Retirement Planning Tips to Avoid Financial Shock

More than 65 percent of seniors ages 70 and older will face a sudden crisis in their financial planning. Use this checklist to plan ahead and avoid financial shocks.

Nov 14, 2013, 16:08 ET from

GLENDALE, Calif., Nov. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Seventy percent of women and 67 percent of men ages 70 and older will encounter one or more "shocks" to their financial planning, according to a 2012 report by the Society of Actuaries.



It might be a serious illness, disability, widowhood, emergency support of an adult child or sudden guardianship of a grandchild—whatever the situation, it can disrupt even the best-laid plans. Fortunately, there are several ways for seniors to guard their financial plans and prepare for the unexpected.

In a new financial checklist from, Christopher Rand, a financial planner for senior clients at Strategic Wealth Associates in San Diego, outlines these proactive strategies, including:

  • Build a contingency fund. Rand says it's wise to put away 6–12 months of household expenses as an emergency reserve. Supplementing retirement funds with an emergency fund can provide a buffer for any unexpected needs.
  • Create financial flexibility. Rand stresses the importance of investing in securities that are easily converted to cash, such as stocks or bonds. He also advises seniors to place adequate assets in low- or no-fee checking and savings accounts so that emergency withdrawals will not incur significant penalties.
  • Add insurance coverage. Chronic health conditions or disabilities that require in-home care or assisted living can gut savings, as they may not be fully covered by Medicare, Medicaid or basic health insurance. Rand advises taking out long-term care insurance to protect limited health care assets.

To see the rest of Rand's financial checklist and find all of MySilverAge's retirement planning tips, including more information on long-term care insurance and guides to help organize retirement finances, visit


MySilverAge is a website and online resource center, brought to you by, that is designed to help seniors enjoy "what's next." MySilverAge brings together thought leaders on the subject of successful aging, leading intelligence on healthy aging and senior living, and expert tips and advice for creating the home, community and relationships in which seniors can thrive.


As one of California's largest nonprofit providers of senior living communities, is committed to creating communities and services that make the lives of older adults more fulfilling.'s dedicated, well-trained staff is devoted to helping its residents and clients discover new ways to embrace life's possibilities and new options for exploring their potential. Follow @begroupliving on Twitter.

Jackie Gibson
Content Director