Tune into one of the television stations listed below to get live retirement advice from Brian Quaranta!

  • Friday: WPGH Fox 53 – 9:00 am – 9:30 am
  • Sunday: WPNT CW – 8:00 am – 8:30 am
  • Sunday: WPGH Fox 53 – 10:30 am – 11:00 am
  • Sunday: KDKA – 12:00 pm – 12:30 pm
  • Monday: WPGH Fox 53 – 9:00 am – 9:30 am

Video Transcript

Cynthia de Fazio – 00:22

Welcome to on the money with secure money. My name is Cynthia de Fazio. I’m joined today by Brian Quaranta, he is president and founder of secure money advisors. Brian, how are you?

Brian Quaranta – 00:31

Good. How are you doing?

Cynthia de Fazio – 00:32

I am fantastic. It’s always a pleasure to see you. How are things going?

Brian Quaranta – 00:36

Very busy as always very, very, very busy. But thank you for asking.

Cynthia de Fazio – 00:42

Sure. Yeah. Let’s talk a little bit about that. Because obviously the radio show you had been doing for such a long time, and you still are in the now with the television. Let’s talk about that piece. You’re getting quite a few phone calls per week. What are they asking you mostly Bryan?

Brian Quaranta – 00:54

Are we on the right track? It’s the number one question, are we on the right track? Are we doing the right things? Do we have enough money to retire? Right? These are all these are all common concerns of most everybody approaching retirement, and even those that are still in the growth phase of retirement, they want to know, are we putting away enough money? Are we getting the right rates of returns? And you know, people today are responsible, more responsible than they’ve ever been for their own retirement. Because we just don’t see pensions the way we used to. So, it does require discipline on each of our parts to accumulate enough money, right to be able to eventually retire with enough monthly income to do all the things that we want to do. And it takes a it takes a plan to be able to do that.

Cynthia de Fazio – 01:44

Sure, absolutely. Do you have ever have a lot of people that call and say, you know, Brian, I’m thinking about retiring in five years, but what should I be doing right now?

Brian Quaranta – 01:53

Yeah, yeah, those are, those are common calls. And you know, the other common calls, we get to unfortunately, I shouldn’t say unfortunately, because, you know, some people, some people call and say, Hey, I’m retiring next week, yeah, I have this paperwork, I need to have filled out, I’ve got to roll my 401k over, I’ve got to choose pension, election options, and so on and so forth. But yet the five year out, 10 year out, you know, are we doing the right things? Are we on the right track? When can or when are we going to be able to retire? I think what’s really neat for us to see at our office, you know, doing this for over 21 years now. You know, helping people put together a written plan and showing them how to build income with their portfolio and showing them how to generate cash flow on a monthly basis. Typically, those people that will call in and ask about that five year mark on five years out, what does it look like? Usually, a lot of times, I should say, you know, majority not not, you know, maybe 30% of time, 40% of time, maybe we’re able to actually get him retired sooner than five years. Wow. Okay, so and that’s just the power of having a really good plan.

Cynthia de Fazio – 02:57

Sure, absolutely. So let me ask you a question. When someone does come in for their first consultation with you, what does that look like? What does that feel like for someone?

Brian Quaranta – 03:07

Well, first off, you have to understand our culture at secure money advisors that we’ve created, is a very nurturing caring culture. And we know that the process of coming in and, you know, in laying out your financial life to somebody can be a very, very intimidating process. And so we’ve made the process very simple. It’s easy to understand. And I think a lot of people are intimidated, sometimes with going in and seeing a financial advisor because they’re afraid of being criticized for what they’ve done, or what they’re invested in, and so on and so forth. We’re not concerned about criticizing anybody, what we’re concerned about is making sure that they’ve got turned by turn directions to get from point A to point B, we want to give them the roadmap, if you will, to make sure that they can get to retirement on time and through retirement without any accidents, right. And that’s the importance and through that process. Cynthia, what we’ve done is we’ve created an intake process where we ask a lot of questions. And the reason we do that is because most people do not know what to ask. So if you’re thinking about coming in to secure money advisors, I would tell you don’t worry about figuring out what to ask. Just get your POS which if you haven’t watched the show that stands for pile of stuff, get your POS bring it in and we’ll help go through it and we’ll take the pieces of the puzzle, and we’ll be able to put them together to show you what your picture for retirement looks like.

Cynthia de Fazio – 04:35

Brian Are you hearing a lot of questions about taxes right now because that’s a hot topic for everyone. What are your thoughts on taxes in the future?

Brian Quaranta – 04:43

Yeah, taxes are big taxes are big because you know one if you ask most people today, if they feel taxes are going up or down in the future, most people will say that they’re going up. And taxes are a big deal for two reasons. Number one, it affects your income and retirement. Right. So Anytime I’ve got to pay taxes on my income, it shrinks the amount that I get to keep and put in my pocket, right? Very, very simple, you know, you get a paycheck, all you got to do is look at your gross amount compared to your net amount, you realize how much taxes impact you. So what we want to do is make sure that, that the largest amount of money gets into your pocket on a monthly basis. But what we also want to make sure of is that Uncle Sam doesn’t become the largest beneficiary of your money when the good Lord decides to take you home. And unfortunately, for a lot of people, they don’t do tax planning. And I don’t think it’s necessarily their fault, because most tax accountants are doing tax preparation, right? Not tax planning. And most financial advisors are not offering tax strategies around retirement planning. Most people are going in and they’re meeting with a financial advisor. And they might be talking about how their investments did right, what the what the value of their account is, you know, what, what interest rate they’ve earned over the last few years, that that’s not retirement planning, you know, sitting down with somebody and just talking about performance and how the investments perform. That is the farthest thing from retirement planning, that’s investing. What retirement planning is, is it’s about five key areas. It’s about income, taxes, investments, health care, and legacy planning. And there’s best practices, Cynthia, for every single one of those areas.

Cynthia de Fazio – 06:28

Okay. Okay. So like you mentioned earlier, Brian, people just don’t know what types of questions to ask because this is a whole new world for them. Let’s talk a little bit about the difference between working with someone who specializes in the distribution phase of life versus the accumulation years,

Brian Quaranta – 06:44

yeah, it’s a big difference. The accumulation phase is actually a pretty simple phase, you know, and you could have a relatively halfway decent advisor get you through the accumulation stage, because it’s really not that hard. All you got to do is buy a decent, you know, portfolio of maybe some mutual funds or ETFs. And you have something very important on your side in the accumulation phase. And that’s called time, something we can’t create, create any more of right? And so as you get closer and closer to retirement, that time period shrinks down, right? So the distribution phase now becomes, how do I take this many years of work, and make it now work for me in this many years of retirement, and do it without the risk of running out of money. And the thing that strategies and techniques you use during your accumulation years are not the same strategy and techniques that you’re going to use during your distribution years. It’s a completely different model. We talked about it a lot on the show, we talked about the buckets, and we build our plans around buckets. Why? Because we have a now bucket, which means there’s money in there for right now, we have assumed bucket, which means that’s money we’re going to need over the next five years. And then we have a later bucket. And based on the needs of those buckets also determines how we actually invest that money. You see, the more time you have, the more risk you can take? Sure. So think about this. People will tell you when the market goes down, don’t worry about it, hang in there, you’re in it for the long haul, will really if you’re 65 years old, I mean, how much long haul Do we really have left here. And I’m not meaning to kill anybody off here. But the reality is, you don’t have the long haul. The other thing they’ll say is, well, the market will always do well, if you just stay invested over time. Well, how are you going to stay invested over time when you’re shifting into the distribution phase? And you’d need that money right now. And this is why working with a fiduciary that specializes in the distribution phase is so very important.

Cynthia de Fazio – 08:45

Absolutely. Well, Brian, I know you have a special offer to present to the viewers at home today. Let’s talk a little bit about what that is. And then open the phone line.

Brian Quaranta – 08:52

Sure our right track Retirement System, Cynthia is really designed about helping you get on the right track and make all the right moves for retirement. Our goal is to take you down the road to retirement and get you from point A to point B successfully by looking at where you are right now and where you need to go and then providing you a turn-by-turn directions to get there. But you’ve got to do your part for the next 10 callers who call us right now. At 1-888-382-1298. We’re going to give you a complimentary portfolio analysis, you will walk out of our office better understanding where you are whether or not you’re on the right track and as I always say, if you’re not on the right track, when would you want to know that now would be a good time. So again, don’t procrastinate. This is not a dress rehearsal. We do not want to kick the can down the road. Pick up the phone and call us. 1-888-382-1298

Cynthia de Fazio – 09:45

Brian, thank you so much to the viewers at home. The phone number to call is on your screen. That number is 888-382-1298 we know you might have a lot of questions about how to retire comfortably, how to retire with confidence. Brian and his team have the answers for you. All you have to do is take it back Have that call today? The number is 888-382-1298. We have to take a very short commercial break, but don’t go anywhere. I have so much more with Brian when we return.

Commercial Break – 10:12

How confident are you in your current financial plan? Do you know with certainty how the recent market volatility will affect your future hopes and dreams? How much are you paying in taxes? And how much are you losing to unnecessary high fees? You didn’t work to save this money so that you could spend your time worried in retirement. Now it’s the time to take charge of your finances so you can feel confident about your future call in during the next 30 minutes of today’s show only to set up an absolutely complimentary no obligation, full blown Financial Review that will result in your own customized written plan. This is a $999 value that we’re giving away complimentary to the first 10 people who respond. We’ll start with a full blown analysis of what you already have, by running a report to untangle how much you are currently paying in fees, how you’re allocated for risk, and what it’s costing to work with your current advisor. Next, we’ll identify your goals. Where do you see yourself in the next five years? Where do you want to go? And who do you hope to go there with is your current financial plan set up to get you there without mishap? Let’s design a roadmap to create a financial plan you can follow with confidence, get the piece that so many people are missing from their retirement. Find out how having a written plan can make a difference to your retirement dreams. Call now to schedule your complimentary no obligation full blown Financial Review today.

Cynthia de Fazio – 11:45

And welcome back to on the money with secure money. My name is Cynthia de Fazio. I’m joined today by Brian Quaranta. He is president and founder of secure money advisors. Brian, a great show that we’re having today talking about a multitude of topics all surrounding the retirement years, if you will want to talk to you a little bit about something that’s so important, not a lot of people’s minds today. Inflation because obviously the cost of everything is going up no matter where you go to the grocery store loaf of bread costs more than it did five years ago, 10 years ago. So how does inflation impact retirement?

Brian Quaranta – 12:19

Yeah, supply and demand is real. Yeah. You know, so when demand is high, and supply is low cost is going to go up? It just is just basic economics. So it does I mean, you know, anytime cost increases, I mean your grocery bills a little bigger, your gas bills a little bit bigger. And that eats into how much money you actually have leftover at the end of the month, you know, and what how do they say, you know, it’s never good, when you have too much month left? Yes. Is that enough money

Cynthia de Fazio – 12:46

not too many days, not many days.

Brian Quaranta – 12:51

But it is important and the importance of especially when you’re going to be going from your working years to your retirement years, now we’re going from being able to earn a paycheck, which typically for most employers, if you’re in the workforce, you know, as you come to the New Year, you might get an increase of, you know, a couple percentage points a year on your income. Social Security tries to do that a little bit. I think, you know, with what we went through the pandemic, there, I had read an article that Social Security was going to give roughly about a 6% cost of living adjustments, because that that cost of living adjustment that Social Security gives is indexed based on the inflation rate, and the inflation rate has been high for some time. But you know, when we’re working on a fixed income and retirement, if things cost of living goes up, and we need to generate more income, where are we going to get that from? It means we’ve got to take more money from your retirement savings. And this is why having a plan is so important. And this is what we talk about at secure money advisors because we specialize in that distribution phase. We specialize in helping you generate that monthly income, how to build that cash flow from your portfolio, and we model into the portfolio of what an inflationary environment would do if we needed to take more money from the portfolio. Because we would have to increase withdrawals. Well, what would be the impact of increasing withdrawals? Would we have enough money to get us all the way through retirement? Or would we be coming up short? And that’s certainly something we don’t want to do, because I think everybody’s biggest fear would be running out of money before they die.

Cynthia de Fazio – 14:30

Sure. Well, Brian, I have to ask you, how important is it to be diversified with income streams during retirement? What’s your philosophy on that?

Brian Quaranta – 14:37

It’s a great, it’s a great question. I mean, I look at it as diversification of income streams and also different income sources based around different tax rates. But let’s talk about diversification of income streams. It’s harder to do today because, you know, if you looked at retirement, you know, in the past, you had a social security check, which was one income stream. You had a pension Right check which came in every month that was a second income stream. And if you needed a third income stream, what you’d probably do is you’d take the money that you have accumulated, go down to the local bank and buy a CD. And let’s say you had $100,000, that you could give to the bank at a 10% rate of return, that would be another income stream coming in every year of $10,000. In interest, never touching that principle. So those would be three income sources, or three, three income streams. Today, what you’re seeing is, most people don’t have that pension income stream, they don’t. So now what we’ve got to look at is in retirement, a lot of us only have two. And one is provided by the government called sole security, okay, and the other one is provided by us. Yeah. And it’s our job to make sure that it’s going to be there. But not only be there, but be enough to be able to generate, and this is why controlling your costs, controlling your debt, saving enough money is so important. And you know, a lot of people today tend to like nice things right now, sure. They don’t like to sacrifice and have delayed gratification to take things down the road. They want things now, and I would just encourage people understand, you are your retirement, you are your pension. And boy, you better get it right.

Cynthia de Fazio – 16:19

Absolutely. Absolutely. Have a question of you’re actually called in wanting to know your opinion on how much of their portfolio should be dedicated to bonds.

Brian Quaranta – 16:28

The bonds. Okay, yeah. None. How’s that? All right, next, let me explain why. Let me explain why. Because we’re in an all time low interest rate environment. All right. And what we have to understand is that when interest rates go up, bond prices go down. So if you look at a bond chart of interest rates over the last, like 25 years, we’ve been on a steady decline, but not a steady decline. I’ve written this in my book, and and that steady decline has caused us to basically bottom out on interest rates, okay, so what happens when I put, let’s say, got a, you know, a million dollar portfolio, and I put half of it in bonds, okay. Well, you’re putting a half of it in bonds, because you believe that you’re protecting that money, aren’t you? I mean, that’s what you think you’re doing. And again, this would have made sense 30 years ago, but in the environment we’re in today, things are so much different. So now we’re at an all time low interest rate, I got half a million dollars in my portfolio sitting in bonds. And now all of a sudden interest rates go up, right? It’s like a seesaw, interest rates go up, bond prices go down, guess what happens to my $500,000, it goes down. So there’s better alternatives today to bonds that can be used to help protect and put more of a foundation onto your portfolio.

Cynthia de Fazio – 17:46

Okay. Yeah. Thank you, Brian. Excellent response, another caller called in and wants to know, your philosophy on paying down debt before retirement? And if so, what’s the most important debt to pay down? All of it, all of it?

Brian Quaranta – 17:58

If you could, I mean, because look at it this way. So I always say, think about the portfolio equivalent that you would have to have to generate whatever the debt is, let me explain. So let’s say I’ve got $3,000 in debt between credit cards and mortgages and everything else, okay? Well, how much money would you have to put away every single month in order to be able to generate that $3,000 a year in income you with me on this. So if I’m putting money away to accumulate, right, I’m also putting that probably in an area where it could go down. So now I’m putting money away to try to generate this specific amount of income. And I may not actually make it because the market could go down, and I could lose it. And I might not be able to generate that income. But if I pay that debt off, I’m guaranteed to get that as income. Because now if I pay the mortgage off, I pay the debt off, I picked that $3,000 up as additional income, because it’s no longer going out the door as an expense. And the key here, folks, is the fact that it’s guaranteed to happen. Yeah, if you pay it down to zero, it’s guaranteed to happen. But if you don’t pay that debt down, then you’re going to need that income, right? And where are you going to get it, you have to get it for your portfolio, but your probability is not guaranteed that you’re going to have enough in the portfolio to be able to generate that $3,000 that you might need to pay that debt, so it’s better to pay it all down.

Cynthia de Fazio – 19:25

Well, Brian, I know you have a special offer to the viewers at home today. Let’s talk a little bit about that again, and then reopen the phone lines.

Brian Quaranta – 19:30

Sure our right track Retirement System folks, truly is designed to help you get on the right track. You know, if you’ve ever thought to yourself before, are we on the right track? Are we doing the right things? What if you weren’t when would you want to know? You know, our right track Retirement System is all designed to help you build an income strategy, help you pay less in taxes, make sure that you’re invested the right way. Make sure that at the eye health event you’ve got a good strategy for it and more importantly, when the good Lord decides to take your home that day. become the largest beneficiary. You know, most people when they come in will ask us, I don’t know when to take my Social Security. I’m not getting a pension, but I need income. I’m afraid that I’ve got too much money in the market. I can’t afford to lose it at this point because I don’t have time to recover. Call us today. Don’t kick the can down the road. Take advantage of our right track Retirement System. no cost to you. But you’ve got to do your part. 1-888-382-1298 and call us today schedule with my team 1-888-382-1298.

Cynthia de Fazio – 20:31

Brian, thank you so much to the viewers at home. The phone number call is once again on your screen. That number is 888-382-1298. Again, if you have any questions about how to plan comfortably for retirement, Brian and his team have the answers for you. All you have to do is take advantage of that phone call today. That number is 888-382-1298 we have to take a very short commercial break. But when I come back, I have viewer questions and one of those could be yours. Stay tuned.

Commercial Break – 20:59

As a good saver, you’ve been putting away money during your working years. studies find that the biggest fear of retirees is running out of money. market volatility isn’t just a downward movement of stock prices. It’s the size and frequency of change. The more dramatic the ups and downs, the higher the volatility. This can put savers who are newly retired or a few years away from being retired at greater risk. today’s generation of retirees is not receiving traditional pensions as our parents or grandparents did. Instead, we have retirement accounts such as 401 Ks or 403. B’s. These accounts typically expose your money to market risk. The last thing you want right before retirement is to lose a portion of the money you need for income. But how do you turn these accounts into a retirement income? Is it safe to keep all your retirement money sitting in the stock market. The last thing you want is to lose a portion of the money you need for income due to market loss. By working with a financial professional, you can learn how to turn a portion of your savings into an income stream for life and income for the life of your spouse if you’re married. We all have moments in our lives when we wish we had taken action sooner. Don’t let procrastination rain on your retirement parade. Act now before it’s too late. Please call our office to set up your no cost no obligation retirement income review today.

Cynthia de Fazio – 22:25

And welcome back to on the money with secure money. My name is Cynthia de Fazio. I’m joined today by Brian Quaranta he is president and founder of secure money advisors. Brian, this is my favorite part of the show because I love your questions. We never know what someone’s going to call in with and they’re very diversified. They’re all over. Yeah. So are you ready to tackle if you are? This is a great question. It says Brian, can I invest in my heirs college education tax free? And if so how?

Brian Quaranta – 22:51

I think so. I don’t do a whole lot of college planning. I’d have to consult with somebody on that. I’m not really sure how to answer that one. Okay, you know, we at secure money advisors were so focused on distribution. They usually if somebody has a question about college planning, I’ve got other strategic partners that will handle that we just don’t do that really well. It’s secure money.

Cynthia de Fazio – 23:10

Sure, because they said heirs. Could that be more of the legacy planning piece?

Brian Quaranta – 23:14

It might be. It might be. I mean, you know, I mean, you could potentially if they’re saying errors, it could be meaning maybe after they die, that they want to leave a sum of money to maybe send some kids to school. I mean, if that’s the case, you could do it through some form of life insurance or something along those lines. But if they’re referring to putting money into a 529, or something along those lines, it’s really out of my wheelhouse.

Cynthia de Fazio – 23:37

Okay, yeah. All right. Excellent. Thank you, Brian. This is our next question. It says, How do you guard against choose huge losses like 2008? And when recession’s hit, I’m very concerned about taking another major nosedive?

Brian Quaranta – 23:49

Yeah, this one I hear a lot. Because the people we’re working with can afford another 2007 2008. They don’t have time to recover. And this is the one thing I try to teach so much is that, you know, people are so used to these cookie cutter phrases when the market goes down, like don’t worry about it, hang in there, you’re in it for the long haul. You know, I can remember working at a brokerage firm, you know, this is 20 plus years ago. And I remember that we were taught when my wife like one of my first days on the job, they would teach you these phrases, and one of the phrases they would teach you is don’t worry about it hang in there. You’re in it for the long haul. And I remember taking a phone call from a gentleman who had lost a lot of money now I was just a junior advisor at this firm, which is kind of really a nice way of saying Hey, kid, can you go get me a cup of coffee? Hey, kid, can you make these copies for me, right? But it gave me a great insight of what I didn’t want to do. And I sat in meeting after meeting at this at this brokerage firm and I listened to these financial advisors, I really call them financial salespeople because there was really no advising going on other than just trying To sell financial products, but they would tell people, you know, to diversify their portfolios, that they would make changes that they see necessary. But when 2000 2001 rolled around, right when people started losing money, I started fielding a bunch of calls. Now, I don’t know what to say to people when they were losing money, right? And so we were taught to say, don’t worry about it, hang in there, you know, you’re in it for the long haul. And so like a good soldier and a good employee coming right out of college, just this, this is what I say. But there was a gentleman on the other line who changed my life because he called and he was upset that he lost money, and he wanted out of the market. And what do I tell him? I tell him not to worry about it to hang in there. He’s in it for the long haul. And he said, Brian, I’m 75 years old, how much damn long haul Do you think I got left? And you want to know something? It changed my life? Because he was 100%. Right? It’s not a question of whether or not the market’s going to come back. We know it will. But is the market going to come back in a time period that you need it to come back in? Yeah, it might not think about the people in 2007 2008 that were retired, how many stories that we hear about of people that had to come out of retirement, because somebody convinced them that it was a good idea to continue to take risk with 100% of their money, folks, taking risk with 100% of your money that you’ve worked 35, 40 years for is not the way you want to go into retirement. There is nothing wrong with the stock market. But exposing yourself to 100% of the risk that could literally keep you from retiring or having to come out of retirement is not an approach you want to take in retirement. And this is why our right track system is so important because it’s going to help you understand how to fundamentally build out a system that helps you mitigate the risk of market volatility, which we’re all going to go through. We’re all going to go through market volatility. The question is when market volatility hits, are you going to have to delay retirement? Are you going to have to come out of retirement? And that’s certainly something that secure money advisors, we’d never want to see any of our clients ever have to go through. We want to know when we get you retired, you’re staying retired, even if there’s another 2007 2008. And yes, there are ways in today’s world to protect your downside and not expose yourself to 100% of the risk. Remember this, that the losses will hurt you more than the gains will help you. So call us today schedule your right track retirement meeting. It’s complimentary no cost, no obligation. We’ll help you build out a good system for retirement. Call us today. 1-888-382-1298

Cynthia de Fazio – 27:43

Brian, thank you for another amazing show this week to the viewers at home most specifically thank you for spending time with us. That number to call is 888-382-1298 be safe. Be happy, be blessed. We’ll see you back next week.