By Len Hayduchok
Whether a lifelong Delawarean or a newly retired transplant to coastal life, the retirement stage (free from work and family responsibilities) opens up all types of lifestyle opportunities … and options for how to benefit from that saved up nest egg. How money is used during retirement is closely linked with lifelong attitudes related to money, called Financial Personalities. While these personalities can be shaped by financial circumstances, Financial Personalities are more likely to determine a retiree’s financial circumstances and the financial shape they find themselves in. Financial Personalities are part of an overall psychological profile and sometimes it’s during the retirement years they can be expressed more freely. The four Financial Personalities include Spenders, Savers, Investors and Planners.
For Spenders, retirement is an amazing time to go out, have fun with friends, try new things, travel—all types of “consumption” activities where money is needed and enjoyed. Exploring each personality through a fictitious name, meet Jamie, the Spender.
Jamie enjoys money, enjoys relationships and enhancing relationships by spending money. A very giving person, Jamie is fun to be around. In general, Jamie has loose budgets, and may not be sure how much is in the bank account at any one time. As a short-term financial thinker, Jamie wouldn’t often be approached for financial advice (except for where to get a good deal, because Jamie thrives on finding bargains!). If Jamie were to find $100 in a coat pocket, the thought would be “How can I enjoy this the most?” Perhaps that new book, a concert ticket, or gift for that friend’s birthday on Friday. Overall, this is a fun personality. Jamie is what might be called a “Spender.”
Spender’s financial priorities in retirement are to have money to enjoy throughout their entire retirement. They may work more to have money to spend so that they can keep up the lifestyle they prefer. There are pros and cons to this personality, as with all personalities. Spenders enjoy money and are often smart shoppers when they’re not impulsive. They might have trouble budgeting and might be impulsive. Spenders can also be shopaholics. They are not generally good with money for planning purposes and because they’ve failed to plan and also spent more freely, their number of resources might be somewhat limited. They might run out of money in their lifetime.
Spenders have a high need for a Financial Planner. They do not do financial planning all that well, and they recognize it. They also recognize that they need a Financial Planner to have resources to spend through their entire lives. The financial planning strategies that Spenders are most interested in are 1) Generating Income, to have money to enjoy now and well into their retirement years, 2) Creating Wealth, to make sure they do not run out of money and have money to spend in the future. Financial instruments they are typically interested in are money in the bank they can have accessibility to when they want it, but they need better returns than what bank accounts pay. CDs pay slightly higher rates now and fixed-rate annuities pay rates that may be a few percentage points higher. Investments in the stock market provide higher long-term growth potential but spenders tend to have a short-term financial horizon and see stock market losses as reducing their ability to spend their money. A financial plan that includes financial instruments that will provide the ability to spend in the short-, medium- and long-term are helpful for spenders.
What is the best financial personality? The best financial personality is WHO THE RETIREE IS! No person can change their innate personality; however, they should be aware of personal strengths and weaknesses. (NOTE: No one is just one financial personality, and most often actual behavioral patterns regarding finances are often a combination of characteristics from each personality.)
It’s important for retirees to work with a skilled Financial Advisor. When considering an advisor, it’s key to check their credentials. Working with a Certified Financial Planner™ practitioner working in a Fiduciary capacity can help retirees make better choices considering personality and priorities and fill in the gaps in a retiree’s knowledge and behavior patterns to strengthen their financial health.
Len, the Delaware Retiree Advisor, is a Fiduciary, Certified Financial Planner™ with over 30 years’ experience navigating the complexities of Financial Planning and Retirement Planning. As the founder of The Delaware Retiree Connection, and the director and owner of Dedicated Financial Services, Len offers his wealth of experience to guide others through the mire of Financial and Retirement Planning. As a Certified Life Coach, he pairs his financial expertise with a heart to help others who want to make the most of their retirement plan.
Investment Advisory Services are offered through SGL Financial, LLC, an SEC registered advisory firm. Insurance products and services are offered through individually licensed and appointed agents in appropriate jurisdictions. Leonard Hayduchok NJ License #9243813, Dedicated Financial Services LLC, NJ License #1663601, Leonard Hayduchok, DE License # 1331748; Dedicated Financial Services LLC, DE License # 3000323897.