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When it Comes to Retirement Planning, What’s the Difference Between Needs and Wants?

Posted by Gabriel Burczyk | CEO

June 14, 2017

Retirement planning involves more than just saving money in a 401(k) or putting away cash in IRAs here and there. An investor has to consider many other factors: living expenses and cash flow needs throughout one’s lifetime (as well as a spouse’s lifetime, if applicable), health care spending and how that can change over time, Social Security timing decisions, estate planning, and tax strategies. It can be a lot of work.

When it comes to planning for living expenses and cash flow needs (spending), one beneficial exercise can be to categorize your assets/goals into 'needs,' 'wants,' and 'legacy' items. The next step would be to think about how your retirement plan can be used to fund each category, starting with your needs first.

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