Depending on who you ask, you’ll get varying answers to some of retirement’s most pressing questions. Dan will help us settle these financial debates.
(Click the featured times below to jump forward in the episode)
First Things First.
- 1:13 – In The News: Gold prices are hitting a low.
- 4:01 – Mailbag: Helene asks whether to consolidate her seven IRA accounts.
- 5:57 – Mind Over Money: Dan discusses familiarity bias.
Paying Off Debt Versus Building Up Savings.
- 8:30 – This debate very much depends on your circumstances, as do many of these financial debates. However, we can say we’ve never met anyone who entered retirement and had a very powerful retirement experience if they had significant debt. It all depends on the ratio of debt to assets. If you have millions of dollars and a little debt on one piece of property, it’s probably not a big deal. However, eliminating debt is a freeing experience that leads to financial freedom. If possible, pay off your debt, but try to save at the same time.
Should You Buy Term Or Permanent Life Insurance?
- 10:35 – Certain products are quite controversial, and different advisors have different opinions on these financial debates. As a general rule, we’d say term life insurance is like renting an apartment, and permanent life insurance is like buying a house. There are certainly times in life when renting is better than owning a house. Similarly, when you’re in the process of getting your financial house in order, term life insurance can be a useful tool for your situation. However, as you age, permanent life insurance becomes more useful. You shift from needing income replacement to needing income for your spouse when you pass away. Permanent life insurance is also useful when you need long-term care. In short, term life insurance is generally better when you’re younger, and permanent life insurance is better as you age. However, it truly depends upon your unique circumstances.
Financial Debates Surrounding Mutual Funds And Annuities: Are They Good Or Bad?
- 12:26 – We’ve never been particularly big fans of annuities. The financial industry tends to push them without emphasizing how expensive and complicated they can be. Before purchasing an annuity, do the research to see if it makes sense for you. Often you’ll find that it doesn’t. As for mutual funds, their merit generally depends upon the type of fund. Actively managed funds that try to time the market tend to harm you more than help you. However, more passively managed funds and other index funds tend to be better for your portfolio.
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