Plan B™: Retirement Planning for the Unexpected

June 9, 2020

We know that as life happens, plans change. Nothing works out exactly as planned. Whoever thought the entire world would be shut down for a virus?

Plan B™ is an important part of Brown and Company’s personalized financial analysis and retirement consulting services, custom tailored to help you deal with the ‘What if?’ scenarios life and retirement may throw at you. The best financial planning is all centered around a simple question: “What if?” It’s all about planning for contingencies. Some of the contingencies are out of your control:
  • What if legislation passes that changes the tax rates / increases regulations / alters health care laws?
  • What if the inflation rate rises?
  • What if the stock market has a major correction like we’re experiencing?
  • What if interest rates rise?
Other contingencies are more within your control – or at least have to do with your own individual situation:
  • What if you are spending more than you can afford?
  • What if you earn a lower rate of return than expected?
  • What if a loved one has health problems?
  • What if one spouse dies early?
  • What if you lack sufficient liquidity to meet your spending needs?
Our goal is to create a plan for you that makes conservative assumptions (like a lower than expected rate of return or slightly higher than expected tax rate) so that if there are surprises, hopefully they are good ones.  There are three steps we use to put together a plan like this:
  1. Consider a wide range of realistic possibilities (these are the problems lurking beneath the surface)
  2. Diagnose the implications of those possibilities
  3. Come up with a plan to hedge against that risk (which can mean avoiding it, insuring against it, or minimizing its impact)
We try to insulate our clients against problems no one else is thinking about – problems they don’t even know they have. The main reason people lie awake at night worrying is fear of the unknown.  We work to identify these unknowns ahead of time, consider their potential impact on our client’s goals, and create a plan to meet them.  Plan B™ .  It doesn’t guarantee a positive outcome, but it does decrease the chances that your goals will be derailed by something unexpected. Plan B™ is sound financial planning which realistically takes into account the unpredictable nature of life so that you are not completely upended by unforeseen negative circumstances.