Retirement Roundtable: Recap

We invited one of our instructors, David Wattenbarger, to share his experience giving professional advice and guidance at a recent The Chattery class. 

On Tuesday, November 18 the Chattery hosted a “retirement roundtable”, a forum for people to come and share their questions and concerns around preparing for their retirement, as well as making the most out of the retirement stage of life.  I was proud to be one of the “professionals” in attendance; I shared those duties for the night with Gary Hathaway, an insurance agent with NY Life who brought decades of experience in that field to the discussion.

The event took place at the new Southside headquarters of the Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise, and was well attended by a diverse group of people from very different stages of the road to retirement: there were young people just beginning in their professional careers, some folks in late career transitions, and even a few people already enjoying their retirement.  The mixture of perspectives led to a vital and interesting conversation that ranged from discussions of proper investment strategy to anecdotes and suggestions of best practice around Medicare supplement planning.

A few key takeaways from the evening (but by no means the whole of the talk):

  • Expectations for health care spending in retirement and related insurance decisions (Medicare, private supplements, “long term care”, etc) seemed to loom large in the group’s collective concerns

  • The need to collect personal information together (email / social network log-in data, the location of wills/trusts/valuable personal property, etc) and to share that information responsibly with friends and advisers is easy to neglect but can be a very important consideration in our later years

  • Proactive and thorough estate planning is a crucial component to feeling prepared for retirement and after

The Chattery plans to create a series of related seminars and events addressing financial literacy and preparedness to build on the valuable foundation begun in this “retirement roundtable”, and I look forward to being a part of that process.

-David Wattenbarger, president of DRW Financial, a fee only advisory firm based in Chattanooga, TN.