What’s In Your Financial Toolbox?

FIRE Fraud

Originally aired 9/15/2021


🚧This episode of the Get Ready For The Future Show is a CONSTRUCTION ZONE 🚧We’re talking all about what’s in your financial toolbox!

You’ll learn:

– The financial planning equivalent to Ikea
– Tools you need for different parts of your financial journey
Grab your hard hats, because the straight talk is headed your way

Downloadable Content:

What’s the Plan? A Manifesto for Your Life, Your Worth, and What Happens Next



Build Me Up, Buttercup!

  • Money is a tool.
    • Just like different projects need different tools, different seasons of life need different financial tools.
  • On today’s Get Ready For The Future Show, we’re talking through what you need in your financial toolbox!
  • It’s important to make sure you have the right equipment…
    • You can get a “hammer” that’s a child’s toy or you can get a hammer from your local hardware store.
    • A kid’s toy isn’t going to be able to accomplish for you what a real hammer will – or it might but it will take a lot longer and be a lot more difficult than if you had used the right tool.
  • You need the right tools for your money, too.
    • Investments alone aren’t enough.
      • If you’ve only ever been focused on investment management, you’re left on your own to figure out how to take those investments and turn them into an income stream.
      • How do you decide what investments to sell, how much, and when?
      • How you spend your assets matters.
    • Savings alone aren’t enough.
      • Your money won’t be worth as much tomorrow as it was yesterday. Your lump sum in savings just sits there losing value year over year.
    • House Analogy
      • Don’t rely on IKEA instructions to build your house. Retirement is complex, and your goals are unique.
      • You need a comprehensive financial plan that focuses on your needs and desires and gives you options as you work toward and live through retirement.
    • Feeling secure about your future starts with how you see your future.
      • We’ve got 10 ways to shift your perspective of planning with our free download What’s The Plan: A Manifesto for Your Life, Your Worth, and What Happens Next.

Under Construction

  • Age 25-40
    • Retirement seems like some distant concept that you don’t need to worry about yet.
      • But making moves now toward financial independence can set you up to be better prepared for the road ahead.
    • Tools for This Age Range:
      • Debt Freedom
        • If you don’t owe anyone money, you’re in a better position than most Americans.
        • Work on paying off your student loans and other debt.
      • Your Employer Match
        • At the very least, max out the match your employer is willing to contribute to your retirement. If you don’t, you’re throwing away free money.
        • The earlier you start, the better.
      • Self-Awareness
        • Pay attention to how you deal financially in crises
        • What can you do to set yourself up to handle future market volatility?
      • Age 41-55
        • If you’re in this age range and the only tools you’re using are the ones we mentioned in the last segment, you’re likely missing part of the picture.
          • It’s like having an instruction manual with only pictures – you have a general idea of what to do, but you’re missing a lot of details that could impact the end result.
        • What do you really want your retirement to look like?
      • Tools for This Age Range:
        • Regular meetings with your financial advisor
          • Talk about the RTRP – annual meetings are a part of our process, retirement goals and financial means change over-time, etc.
        • Keeping your financial emotions in check
          • Don’t let market volatility dictate what your future looks like.
        • Understanding Your Options
          • Do you need another retirement account?
          • Do you need to take advantage of a rollover or an in-service distribution?
        • A Plan
          • If you don’t have a plan yet, you should get one in place at this stage.
            • Retirement still seems like it’s far enough away that it doesn’t need to be a priority, but if you aren’t consciously beginning to prepare it might sneak up on you.
          • Are you on track for a successful retirement?
            • One of the easiest tools to find out is our 15 Minute Retirement Checkup – and it’s completely free.
            • Visit 15minuteretirement.com or text CHECKUP to 501.381.5228 to get started!

Hard Hats Required Beyond This Point

  • Age 55+
    • You’re “up close and personal” with retirement now. Even if you’re delaying retirement, you need to be honing in on what’s coming next.
      • The years ahead will bring a significant change.
      • Accumulation to Decumulation
    • 3 Big Risks
      • Longevity
      • Timing
      • Inflation
    • The Ready to Retire Process addresses all three
  • Tools for This Age Range:
    • Timing
      • Has it changed? If not, should it?
      • Meet with your advisor to discuss what your options are.
    • Understanding How Legislation May Impact Your Retirement
      • The SECURE Act – what it means for you.
    • A Legacy Plan
      • Be sure your legacy planning is up-to-date.
      • Talk with your advisor about the best way to navigate this with current legislation and how you can utilize possible tax advantages.
    • To and Through Retirement
      • Evaluate:
        • Is retirement living up to your expectations?
        • Are you worried about running out of money?
      • Tools for This Age Range:
        • A Plan
          • You need a plan for how you are going to receive your money throughout retirement.
            • The 4% rule is dead.
            • Buckets
          • If you’ve got your plan already, great! Stick to it!
            • If you don’t yet have a plan in place, it’s not too late.
            • How you spend your assets matters. A plan can help you make the most of what you have.
          • A plan can also help you avoid making detrimental financial mistakes based on emotions.
        • Purpose
          • Purpose is vital in retirement.
          • How can you pursue your passions?
        • An Understanding of your Expectations
          • Are you on the right track?
            • Find out at 15minuteretirement.com or text CHECKUP to 501.381.5228.

Don’t Try to DIY

  • If you’ve only got one tool in your toolbox, it won’t get you very far.
    • Say you needed a screwdriver for a simple project and that’s all you had in your toolbox. Your next project rolls around and it requires a hammer. Your screwdriver won’t get you very far.
    • In the same way, if your financial advisor only has one play, they’re not a financial advisor (or a carpenter). They’re actually just a salesman for something that will make them money.
  • If you’ve got a full toolbox but it just sits in your garage, or you don’t know how to use the tools that are there, it doesn’t do you any good, either.
    • Similarly, you might know there are financial tools out there to help you, but if you aren’t putting them to use they won’t do you any good.
  • Just because it’s called financial independence doesn’t mean you have to go it alone.
    • It’s important to have the right person to help guide you along the way.
    • If you don’t know anything about home renovations, you aren’t likely to just start knocking down walls and trying to take on major projects without the guidance and help from a professional.
    • Maybe you think that if you were “really” independent (or smart, or savvy), you would do all of this yourself. You would save a little on fees and pick your own stocks.
      • The problem is: Few, if any, become financially solvent or cultivate wealth that way.
      • True financial independence isn’t doing this on your own; it’s knowing who to ask and when to listen. You may worry that you can’t afford the fees. But what you really cannot afford is a mistake.
    • If you’re ready to put these financial tools to work for you, give us a call!


Just like you need different tools for different projects, you need different financial tools for different stages of your life.

Don’t rely on IKEA instructions to build your house of income independence.

Retirement is complex, and your goals are unique.

Generic rules of thumb and averages aren’t enough to gamble your retirement on.

A full toolbox does you no good if it just sits in the garage.

Knowledge is a multiplier, but without action, you’re multiplying by zero.

One of the easiest tools you can put to use right now is our 15 Minute Retirement Checkup.

Take action and get yours for free at 15minuteretirement.com or by texting CHECKUP to 501.381.5228