Basketball coaching legend John Wooden said, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.”
An email I received made the following inquiry, “I am 63 years old and have been in business
for over 20 years. I would like to start planning my retirement. Do you have any
Retirement presents an entirely
new lifestyle, especially if you have
not prepared for that phase of your
life. Because I was faced with
retirement issues a few years ago, I
will try to fill you in on what I have
If you do not have a hobby, I
suggest you think about doing some
things that might keep you busy.
I am fortunate that the state of
California provides a free education program for those over 55 years of age at a
level. While attending classes I have focused on photography, which has forced
me to upgrade
my computer skills by learning new software.
The first thing to consider regarding retirement is your health. You must
exercise your mind
and your body. I go to a gym three days per week. I go to school two days per
week. With all of
that going on, in addition to participation in a local photography club, a
club, and the homeowner’s association board of directors, I manage to keep busy.
Do not become a couch potato. The aging process accelerates rapidly when you are
exercising the mind and body. Another hobby of mine is taking care of our back
yard. It gets me
out of the house and when I am finished, I can look at the yard with a great
The education I have received over the last five years has provided me with the
to post photography slideshows on YouTube. Over 50,000 people, from all over the
viewed those shows.
The next important thing, now that you have taken care of your mind and body, is
money. I did not put money first because your physical and mental health are far
important than any other aspects of your life.
Are you investing in the stock market? Have you bought income producing real
insurance annuities appeal to you? How about investing with a company that buys
policies from people who average over 80 years of age?
You will be amazed at the variety of investments that are available. I read an
ad today in the
Orange County Register selling investments in First Trust Deeds that will
provide a 10 percent
return on your money. In this low bank interest environment, anything goes.
My suggestion is you consider real estate or find a certified financial planner
and start a
program that will provide income. Income producing real estate is good if you do
maintaining it, and dealing with tenants. The problem with stockbrokers is they
have their own
best interest at heart, not your best interest.
Not having that weekly or bi-weekly check deposited into your bank account is a
adjustment. Consider purchasing Quicken to track your current income and
where you and your wife are spending money.
Creating a financial plan for you and your spouse is as important as creating a
Part of your plan should include health care. You will have Medicare Part A and
Part B coverage,
but that is never enough. You must select a Medicare Supplement.
Fortunately for Barbara and I, an uncle in the insurance industry suggested we
best supplement available, which at that time was a J plan. The J plan is no
longer being sold,
but we are grandfathered in. Find the best plan you can afford, and be thankful
you have it.
Your medications can be covered with what is known as a Part D supplement.
rising drug costs, I shop for our Part D supplements every year. The drug
companies know that
most people will not take the time to do that, so the premiums continue to rise.
The Medicare website is one of the best things our government has done. You can
Medicare supplement plans on line and find one that fits your needs. Go to
Medicare.gov to get
Finally, go to an attorney, and set up a revocable family trust. Put your assets
into the trust.
That includes your home and any bank accounts along with whatever assets the
Now that you have your personal life in order, let us look at the business, and
to prepare for the sale. Here is where you have a decision-making process to go
through. This is
the key question.
Do you want to lend the buyer money to purchase your company? If you want to be
lending agency, I suggest you use the personal assets of the buyer to guarantee
the loan. Do
not use the business as security. I know of a company that was sold and the
seller carried the
loan. The buyer, after a few years of killing the sales, removed all the
equipment and vanished.
Maximize the value of your business by increasing your bottom line. You can cut
can report all your income. These are not easy things to do, but if you want the
price, they are necessary.
Talk to your property owner, if you do not own the location, and get a new
lease, lease option
and/or lease extensions. Any buyer who has a brain will want at least a
five-year lease with
another five-year option. Better yet would be two five-year options.
You must talk to your accountant and learn how to handle your tax situation when
You can run into very expensive issues when the state and Uncle Sam takes as
much as 33
percent of the selling price.
Even if you are not retiring, much of this advice should be considered for you
and your family.
Remember what coach Wooden said about planning. His statement is as valid for
your life as it
was for his coaching.
In the event you need a question or questions answered, do not hesitate to send
me by email
or phone. As you have read, I will respond to most questions, no matter the