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On May 4, 2019, I gave a talk to the AZ Academy of General Dentistry Annual Convention on the topic “Dentists: Learn How to Retire 5-15+ Years Earlier!” Unfortunately, ¼ to 1/3 of all dentists are forced to retire early due to physical disability. Their normal work week is only Monday through Thursdays because they are continually leaning over the patient in an awkward position. However, the bulk of most medical professionals’ (whether dentist or physician) retirement savings occurs in the last 20 years of their working life. If they lose 10-15 years of income by not working until 70, their retirement future can be fairly bleak.

From a mathematical perspective, there are only a few key variables to the retirement financial equation: Earn More; Save More; Work Longer; Earn a Higher Rate of Retirement Cash Flow; and Reduce Taxes. This article will be the first of a series that covers these issues, including real-world case studies.

This article focuses on the majority of Baby Boomers who have not saved close to what is needed for a happy and financially carefree retirement. The previous article covering Part 1 was published in the 5/15/2019 Ahwatukee Foothills News. There was recent media attention about a recent study “Boomer Expectations for Retirement 2019”, released April 2019 by the Insured Retirement Institute. This study concentrates on Baby Boomers, born in years 1946-64. This age range is 55-73 and nearly half (47%) are already retired.

There was recent media attention about a recent study “Boomer Expectations for Retirement 2019”, released April 2019 by the Insured Retirement Institute. This study concentrates on Baby Boomers, born in years 1946-64. This age range is 55-73 and nearly half (47%) are already retired.

The Social Security Administration has published “Fast Facts & Figures About Social Security, 2018” that gives some interesting numbers. In 2017, retired workers received $1,404 in average monthly Social Security (SS) benefits; Disabled workers received $1,197; and Survivors of deceased workers received $1,388. Of the 67.0 million people who received benefits from SS programs in 2017, 55% of adult SS beneficiaries were women and 54.5 was the average age of disabled-worker beneficiaries.

For decades, many have underestimated the crucial importance of maximizing your Social Security and other retirement income. In 2014, the average Social Security (SS) retirement benefit was $1,294 per month. “Among elderly SS beneficiaries, 52 percent of married couples and 74 percent of unmarried persons receive 50 percent or more of their income from SS.” Source: “How Social Security Strategies Affect Your Retirement”, by Dr. Harold Wong, published 5/23/2014 in The AZ Republic.

According to recent research (see, “How Social Security Strategies Affect Your Retirement”, May 23, 2014 AZ Republic by Dr. Harold Wong), the average Social Security check to retired workers in 2012016-03-26 06:01:474 was $1,294 per month. Clearly, this is not enough to live on for a single woman. If the amount is doubled for a couple, it’s still not enough to have a comfortable lifestyle.

In 2014, I wrote a 6-part series on Social Security Strategies with the first article, “How Social Security Strategies Affect Your Retirement”, 5/23/2014 AZ Republic by Dr. Harold Wong. The average retirement benefit was $1,294. For older Baby Boomers, full retirement age for purposes of Social Security (SS) benefits is 66. Only 5.2% of men waited until age 66 and only 1.2% waited until age 70 to take SS retirement benefits. Example: if SS benefits at age 66 were $2,000 per month, it would only be $1,500 at age 62 and $2,640 monthly at age 70. So why don’t people maximize their SS benefits?

 

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