PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - We're all planning for retirement -- but have you talked to your husband or wife about those plans?
Sarah Halpin CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER with The Danforth Group of Wells Fargo Advisors talks with us about how you can avoid a "He Said, She Said" moment when it comes to retirement.
Agree to share finances on a regular basis
. According to a Fidelity Couples Retirement Study, just 41% of couples jointly handle investment decisions for retirement savings and only 17% of couples are totally confident that their spouse is prepared to assume total responsibility of the retirement finances if need be. Make sure that each of you knows the location of all documents relating to your retirement plans, and investment accounts, as well as, information around your expected sources of income in retirement such as pensions and social security. It's important that you are both involved in your retirement planning so that you minimize financial missteps and money worries in later years.
Don't assume your retirement goals are identical
. Do you both plan to retire to a cabin in the woods or does one of you want a condo at the beach? Misinterpreting a spouse's retirement dreams or assuming they will continue to work long after you have retired may not make you very popular with your other half! Long before retirement sit down and discuss key retirement topics such as when you plan to retire, where you see yourselves living, how you are going to be spending your time and revisit your retirement plans annually.
Agree on common goals and compromise on individual goals
. Goals give your life direction and a goal, like an idea, only has value when you act upon it. A couple has to be on the same page financially and have a shared vision for their retirement finances. If both of you are not fully invested in setting goals and in decisions around how goals are going to be achieved, then someone is probably going to sabotage the outcome. A possible conflict could be that one person is diligently saving in a retirement account whilst the other goes out and buys a new car without discussion. First and foremost, agree that you both want to cooperate in finding solutions and recognize that honest discussions around allocating resources to meet retirement goals may require compromise.
Preparing for retirement can be challenging. You are more likely to have a positive outcome if you and your other half share the same vision and are committed to working as a team to achieve your retirement goals.