CFP®, RFC, CSA
Senior Financial Advisor
It never ceases to amaze us how many intelligent people take advice about their retirement from people who are totally unqualified to give you this critical advice! For example, when we see retirement messes, (which we see virtually every day) and we ask where they got this information that has screwed them up so badly, we inevitably hear things like: "My brother-in-law told me to do that. He used to be an accountant for Sempa Energy, you know!"
"I asked the guy who's office was next to mine for all these years. I figured he must know what he's doing, since he owns his own business."
"I read an article in Money magizine that said all retirees should..."
And so on. Everyone's got an opinion about what you should do with your retirement. Unfortunately, just because they are your relative, or are involved in some area of finance unrelated to retirement planning, (like the person at the bank who takes applications for checking accounts and CD's) or write articles for national magazines, doesn't mean they know the answers to your retirement problems and questions!
I cannot stress enough how important it is for you to work with a specialist in retirement planning that knows this area backwards and forwards, inside and out! Someone who knows how to integrate and coordinate ALL areas of your complicated financial situation and sort it all out for you! After all, how many times are you going to retire? Shouldn't you be sure that the advice you're getting is right for you, and not generic? Advice given out of context of your ENTIRE financial situation is just plain wrong!
My wife Monica and I are currently looking for our next house and I am fortunate to have a competent real estate agent and mortgage broker who provide me with good information. However, I am amazed at the advice people volunteer when they find out that we're house hunting. Unfortunately, a portion of this bad information has even come from professionals who have "many years" of real estate experience. Be cautious in where you seek and accept advice.
It's important to find a retirement specialist, just like you would look for a cardiologist if you had a heart problem. Would you ask your brother-in-law or another executive to analyze your electrocardiogram? If not, why would you ask him to analyze your entire financial situation?
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