On this episode of The Retirement Huddle podcast, Mark Howard explains how retirement planning is like a jigsaw puzzle.
1) Look at the big picture
You can’t just dump a thousand puzzle pieces out on the table and expect to put them together unless you know what the picture is supposed to look like. That’s why you always set the box up in front of you so you can see the picture that you’re assembling. You also have to see the big picture with your financial plan.
“When we’re building a financial plan, we’re asking people to see that big picture,” said Mark.
2) Build a framework
With a jigsaw puzzle, most people like to start by finding all of the straight-edge pieces and assembling the border of the puzzle. With that framework in place, it’s easier to get the rest of the picture to come together.
“When we’re building a retirement plan, that framework is your income,” said Mark.
Without an income plan, you don’t really have a retirement plan. But once you have the right combination of Social Security, pensions, annuities, interest, dividends, or rental income, you can be confident in your monthly paychecks.
3) Sort by color
With a puzzle, it’s often helpful to group pieces together with others that have similar colors. Sorting your financial accounts to find similarities can also be helpful. For instance, you could sort by tax status.
Listen to the full episode or use the timestamps to jump to a specific section. Thanks for listening! We’ll be back for another show every other Thursday.
[1:40] – Look at the big picture
[3:04] – Build a framework
[4:30] – Sort by color
[5:51] – Have an end-game in mind