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Video Transcript

Cynthia de Fazio – 00:20

And welcome to On The money with secure money. My name is Cynthia De Fazio and I’m joined today by Brian Quaranta. He is president and founder of secure money advisors, as well as Neil Major senior investment advisor. Brian, let me start with you. How are you today?

Brian Quaranta – 00:34

I am doing well. Cynthia, how are you?

Cynthia de Fazio – 00:36

Fantastic. Always a pleasure to see you. Thank you for having me on the show. Neil, how are you?

Neil Major – 00:41

I’m great. Cynthia, how are you today?

Cynthia de Fazio – 00:42

I am fantastic. And I’m so excited about today’s show, gentlemen, because obviously, you’re both so extremely passionate about helping people retire comfortably, retire with peace of mind, most importantly, making sure that they’re on the right track. So for a moment, Brian, let me ask you, when you talk about someone being on the right track, where did that philosophy come from the need to be on the right track?

Brian Quaranta – 01:04

Well, actually, I will give the credit to Neil. Okay. Because he said, you know, Brian, he said, Everybody keeps coming in. And the first thing they always ask us is, when we say, you know, what’s the number one most important thing you want to try to accomplish? By the time the meeting is over? Most everybody says, I just want to know if I’m on the right track. So you go, Okay, well, what is being on the right track actually mean? Right? What does it exactly mean? Well, it means that you’ve have solved your income problem, it means that you’ve looked at tax strategies to eliminate taxation in retirement, it means you’ve re evaluated your investments to make sure that you own the right investments, with the right risk levels. A lot of times what you’ll see with investments as people get older, is they’re taking this much risk, and they’re only getting this much return. And so we’ve developed a software that will tell us how much risk somebody is taking versus the return that they’re getting. It also means what happens if a health event were to take place, and you were to need care or have to pay for care. And then more importantly, is when the good Lord decides to take your home. Yeah, right? What’s the estate planning going to look like? Yeah, that’s what it means to be on the right track. Having a 401k is great, it means you’re doing some investing. But that doesn’t mean that you’re on the right track. Just because you’re contributing money. You know, maybe your employer is contributing doesn’t mean that you’re tracking towards what you need. And so what we teach people is how to work backwards, right? So if I, you know, if I have someone that’s coming in, and they want to retire in 15 years, how do you get them there? Well, the first thing we got to determine is, what are we exactly going to need in retirement as far as income goes, okay? Now, some people might think that that’s a hard thing to figure out. But it’s really not. Because if you just take their current day incoming, apply a little bit of an inflation rate to it, it’ll bring you to that number. Now we can work backwards and figure out okay, if we’re going to need this much income, how much are we going to have to contribute every month? How much? What rate of return are we going to need to have? How much volatility could we absorb from the markets, and this now is what building a plan is all about? Right? These are the different factors that have to be built in so that you walk away feeling secure, and you feel that you really have something that you can sink your teeth into and go, You know what, I actually am going to be able to do this retirement thing. And I’m going to be able to do it on my terms. And I’m going to be able to retire on the date that I want to retire. And that’s how everybody should feel it shouldn’t just be, you know, let me roll the dice and see where I land in a couple years. Like that’s not an approach. So that’s what being on the right track meets.

Cynthia de Fazio – 03:37

Thank you, Brian, Neil, great idea that you came up with? Are you on the right?

Neil Major – 03:45

Literally every person committed Am I on the right track? Am I on the right track? And what’s funny is that the right track is different for every person that comes in. Yeah. So that’s when you say, Am I on the right track? Give me more information about what exactly you mean, by being on the right track. Because some people feel it’s investments. Some people, it’s preparing their income, right? Some people, it’s making sure they make the necessary tax changes are consequences that are going to have to make to be better positioned in the future. So a right track kind of can meet something different for everybody.

Brian Quaranta – 04:21

But the fundamentals, you know, even though the pressing concerns are different for everybody, right? Somebody might say, well, you know, we really don’t talk to our investment, you know, person and we’re not really getting any good advice. And, you know, we just don’t feel that we’re in the right things at this point. You hear different like higher level concerns than that. But as a fiduciary Our job is to check in on the fundamentals, meaning, you know, even though somebody might not be saying I have a an income concern, we’re still going to look at their income. We’re going to run the proper analysis, like looking at what happens if we have an inflationary environment. What happens if you lose a spouse? What happens if there’s a big loss In the market is that income that they currently have coming in, still going to be sustainable throughout the years? Right. So we’re still checking on the fundamentals of the plan, even though it might not be a primary concern. And that’s how we make sure that they’re on the right track.

Cynthia de Fazio – 05:16

I love that. Well, Neil, I know that you and Brian are very passionate about education. We’ve talked in the past about workshops are those going on right now?

Neil Major – 05:24

Yeah, actually, we love educating the public getting out there and kind of getting in our local communities and, and just crying because you know, a lot of this information just isn’t understood. Yeah. And a lot of people don’t know the right resources to get the information from so.

Brian Quaranta – 05:40

Couldn’t they just go to Google, with

Neil Major – 05:43

your own risk, right.

Brian Quaranta – 05:49

Next thing I know, we got anxiety about some ailments. Very dangerous. Well, Google says I should I shouldn’t have a 401k, I should have an IRA. Google says I should be doing a Roth conversion. But yeah.

Neil Major – 06:05

So you know, we do the show, we do the radio show. And people get a lot of information from there, but they weren’t more. And so now that we’re be able to get back out there and get in the communities be at our local community centers, libraries, universities, restaurants, it’s a great way for people to get more of the philosophy, get more of a feel for people that they could potentially be working with, if they’ve if they found the fit. And so it’s just a really nice, relaxing way to to get some education, but also to get an experience of, of, you know, philosophy, what these people are like. So,

Cynthia de Fazio – 06:43

absolutely. And, Brian, we’ve talked about this in the past, obviously, if someone is in the viewing audience today, and they think they already have a plan, they went to their mailbox, and they grabbed out that statement. That’s not really the plan. Is it?

Brian Quaranta – 06:55

Statements not a plan? No, it’s a statement. It’s a statement, right? You guys know, the plan, having a guy’s not a plan, you know, yeah. You know, but the plan really should be in a binder, we have a big I wish we had one here at the studio that I could show. But we have a three ring binder in that binder includes the number one most importantly, it includes is the first thing our clients see when they open up their binder is a tax strategy for inheritance because most likely, if that binders getting opened by anybody other than them, it might be because of a death. So there’s instructions in there to the beneficiaries not to make any moves that would cause a big taxable event because there’s a strategy that’s been put in place. Number two, there’s a consolidated asset summary, and there’s so they can see where all of their money is, whether it’s with us or outside of us, right. Number two is their income strategy. Number three is all their beneficiary documents with all their beneficiaries listed. All their life insurance policies, long term care policies, estate, planning documents, everything is in one place. This way, when they do a review, they do a review with that binder. And that is their financial life if anything ever happens to them. Our clients know that when they go when they’re leaving for whether they’re, you know, snowbirds and they’re headed to Florida for the for the winter for six months, or they’re headed on a trip for the summer. Their kids know, if anything happens. There’s a binder, it says secure money, pull it Everything’s in there and instructions of what to do. Now, unfortunately, we do deal with a lot of death at our office. So you know, it’s not something that I guess, you know, I mean, we’re kind of good at processing death claims. And I guess that’s a good thing for people that are they’re looking for someone to handle them, because there’s a lot that goes into it. There’s a lot of gotchas that can happen at death that caused taxable unnecessary taxable events. So, but yeah, that’s what planning is all about?

Cynthia de Fazio – 08:48

Well, Brian, I know that you and Neil have a very special offer to present to the viewers at home today. Let’s talk about what that is, and then open the phone. Folks, the

Brian Quaranta – 08:55

right track retirement system really was designed with you in mind to give you that peace of mind that we all deserve going into retirement. But it really is designed to go over five key areas with you when you come in, it’s going to go over your income, your taxes, your investments, your health care strategy, and of course, your estate planning strategy. You can call us today. And matter of fact, for the next 10 callers, we’re going to give a complimentary right track retirement review. All you got to do is call the number 1-888-382-1298. Folks, this is not the time to procrastinate, this is not the time to kick the can down the road. If you’ve been thinking about doing this, pick up the phone right now and call us and remember, maybe you just need a second opinion. Well, you can’t get a second opinion from the person that gave you the first opinion. So again, call 1-888-382-1298 to schedule your right track retirement reveal.

Cynthia de Fazio – 09:43

Brian, thank you so much. Neil, thank you so much to the viewers at home the phone number to call us on your screen. That number is 888-382-1298 We know you have a lot of questions for Brian and Neal about how to plan your perfect retirement. All you have to do is take advantage of picking up the phone today and Finding out if you’re on the right track 888-382-1298, we have to take a very short commercial break, but don’t go anywhere. When we come back, I’m going to talk to Brian and Neil about maybe some effects the pandemic had on couples in general. So please stay tuned for their response.

Brian Quaranta – 10:16

So everybody can tell you how to invest your money. There’s not a lot of people out there and a lot of firms that can teach you how to use your money. Most people also tell you that they’re scared. And the reason they’re scared is because they’re afraid of running out of money.

Neil Major – 10:30

The last thing you want to do is have a really good job and your 60s retire, be looking for work again, in your late 70s.

Brian Quaranta – 10:38

The average person might say, well, a good portfolio would be a good mix of stocks, bonds, mutual funds, then a good portfolio is all designed around the five key areas, income, taxes, investments, health care and lazy planning.

Neil Major – 10:53

There’s we’re not just product pickers here, what we do best here as we build retirement plans,

Brian Quaranta – 10:58

nine out of 10 people, when they walk through the door would ask us, we just want to know if we’re on the right track. And I always say if you’re not on the right track, when would be a good time to know it. Probably now,

Neil Major – 11:09

people you know can actually see a vision once we start to really build out their plan. This is about

Brian Quaranta – 11:15

you, if you’re not getting what you need. And you feel that when you walk out of the advisors office, it’s time to get a second opinion. And you can’t get a second opinion from the person that gave you the first the difference at secure money advisors, as a fiduciary firm, we help you manage the risk, build the account and give you the retirement.

Cynthia de Fazio – 11:47

And welcome back to the money with secure money. My name is Cynthia De Fazio and I’m joined today by Brian Covanta. He is president and founder of secure money advisors as well as Neil, major senior investment advisor. Gentlemen, I’d love to talk to you a little bit about in this segment, of course, people that have gone through the pandemic together as a couple, if you will, what kinds of changes what sort of changes have you seen even in relationships, retirement early? All of those things, Brian,

Brian Quaranta – 12:14

I would say the biggest one, we’ve seen a lot of people wanting to retire sooner than later. They’ve had a lot of clients come in, that have been clients for you know, for the past 510 years that we were tracking towards retirement. We always show it show people how they can get retired early. This time they’re taking us up on it. Because what was happening is of course, you know, more and more people have the opportunity to work from home. Okay, and they got a little taste of not having to wake up, get ready by traffic get to the office. They were working from home and when the company started calling them back into the office. Like I don’t know if I want to do this anymore. Yeah. And so we had a number of clients that we retired years earlier than, than what they were telling us they wanted to because being home being with their family being around their spouse, right. For some that was good. For others. It wasn’t. But it really it really, you know, accelerated there wanted to get into retirement, I think people reevaluated what was important. Yeah. You know, so I think you would probably say the same. Yeah,

Neil Major – 13:21

I mean, I think one of the things that I think that we do well, is that we stress test the plans, right? I mean, we stress tested to determine, Okay, I know that you want to retire at 67. But what if it didn’t happen? And what if we had to adjust? So we typically build out retirement at 62, retirement 65, retirement 67. Because what I saw a lot of was, hey, Neal, I know, we had mapped out retiring at 67. But I know I’m only 63. My company’s laid me off, I’m not going back into the office, or I’m concerned about COVID impacting my health, and I don’t want to go back into the office. So you know, we can’t. So yeah, so because we’ve built out the model already, of being able to identify what those numbers already look like, you know, we’re simply able to make some adjustments and implement the plan a little sooner.

Brian Quaranta – 14:13

I think that’s probably the one of the most rewarding things about what we do is, and I can’t stress this enough. And that’s why I’m very proud of secure money advisors. And we have a lot of talented people that work there that have helped, you know, build this out that you know, that what we have today. But it’s probably the most rewarding thing that we do is being able to implement a retirement strategy earlier for somebody and have the confidence or ourselves and knowing that the model works, because again, you know, as I’ve talked about on other shows, is, you know, you have to have some guarantees built into a retirement plan in order to make it happen, because there is a lot of uncertainty with a lot of financial products and strategies. So you have to have some certainty built in. And it’s one thing I think we do really, really well, you know, the other thing is, you know, you did have people that wanted to get back to work, though, because they were around their spouse too much. You know, where they were

Neil Major – 15:10

a little taste the retire, they got

Brian Quaranta – 15:12

a day job and they weren’t ready. Yeah, they weren’t, they were not recent. Matter of fact, I have a client that I worked with a couple of weeks ago, we were going to retire this year. And he’s decided to delay because he was working from home so much, he didn’t like it. And so he’s back in the office now. And he enjoys being there. He enjoys being around his colleagues. So there are people that have healthy work environments that they want to be around, and they’re just not ready to exit yet. And that’s okay. To the point of having a well designed plan, as Neil said, is being able to adjust no matter what, right whether we want to retire sooner, we want to retire later. You know, and having a real plan built around real math around black and white figures, not based on opinions or fancy sales brochures, allows you to be able to do that.

Cynthia de Fazio – 16:00

Yeah, absolutely. Brian, what happens when one spouse retires, and the other one is still going to work every day? Have you seen anything like that recently?

Brian Quaranta – 16:10

Yeah, it never really goes. It is, it is, you know, I had some folks come in, I retired the I retired the husband last year, and the wife was gonna stay on for another year, because they were gonna stay on her health benefits, right? Although I worked in the plan that if they had to pay for health insurance, we had more than enough money to be able to do that. But they felt that they want she was going to keep working to keep the benefits. And I think it was like after eight months they came in and you know, they were a little bit early for the reviews. So you know, the first thing I did, I said, What is it that you want to address? She says, Well, I’m tired of getting up and him still mean I’m dead. And me having to go to work. So I want to talk to you about retirement. And I said sounds good to me. We talked about it last year, I was gonna retire on both at the same time. So yeah, you’ll see this. The other thing you’ll see though, as I’ve had I had a client couple years ago that retired. His wife was a homemaker for many years, right. And they were the most loving couple I’ve ever met in my entire life. Matter of fact, I was I you know, when I was sitting there, and I met them the first time they were holding hands in the conference room, I thought they had just gotten married. And I asked them, they said that they’ve been married for 30 years. And I was really impressed with Lita the affection that they were showing in the conference room. Well, they came back six months after he retired and they didn’t, they weren’t saying a word, you could cut the tension with a knife. And I in and of course, you know, as I opened up the meeting, I could tell something was wrong. And I wasn’t really sure what was wrong. And then of course, she tells me, he’s getting in my way. You know, she had her routine. So they do

Neil Major – 17:44

Yeah, same example, had a client come in. Yeah, he typically traveled most. Out of the state. Yeah. And now all of a sudden, he’s retired. Yeah. And he’s in her way, right? She’s used to doing her thing, having her space. What she has to do, and now all of a sudden he’s there. And he’s there every day. It isn’t like it is sweet and kind people

Brian Quaranta – 18:10

are adjustments, adjustments outside of the finances? Yeah, that you have to get accustomed to, you know, depending on, you know, what lifestyle you’ve lived. But, yeah, our meetings can be relatively funny from time to time.

Cynthia de Fazio – 18:25

Because you’re hearing every Yeah.

Brian Quaranta – 18:27

And you’re hearing a lot of times for couples that we meet, sometimes that’s the first time that they’re discussing investment philosophy together. So we ask questions independently of them, you know, how do you feel about this? How do you feel about this? For the first time, they’re talking about it for the very first time together? And they might actually have opposite opinions. And they’re just discovering this? So that’s always very interesting to

Cynthia de Fazio – 18:48

Oh, Brian, I know you and Neil have a special offer to present to the viewers at home. Let’s talk about what that is. And then reopen the phone lines,

Brian Quaranta – 18:55

folks from x 10 cars who call in right now we’re going to give you an opportunity to come in, sit down with us and get a complimentary right track retirement review. It’s going to help you understand retirement thoroughly. It’s going to give you that roadmap that you need to get from where you are to where you need to go. We’re going to cover the five key areas with you when you come in income taxes, investments, health care and estate planning. But you’ve got to do your part. Pick up the phone today. Call 1-888-382-1298 and schedule that right track retirement review today.

Cynthia de Fazio – 19:26

Brian, thank you so much, Neil, thank you so much to the viewers at home the phone number to call us on your screen. That number is 888-382-1298. We have to take a very short commercial break, but don’t go anywhere. I do have viewer questions coming up next, and the next one could be yours. Stay tuned.

Brian Quaranta – 19:43

If I could help you increase your income. If I could help you pay less taxes if I could help you potentially maximize the returns of your investments while reducing risk reducing fees if I could help you prepare for a health event or more importantly, when the good Lord decides to take you home to make sure that the money you’ve accumulated over your lifetime goes to your family and to your charities rather than the IRS. Would that be worth the time to come in and get a second opinion.

Cynthia de Fazio – 20:14

And welcome back to on the money with secure money. My name is Cynthia De Fazio. And I’m joined today by Brian quanta. He is president and founder of secure money advisors, as well as Neil major. He’s actually senior investment advisor, gentlemen, a great show we’re having today talking about the importance of planning properly for retirement and the different things that happen when people enter the retirement years, if you will. But now we have viewer questions. So I love these. We never know what people are going to be asking when they call truth. These are great questions. Neil, I’m gonna start with you because you’re smiling. Are you ready? Okay. This is a great question, says, Neil. I’m 62. And I was planning to work for another four years before retiring. However, my job is wearing me down and I’m not happy there anymore. So I’m tempted to just quit and start taking so security now that I’m eligible and then work a low stress, part time job somewhere. Have you seen people do this successfully?

Neil Major – 21:03

Yeah, we actually just spoke about this, right? I mean, just the fact that

Brian Quaranta – 21:08

you’re not alone. Whoever you are. We see that all the time.

Neil Major – 21:10

Yeah. Yeah. There’s a lot we just said because of COVID. And everything else. We saw a lot of early retirement. Yeah, right. Yeah. So yeah, we’ve absolutely seen it work, right. I mean, people taking a different position, lower stress, that we always hear about companies changing and the more work and less employee. So now I got more work on my plate. And so you know, you want to take Social Security. And you’re going to take a part time job, you do have to be careful with the income thresholds. If you’re going to take Social Security before your full retirement age, you also want to make sure that if you are going to pull the trigger to retire early, and you’re going to take Social Security early, that you do have some money set aside. So when you no longer able to even do the part time job, that you’re able to supplement the Social Security. So there’s a still a lot to uncover there with that question.

Brian Quaranta – 22:03

I would say to that, you know, I like the idea of loving leave my job that I’m in and work a part time stress free job. Yeah, I would say, before you even do that, why don’t we just build you a strategy that gets you retired right now, so that you can if you want to go work the part time job? You can, but you don’t have to wait, right? It’s not. So that’s the strategy you want to focus on is, if you want to go that direction, it’s because you want to not because you have to. And that’s what good planning can do.

Cynthia de Fazio – 22:35

Brian, thank you, Neil. Thank you, Bryan, this next question is for you. The whole idea of not working anymore makes me really nervous about our financial future. Brian, I’ve worked for over 50 years, and I can’t imagine just stopping, how can I know that the resources I have accumulated will meet our needs for the rest of our lives?

Brian Quaranta – 22:53

Yeah, I mean, this is exactly what we do. And this is the peace of mind that we provide, because that’s exactly what I hear all the time when people come in. And even if they’re interviewing three or four different financial firms, they’ll settle on us, because we’re the only ones that showed them that they’re going to have the peace of mind to retire, and that the assets are going to last for that period of time, because of the extensive planning that we do. And so it’s an adjustment, right? With with a plan, a real written plan mathematically spelled out with different scenarios built in, you will feel comfortable, and you will have the peace of mind and confidence to retire. And that concern that you have will be addressed and it will go away.

Neil Major – 23:34

Okay. All right. It’s always interesting, because we spend 40 or 50 years, we’re taught to save money. Yeah, right. Right. All of a sudden, we flip the switch and go into retirement and start spending it right. So that’s, that’s why the plan is so important. We got to give you the peace of mind to be able to pull the trigger to understand that if we are going to take distributions to provide you income, that we’re never going to come to 8590 95 years old, and so we’re out of money, right didn’t work out, right. So you really need that peace of mind. And I think that’s what secure money advisors really specializes in, is showing you exactly how we’re going to go about doing that in giving you the ability to pull the trigger, and knowing that you have peace of mind going into retirement. Yeah,

Cynthia de Fazio – 24:18

great point. That was wonderful. Gentlemen, thank you so much, Neil, this next question is for you. It says, Neil, I recently changed jobs and I can’t decide what to do with my 401k. I can either leave it where it is rolled into an IRA or roll it into the 401k. At my new job. I’m planning to retire in four years at age 67. How much does it matter which one I do?

Neil Major – 24:39

Well, it matters a lot. Because it sounds like they’re what I call the financial redzone. Right? I mean that they’re nearing that date of retirement. So you want to becomes very specific what you should be doing at that point. So the good news about IRAs is you’re have the ability to shop the entire marketplace to find the right investment options. So I would say, you know, find your local fiduciary. I don’t know where you’re located, but we’re up in Zelienople. Okay, yeah, no, come on up. And we’ll help you build out a strategy and a plan to make sure that you are on the right track that we can find your purpose of that money in the future. And then we can look at finding the right investment options by shopping the entire marketplace.

Brian Quaranta – 25:23

401k. As you know, just to add to that, I mean, the 401, k’s are very limited as far as what they can offer to if you ever looked at a 401k plan, typically, there might be 25 to 30 investment options in there. I mean, look, we go through that at secure money advisors, we have a 401k for the company. And there’s only 25 to 30 investment options in there. Each of my team members, you know that, that invest in the 401k, they do it because they have higher contribution amounts, right. So it makes sense, because they can put a lot of money away there. But you know, they all have what we call an in service withdrawal available to them, as they get closer to retirement, they’re going to actually be able to roll their money out of their 401k. And I, you know, even though I own the company would encourage them to do that, because I know that having more options available to them is going to be advantageous to them. And a lot of times you can’t get into the tactically manage portfolios, or the professional money managers inside of a 401k. Typically, it’s traditional mutual funds that you know, are mediocre depart best, probably don’t have real good ratings or returns and they’re probably a little bit heavy on on fees. So moving to a traditional IRA, where you do have the freedom to do what you want is way more advantageous. And what

Neil Major – 26:33

we’re seeing, too is a lot of folks are picking those target date funds, right, because they feel that they’re more secure safer investments. Well, I remember in December of 2019, meeting with a guy who was in a 2020 target date fund. Now his preference was to not take an in service rollover to an IRA. He wanted to wait until he retired in April of that year to roll his money over. Well, what happened he comes back in the March of 2020, when COVID was initially happening, he was down 30% on his 2020 target. Right. So that’s why you choose the right options and you do it sooner.

Brian Quaranta – 27:08

Which by the way, if you don’t know what the target date fund means It means this guy had a 2020 target date fund, which means that that fund was assuming that he was going to retire in 2020. So the idea of the fund was that it was going to get more conservative as he got closer to that retirement date. And of course to Neil’s point, it didn’t but this is why we offer the right track retirement review, folks because we can help you sort all of this out. So for the next 10 callers who call in right now it’s a complimentary right track retirement review. Don’t kick the can down the road. Don’t procrastinate. Call us immediately. 1-888-382-1298 and schedule that appointment with us today.

Cynthia de Fazio – 27:45

Brian, Neil, thank you so much to the viewers at home. Thank you for spending time with us the numbers 888-382-1298. We’ll see you back next week.

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