Retirement Planning

Examine spending when planning for retirement

Many people take a singular approach when planning for retirement. They’ll focus on the investment side of the equation – how much they need to put away each month to reach their retirement goals. However, to get a complete picture of their retirement situation, they must also pay attention to their expenses.

According to Sean Mullervy, MBA, CFP®, Branch Manager and Financial Advisor with Raymond James Financial Services, expenses are the most important factor in a financial plan. They drive everything that happens within the plan. He believes that expenses determine how much a client can save per month before retirement, as well as how much they need to withdraw per month after retirement.

“The first thing that I recommend to every prospective client is to complete the printable budget worksheet on my website,” said Mullervy. “Once I know exactly how much a client spends per month, I can build a plan around that in the present and project potential outcomes decades into the future.”

Mullervy is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PROFESSIONAL™ professional, and has been an independent financial advisor for some 20 years. He specializes in financial planning and wealth management, and focuses on strategic asset management and long-term investing. While he is affiliated with Raymond James Financial Services, Mullervy helps clients to create portfolios based on their investment objectives, time horizons, risk tolerances, and financial profiles.

People should also understand that planning for retirement is a two-sided coin. One side is pre-retirement planning, which involves accumulating funds for retirement. The other side is post-retirement planning, which involves distributing funds that have accumulated to that point. While both types of retirement planning are connected and related, they are distinct, and should be treated as such within the context of the financial plan.

“Portfolios are like prescriptions: you want the ones that have the most benefits with the least side effects,” said Mullervy. “My clients receive advice from an independent advisor who is not under any pressure to sell his company's products or services. My clients also have their assets in custody at a financially strong and conservatively run investment firm that has world-class customer support.”

For more information on Raymond James Financial Services, visit:

Opinions are those of Sean Mullervy and not necessarily those of Raymond James. Securities offered through Raymond James Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advisory services are offered through Raymond James Financial Services Advisors, Inc.

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, CFP® (with plaque design) and CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.


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