5 Strangely Common Mistakes People Make With Their Retirement Money

Following Seminar Advice on Things You Know Nothing About The stakes are higher as you near retirement. You don’t have time to make up for errors in judgment. That’s why it’s critical to know what common mistakes you’ll want to watch out for. As a practicing retirement income specialist, I’ve seen it all. Here are five mistakes that I’ve seen far too often over the last 20 years.

1. Following Seminar Advice on Things You Know Nothing About

In 2007 one of my clients, an airline pilot, called me a month before he retired and told me he wasn’t going to need to withdraw any monthly income from his IRA as we had planned.

“Why?” I asked feeling quite surprised.

He told me he invested $80,000 in a currency trading program that was paying him out $4,000 a month. I got a sick feeling in my stomach. That would equate to a 60 percent a year return. I knew that wasn’t possible on a sustainable basis. It paid out for four months and then the company went under. It turned out it was a big Ponzi scheme. He got a tax write off for the loss, and a few thousand recovered years later in court. That’s it.

He’d heard about the strategy at a free seminar.

What Should You Do Instead?

If you want to dive into alternative investments, or anything you don’t know a lot about, take the time to learn as much as you can first. Then do it in small increments. Try reading Fast Profits in Hard Times by Jordan E Goodman. It provides a great introduction to 10 non-traditional investment options.

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