How to Retire With Enough Money

How to Retire With Enough Money

And How to Know What Enough Is

Book - 2015
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Here is a single-sit read than can change the course of your retirement. Written by Dr. Teresa Ghilarducci, an economics professor, a retirement and savings specialist, and a trustee to two retiree health-care trusts worth over $54 billion, How to Retire with Enough Money cuts through the confusion, misinformation, and bad policy-making that keeps us spending or saving poorly. It begins with acknowledging what a person or household actually needs to have saved--the rule of thumb is eight to ten times your annual salary before retirement--and how much to expect from Social Security. And then it delivers the basic principles that will make the money grow, including a dozen good ideas to get current expenses under control. Why to "get rid of your guy"--those for-fee (or hidden-fee) financial planners that suck up valuable assets. Why it's always better to pay off a loan or a mortgage. There are no gimmicks, no magical thinking--just an easy-to-follow program that works.
Publisher: New York : Workman Publishing, [2015]
ISBN: 9780761186137
Characteristics: 128 pages :,illustrations ;,19 cm.


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Feb 17, 2018

This book did not focus on answering the question in the title. If you want an answer, don't waste your time reading it.

It's laughable to me that the author value the government programs more than the personal investment methods to solve the problem. It takes time to demonize the 401K and almost mentioned nothing about IRA surprises me the most.

Mar 17, 2017

Of course, this is American. Not clear how useful this is to Canadians operating under quite a different system.

Mar 17, 2017

Another retirement book to make you thoroughly depressed.
Looks like the bottom line for us is this: Retire and live in poverty for the rest of your miserable life or work until you drop dead.
I think I am not going to read any more of this crap.

Lord_Vad3r Jun 22, 2016

This book starts off with some startling facts that are not too surprising when you think about it. Approximately half of the middle class will retire to near poverty levels. Why? There are several reasons. Companies ditched pensions in favor of the cheaper alternative, the 401k. Employees, especially young ones, frequently neglect to put aside money for retirement because, “hey, it’s like a million years away.” Add to this that some 401k plans are just bad products with high management fees. If your employer doesn’t offer matching funds you should try to find something else.

So, Americans in their golden years are staring at some trouble unless they take action. But what action should you take? Ghilarducci’s answers to these questions are a little vague: calculate your life expectancy, how long you’ll be able to work, and aim to have 8-15 times your annual salary in savings by the time you retire.

Some of the advice is stock: when you invest do so in index funds, as you near retirement shift your allocations to favor more secure bond products, pay off debt as soon as possible as the interest you save will far outweigh any return you can get on investments, if you get a money guy then make sure he has fiduciary responsibilities. It’s all sound advice. The only thing I’d take issue with here is the argument that you should always pay off debt before you start saving. You need to have some liquid cash built up in case of emergencies (Dave Ramsey’s plan for getting out of debt is a good “boots on the ground” type approach that incorporates an emergency fund.) Also, research and investigate a lot of fiduciaries before you settle on one. Just because they have fiduciary status doesn’t necessarily mean that they will have integrity. Most people have a price.

I do like Ghilarducci’s stance on being politically active and preventing Congress from making cuts to programs like Social Security and Medicare. They were never meant to be the sole source of a person’s retirement income (neither was the 401k for that matter). Regardless, it is all that some people have. We do need to keep the pressure on our elected officials to do things that benefit the country as a whole, not just small segments of it. The middle class used to be the backbone of the country and it is slowly being eroded and broken down.

Perhaps the best idea outlined in the book is Ghilarducci’s plan for a Federal-level Guaranteed Retirement Account. It would be a mandatory Federal pension plan that both employers and employees have to contribute to and would follow you from job to job. Social Security would continue like normal but would assume the responsibility of collecting these funds which would then be managed by America’s best fiduciaries. This is the subject of another of Ghilarducci’s books, When I’m 64, not only the title of a book I intend to read but also that of great Beatles tune.

The financial world has been made deliberately convoluted and confusing, especially when it comes to investing, but we could all stand to educate ourselves on it.

May 05, 2016

Well done! A concise "reality check" that we all need. Definitely conservative investment returns used (maybe more conservative than your risk tolerance would expect). The author is very knowledgable and very well versed on the subject.

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