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Three plans every Gen Xer needs to consider before they turn 50

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It’s not your imagination Generation X — the heat is being turned up with every candle added to your birthday cake. Let’s face it: reaching the big 5-0 is a major milestone. You’ve probably started a family, have an established career and may be looking forward to retirement. But did you know that there are three essential plans you may want to consider as you near age 50?

#1  A financial plan

How many of you can complete the following statement? "If you want something done right…" Go ahead scream it out loud "Do it yourself!" After all, your parents taught you how to be independent. You went home after school, did your homework, watched some MTV and prepared your dinner all before your parents got home. Think about it, how much do you know about your finances? Are you saving enough for your retirement goals? Have you considered how much money it might take to fund your child’s higher education plans? What are you going to do with that old IRA-rollover? Is your portfolio properly diversified? If you have these questions, it’s time to talk to a financial advisor about establishing a financial plan. Don’t worry, your advisor will be there to answer all of your questions. Go ahead and bring in those articles you’ve been collecting but haven’t found the time to read. Your advisor will be happy to sift through everything and help you develop a plan that is specific to you and your situation.

#2  An estate plan

As a proud member of the Gen X club, you’ve seen many changes: from the Cold War to post-Cold war, from a dial-up connection to high-speed wireless internet, from the domination of the big three TV networks to cable TV with hundreds of channels. Throughout your life, you’ve even seen successful companies with bright futures such as Eastman Kodak, Sears and Blockbuster go out of business in part because they didn’t have a plan for the future.

Don’t be one of the people who fails to plan for the future. We get it; nobody likes to think about getting old or worse yet, dying. But maybe the right time to think about your finances, possessions and family is while you are still young and healthy. As an Xer, it’s in your nature to have a backup plan for everything you do. An estate plan can be your backup plan to help protect your loved ones after you are no longer around. Don’t use your busy schedule as an excuse to put off planning until you’re richer or older, because this can create unintended consequences.

#3  An advanced care plan

As children, Xers were exposed to the world through nonstop news cycle of CNN. You saw the institutions created by Traditionalists, and improved upon by Baby Boomers, get called into question. You probably remember the political corruption and scandals that took over newspaper headlines. You have seen business ethics deteriorate with the fall of Enron and WorldCom. The events you witnessed as a child have probably made you more skeptical of exactly who you can trust.

Don’t leave your most important asset, your health, in the hands of strangers. An advanced care plan is a document that ensures the health care treatment you receive is consistent with your wishes should you be unable to make your own decisions or speak for yourself. Whether you are faced with serious injury due to an accident, an acute illness, a long-term chronic illness or a terminal illness, advanced care planning can help improve your quality of life and provide a better understanding of the decision-making challenges facing you and your loved ones. This plan is for the “what ifs” that may occur across your entire lifespan, not just for older adults approaching the end of their lives.

Hitting the big 5-0 is a pivotal time, so it’s crucial that you have the proper plans in place to protect your family and yourself. You can start now by taking advantage of the expertise a financial advisor who can partner with you to help ensure you are prepared for all of life’s unexpected challenges.

This information is provided for informational purposes only. Ivy Distributors, Inc., believes the information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but does not guarantee the accuracy of the information provided.

Need more insight? Let us be your guide.

Our national network of experienced financial advisors can help you create a personalized plan to help you identify financial goals and get you where you want to go in life.

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Associated Tags: Advising Across Generations

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