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    One of our clients described our process to be “like cleaning out the junk drawer in the kitchen for the first time in 40 years.” Our proprietary G.P.S. Process can educate you better than ever before on your current plan, reviews your goals to see how your current plan is aligned and then can unveil gaping holes that could lead your plan to fail. Finally, we provide a plan of attack to help fix potential problems — a plan that organizes legal, financial and estate planning matters into one cohesive, easy-to-understand plan.


    Unlike old-style planning, the G.P.S. Process is about problem solving and driving toward the goal(s) you define that will make the process a success. Success can mean a variety of things that include: tax strategy, money management, insurance planning and/or legal planning. Typically, the best solutions include a complete written plan that encompasses all of your retirement goals and objectives.


    Most financial planning in America today is very “cookie cutter” and based on age. Not here. Our clients bring in financial problems as different and unique as their own fingerprints. No two situations ever present themselves in the same way. Therefore, our process is geared toward finding the custom-fit solutions to solving our clients’ most pressing problems. Often, these problems keep them up at night worried about their future or the future of their loved ones. We help our clients move toward a goal that they always dreamed of — an outcome that gives them peace of mind and comfort.


    At Senior Planning Advisors and/or Strategic Investment Advisors, we have developed a four-step proprietary planning and review process that identifies the areas other financial professionals may fail to address. Our goal is to assist you in developing a complete, custom plan that addresses all areas of financial planning.


    Having too much risk in your retirement portfolio could cause you major problems. Unfortunately, far too many retirees do not adjust their safe/risk ratio when they move from the workforce into retirement. If you incur a 20, 30 or 40 percent drop in your portfolio, you do not have enough time to recoup the losses, and the effect that it could have on your income and your lifestyle could be substantial.

    The Investment Risk Review will help you establish a reasonable safe/risk ratio based on your income needs and retirement goals. By determining how much risk you can actually afford to take during your retirement, you can develop a plan of attack that will help you secure your retirement income so that your lifestyle has more protection against market turmoil or a future recession or depression.

    An example of our risk analysis can be seen below. This individual was one year from retirement and based on our analysis discovered that she was at risk of losing approximately 55 percent or $570,000 of her retirement if we had another 2008. If she lost 55 percent of her portfolio, do you think she could retire? Would she have to go back to work, or worse yet, completely change her quality of life at a time when she should be enjoying her life?

    Risk Analysis

    Did you know that mutual funds can be two to three times more costly than advertised and often carry front-end or back-end loads or charges? Did you know that variable annuities are considered one of the most expensive risk-type vehicles an investor can own today? What about your 401(k)? Today’s traditional defined contribution plans are set up by employers because they are much less expensive to administer than their older counterpart (the defined benefit pension). The average American household will lose $155,000 in fees, or 30 percent of what they would have otherwise saved, to money managers of their 401(k) funds.*

    This pivotal step in our Financial G.P.S. shows you what your current portfolio is costing you in fees and commissions. Before you can decide if it is time to make a change, you need to understand whether or not you are receiving value for the cost you are paying.

    To see an example of our fee analysis, CLICK HERE. As you can see, this individual was paying 3.38 percent, or over $23,000 per year, in fees. How long would it take her to run out of money in retirement if she was also taking out 5 percent per year just to live on? 5 percent is now 8.38 percent when you include her fees.

    Now that you understand the cost and risk involved in your current portfolio, step three will help you understand how much of your money should be protected. In Bucket 2, our goal is to identify how much additional contractual guaranteed lifetime income you will need so that you can spend confidently in retirement and know that you will have lifetime security and income. Using “safe” money to generate a reliable income is key.

    In Bucket 2, we first identity how much guaranteed income you currently receive through Social Security, pensions and/or other sources. We then determine your “income gap” between your income needs in retirement and your current guaranteed income streams. Taking inflation into consideration, we then allocate sufficient assets in Bucket 2 to meet this income gap through different safe money strategies.

    Cash flow/retirement income and the reliability and sustainability of the income are most important in retirement. You have a business decision to make when it comes to this planning — **do you want your income guaranteed or not guaranteed?

    4.  E.P.R. -  ESTATE PLAN REVIEW***

    Most people don’t realize the cost of dying. Account ownership and beneficiary planning are key in estate taxes, income tax and probate. In fact, many people put off planning for their estate entirely. NEWS FLASH: Simply having a will in place will not protect you from probate and unnecessary taxation to dollars you want to pass on to your loved ones. Often, an estate plan does not “sync up” with an individual’s portfolio properly, which leads to large legal problems for loved ones in the time of loss.

    One of the most important aspects of estate planning is asset protection, which is critical, especially against potential creditors. As a parent, the last thing you want is to have your hard-earned money and life savings accidently go to your children’s potential ex-spouse. Of course, we like to believe that this will never happen and our children will never divorce. But unfortunately, with the high divorce rate in our society, we need to protect our assets for our children

    Finally, for some, leaving a significant legacy is important to them. There are many advanced planning strategies that we employ to achieve these goals using small amounts of wealth today to leverage a significant legacy tomorrow. In addition, for those who are philanthropic, there are a number of charitable strategies that we can utilize, from family foundations to charitable trusts that can provide tax advantages today, income for the future and benefit charities tomorrow.

    With the E.P.R., our partnering estate planning attorney will review your current legal documents to uncover any holes. We will then make sure your beneficiaries receive the legacy you want to leave them in the most tax-advantageous ways, in direct accordance with your wishes.

    *The Retirement Savings Drain: Hidden and Excessive Costs of 401(k)’s”, May, 29, 2012,

    **Our strategies can help you build an income that you can never outlive.

    ***Estate plan review is conducted by a licensed
    estate attorney and works independent of Senior Planning Advisors / Strategic Investment Advisors

    To schedule a time to discuss your financial future and design a retirement plan, contact us at, or call us at (866) 211-1904 today!

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