You’ve been saving for years and you can see retirement down the road. What is your timeline? How does all this fit together? Below is a timeline on how to start the retirement process and help explain how the puzzle pieces work together.
I’ve never engaged in Millennial bashing because I can’t think of anything bash-worthy. I love Millennials! I have two daughters, both in their twenties. They don’t do things the way I did at their age but that doesn’t matter because I appreciate their different point of views and passions. For example, my daughters and their friends care about the earth. They place a high value on friends, teamwork, and collaboration. In general, Millennials tend to prefer experiences over things.
I was one of those moms who insisted her kids do chores. Not just 5 minutes worth but a number of regular daily chores. We did this to develop of a sense of belonging and to learn responsibility. Another reason was I didn’t want them to see Mom and Dad always working while they loafed around the house. If adulthood was that drab, why would they ever want to grow up?
We see it time and again. Some of our brightest, most affluent clients struggle with paying bills. It’s not that they don’t have enough money. It’s that they don’t have a workable system and sometimes miss a payment or have to dip into savings for a big bill.
Sometimes when I read about scams I think, “How could someone fall for that?” Then, I clicked on a fateful email myself and realized how easily it could be done. Below are a few examples of scams that our clients have recently encountered. We are sharing these stories to help you be more alert and to avoid being scammed.
Is college worth it? A few years after baby boomers finished college beginning in the 90s, the cost of education started rising higher than the costs of other goods and services1. Now, as we are trying to secure education for our own children, we are faced with mind-boggling expenses. The average cost of tuition and fees at a private non-profit, four-year school for 2015 was $31,2311. Ivy League schools almost double that. At the University of Minnesota, the bill for our daughter this year will come in just over $25,000 for expenses including tuition, fees, room and board.
Recently at a family reunion, I overheard my niece Brittany explaining to my daughters that she often says, “Thank you Past Brittany!” That got my attention. She went on to describe how she often runs across a situation that is going smoothly for her only because she had prepared for it in the past. She says to herself, “Thank you Past Brittany!”
My sister in law is an Emergency Room nurse. Our conversations can be odd in that when I talk finance, she wants to cover her ears. When she talks medical, I do the same. Even though I often try not to listen to her stories, her words have gotten through and I’ve learned an important lesson. Life can be random and we never know when we are living our last day. It was she who taught me to always say “I love you” when one of my family members leaves the house. In fact, it’s become such a routine in our household our youngest will essentially shout “I love you!” as she flies out the door but won’t actually leave until she hears it said back to her.
Slogging through mud and plunging into ice cold water. Those are things I’ve done for charity. I support others who also love a challenge. I’m the person my family and friends know to hit up when they are climbing dozens of stairs for the Leukemia Foundation or walking 60 miles for breast cancer. I give because I want to make a difference in people’s lives and frankly, I like the warm feeling it gives me. I recently completed the designation as Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy® because I want to help others make an impact and feel the joy of giving as well.By Bridget Handke, CFP® CAP®