry about. 20, 30 years from now you're going to wish you had more time. Make sure you made the most of each and every retirement year. Spend less time worrying about what stock you own and more time worrying if you fit in that family vacation to Zion National Park. Spend less time worrying about your bond allocation and more time worrying about hiring a chef and inviting over your friends for a dinner party. Spend less time worrying about politics and the market and more time worrying about if you made it to your grandkids t-ball game. Make the most of every moment.
And that's the best thing I saw this week.
Scot Strategy Segment:
Earlier in the show we talked about people who wanted to bounce their last check but what about those where legacy is important. What are the top strategies for talking with your kids about money and for dealing with your kids about money? How do you maximize and optimize your plan if you're concerned about leaving a legacy? Here are my top tips:
Those are my top tips and strategies for those that are looking to build a legacy. Legacy with their money. Legacy their kids. Legacy with their wealth. Hope you found it informative and if you want to talk more about it, of course, click on “Schedule a Consult”. I’d be happy to meet with you one-on-one and talk about strategies to maximize your overall wealth picture.
And that’s our Scot Strategy Segment for the week.
If you want some of your questions answered during the show, go to our website RetireEWO.com and click on “Submit a Question”. We’ll do our best to get your question answered during the show. Joining us today as usual is our producer, Angela. She's got some questions from some of our listeners. Angela, take it away.
[Angela] Thanks so much Scott and the first question comes from Tito in Los Angeles, CA.
Hi Scott. I want to help my daughter buy a home. I'm thinking of withdrawing $400,000 from my IRA. Are there better ways to do this? Thanks so much.
[Scot] Tito, thank you so much for your question and I'm so glad that you sent me this question. Hopefully before you done it because that could be an absolutely epic mistake. Pulling IRA money to help your kids get into a home at that level of income is going to be incredibly expensive from a tax perspective. If you want to help your kids get into a home, hopefully you’ve got some cash you put aside. Maybe you have some non-qualified assets. A trust account, a joint account where to sell those positions you'll pay capital gains tax instead of income. For you to pull $400,000 from your IRA, Tito, if you're working or have any other income, you're going to be in the highest tax bracket possible. You're going to be paying almost 40% in federal taxes. You're going to be paying 10% in California estate taxes. For you to pull out $400,000, could cost you $200,000 in taxes. That’s a huge issue. That’s a huge problem. Now, one of the strategies, if you are set on using IRA money to help your daughter, pull it out more slowly over time. Maybe pull out $100,000 a year were four years. Maybe pull $50,000 a year over the next eight years. Pull it more slowly over time and look very closely at what your tax liability is going to be. The way the tax code works in this country is the first dollar you make, you’ll pay nothing in taxes but the last dollar you make you’ll pay the highest rate. Every single dollar you make can be taxed at a different right. There different brackets. So you have to be very conscious of what your tax bracket is and how much it’s going to cost you to pull money from those IRAs. Tito, there may be other assets you want to look at in your portfolio. There may be a smarter way to pull out that money to help your daughter.
[Angela] Our next question comes from Eve in Temecula, CA.
I want to start talking to my kids about money but I feel if they know our financial position they won't be as motivated to make their own money and I don't want to give any free handouts. Any advice?
[Scot] Eve, thank you so much for the question. This is really a challenging question. A lot of people face it. How do you talk to your kids about money without them knowing too much? Without them feeling entitled? How do you keep them motivated? Listen, this is an art. There is no perfect science to this, but I do have to say by not saying anything you're doing them a disservice. By not talking about it at all, you're doing them a disservice. But what's going to happen if something happens to the two of you, they inherit all this money, how are they going to be expected to manage it well? How are they going to be expected to know what to do? I think that families that are building wealth for the long-term, the best ones are talking about money. They're talking about money and it can be an adjustment. It can be an adjustment for you to do this and don't feel like you have to do it all at one time. You don’t have to give them all of the information all at one time. You don’t have to tell them what you make every year or what the home is worth or how much you have in your IRA or how much you have in cash. You don't have to disclose every single detail but it's important to start having a conversation about money, about what motivates them, about what motivates you, about not just making money but saving money, not just about earning more but not spending quite as much but spending it in a smart fashion. It's important to have a conversation about money and I don't know what the exact answer is going to be for you, Eve. I don’t know what the exact formula is going to be but definitely start talking about something. If you're not comfortable talking about the details, talk about it conceptually. Start giving some small details and see if they can earn your trust. Start having the conversation someway somehow because if you don't, they won't be prepared in the long-term. You want to make sure your kids are making the best decisions for them, long-term. If they know they're going to be inheriting money down the road, maybe they're making a better long-term career decision instead of making a short-term career decision. They need to understand the whole family picture as well, so they can make some of the best decisions that they can for their own financial life. Hope that helps.
[Angela] And our final question is Cindy in Diamond Bar, CA.
I feel like my kids haven't given enough. I want to give most of my assets to charity. Do you have any issues with this?
[Scot] Cindy, I don’t see any issues at all. Give your money to whoever the heck you want to. You want to give it to your dog or cat, you can do that. You want to give it to charity, feel free. You want to give it to your kids, great. Give your money to whoever you want. Couple things – one, make sure clear in your trust, in your will about your instructions, okay? And make sure you tell a couple people about your intentions. You don't want your kids to be blindsided. If you could tell your kids or give them an inkling, that would be very nice. But you don’t want your kids to be blindsided. You don’t want them to think they're going to be inheriting stuff that they’re not. The more you can have clarity, the better. If you want to give, most of time with people that are in the situation, often your kids have done well for themselves so they don't need to inherit certain things. Also, I would encourage you, don’t blindside your kids and give them some of the things that have meaning. You don’t want to give them all of the things that have money. Give them some of the things that have meaning. Maybe you got to watch, maybe you have a car, some of your memorabilia, some of the things that they find personally valuable. Make sure that's given to them. Don't give that to a friend. Don't give that to a stranger. Give it to your kids because they’re going to be the ones who find it most valuable when you're gone. Also, think about what you're going to give to who. For people that are giving money to charity, I tell them to think really carefully about what they're giving to charity. Most people I meet with are not giving everything to charity. Maybe they give 10%, maybe 25%, maybe 50% to charity and it's important to do some good planning around that because the best assets to give to charity are different from the best assets to give your kids. Let's say you’re going to give half your money to charity and half of your money to your kids. I would encourage you, give your IRAs, give your 401ks to the church or to the charity because they are going to collect that money and not pay any taxes. Your kids, if they inherit the IRA and 401k, they’ve got to pay an income tax bill. Leave your kids the home. Leave your kids the real estate. Leave your kids the stuff that’s in the non-qualified or trust accounts where they get that step up in basis. Where they don’t have to pay any income tax. They don’t have to pay any estate income tax when you do eventually pass. So instead of just doing a 50/50 split on everything, I’d rather have you give your qualified assets to the charity and give your non-qualified assets or real estate assets to the kids. And of course the assets that have some sort of personal significance. Cindy, I hope that helps.
If you want some of your questions answered during the show, go to our website RetireEWO.com and click on “Ask a Question”. We’ll make sure to get your question answered on a future show. If you want to sit down one-on-one and talk about your financial situation, I’m happy to offer you a complimentary consultation to sit down with you and talk about your individual situation, your individual questions and the best financial strategies to maximize your retirement. To do that, go to our website and click on “Schedule a Consult”.
That’s our show for the week. Go like us on Facebook to get our most up-to-date content. Subscribe to our podcast on iTunes or GooglePlay. This is one of our last episode of the season so quick shout out to the staff and the team that helped put this season together. Angela, our Show Producer and Marketing Director, has done a fantastic job from start to finish. Trevor, our Production Assistant has been so integral in all the video and all the content you see online and editing the show every week. A quick shout out to Chelsea and for all of her help on the show.
The best way to stay up-to-date on our content is to go like us on Facebook or Subscribe to our podcast on iTunes or GooglePlay. This is going to be the end of our first season of Retire Eyes Wide Open. Stay connected with us to hear about our updated content. Stay tuned for 2019 for a new season of Retire Eyes Wide Open. Don’t go into retirement with your eyes closed, go into retirement with your eyes wide open!
I’m your host Scot Landborg and we’ll see you really soon.