A MetLife executive has suggested a series of questions that financial advisors should prompt their clients to ask themselves to assure they know how much money they will need for retirement.
The Employee Benefit Research Institute has said employees often guess at how much money they will need to accumulate for retirement. Instead, they should be performing a systematic retirement-needs calculation, according to MetLife. Not performing regular calculations often leaves people near retirement without a solid idea of the amount of money they will need.
John Bucsek, managing director at MetLife Solutions Group, says advisors should ask the following questions of clients as they near retirement:
What type of payment plan will the client use to collect employer-sponsored earnings? A discussion should include the options for retirement withdrawals such as lifetime annuity options and lump-sum options to see which best fits their lifestyle and current situation.
Can they rely on Social Security? Social Security is meant to replace only a portion of pre-retirement income.
Did they consider medical costs? Medical care can leave a big mark on retirement savings. Even with Medicare benefits, additional costs may come. Advisors should ensure retirement plans account for this.
Do they need to pay off debt or other financial obligations? Traditional formulas used to determine retirement income needs often assume retirees have paid off mortgages. Consider the payments required on a home, college loans, credit cards, or members of their family for which they care.