Retirement Navigator

Welcome to Retirement Navigator, the blog of Jeff Mahoney, HJ Sims Certified Financial Planner®, Retirement Income Certified Professional®, Vice President – Financial Advisor, located in our Bloomington, MN office.

If you know someone who would enjoy these articles, please feel free to share! To contact Jeff: (800) 439-7052 or

The Gold Watch and the Nest Egg

You know the cliché: after 40 years with the same company, Mr. Jones has worked his way up from an entry-level clerk to middle management position. Mr. Jones is comforted in knowing he helped this company become successful, and as a result, the company will continue to support him through the pension he was promised on the very day he started employment. Today, this seems closer to a scene from an old-time movie than the reality of today’s workplace. So, what happened? Read more: The Gold Watch and the Nest Egg.

Which Retirement Sources Should I Withdraw from First?

If you are looking to maximize the amount you can safely withdraw from your investment accounts in retirement, choosing the right withdrawal order is a vital component. Your tax bracket, sources of income and account balances are all important factors in choosing the right strategy. Most people still utilize a traditional withdraw strategy (taxable accounts first, followed by tax-deferred accounts). Yet, growing research suggests it is worth considering a reverse order strategy (tax-deferred first, then taxable). Ultimately, the right strategy is one that considers your current and future tax consequences, and likely combines the two strategies into a custom-fit approach for you  Read more: Which Retirement Sources Should I Withdraw from First?

Have You Earned W2 and 1099 Income?

If you are a high-wage earner with W2 and 1099 income, you may have retirement savings opportunities available of which you are unaware. The best way to illustrate this is to consider a case study. In this example, I will discuss the savings opportunities of a hypothetical lawyer named Fallon (which happens to be the name of one of my favorite people, my daughter). Read more: Have You Earned W2 and 1099 Income?

The Record Bull

The month of August marked an important milestone for the long-running bull market. On August 22, the bull market, as measured by the S&P 500 Index, extended its run to 3,453 calendar days (CNBC, various sources), becoming the lengthiest bull market in history, or at least since WWII. While we may celebrate this milestone, let’s take a moment to review where we have come from. Before I continue, I believe a couple of definitions are in order. Click here to read more.

We Bought a Camper!

For the past couple of years, my wife and I have been toying around with the idea of purchasing a camper. We love spending time outdoors and we have fond memories of going tenting and camping as children. So, we wanted to share that experience with our two young kids before they realize they’re too cool for us.

Each time we got serious about buying a camper, the financial planner in me started looking at the economic justification, or the lack thereof, in the decision. I seemed to always come to the same conclusion: Buying a camper is a really bad financial decision! I tell people to maximize their retirement savings every day. How could I justify forgoing saving money for an asset that will almost assuredly be worth less money each day that we own it, starting on the day we bought it? So, the decision was easy….
Click here to read more.

Four Year-end Tax Saving Strategies

On December 17, 2017, President Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). This new tax law has been described by many as the most sweeping tax legislation since the Tax Reform Act of 1986.

Regardless of which side of the political aisle you are on, or personal views on how politics impact your situation and the economy as a whole, there are financial planning opportunities of which to be aware. In this article, I will lay out what I believe are four action items that individuals in or approaching retirement can take this year to maximize their tax efficiency within the rules of the TCJA. Click here to read more.

New Year Financial Checklist

The New Year brings an opportunity to evaluate our current financial situation and make improvements when and where we need to. Make 2019 your best year yet by adopting these saving strategies. Click here to read more.

The material presented here is for information purposes only and is not to be considered an offer to buy or sell any security. Commentary is prepared from sources believed to be reliable but it is not guaranteed as to accuracy and it is not a complete summary or statement of all available data. Information and opinions are current up to the date of publication and are subject to change without notice. The purchase and sale of securities should be conducted on an individual basis considering the risk tolerance and investment objective of each investor and with the advice and counsel of a professional advisor. All investments involve risk and may result in a loss of principal. Investors should carefully consider their own circumstances before making any investment decision. The opinions expressed by the author(s) are strictly their own and do not necessarily reflect those of HJ Sims & Co, Inc. or their affiliates. HJ Sims and its affiliates do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction. Member FINRA, SIPC.

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