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Black Enterprise talked to some of the top financial planners, investment advisers, real estate professionals, tax accountants, and insurance agents to get their best advice for your money. Over the next few weeks, BE will share their tips.
Financial All-Star: Dwight Raiford, MetLife Financial Planner
Raiford’s Advice: Focus on guaranteed sources of retirement income for your basic retirement needs—food, clothing, shelter, health care. Social Security benefits and pensions are the traditional sources of guaranteed income. As uncertainty increases around those, especially guaranteed pensions, savers may look to create their own pensions through guaranteed income sources such as annuities as well as investment accounts. As always, please consult with your financial professional to determine your risk tolerance and investment objectives.
Maximize the use of retirement accounts. Use 401(k)’s and IRA’s to put away money. Take full advantage of company match plans. These plans allow you to put money to work for you and have it grow tax deferred. There are also other tax-efficient strategies available to supplement your retirement accounts. Please contact you financial services representative for options available.
Don’t be afraid of equities. They have been and will continue to be, a hedge against inflation should it fit your risk tolerance. A well—diversified portfolio with periodic rebalancing can remove some of the volatility that frightens many people from the equity markets. While diversification through an asset allocation strategy is a useful technique that can help to manage overall portfolio risk and volatility, there is no certainty or assurance that a diversified portfolio will enhance overall return or outperform one that is not diversified. Work with a qualified adviser to help with all of these plans to help avoid the mistakes that many inexperienced individuals may make.
Stay tuned for more expert advice from our financial all-stars in the coming weeks.