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So I've been in Fooldom for 10 years and have amassed a vast array of stock knowledge. I am grateful. Now I have a well diversified portfolio of stocks in various retirement vehicles. My question is when i near retirement, (still 25 years away), how will I convert these portfolios into retirement income?

I appreciate the responses.
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The traditional Motley Fool recommendation is that you create a laddered maturity bond portfolio containing 5 years of living expenses. Then you live off of the interest from the portfolio and the funds from the bond that matures. Each year you sell stocks sufficient to purchase another 5 yr bond.

This system gives you a steady stream of income you can count on. And when the market tanks, it allows you to live off of the bond portfolio and avoids being forced to sell in a down market. Of course you still need to replace the missing bonds when the market recovers.

Historically most stock crashes recover in less than 3 years. Hence, 5 yrs is adequate.

Generally Fooldom suggests that you can retire on investments when 4% of your assets covers your living expenses. If you retire on the minimum, that implies that your bond portfolio is 20% of assets. That is a pretty aggressive number. Most retirees have more in bonds, but still stocks offer better return (at higher risk). Hence, on the minimum you need to max your growth potential to get suitable returns. But if your assets exceed the minimums, you can be more conservative.

Note that the 4% of assets implies that as your investments succeed and your assets grow, your funds available to spend also increases. Hence, ideally your net worth rises each year even after your living expenses are paid. This provides inflation protection, and lets your portfolio support you long term.
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The following old article addresses your concern. It may still have validity today.

http://www.fool.com/retirement/retireeport/2000/retireeport0...

It's predecessor may give you a little background.

http://www.fool.com/retirement/retireeport/2000/retireeport0...

Good luck.

-drip
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I am not sure if this reply is relevant, but would ask for your patience when reading this (and any (constructive) advice you can offer):
I currently work for the Federal Government part-time. As I am in my late 60's, I am taking full advantage of the Thrift Saving Plan (TSP) while continuing to keep my rolled-over savings from my previous employers (over $700k) with a full-service brokerage firm. As I am contemplating retirement within the next 2-3 years, I wonder if it would be advisable to move my full-service 401K to my TSP account which appears to be less expensive (fee-wise). As I read my TSP literature, I understand that the "annual expenses" for the administration of my TSP account is somewhere in the neighborhood of $0.27 for every $1000 in my account as compared to an average fee that might be as high as $8.30 for every $1000 with a full-service brokerage. As I look at the balance of my savings with my full-service brokerage for the past five years, it appears as if my balance has remained the same (with a possible loss over the past five years including the annual fees charged). Do you happen to have any data that would help me with the decision to either move my savings to my TSP account or keep it with my full-service brokerage? Thank you.
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