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Your Retirement Plan – Resilient or At Risk of Failure?

I’m sharing this story in the hope that it may help you. This is about a couple who came to me after having a frustrating experience. They were successful business owners with real estate, collectibles, investment accounts, retirement accounts, gold, and silver bullion. They had significant assets and wanted reassurance that their retirement plan would be okay.

They had tried several online retirement calculators looking for answers. But, they found them to be either too simplistic or too complex. And the answers were inconsistent. As a result, they felt less confident about the resilience of their retirement plan.

The problem with many retirement calculators is that they try to predict the future. These calculators make general assumptions about variables like rates of return and inflation. Also, they cannot capture important influences like politics, war and human emotion. This couple realized they were risking their financial well-being based on a crystal ball approach.

I offered them a different approach – one that showed them how their retirement would have performed over a hundred years of market history as if they retired in 1900, 1901, 1902 and so on. This way, they could see how their plan would have performed in the best and the worst of market conditions. And all of the important influences are included in the results.

After running this couples retirement plan, the results shocked them. At their current spending levels they would run out of assets in their mid-eighties. Luckily, we were able to do proper financial planning before it became a crisis.

Based on this frightening revelation, we modeled adjustments the couple could make such as different spending scenarios, prioritized expenses, limited portfolio withdrawals in bad markets, liquidation of designated real estate or collectibles, and also the benefit of downsizing and renting.

In the end, we found the combination of adjustments this couple needed and could live with. Now their retirement plan has the resilience they were looking for. And they are no longer guessing about the future.

Learn from this couple. Read the article, “Why Most Retirement Plans Will Fail You” free for download at our website Ask yourself if your retirement plan is resilient or at risk of failure.

Glenn A. Cunningham is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional located in Temecula. He is the owner and President of GC Asset Management, a Registered Investment Advisor that specializes in Wealth and Retirement Strategies. For more information visit or call (619) 356-8810.