The days of working 40 years for the same employer and retiring with a gold watch and full pension are as outdated as leisure suits and eight-track tapes. Today’s retirees can look forward to longer, healthier lives to spend with loved ones and do the things they enjoy.
However, longer retirements require more savings and income -- often, a lot more. Unfortunately, at a time when they should be increasing savings, many people are facing the headwinds of stock market volatility and record inflation. The good news is that economic realities have encouraged many of them to get their financial houses in order and work with a financial advisor to help reach their retirement goals.
Not all retirement plans should look the same, because every prospective retiree has different goals. Retirement is personal, and what retirement means to you is unique. An advisor can help navigate through these economic uncertainties in volatile times and help you stay on track. A financial advisor also helps take some of the emotion out of investing, helping you stay disciplined and working through the good times and the volatile times in the market.
Edward Jones is on the leading edge of strategies for the new retirement, yet it offers the stability of a company that was founded a century ago. It has deep roots in Missouri, having been founded in St. Louis; locally, they have served the Lee’s Summit community for more than four decades.
Edward Jones understands that each client is more than simply the balance in their bank account or investment portfolio. This is why it focuses on what it calls the four pillars of retirement – health, family, purpose and finances. Taking care of each of these pillars is the key to a fulfilling retirement.
These pillars focus not simply on finances but on the most important components of a healthy, happy retirement.
Health. Physical health naturally declines with age, but research shows that mental health -- psychological and emotional -- actually rises. Overall, health spans do not match lifespans, with older Americans living an average of 10 years in poor health. Cognitive health is of supreme importance and worry for retirees. Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia are the conditions they fear most -- more than cancer, a heart attack or even infectious diseases such as COVID-19.
Family. Most retirees draw their greatest nourishment from family relationships. For most Americans today, family extends beyond blood relatives to include “families of affinity.” Generational generosity is the rule, with retirees willing to do whatever it takes, personally and financially, to support family members in need, even when it means sacrificing their own financial security. Retirees without close connections to family and friends face greater risk of physical and social isolation.
Purpose. Retirees with a strong sense of purpose are happier, healthier and live longer. They report deriving their strongest sense of purpose from spending time with loved ones. They also face the new challenge and opportunity of how to use their newfound “time affluence.” They don’t just want to keep busy; they want to spend their time in useful and rewarding ways
Finances. The financial goal of the vast majority of retirees is not to accumulate wealth in itself but to have sufficient resources to provide security and the freedom to live the lives they want. Many retirees find that managing money in retirement can be even more challenging than saving for it. In today’s volatile market, retirees’ greatest financial worry is the cost of health care and long-term care. The key to financial preparation is looking holistically at how one wants to live in retirement, not just at how much money may be needed.
The four pillars strategy lays the groundwork for a life that is rewarding as well as financially secure. After all, for many the new retirement is about living a fulfilled life with a sense of purpose, maintaining a healthy lifestyle and enjoying time with family and friends.
For more information about the four pillars of retirement and how Edward Jones can help, please visit www.edwardjones.com.