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John F. O'Hara

John F. O'Hara
731 W Skippack Pike  Blue Bell  PA 19422
Phone:  610-277-4060
Office:  215-643-3200
Cell:  267-481-1786
Fax:  267-354-6973

My Blog

How Will You Pay Yourself in Retirement?

March 22, 2016 1:42 am

Depends on who you ask, according to research conducted by Ameriprise Financial. The financial services provider recently posed the question to both pre-retirees and retirees in a study, revealing contrasting confidence levels between the two.

According to study findings, 85 percent of retirees have a plan in place to pay themselves in retirement, and thus feel at ease; just 53 percent of pre-retirees have developed a retirement plan, and feel less confident that they’ve saved enough money to last their lifetime.

“Figuring out how to recreate a paycheck in retirement can be one of the most daunting challenges investors face,” says Marcy Keckler, vice president of Financial Advice Strategy at Ameriprise. “Add to it recent market volatility, and it’s easy to see why pre-retirees who have not developed a retirement income plan feel less confident that they’ll have the money they need to cover their expenses.”

Despite this, 73 percent of pre-retirees cited in the study said they plan to retire at age 65.

“The good news,” says Keckler, “is that they still have time to take action. By putting a plan in place now, while they’re still earning a traditional paycheck, they may be able to achieve similar levels of confidence as their older peers.”

In a shift from previous generations, pre-retirees today are relying less on pensions and more on 401(k)s and IRAs, which places the burden on the individual, rather than his or her employer, to save for retirement. It’s likely the next wave of retirees will need to spend more time calculating optimal withdrawal rates and exploring guaranteed sources of income.

Tax treatment of investments is one of the most important considerations when deciding how or when to draw income. As retirees reach their 70½ birthdays, Required Minimum Distributions (RMD) will dictate how much money they must withdraw from their retirement accounts annually. Retirees may face penalties if distributions are not taken or calculated incorrectly; therefore, it’s crucial to consider these tax rules when formulating retirement income plans.

The majority of retirees surveyed in the study relied on financial professionals to design their plans.

“When transitioning from a pre-retiree to a retiree, figuring out how to spend your savings can be an overwhelming process,” Keckler says. “A financial advisor can serve as a critical source of information to help you develop a tailored, comprehensive plan to fit your retirement income needs.”

Source: Ameriprise Financial, Inc.

Published with permission from RISMedia.


5 Habits for Greener Living

March 22, 2016 1:42 am

(Family Features)—Adopting just one environmentally-conscious habit can make a world of difference—really! The majority of individuals who make choices that help preserve natural resources report feeling happier when doing so, according to a study by packaging product manufacturer Tetra Pak.

“We believe that even simple lifestyle behaviors have the power to make a big impact, on both a personal and global scale,” says Elisabeth Comere, director of Environment and Government Affairs for Tetra Pak. “The combined benefit of the small actions we take, from taking shorter showers to choosing products in renewable packaging—made of natural resources that can be replenished over time—can benefit the world around us while making us happier.” 

Comere recommends starting with one of the following lifestyle changes:

1. Conserve resources, including water. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates cutting your shower by just one minute will save two and a half gallons of water. Over time, that savings adds up: 75 gallons per month and nearly 1,000 gallons over the course of a year.

2. Choose products in renewable packaging. Choosing food and beverage products in renewable packaging is a natural extension of environmentally-friendly habits, such as recycling or composting. From milk and soup to water and juice, you can find food products packaged in cartons—primarily made from paper, a renewable resource from growing forests.

3. Buy only what you can consume. At the grocery store, it's easy to over-shop, especially if you're hungry. Buy only what you need, and seek groceries that are considered renewable, such as fruits and vegetables.

4. Use reusable containers. These days, hectic lifestyles are the norm and that often means meals and beverages on the go. When possible, rely on reusable drink and food containers instead of disposable ones.

5. Whenever you can, bike or walk instead of driving. According to data compiled by National Geographic, it takes nearly 13 gallons of water to produce each gallon of gasoline. Using alternative modes of transportation, or car pooling, can help cut water and energy demands.

Adopting just one of these renewable habits can help preserve the planet's resources while fast-tracking levels of happiness. Which of these green changes will you make?

Source: Tetra Pak

Published with permission from RISMedia.