Encourage clients to brainstorm their ideal retirement

By Camilla Cornell | March 23, 2017 | Last updated on March 23, 2017
2 min read

“Retirement is like a long vacation in Vegas,” former Wall Street Journal columnist Jonathan Clements once wrote. “The goal is to enjoy these years to the fullest, but not so fully that you run out of money.”

Easy to say. Not always so easy to do. But advisors can help clients plan for the “good” retirement by cultivating two skills that may seem in opposition to each other; namely, the capacity to visualize (and of course, save for) the future they want and the ability to remain flexible in the face of societal and economic change.

If they can see it, they can be it. Shirley Byers writes in the Western Producer a thoughtful and humorous look at how one couple adjusted to the day-in, day-out of retirement, which leads in to a useful list of questions couples should be asking each other about the retirement of their dreams (preferably before they get their gold watches).

Adjusting to the gig economy. As the ranks of self-employed or contract workers swell, you will likely find that fewer and fewer of your clients can lay claim to a company pension. Writing for the Globe and Mail, Paul Brent lays out the challenges of the gig economy and makes the case that such workers must nonetheless come up with an annual budget that allows for a surplus earmarked for savings.

Using a TFSA to shelter home sale proceeds. The TFSA isn’t exactly brand new, but if clients aren’t incorporating it into their investment strategy, they could be missing out. Writing for the Chronicle Herald in Halifax, Roy Thomas details one specific strategy: how to make use of unused TFSA room to shelter the proceeds from a home sale.

Hedging bets with a smart draw-down strategy. In the Financial Post, Actuary Fred Vettese takes a look at a defensive strategy aimed at guarding clients’ retirement portfolios against a long stretch of low returns in the stock market.

Thinking outside the box when it comes to retirement accommodations. Increasingly, retirement home operators are offering facilities that cater to some very specific needs and wants among retirees. Consider this Manchester, UK, facility that caters specifically to lesbians. Val McDermid’s story in the Guardian reasons that it prevents elderly gay people from hiding their sexuality for fear of hostility and discrimination from those charged with taking care of them.

And even the Parrot Heads (Jimmy Buffett fans) have a home of their own. The staff at People Home & Travel point to the launch of Latitude Margaritaville, a senior living community in Daytona Beach with a laid-back vibe, a pool and fitness club, a bandstand for live entertainment and signature drinks daily. In the words of Jimmy Buffett, now you truly can “waste away” in Margaritaville!

Camilla Cornell