Ep 70: Planning For Retirement’s Uncertainties

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Show Notes

We naturally crave certainty, wanting to know exactly what’s going to happen next. That would make life a lot easier, wouldn’t it?

However, planning for your retirement includes a lot of uncertainties that can be uncomfortable. For example, how long will you live? How long do you need your money to last? What will the stock market do tomorrow? What will tax rates look like in the future?

Today we’re talking about five retirement uncertainties, the big mistakes we see people make and how to plan for the unknown.

1) Life expectancy/longevity

If you knew how long you’d live, you might not need a financial advisor. Since we don’t know that, how do you build a plan?

You need a plan for longevity and to make sure your money is growing. Some people say they’ll only live into their 80s and plan for that. But what if you live longer?

2) Year-to-year stock market returns

This is an area where we’d all love some certainty. You can try to predict the future, but no one knows for sure. Nobody knows what the stock market’s going to do next.

The big market swings this past year have made it tough for some people and caused all kinds of emotions. Once you get emotions involved, you can make mistakes.

3) Future tax rates

Just like the stock market, no one knows where taxes are headed. Congress is just as unpredictable as the stock market. The big mistake we see people make is saving all of their retirement into one tax bucket, such as a 401k.

We have a free guide on our website to help you with tax planning tips: lifemoneyshow.com/taxes

4) Inflation (Costs of goods / services / healthcare)

How do you prepare for inflation? It affects more than just groceries. We’re seeing higher prices on services, healthcare and more. A big mistake we see is people shifting funds to be very conservative and safe, but you can become too conservative. You need money in the growth side.

5) Unexpected Expenses or Purchases

These purchases can hit you out of nowhere and put a dent in your retirement. The big mistake we see is people having no cash in savings or an emergency fund. That can create a really stressful situation.

We’ll dive into this in more detail on the show, but let us know if you have any questions.

[4:10] – Life expectancy

[7:50] – Stock market returns

[11:15] – Tax rates

[15:51] – Inflation

[18:46] – Unexpected expenses

[21:23] – Mailbag: Want to save more

Thanks for checking out this episode. We’ll talk to you again soon.


Planning for your retirement includes a lot of uncertainties that can be uncomfortable.”

-Scott Sierens