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What Robin's Reading: Survey of CPA Financial Planners

The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) recently released findings from their Personal Financial Planning Trends Survey, which compiles findings and results from over 600 CPA Financial Planners.

The Robin S. Weingast & Associates team has been reading through the results and here are our top takeaways: 

1) Running out of money is the top financial concern of clients planning for retirement, cited by 30 percent of CPA financial planners.

What this means for you: This concern has decreased since the 2016 survey (which had 41% of respondents listing running out of money as a top concern), likely due to the steadily improving health of the overall economy. However, market volatility will likely be a part of our immediate future, so this concern will likely stay top-of-mind for most people. 

2) Clients worried about the ability to maintain their current lifestyle and spending level even while retired (28 percent) was a close second financial concern.

What this means for you: This finding speaks to people's overall confidence in their financial and retirement planning. Regular readers of our blog know that the best way to stay confident about your financial future is to plan, plan, and plan some more. Having a plan in place will eliminate the need to guess if you can maintain your current lifestyle. You'll be equipped with the knowledge to know where you 

3) Stress from rising health care costs (18 percent) was a distant third. 

What this means to you: This finding was also no surprise, as medical costs forecast to continue growing throughout 2019. Again, planning is key. It's essential to factor healthcare costs into your retirement and financial planning.

4) Clients, even those with solid financial plans, are more concerned than their financial planners (48% to 39%) that they will outlive their money.

What this means for you: It's important to have a financial advisor with whom you can speak openly and honestly about concerns. This way, your planner will be able to talk you through the various scenarios and factors that may be causing you to worry about outliving their money. Whether the concern is healthcare costs, economic volatility, concerns about being able to provide for family, or anything else — the best financial planning team can help you understand what you need to do to be prepared for anything. 

5)  57% of CPAs are seeing long term care issues impact their clients’ retirement planning more frequently than they did five years ago.

What this means for you: We've written extensively about the importance of considering long-term care when making financial plans. This indicator can actually be seen as a positive sign that more people are taking long-term planning into account when discussion retirement.

The big takeaway: Despite a number of concerns, the overall retirement picture for clients of CPA financial planners is improving. When asked to compare their clients’ current situation to five years ago, half of CPA financial planners (50 percent) say their clients have more confidence they’re ready for retirement. That outweighs the third (33 percent) that stated they find their clients to be less confident. Another 17 percent saw no change.

What this means for you: Keep planning! And stay connected to your financial advisor. If it's been a while since you've contacted the Robin S. Weingast & Associates team to discuss your financial future, now is the perfect time to reach out to us! Contact us today and let's make sure you're prepared for and confident about your retirement.

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