title

Retirement Starts Today Radio

Benjamin Brandt CFP®, RICP®

9
Followers
40
Plays
Retirement Starts Today Radio
Retirement Starts Today Radio

Retirement Starts Today Radio

Benjamin Brandt CFP®, RICP®

9
Followers
40
Plays
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About Us

Benjamin Brandt wants to teach you how to retire! Listen in as Benjamin Brandt CFP©, RICP© answers the questions on the minds of the modern retiree, often joined by the top experts in the retirement planning industry. Do you enjoy Dave Ramsey and Freakonomics? Check out Retirement Starts Today Podcast. Ask Benjamin a question here: http://retirementstartstodayradio.com/ask-a-question/

Latest Episodes

Will a Trump Impeachment Crash Your Retirement? Ep # 109

If you turn on the cable news there is only one thing you will hear about: the possible impeachment of President Donald Trump. This is not a political show. I don’t discuss politics on this show or in my practice. But we do need to discuss the impeachment possibility because you need to be prepared for any eventuality that will affect your retirement. That is why on this episode of Retirement Starts Today, I won’t be answering any listener questions or going over any retirement headlines. We’ll simply be looking at how impeachment or any market uncertainty may affect your retirement. The one thing that is certain about the markets is that they don’t like uncertainty.Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:22] The chances of the president getting impeached is pretty unlikely* [2:45] Often the best way to plan ahead is by looking back* [5:20] Uncertainty creates volatility in the markets* [8:22] Actionable steps you can take to prepare for market uncertainty* [15:08] Take maxi...

18 MIN1 days ago
Comments
Will a Trump Impeachment Crash Your Retirement? Ep # 109

Annuities for Retirees: Are They a Good Option? Ep #108

Are annuities for retirees a good option? Nes wants to learn more about annuities and how they work. But before I answer that question, first Bruce asks how he can calculate his exact social security benefits. If you have a question for me that you would like answered on the show, you can email me or leave a voicemail so we can all hear your voice. Let’s dive in to learn the answers to our listener questions. If you have a question for me that you would like answered on the show, you can email me or leave a voicemail so we can all hear your voice.Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:22] How can Bruce calculate his exact social security benefits upon retirement?* [4:21] How is your social security benefit calculated?* [7:31] Are annuities a good option for retirees?* [8:47] Understand what annuities are* [13:57] What are the drawbacks to annuities?* [17:44] What are good alternatives to annuities? How can Bruce calculate his exact social security benefits upon retirement? Bruce was nice enough to chime in with a voicemail question for us. He knows that the Social Security retirement calculator assumes that he will keep working all the way up until full retirement age and he would like to know how to calculate his benefits if he chooses to stop working at age 62. If he stops working early his benefits will stop vesting at the same rate and so his benefits will actually be less. The best solution is still using the calculator on the SSA.gov website. You can play with the numbers a bit to try and achieve the best calculation. Listen in to hear what I tell my local community college class in Bismarck. Have you ever used the Social Security detailed calculator?Click To Tweet How is your Social Security benefit calculated? When you receive your Social Security benefits statement in the mail it will tell you how much you are likely to receive at full retirement age. But if you stop working early you will no longer be vesting, therefore the benefit amount will be less. If you stop the trajectory you are on then it will change. Your Social Security benefit is based on your 35 highest-earning income years. And is adjusted for inflation. If your highest earning years have been quite recent or if you have received consistent raises it will assume that your income will keep going up until retirement age. Have you used the SSA benefits calculator to estimate your Social Security benefit? What are the drawbacks of annuities for retirees? Nes asks if annuities are a good option for retirees. I am really not a fan of annuities. It is important to remember that an annuity is an insurance product that protects your investment. There are a number of drawbacks to them and little benefit to the customer. The person that benefits the most from an annuity is the salesperson. Most annuities come with a shocking number of fees.

21 MIN1 weeks ago
Comments
Annuities for Retirees: Are They a Good Option? Ep #108

What is the Best Choice of Health Insurance Before Medicare? Ep #107

If you have been thinking of retiring early, you know that one of the biggest factors is health insurance before Medicare. One listener asks whether Obamacare or COBRA would be the best option. Another listener writes in with a question about investing his home equity in the stock market. You’ll hear my responses to these 2 questions plus an update on my Equifax settlement money. I know you’re curious to learn whether I received my $125 from the Equifax settlement, so listen in to find out. Are you curious to learn about what happened with my $125 Equifax settlement? Listen to episode 107 to find out!Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:12] My Equifax update* [3:39] Should someone get COBRA or Obamacare?* [8:27] Should someone use equity from their house to invest in the market? What are some options for health insurance before Medicare? One of the biggest questions to retiring early is how to cover your health insurance. There are a few options available to get health insu...

19 MIN2 weeks ago
Comments
What is the Best Choice of Health Insurance Before Medicare? Ep #107

How to Use the Bucket Strategy for Retirement, Ep #106

Do you understand how to use the bucket strategy for retirement? One listener has a question about how to use the bucket strategy and whether or not it is too conservative. I also answer another listener question about the 5-year rule for Roth conversions. And finally, we discuss a retirement headline about the shift from passive equity funds to active equity funds and what that could mean for you. Get ready to prepare for your retirement by listening to this episode of Retirement Starts Today. Do you understand how to use the bucket strategy for #retirement?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:32] If I have 3 years of cash in buckets, isn’t that too conservative?* [7:40] Don’t focus too much on the idea of buckets* [11:00] A Roth IRA conversion question* [13:15] Passive equity funds surpass active funds If I have 3 years of cash on hand for retirement in buckets, isn’t that too conservative? One listener asks if the bucket strategy for retirement withdrawals is too conser...

18 MIN3 weeks ago
Comments
How to Use the Bucket Strategy for Retirement, Ep #106

Retirement Lessons from a 4-Hour Commute, Ep # 105

What retirement lessons can you learn from a 4-hour daily commute? On this episode of Retirement Starts Today I share an article I found on CNBC. The article isn’t directly about retirement but there are lessons we can learn from it that apply to life and retirement. I also answer a listener question about Roth and traditional IRAs. We have a lot to unpack with just these 2 topics. Let’s dive right in to find out what retirement lessons we can learn to help you reach your goals. Would you make a 4-hour commute to save $18,000 per year?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:43] What retirement lessons can you learn from a 4-hour daily commute?* [9:43] What should the balance be between before and after-tax accounts?* [11:34] How can you project your cash flow in retirement?* [13:10] Scenario #1* [15:20] Scenario #2 Why would someone commute 4 hours a day? A 30-year-old commutes 4 hours a day so that he doesn’t have to pay a $4500 rent in San Francisco. He wakes up at 4:30 am ...

17 MINSEP 16
Comments
Retirement Lessons from a 4-Hour Commute, Ep # 105

How to Protect Yourself Against a Social Security Scam, Ep # 104

Do you know what to do if you fall victim to a Social Security scam? In the Retirement Headlines segment, we’ll discuss a recent Market Watch article that shares some excellent tips for protecting yourself against social security scams and advice on how to minimize the damage if you fall victim to one. But before we get to that we’ll start a new kind of segment in addition to the retirement headlines. This is the first episode in which we look at some case studies. We have a lot of information to help you gather information to prepare you for retirement. Do you know what to do if you fall victim to a Social Security scam?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:42] Our first case study* [6:48] A pension buyout offer* [10:24] Social security scams* [14:29] Can my Social Security number be suspended? To sell or not to sell the farmland? Our first case study regards a question about selling farmland. Recently I received a call from a person that was looking for advice about whethe...

18 MINSEP 9
Comments
How to Protect Yourself Against a Social Security Scam, Ep # 104

Why I Hate the FIRE Movement, Ep # 103

Have you heard of the FIRE movement? In this episode, you’ll hear why I hate it. We’ll also discuss a listener question about spousal Social Security benefits and a CNBC article that compares retiring at different ages. You’ll learn why it is important to work for as long as possible. Listen to this episode to hear how much more money you’d have if you delay retirement and to learn why I hate the FIRE movement. Have you heard of the #FIRE movement?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:22] A Social Security spousal benefit question* [3:30] Here’s how much more money you’d have if you delayed retirement* [8:12] What is the FIRE movement?* [10:15] Why do I hate the FIRE movement? Can my wife collect her spousal benefit at age 66 and hold off on collecting her own social security until age 70? Thank you, Brian, for this excellent listener question. I always try to advise holding off on collecting your social security until age 70. Because if you wait this long then you will ...

15 MINSEP 2
Comments
Why I Hate the FIRE Movement, Ep # 103

How to Retire Abroad with David Jacoby, Ep # 102

Do you know what you need to do to travel or retire abroad? We asked and you answered. The number one thing that our listeners would like to do in retirement is travel. That’s why I found financial travel expert, David Jacoby from RemoteFinancialPlanner.com to help us understand all the nuances of travel and living abroad in retirement. David has actually lived in 4 different countries and built his business while living abroad. He’ll walk us through the unique aspects of retiring abroad that you may not have considered and what the financial ramifications may be. Listen to this episode of RetirementStartsToday with David Jacoby @RemoteFP as he walks us through the unique aspects of retiring abroad that you may not have considered.Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [3:12] David works primarily with 3 different groups of people* [5:47] How does he walk people through the decision to live abroad?* [9:32] How does he help clients narrow down where they want to live?* [13:33] Wh...

21 MINAUG 26
Comments
How to Retire Abroad with David Jacoby, Ep # 102

How to Navigate the Upcoming Changes in Medicare Supplement Plans with Danielle Roberts, Ep # 101

If you’ve seen then news lately, then you know that there are big changes in Medicare supplement plans coming in 2020. This is why I’ve invited Danielle Roberts on the show today. Danielle is a Medicare Expert with Boomer Benefits. Boomer Benefits is a Medicare broker that can help you navigate the complex world of Medicare. Danielle is here today to walk us through the changes to one of the most popular Medicare supplement plans, Plan F. If you or your parents are dealing with Medicare you will definitely want to listen to this episode to help you navigate the upcoming changes to these supplement plans. How will the changes in #MedicareSupplementPlans affect you?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [2:12] What changes are soon coming to Medicare?* [4:58] How much more expensive is plan G than plan F?* [6:00] What might happen to plan F?* [11:31] What might happen if the pool gets unhealthier and unhealthier?* [14:09] How can you switch plans?* [17:22] What are some declinable...

26 MINAUG 19
Comments
How to Navigate the Upcoming Changes in Medicare Supplement Plans with Danielle Roberts, Ep # 101

How to Offset the Rising Costs of Long-Term Care Insurance Premiums, Ep # 100

On episode 100 I answer listener questions including what to do about the rising costs of long-term care insurance premiums, what to do with old annuities, and SIPC protection. Thanks to all of you listeners for 100 amazing episodes! I have learned so much alongside you all. Your questions and feedback on the show have gone a long way into making the show what is today. And I am humbled and encouraged by your kind words and support. Thank you all so much. I look forward to learning and growing with you over the next 100 episodes. Listen to this episode to learn the answers to all of those listener questions. Thanks to all of you listeners for 100 amazing episodes! Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [2:36] The results of the listener survey are in* [5:50] A long-term care insurance question* [14:02] LT has a question about an old annuity* [20:15] A concern about SIPC The results from the listener survey are in Each year we conduct a listener survey to help improve the show by t...

24 MINAUG 12
Comments
How to Offset the Rising Costs of Long-Term Care Insurance Premiums, Ep # 100

Latest Episodes

Will a Trump Impeachment Crash Your Retirement? Ep # 109

If you turn on the cable news there is only one thing you will hear about: the possible impeachment of President Donald Trump. This is not a political show. I don’t discuss politics on this show or in my practice. But we do need to discuss the impeachment possibility because you need to be prepared for any eventuality that will affect your retirement. That is why on this episode of Retirement Starts Today, I won’t be answering any listener questions or going over any retirement headlines. We’ll simply be looking at how impeachment or any market uncertainty may affect your retirement. The one thing that is certain about the markets is that they don’t like uncertainty.Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:22] The chances of the president getting impeached is pretty unlikely* [2:45] Often the best way to plan ahead is by looking back* [5:20] Uncertainty creates volatility in the markets* [8:22] Actionable steps you can take to prepare for market uncertainty* [15:08] Take maxi...

18 MIN1 days ago
Comments
Will a Trump Impeachment Crash Your Retirement? Ep # 109

Annuities for Retirees: Are They a Good Option? Ep #108

Are annuities for retirees a good option? Nes wants to learn more about annuities and how they work. But before I answer that question, first Bruce asks how he can calculate his exact social security benefits. If you have a question for me that you would like answered on the show, you can email me or leave a voicemail so we can all hear your voice. Let’s dive in to learn the answers to our listener questions. If you have a question for me that you would like answered on the show, you can email me or leave a voicemail so we can all hear your voice.Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:22] How can Bruce calculate his exact social security benefits upon retirement?* [4:21] How is your social security benefit calculated?* [7:31] Are annuities a good option for retirees?* [8:47] Understand what annuities are* [13:57] What are the drawbacks to annuities?* [17:44] What are good alternatives to annuities? How can Bruce calculate his exact social security benefits upon retirement? Bruce was nice enough to chime in with a voicemail question for us. He knows that the Social Security retirement calculator assumes that he will keep working all the way up until full retirement age and he would like to know how to calculate his benefits if he chooses to stop working at age 62. If he stops working early his benefits will stop vesting at the same rate and so his benefits will actually be less. The best solution is still using the calculator on the SSA.gov website. You can play with the numbers a bit to try and achieve the best calculation. Listen in to hear what I tell my local community college class in Bismarck. Have you ever used the Social Security detailed calculator?Click To Tweet How is your Social Security benefit calculated? When you receive your Social Security benefits statement in the mail it will tell you how much you are likely to receive at full retirement age. But if you stop working early you will no longer be vesting, therefore the benefit amount will be less. If you stop the trajectory you are on then it will change. Your Social Security benefit is based on your 35 highest-earning income years. And is adjusted for inflation. If your highest earning years have been quite recent or if you have received consistent raises it will assume that your income will keep going up until retirement age. Have you used the SSA benefits calculator to estimate your Social Security benefit? What are the drawbacks of annuities for retirees? Nes asks if annuities are a good option for retirees. I am really not a fan of annuities. It is important to remember that an annuity is an insurance product that protects your investment. There are a number of drawbacks to them and little benefit to the customer. The person that benefits the most from an annuity is the salesperson. Most annuities come with a shocking number of fees.

21 MIN1 weeks ago
Comments
Annuities for Retirees: Are They a Good Option? Ep #108

What is the Best Choice of Health Insurance Before Medicare? Ep #107

If you have been thinking of retiring early, you know that one of the biggest factors is health insurance before Medicare. One listener asks whether Obamacare or COBRA would be the best option. Another listener writes in with a question about investing his home equity in the stock market. You’ll hear my responses to these 2 questions plus an update on my Equifax settlement money. I know you’re curious to learn whether I received my $125 from the Equifax settlement, so listen in to find out. Are you curious to learn about what happened with my $125 Equifax settlement? Listen to episode 107 to find out!Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:12] My Equifax update* [3:39] Should someone get COBRA or Obamacare?* [8:27] Should someone use equity from their house to invest in the market? What are some options for health insurance before Medicare? One of the biggest questions to retiring early is how to cover your health insurance. There are a few options available to get health insu...

19 MIN2 weeks ago
Comments
What is the Best Choice of Health Insurance Before Medicare? Ep #107

How to Use the Bucket Strategy for Retirement, Ep #106

Do you understand how to use the bucket strategy for retirement? One listener has a question about how to use the bucket strategy and whether or not it is too conservative. I also answer another listener question about the 5-year rule for Roth conversions. And finally, we discuss a retirement headline about the shift from passive equity funds to active equity funds and what that could mean for you. Get ready to prepare for your retirement by listening to this episode of Retirement Starts Today. Do you understand how to use the bucket strategy for #retirement?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:32] If I have 3 years of cash in buckets, isn’t that too conservative?* [7:40] Don’t focus too much on the idea of buckets* [11:00] A Roth IRA conversion question* [13:15] Passive equity funds surpass active funds If I have 3 years of cash on hand for retirement in buckets, isn’t that too conservative? One listener asks if the bucket strategy for retirement withdrawals is too conser...

18 MIN3 weeks ago
Comments
How to Use the Bucket Strategy for Retirement, Ep #106

Retirement Lessons from a 4-Hour Commute, Ep # 105

What retirement lessons can you learn from a 4-hour daily commute? On this episode of Retirement Starts Today I share an article I found on CNBC. The article isn’t directly about retirement but there are lessons we can learn from it that apply to life and retirement. I also answer a listener question about Roth and traditional IRAs. We have a lot to unpack with just these 2 topics. Let’s dive right in to find out what retirement lessons we can learn to help you reach your goals. Would you make a 4-hour commute to save $18,000 per year?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:43] What retirement lessons can you learn from a 4-hour daily commute?* [9:43] What should the balance be between before and after-tax accounts?* [11:34] How can you project your cash flow in retirement?* [13:10] Scenario #1* [15:20] Scenario #2 Why would someone commute 4 hours a day? A 30-year-old commutes 4 hours a day so that he doesn’t have to pay a $4500 rent in San Francisco. He wakes up at 4:30 am ...

17 MINSEP 16
Comments
Retirement Lessons from a 4-Hour Commute, Ep # 105

How to Protect Yourself Against a Social Security Scam, Ep # 104

Do you know what to do if you fall victim to a Social Security scam? In the Retirement Headlines segment, we’ll discuss a recent Market Watch article that shares some excellent tips for protecting yourself against social security scams and advice on how to minimize the damage if you fall victim to one. But before we get to that we’ll start a new kind of segment in addition to the retirement headlines. This is the first episode in which we look at some case studies. We have a lot of information to help you gather information to prepare you for retirement. Do you know what to do if you fall victim to a Social Security scam?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:42] Our first case study* [6:48] A pension buyout offer* [10:24] Social security scams* [14:29] Can my Social Security number be suspended? To sell or not to sell the farmland? Our first case study regards a question about selling farmland. Recently I received a call from a person that was looking for advice about whethe...

18 MINSEP 9
Comments
How to Protect Yourself Against a Social Security Scam, Ep # 104

Why I Hate the FIRE Movement, Ep # 103

Have you heard of the FIRE movement? In this episode, you’ll hear why I hate it. We’ll also discuss a listener question about spousal Social Security benefits and a CNBC article that compares retiring at different ages. You’ll learn why it is important to work for as long as possible. Listen to this episode to hear how much more money you’d have if you delay retirement and to learn why I hate the FIRE movement. Have you heard of the #FIRE movement?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [1:22] A Social Security spousal benefit question* [3:30] Here’s how much more money you’d have if you delayed retirement* [8:12] What is the FIRE movement?* [10:15] Why do I hate the FIRE movement? Can my wife collect her spousal benefit at age 66 and hold off on collecting her own social security until age 70? Thank you, Brian, for this excellent listener question. I always try to advise holding off on collecting your social security until age 70. Because if you wait this long then you will ...

15 MINSEP 2
Comments
Why I Hate the FIRE Movement, Ep # 103

How to Retire Abroad with David Jacoby, Ep # 102

Do you know what you need to do to travel or retire abroad? We asked and you answered. The number one thing that our listeners would like to do in retirement is travel. That’s why I found financial travel expert, David Jacoby from RemoteFinancialPlanner.com to help us understand all the nuances of travel and living abroad in retirement. David has actually lived in 4 different countries and built his business while living abroad. He’ll walk us through the unique aspects of retiring abroad that you may not have considered and what the financial ramifications may be. Listen to this episode of RetirementStartsToday with David Jacoby @RemoteFP as he walks us through the unique aspects of retiring abroad that you may not have considered.Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [3:12] David works primarily with 3 different groups of people* [5:47] How does he walk people through the decision to live abroad?* [9:32] How does he help clients narrow down where they want to live?* [13:33] Wh...

21 MINAUG 26
Comments
How to Retire Abroad with David Jacoby, Ep # 102

How to Navigate the Upcoming Changes in Medicare Supplement Plans with Danielle Roberts, Ep # 101

If you’ve seen then news lately, then you know that there are big changes in Medicare supplement plans coming in 2020. This is why I’ve invited Danielle Roberts on the show today. Danielle is a Medicare Expert with Boomer Benefits. Boomer Benefits is a Medicare broker that can help you navigate the complex world of Medicare. Danielle is here today to walk us through the changes to one of the most popular Medicare supplement plans, Plan F. If you or your parents are dealing with Medicare you will definitely want to listen to this episode to help you navigate the upcoming changes to these supplement plans. How will the changes in #MedicareSupplementPlans affect you?Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [2:12] What changes are soon coming to Medicare?* [4:58] How much more expensive is plan G than plan F?* [6:00] What might happen to plan F?* [11:31] What might happen if the pool gets unhealthier and unhealthier?* [14:09] How can you switch plans?* [17:22] What are some declinable...

26 MINAUG 19
Comments
How to Navigate the Upcoming Changes in Medicare Supplement Plans with Danielle Roberts, Ep # 101

How to Offset the Rising Costs of Long-Term Care Insurance Premiums, Ep # 100

On episode 100 I answer listener questions including what to do about the rising costs of long-term care insurance premiums, what to do with old annuities, and SIPC protection. Thanks to all of you listeners for 100 amazing episodes! I have learned so much alongside you all. Your questions and feedback on the show have gone a long way into making the show what is today. And I am humbled and encouraged by your kind words and support. Thank you all so much. I look forward to learning and growing with you over the next 100 episodes. Listen to this episode to learn the answers to all of those listener questions. Thanks to all of you listeners for 100 amazing episodes! Click To Tweet Outline of This Episode * [2:36] The results of the listener survey are in* [5:50] A long-term care insurance question* [14:02] LT has a question about an old annuity* [20:15] A concern about SIPC The results from the listener survey are in Each year we conduct a listener survey to help improve the show by t...

24 MINAUG 12
Comments
How to Offset the Rising Costs of Long-Term Care Insurance Premiums, Ep # 100