Retirement Planning: Secure Your Financial Future

Most people look forward to enjoying the rewards of their hard work in retirement.

Unfortunately, too many families are unprepared with studies showing that almost half of American households have no retirement savings1 and 39% of American households are at risk of being unable to maintain their pre-retirement standard of living in retirement2.

Even the top 5% of income workers3 who are currently positioned to meet their retirement spending requirements will need a plan, as greater wealth can lead to greater complexity, including the need to integrate your financial, retirement and estate planning for future generations.

Whatever your level of wealth and retirement readiness, the key is to take control and have a plan. If you are in the early stages of your career, starting now will empower retirement readiness later. If you’ve fallen behind, it’s never too late to get back on track.

We’ve outlined answers to common questions about retirement so you can take action to secure your financial future.

A retirement plan is the process of accumulating enough money to live comfortably once you stop working. It includes defining your goals, risk tolerance and desired lifestyle, estimating your future expenses and income requirements, and establishing a long-term savings and investing strategy to ensure financial security during your retirement years.

Your plan will evolve with your age and life circumstances and must cover everything from how you will pay for essentials (home, food, healthcare, etc.) to family needs and emergencies to personal and social interests (travel, golf, favorite charities, etc.).

While there is no magic formula, different organizations offer various rules of thumb. For example, the Employee Benefits Security Administration suggests that people save 70 to 90 percent of their pre-retirement annual income to maintain their current standard of living4. Fidelity guides people to save at least 15% of their income annually for retirement5.

The reality is your retirement plan – and number – will be personal to you, based on your goals, age, lifestyle, location, health, and more. The objective is to develop a reasonable estimate of how much money you will need to save to achieve your desired lifestyle.

For example, younger investors can take more risks with investments and capitalize on decades of compounding by investing early—or earning returns on both your original investment and previous returns. Pre-retirees who are underprepared will likely need to adjust their strategy to save more and get on track. Successful retirees who have accumulated more than they will spend in their lifetime can consider more aggressive estate planning, gifting, and investment approaches to create generational wealth.

Regardless of your situation, we recommend you start early and get professional advice to help design a plan specific to your needs so you can enjoy a comfortable retirement.

Most retirees will need to plan beyond their bank accounts and expected social security benefits if they want to secure their desired standard of living in retirement.

There are many ways to accumulate retirement savings, including tax-advantaged employer-sponsored plans, Traditional and Roth IRAs, and Health Savings Accounts (HSAs); some retirees may also have pension plans, profit-sharing plans and more.

401k: tax-deferred employer-sponsored plans; they are easy to set up and maintain, especially with automatic payroll deductions; contributions are typically with pre-tax dollars unless it is a Roth 401(k); if they come with an employer match, it is advantageous to take advantage; catch-up contributions are allowed for employees over the age of 50.

403(b): similar to a 401(k) but designed for employees of public schools, tax-exempt organizations, and churches, e.g., teachers, school administrators, professors, and government employees; catch-up contributions are allowed for employees over the age of 50; “special catch-up” provisions also allow an additional $15,000 lifetime contribution for employees who have worked with a qualifying organization for 15 years

Traditional IRA: tax-deferred individual retirement account; contributions can be made with pre-tax dollars and may be fully or partially tax-deductible depending on your filing status; money grows tax-free and is not taxed until you start to take distributions.

Roth IRAs: contributions are made with after-tax dollars; money grows tax free and can be withdrawn tax-free in retirement if the account has been open for at least five years and you are over the age of 59½.

HSAs: savings accounts for people with high-deductible health plans used for medical expenses – a big cost for many retirees; contributions are made with pre-tax dollars, money invested grows tax-free, and withdrawals are tax-free if used for qualified expenses.

If you are a small business owner or self-employed, you may want to consider solo 401(k), SEP IRAs, and SIMPLE IRAs as part of your planning. Depending on your circumstances, a retirement trust or other estate planning strategies to help shield your family and estate from against creditors, lawsuits, divorce, and other challenges.

Planning for retirement today can provide you with financial preparedness and peace of mind tomorrow. Crescent Harbor can help you create a personalized plan to achieve your goals for your financial future – guiding you to accumulate and compound wealth, manage retirement income and spending, and ensure the most tax-effective tax strategies to optimize your assets throughout your retirement years and beyond.

Let’s get started together.


1 ASAFacts (November 9, 2023; referencing 2022 Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF);

2 The National Retirement Risk Index – Center for Retirement research at Boston College (

3 Vanguard – The Vanguard Retirement Outlook: A national perspective on retirement readiness (

4 Employee Benefits Security Administration – Top 10 Ways to Prepare for Retirement(

5 Fidelity – How much should I save for retirement? (

This material is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as tax or legal advice.

Registered Representatives of Sanctuary Securities Inc. and Investment Advisor Representatives of Sanctuary Advisors, LLC. Securities offered through Sanctuary Securities, Inc., Member FINRA, SIPC. Advisory services offered through Sanctuary Advisors, LLC., an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Crescent Harbor Private Wealth is a DBA of Sanctuary Securities, Inc. and Sanctuary Advisors, LLC.