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Financial Planning

People often decide between renting or buying a place to live based on preferences and instinct: What do you want to do? If they are incrementally more analytical, they may explore "how much house" they can "afford". This approach is grounded in capabilities. What can you do? I think the most useful approach to important financial [...]

I believe effective life cycle estate and financial planning is anchored in the Quadrant of Facts, Forecasts, Life Stages, and Unexpected Events. Over the past several weeks, ten posts covered a lot of territory about Facts and Forecasts. This is a pivot point at which we begin exploring planning issues in the first of several Life [...]

Our previous post explored a model of the cost of the promise you make to yourself to fund your retirement, but that model omitted a very important real-world risk: volatile equity markets. Most recently, the 2008 stock market crash changed many retirement plans for the worse. A 2009 study by the Urban Institute, "What the 2008 Stock [...]

Pause and reflect on what a pension is: income for life after you retire, intended to replace part of all of your employment income. For retirees in the “Greatest Generation,” pensions were common. For a host of reasons (presented well by Jacob Hacker in his 2006 book The Great Risk Shift) structural changes in the American [...]

Most people know (at least in the abstract) that choices have consequences. Choices you make to manage your behavioral tendencies (or not) and about your investment costs may have tremendous consequences for when you can retire. I built a model to explore the tradeoffs between retirement age, investment costs, and behavioral tendencies. Like any model, [...]