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Ten Steps for a Sound and Secure Retirement

5. Get all the professional help you can


- Use free, objective research from a financial professional.

- Retain a financial professional to help you: (1) set a savings and investment plan; (2) check and hold you to savings progress; (3) select prudent investments; (4) achieve broad diversification; and (5) be your "personal financial trainer" and savings coach.

- If you can not afford the services of a financial professional long term, at least invest in one consultation with a professional to help you set a realistic Retirement Plan.

- Get professional guidance before you draw down your IRA or 401(k) to avoid penalties.

Interview


Learn about retirement planning basics Henry Hebeler, author of J.K. Lasser's Your Winning Retirement Plan, (Wiley, ISBN 978-0471411246, April 2001).

Video


Advice from David Laibson, Professor of Economics at Harvard, on what to look for when seeking a financial professional.

Tools and Resources


- The web site for Certified Financial Planners offers planning basics at http://www.cfp.net/learn/knowledgebase.asp?id=1

- 401(k) draw down strategies published by bankrate.com may be found at: http://www.bankrate.com/brm/green/retirement/retirement_planner.asp?caret=5c

- For a deeper understanding of how to properly make IRA and 401(k) draw downs, read "The Retirement Savings Time Bomb and How to Defuse It" by Ed Slott, (Ballantine Books, ISBN 9780345494559, December 2006) or visit www.irahelp.com

Quote

"We have turned everybody who has a retirement account into a stock picker. What a big mistake. There are professionals who will do that for you." - Terry Savage, personal finance columnist.

Definition


IRA Drawdown is the withdrawal of IRA proceeds. IRA money can be withdrawn after the age of 59-1/2 and must be withdrawn at least partially by age 70-1/2 to avoid penalties. You should consult a financial advisor about the penalties you can incur if you do not withdraw within prescribed time frames.

Go to Step 6: Broadly diversify your investments
Go back to main 'Steps' page

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