It Does Pay to Work in Retirement

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

March 29, 2011 — One of the persistent myths about retirement is that it doesn’t pay to work after you start collecting social security. The thinking goes is that because if you start collecting before your full retirement age your benefits are reduced, and because you will be taxed on a portion of your benefits if your overall earnings pass a certain threshold, you will be worse off for working.

A very helpful article from WSJ MarketWatch Editor Robert Powell, “Taxing Problem: How to Keep Working and Collecting Social Security“, clearly explains why this thinking is off base. As Michael Kitces, editor and publisher of The Kitces Report says in the article “… frankly, I’ve never seen a situation where there was actually a net loss for working.” He goes on to say that by working you bring additional dollars into the household. Uncle Sam gets to keep part of that, and you get to keep part. Everybody is ahead vs. ….


Posted by John Brady on March 29th, 2011

Best States for Retirement – 2011 Edition

Category: Best Retirement Towns and States

Note: See latest version of “Best States for Retirement – 2014“.
March 29, 2011 — No article we have ever written attracted more attention than our “Worst States for Retirement“. Ever since the list came out last December it has been fiercely debated. In the end we think we accomplished our goal: we were able to get people to think about some of the important factors they should consider before they choose their best place to retire. This article will update the reverse of that article – the best states for retirement.

Rather than produce one ranked list of states for this article, which is always arbitrary, we will list a number of the best retirement states on the basis of economic factors: taxation, fiscal health, and cost of living. Note that in our opinion, state economic factors are not the only and are usually not the best criteria for selecting a retirement town. Other factors such as climate, physical and political environment, healthcare, and proximity to relatives and friend are normally much more critical. For the purposes of this article, however, those factors are so personal that we don’t feel it is our place to rate them for you – you know what you are looking for on these preferences. Some people want to live in a warm climate, while others hate high temperatures and/or humidity. When it comes to environment, some folks want mountains, others want the ocean or a lake, and yet others prefer a city. Some seek out a liberal political and religious landscape, while others prefer the opposite. As we try to stress over and over again, your personal criteria for retirement are much more valuable than…


Posted by John Brady on March 29th, 2011

Should You Pre-pay Your Mortgage?

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

March 22, 2011 — You are about to retire, but perhaps you didn’t quite pay off the mortgage on your home before you got your gold watch (remember those days!). That might put you in a quandary – you have the money in your retirement account that could pay it off, and you know that CDs and T-bills are not going produce anywhere near the interest rate you are paying to the bank – even if you did refinance recently. And in addition, your income has dropped so that home mortgage deduction doesn’t have the same effect as in your higher income days. So what to do?…..


Posted by John Brady on March 22nd, 2011

Should You Be Applying to a College Town for Retirement?

Category: Best Retirement Towns and States

Note: This is Part 1 of our “College Town Retirement” series, which has 4 different installments. See end of article for links to the rest.

Updated December 6, 2016 — A reporter recently asked for our opinion about college town retirements. Her questions concerned the pros and cons, reasons why, top towns, etc. This article will help you try to assess if a college town retirement makes sense for you, as well as provide some recommendations and resources for finding the right college town.

Return to the scene of your youth. Most people who went to college have very warm feelings about the town where they came of age. Particularly if (more…)

Posted by John Brady on March 21st, 2011

Are You Active Adult Community Material?

Category: Active adult communities

Note: This is an updated version of a 2008 article from our Tips and Picks section.

In our experience most baby boomers have an opinion about active adult or 55+ communities – they are either for ’em or agin ’em – but less frequently neutral. We recommend that you suspend your opinions for a few moments, then form them again after reading this. Just maybe, you might change your mind one way or another. To try to be realistic and objective, we have used actual people’s words from various Retirement community Discussion Forums (See links to other Forums at end of article)….


Posted by John Brady on March 18th, 2011

Our Best and Worst Tips for the Newly Retired

Category: General Retirement Issues

March 14, 2011 — If you are like most Topretirements members, you are a baby boomer or just slightly ahead of that demographic. Chances are you are either about to retire, or have just done so. This article will can serve as your Retirement 101 crash course – start off by reading our 26 best — and worst – ideas for you as a newly retired person.

But First
The most important thing for the newly retired person to realize is that retirement is going to be very different from what you are doing now. To make the best of it you….


Posted by John Brady on March 14th, 2011

My Wife is Getting Worried…Will We Have Enough Money in Retirement?

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

March 7, 2011 — Earlier this week we received this comment from a member: “I’m planning on retiring in 6 months and my wife is getting worried about having enough money in retirement. I have a good retirement plan, our home is paid off, and we are debt free. My wife also has retirement income. Any ideas on calming some of her fears?”

This question seems so pertinent to what so many baby boomers are going through right now. We can speak from experience here; the shock that comes from retiring and realizing that we are not going to be getting a paycheck anymore is very real. We can’t count on raises or a promotion to fund an ever-expanding lifestyle. Saving money

Posted by John Brady on March 7th, 2011