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Questions that are continually on the minds of many working Americans are:

  • “At what point will I be able to retire?”

  • “Will I be able to maintain my current standard of living?”

  • “I have dreams for my retirement – are my dreams possible?” 

  • “How do I ensure that my retirement savings will last as long as I do?”

  • “How do I factor in cost of living increase, unexpected expenses, possible illness and my retirement dreams?”

At Hopkins Investment Management we desire to see our clients fulfilling their goals and dreams. In order to be able to reach your goals, you need to start planning for this season as early as possible. The most effective way to do this is with the guidance of a Financial Advisor who understands your goals and can maximize your investment portfolio. We strongly believe this should be a "Fee-only Financial Advisor.")

There are several aspects to retirement planning:

  1. Determine your retirement lifestyle

    1. When do you hope to retire?

    2. Where do you plan to live?

    3. What are your retirement goals and dreams?

  2. What will your retirement expenses look like and how do your projected investments/savings match up?

    1. Calculate monthly retirement budget. Your present monthly expenses are a good guide to your cost-of-living in retirement.

    2. Include extra retirement expenses. For example - supplemental medical insurance, extra medical expenses that may not be covered, Long Term Care insurance.

    3. Estimate retirement income sources: You need to determine the value of investments that can be used for living expenses without eating into your capital, including Social Security and others forms of income.

  3. Develop a strategic Financial Plan that will alert you to any steps you need to take to ensure that your retirement plan works. Building a financial plan shows a clear way forward and takes numerous possible scenarios into account (cost of living, tax, Social Security, insurances etc.)

  4. Regularly review and update this plan to ensure that you are on track to reach your goals and dreams. Once you have a financial plan, a Financial Advisor can take you through steps to assess:

    1. Where you are

    2. Where you want to be

    3. Any changes that are needed to reach your goals in the time available

  5. A vital part of your retirement goal is to maximize your investments.

  6. Here are some key points:

    1. Start investing as soon as possible. Time is the biggest factor in investing.

    2. Together with employer contributions, we recommend saving at least 10-15% of your gross income. Maximize your contributions to your 401 K or a similar plan.

    3. Dollar cost averaging – by adding to your investments systematically on a regular basis, such as from each paycheck, you not only build wealth steadily but dollar cost averaging has a powerful impact on your investments. The reason for this is that when the investment markets are low, your regular investment buys more shares than the same amount would buy when the markets are high. Averaging this out over time typically results in increased returns.

    4. Intelligent diversification involves allocating your investments between various investment types such as stocks, bonds and alternatives in a way that minimizes risk and optimizes returns.

A Financial Advisor can walk you through each step of the above process. Call our office at 1-800-431-5662 to set up an appointment or email us at martin@hopkinsim.com