Free Retirement information includes: Free Retirement Planning Programs, Free Retirement Programs, Free Retirement Budgeting Program, Free Retirement Investments Articles, Free Financial Articles, Free Investment Allocations Program, Free Emergency Reserve Articles, Free† Insurance Articles , Free Taxes Articles, Free Returns articles.
5/21/13.† This brief article published in The Wall Street Journal shows my views on what I believe is the biggest mistake retirees can make
5/20/13.† Retiree Regrets:† A Wall Street Journal editor asked me what I thought was the major regret that retirees had late in their life.† I offered several things people have told me, not just one.† The editor published my answer which you can find in the following link
4-23-13.† Investment for retirement is easy although current low interest rates make fixed-income investments a little harder. Here is the link to The Wall Street Journal's MarketWatch.com article.
3-22-13. Should the Social Security Trust invest in stocks? My views with link to rebuttal from The Wall Street Journal's MarketWatch.com.
3-11-13.† Stock Market Is Up!† What should you do?† My view from The Wall Street Journal's MarketWatch.com.
3/1/13. †Gotta Have it Now!† The financial differences between buying things on the spur of the moment with credit vs. saving before purchasing are enormous. With the former, we PAY interest. With the latter we EARN interest. Even if not on credit, if we have to stretch to buy something, it may not be long before we must buy things on credit.
2/26/13.† Your Death Book. The Wall Street Journal's MarketWatch published one of my articles that deals with providing major help to your survivors. Middle aged people and the elderly should be mindful of the things involved.
2/16/13.† One very observant user who had a spouse with a pension discovered an error in the Base Case (not Optional Case) of the Free Retirement Planner. If your spouse had a significant pension, the older program would produce results that likely would be too conservative. See Computer Programs to download the 2-16-13 update.
2/6/13.† Replacement Savings Make Real Money. This Wall Street Journal article suggests some ways to avoid having to use credit to buy expensive things which fail during use. There is a simple, easy to use table, that illustrates about how much a worker should save to replace an automobile or other things as well as how much a retiree should set aside and not include in a computer retirement analysis that calculates the amount that can be spent each year until death.
1/30/13.† Replacement Budgeting:† This program is a great benefit for both workers and retirees because it can save a lot of money that might otherwise be borrowed. This new program improves the accuracy of the previous one and clarifies how it is to be used.
1/22/13.† Save Like a Squirrel from The Wall Street Journal's Market Watch. Here are some easy ways to make a rough calculation how much you should be saving for retirement or able to spend in retirement. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/save-like-a-squirrel-2013-01-24
1/22/13.† Emergency Preparedness:† Both workers and retirees need savings, supplies and training for emergencies which are an inevitable part of living. It would be impossible to quantify these, but this series of articles alerts us to things that we can do to be better prepared. The articles were written for a monthly church newsletter and selected by Starlene Ward, the editor.
1/14/13.† Baby boomers and those that follow are going to be hurt as much by the lack of savings as the national debt.† http://www.marketwatch.com/story/baby-boomers-beware-2013-01-14?link=mw_home_kiosk
12/27/12.† Get inflation protection from a fixed income: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/inflation-protection-for-a-fixed-income-2012-12-27
12/17/27.† If you are using a planning program that uses statistics from the past, beware: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/back-testing-and-your-retirement-future-2012-12-17
12/16/12.† Should we be saving municipal bonds now?
12/15/12.† Ask Bud.† See some timely new answers to questions relative to buying bonds, using special provisions of Social Security, and finding inexpensive professional help.
12/6/12.† Good health means more retirement money:† http://www.marketwatch.com/story/good-health-means-more-retirement-money-2012-12-06.
10/14/12.† Maximizing Social Security Benefits.† This article explores a number of ways to get far more out of your Social Security benefits.† It shows results from (1) simply filing at an older age, (2) suspending payments after having already started, (3) filing at 66 and then suspending, and (4) filing a restricted application.
10/1/12.† The Benefits of Social Security Alternatives.† This may be the most important article that pre-retirees can read.† It gives new perspective to the alternatives of retirement ages, starting ages for Social Security, ages to die, and the alternatives of Normal, File & Suspend, or just plain Suspend.† Also covers both fixed and COLA pensions.
10/1/12.† Free Strategic Social Security Planner.† We now have a new Social Security planner that does things few other planners do. It allows you to compare the normal alternatives for taking Social Security with the little known File and Suspend and Suspend (only) alternatives. It also includes an accounting for pensions so that you can see both Social Security and pension income and survivor payments for each. It compares the additional savings you need to delay the start of Social Security as well as the other two alternatives. There is a direct comparison of the savings differences with the lifetime incomes from each alternative you might choose for a cost/benefit comparison. You may be able to increase Social Security payments and survivor benefits by as much as 76%.
9/1/12. Fixed income investing. This is more than a primer on major types of fixed-income investing. It covers inflation and depression effects as well as the large taxation differences.
8/21/12.† End Game.† Financial Planning programs can be terribly misleading for older people.† They know that they must be prepared for living longer than they thought years before.† This article offers some help--and a word to the wise for younger people who may overspend thinking they will live to only their current life expectancy.
8/19/12.† Emergencies Drain Savings.† Emergencies can do more damage to savings than a severe drop in the stock market.† It's important to put aside some savings to buffer the effect of major emergencies.† The article suggests situations you may want to consider and offers some ideas on where and how much such savings should be.
8/15/12.† The Free Retirement Planner offers perspective to planning like no other program. It begins with a basic program that accounts for taxable, tax deferred and tax-exempt investments, pensions of various kinds, Social Security alternatives, etc. It also shows what happens AFTER you exhaust your money, something practically no other retirement programs do. This basic program was rated by Consumer Reports in the top three of Web programs and best for those with pensions. In the new version, we have added other tabs important to planning such as for pre-retirement and post-retirement budgeting. There is an optional tab that shows you what would have happened if you retired in the best and worst year of the past using actual inflation and returns each year for your selection of a mix of stocks, bonds and money markets.
8/4/12.† Allocation Control.† This free, easy-to-use program automatically tells you how much of your stock (or stock funds) you should exchange for fixed income investments like bonds or CDs.† The program incorporates an age related formula that has proved successful over 40 years of investing by the author.
7/25/12. I learned a lot from my parents about finances.† Here are some of the lessons they taught that helped through most of my life.
7/22/12.†† Should I suspend and Restart my Social Security Payments?† Itís currently popular now to promote stopping Social Security payments and restarting as late as age 70 to reap the benefits of an 8% increase each year of delay.† This article investigates when that is, and when it is not, a wise strategy.
7/9/12.† THE Trade: Work longer or live on less.† This article gives some ideas for baby boomers who have not saved enough money in order to retire in the manner they had hoped.
6/26/12.† How are my stock picks doingóor my advisor?† This is an easy test that you can make to see if you have done better or worse that the market last year.† Few people do, but it's really easy to beat most stock pickers and professional fund advisers.
6/23/12.† Your Taxes Rates Are Higher Than You Think shows that the income taxes on your real growth is much higher than the stated tax rates for investment returns. In effect, the government is taxing inflation while inflation is simultaneously reducing your real returns.
6/23/12.† Squirrel Savings uses the analogy of a squirrel saving nuts for the winter to produce a simple estimate of how much a person should save before retirement or can spend in retirement.
6/15/12.† Real Value of Pensions and Annuities.† The article shows how the real values of inflation destroy fixed income investments but how we can still make them useful in a high inflation environment.
6/10/12.† The Future Economy Can Destroy Fixed Income Investments.† This article shows the conflict between what the feds like and what older investors need.† It also gives some thought about ways to protect your fixed income investments.
6/1/12.† Health Care Costs--A scary story.† Financial planners and Web based retirement programs usually mislead people by ignoring the real cost of retirement health care. This article shows both the possible magnitude as well as the uncertainty it causes with any projection of the future.
5/26/12.† Retirement Mistakes People Make.† Here I list the many mistakes acknowledged by my readers and made by my friends and myself over 23 years of retirement. There are lots of valuable lessons here.
5/13/12.† Immediate Annuities--What you MUST know.† The title of the link says it all. There are things you won't hear from a sales person.
5/10/12.† Long-term-care insurance vs. alternatives.† Here we cover the uncertainty factors and alternative solutions.
4/18/12.† What planning tools does Bud use personally?† I explain the reasons for my choices to numerous readers who have asked this question.
3/22/12.† Withdrawal Strategies in Difficult Times.† We may be facing the most difficult financial times within our memory for retirees. Withdrawing too much from our savings too early in retirement may prove disastrous. Here we compare some alternative strategies.
3/12/12.† Make life easier for your survivors.† Those who have had to handle the paperwork as a caregiver or survivor know how difficult it is. Itís much easier to provide this information when you or your parents are alive and know where everything is.
2/21/12.† If forecasting is inaccurate, why do it?† This article explains reasons that go beyond simply trying to determine how much to save for retirement or how much a retiree can afford to spend. It describes the importance of comparing alternatives such as when to start Social Security, whether to by an immediate annuity, long-term-care insurance, etc.
2/19/12.† Is your job secure?† Here are some very useful tips if you think you might lose your job or already have--or for anyone whose job may be affected by a significant health change.
2/19/12.† Income to last a lifetime.† There's lots of bum information in the press and internet about how to invest and control your spending so that you don't run out of investments before you die. Get the truth here!
1/19/12.† What are we thinking?† Our country is in deep financial trouble--and the corrective actions from the Administration, Congress and political candidates are all too anemic to help. You may want to join me with some investments that will increase with inflation and a Roth to reduce the future tax burden.
1/11/12. Is your financial adviser any good?† Too often in this low return environment, financial firms are making more from your investments than you are. It's easy to see if this is true in your case. This article explains how. You may need to fire your investment adviser and get another one. This can make a very large increase in your future retirement portfolio and your future spending.
12/27/11.† When can only a penny extra income cost you over $1,800 tax?†† Those over 65, or soon to be so, can easily fall into this common trap. Knowing about it gives you reason to plan to avoid it.
12/23/11.† Saving is a Virtue.† Most of us are saving far too little. This article considers some of the history behind savings rates and the reasons why we must now save more.
12/17/11.† Pre Retirement PlanningóAt Various Stages.† This article suggests very important things to do when 15, 10 and 5 years from retirement. It's got somewhat different points than similar articles on this subject and should be a must-read for Boomers. It's good advice to send to those you know in one of these stages.
12/3/11.† Free Retirement Planner.† This update adds a budgeting program to the planner which neatly ties the planner and budget programs together into a truly integrated program. The program works both for those still working as well as those who have retired. It has two computer programs running simultaneously to make it easy to compare alternatives of many kinds as well to see what happened had you retired in years past with actual historical inflation and returns corresponding to your savings allocations. Consumer Reports ranked this program as one of the three best free retirement planners on the Web--and now it's even better.
11/30/11.† Stretching Investments to the End. This article describes the most important actions I have taken so that my investments will last for well over 40 years of retirement while generally providing annual spending growth to compensate for inflation.
11/11/11.† Safe Withdrawal Rates.†† In an attempt to keep retirement planning simple, analysts and journalists oversimplify retirement planning--most often producing results that exhaust investments prematurely. This article explains the problem and what to do about it.
11/1/11.† How often should I rebalance my investments and recalculate my retirement budget?† We are facing a future that will require a more conservative approach than in the past, so these questions need more conservative responses than many pundits would offer in the past.
10/27/11.† Budgeting for Uncertain Events.† These charts provide important planning information that is almost always neglected in financial analysis and retirement planning in particular.† See for yourself what a huge difference this may make in your future life.
9/18/11.† An Avalanche of Gold Watches is coming.† We need quick and large corrections to our current economic conditions. See how bad it can get.
9/17/11.† The Best Present.† Here is a reference for the kind of things you should have ready if you become incapacitated or die. Your spouse, children, caretaker and executor will be forever grateful!
8/31/11.† King for a Day.† Have some fun trying to find a way to solve our national debt problem. You've fired the Chairman of the Fed, got rid of the Secretary of the Treasury and bullied Congress into doing whatever you want. So you can control taxes, government spending and interest rates on the national debt. Simply click on the arrows in the program, and the future economy is in your control.
8/30/11.† King for a Day article.† This article illustrates the dramatic steps you must take to save the country from economic disaster for our children and their children now that you are King and fired many of the previous people that got us into this trouble.
8/24/11.† Where is this country heading?† Iíve extended the work in my previous article, Looking Ahead, in order to try and find some solutions to our nationís debt problems.† Itís tough, but see what is required in this article.
8/18/11. Looking Ahead. This is a narrative that explains the economic difficulties coming from the growth of government spending beyond its means, the need to be able to support the interest on our debts, the aging of our population, and the cumulative effects of previous over-consumption. It also describes what individuals can do to protect themselves.
8/15/11. Want your teeth in retirement? Dental costs are very high and hard on retirees. This article suggests ways that people can help protect themselves from catastrophic dental costs or dentures.
8/1/11. Dilbertís Food Storage Commentary. Scott Adams offers some good tips about emergency preparedness in his July 7, 2011 strip. Dilbertís Food Storage commentary takes it one step further.
6/1/11. Free Social Security Planner. This is probably the most powerful planner available to make important decisions about Social Security whether you are single or married.
5/28/11. Free Retirement Planner. This version makes it easy to explore different ages to start Social Security. It runs two computer programs simultaneously to make it easy to compare alternatives of many kinds as well to see what happened had you retired in years past with actual historical inflation and returns corresponding to your savings allocations. Consumer Reports ranked this program as one of the three best retirement planners on the Web and best for pension clarity because employers sometimes have misleading projections.
5/23/11. A problem without a solution. The bleak future we face.
5/23/11. The aging problem. Political and economic problems coming.
4/10/11. Working in Retirement: How much can you spend from your working wages?
12/2/10. Advice to My Grandchildren. Pre Retirement
12/2/10. On Being Conservative. Economics
10/24/10. Common Sense Economics. Economics
9/12/10. Don't forget the ladies. Planning, Pre Retirement
9/5/10. Frugality is an important part of preparedness! Budgeting
9/5/10. Multiple skills provide resilience. Planning, General
8/20/10. No Economist will tell you this! Economics
6/25/10. Searching for Yield. Investments
6/15/10. There must be a pony in here! Investments
6/9/10. Watch your planner's planning! Planning, General
4/25/10. Personal Thoughts on Immediate Annuities. Annuities
3/19/10. Is Debt Friend or Foe? Planning, General
3/2/10. Free Retirement Planner. (Previously named Free Pre Retirement Planner +.) Now useful for retirees as well and helpful for those exploring Social Security alternatives. Free Programs
2/28/10. The Gold Watch. Economics
12/15/09 Should I convert my IRA to a Roth? Free Programs
11/25/09 Investing for the Future. Investments
8/22/09 When Will Prosperity Come Again? Budgeting
8/12/09 On Being Conservative. Planning, General
7/20/09 Saving Money and Pain with Health Insurance. Health Insurance
5/19/09 Growing Savings, Income and Investments Now. Planning, General
5/14/09 Baby Boomer's One-Page Planner. Planning, Pre Retirement
4/08/09 You can be the Joneses of the future. Budgeting
3/19/09 A National Recovery That Will Work. Taxes
2/26/09 My own investment choices now. Investments
2/23/09 It's time to cry "Uncle!" Taxes
1/27/09 Why won't the government, finance industry and financial media tell the truth? Economics
1/23/09 Planning and Investing in Difficult Times. Planning, General
12/23/08 Doesn't Anyone Get It? Economics
12/15/08, R 2/23/12 Learn when to start Social Security to get the most in retirement. Social Security
12/10/08 An 84 year old lady teaches us a financial lesson. Budgeting
12/9/08 Can you afford the bailout costs? Taxes
10/8/08 The sky will fall on many people, but there is hope for some. Investments
9/16/08 Investment actions in turbulent times. Investments
9/04/08 Heirs may get little, feds lots. Taxes
8/22/08 Solving the nation's debt problem with I.O.U.S.A. Economics
8/19/08 Hidden Government Costs Hit Your Wallet. Taxes
8/11/08 Algae for Energy. Energy
8/7/08 Solutions to the Energy Problem. Energy
7/15/08 Can we afford such generous government pensions? Taxes
7/10/08 Using Historical Financial Data. Planning, General
7/4/08 Pay off our mortgage at retirement? Planning, Post Retirement
6/25/08 Is there a way out of this economic mess? Planning, General
6/16/08 Planning with unrealized gains. Taxes
6/13/08 Should retirees sell now if taxes will be greater next year? Taxes
6/5/08 Another Misleading Article on Our Wealth Growth, Taxes
6/4/08 Inflation can destroy retirement. Economics
5/8/08 Retirees get blasted by inflation. Economics
4/28/08 A Different Perspective. Economics
2/29/08 Our nation is headed for trouble. Are you? Economics
5/10/07 Evaluating an Immediate Annuity in Retirement. Annuities
3/29/07 Deferred Social Security likely to be better than an annuity. Social Security
1/1/07 Count on Energy Problems. Energy
8/14/06 The Best Investmentófor someone approaching age 62. Investments
7/4/06 When to start social security. Social Security
3/17/06 Doing Better Than Your Peers. Planning, General
12/19/05 Prosperity Depends of the Most Dismal Part of the Dismal Science. Economics
8/21/05 The Best Gift for Your Spouse-- or Executor. Estate
7/30/05 The Simplest Retirement Plan for Retirees. Planning, Post Retirement
6/9/05 Keeping up with the Jones. Budgeting
5/23/05 Head in the Sand Planning. Planning, General
4/30/05 Do You Need Long Term Care Insurance? Investments
4/14/05 Immediate Annuities' Four Whammies. Annuities
3/8/05 An Appeal for Better Planning. Planning. Post Retirement
3/2/05 Investments That Can Equal Social Security Benefits. Investments
3/2/05 Are Personal Retirement Accounts for You? Social Security
2/2/05 Cost-of-Living-Adjusted (COLA) Annuities (PDF File). Annuities
12/15/04 Private Accounts for Social Security. Social Security
12/8/04 Retirement Risk. Planning. Post Retirement
12/6/04 Survivor Benefits. Estate
10/29/04 Replacement Cost Budgeting. Reserves
10/27/04 Laddering CDs and Bonds. Investments
9/1/04 Plan on Less Social Security and More Tax. Social Security
8/3/04 Inflation and Debt in Retirement Planning. Planning, General
8/1/04 What Goes Around Comes Around. Investments
8/1/04 The Biggest Retirement Planning Myth. Planning, Pre Retirement
6/24/04 Financial Dynamics Improves Lifelong Planning (PDF File). Planning, Pre Retirement
6/14/04 Government's Retirement Double-Talk. Economics
5/16/04 Self Reliance. Budgeting
4/22/04 Brutal Facts of Retirement Budgeting. Budgeting
4/22/04 How Much Income Will I Need in Retirement? Planning, Pre Retirement
12/23/03 Do-It-Yourself Retirement Spreadsheets (PDF File). Planning, Pre Retirement
11/23/03 Are You Planning on Living to 100? Planning, Post Retirement
7/10/03 Provident Living. Planning, Pre Retirement
5/25/03 Will Reduced Tax Rates Help Your Retirement? (PDF File). Economics
2/8/03 Can You Trust a Trust or Its Trustee? Estate
10/14/02 Selecting a Program for Retirement Planning (PDF File). Planning, Pre Retirement
9/24/02 Ten Steps To A Better Financial Future. Planning, Pre Retirement
8/27/02 Reserves (PDF File). Reserves
7/17/02 The Future Is Likely To Be Tough (PDF File). Economics
5/13/02 Start Social Security at 62, 66, or 70? (PDF File). Social Security
1/31/02 A National Tragedy (PDF File). Economics
11/3/01 Retirees Need Conservative Planning (PDF File). Planning, Post Retirement
10/4/01 Smart Actions In Turbulent Markets (PDF File). Investments
9/18/01 Mad as H,E, double Q! (PDF File). Planning, Pre Retirement
8/18/01 Financial Planners Have a Lot of Crow to Eat (PDF File). Planning, Post Retirement
8/18/01 Social Security and Inflation (PDF File). Social Security
7/22/01 Saving for Retirement (PDF File). Planning, Pre Retirement
4/3/01 Pattern for Disaster (PDF File). Economics
3/22/01 Bad Assumptions (PDF File). Planning, Post Retirement
3/12/01 For Retirees Only. Planning, Post Retirement
1/2/01 Reverse Dollar Cost Averaging (PDF File). Investments
10/2/00 Spending Costs Savings. Budgeting
10/2/00 Are You Prepared to Retire? Budgeting
10/2/00 Retirement Asset Allocation. Investments
10/2/00 What? Retirement Funds from Your Home? Planning, General
10/2/00 Retirement Planning: Morticians vs. Obstetricians. Planning, Pre Retirement
10/2/00 The OSIFs of Retirement Planning. Reserves
10/2/00 Social Security at Age 62? Social Security
9/12/99 Put Your Retirement Planning on Autopilot! (PDF File). Planning, Post Retirement