Oxford Wealth Advisors, LLC
President / Retirement Lifestyle Specialist
Lynn Thurgood’s accomplishments are impressive, but more importantly, his success is the direct result of hard work, persistence, and having a vision. In 1987, after witnessing his own family struggle financially Lynn made a commitment to himself to gain financial independence. As a result, he started his own business from the ground up to serve and protect retirees and pre-retirees from retirement issues such as how to avoid paying unnecessary taxes, how to avoid probate, how to stretch assets to last an entire lifetime and how to avoid Medicaid spend-down when nursing home confinement became necessary.
Today, Oxford Wealth Advisors, LLC. continues to help hundreds of clients, throughout New Mexico and the Southwest, avoid these prevalent retirement pitfalls by building PATHways that brighten futures.
Lynn believes in community involvement. He is a member of the Rio Rancho Regional Chamber of Commerce where he has served as Vice President, Board Member and Ambassador. Lynn also served as commissioner with the City of Rio Rancho Planning and Zoning Department for about 5 years. In addition, Lynn has coached Boys and Girls Club Basketball, Little League Baseball, and supports the Boy Scouts of America program locally, having earned the Eagle Scout Rank as a young man. Lynn also participates, and actively serves in church activities.
Lynn married his wife Donna in 1980, and they have lived in Rio Rancho since 1985. They have 2 sons and 1 daughter and 7 grandchildren. Family and Faith are the foundations of his life. Because of his passion, integrity, and commitment, Lynn is in high demand as a Financial Advisor. He and his staff are committed to client satisfaction.
With the volatile stock market and in response to your "might need the money in case of an emergency" I recommend the following:
Go to "Bankrate.com" and click on the Savings/MMA button and avail yourself of the top rates available nationwide for FDIC Insured Savings Accounts / Money Markets.
You will find several options there that are paying as much as 2.25% interest (or more) and allow ongoing deposits and offer 100% liquidity and safety. FDIC Insured and NO FEES!
These online accounts "link" to your local savings or checking account and you transfer money back and forth without fees ....
If you are married a very unique way to get complete control of your 401K (while still employed and under the age of 59 1/2) is to employ a QDRO - Inservice Asset Release strategy. In essence, you transfer up to 100% of the 401K into your spouses name as an IRA rollover under the authority of a properly executed QDRO (do not have to divorce to do this!). You chose the custodian to execute this tax free (penalty free) transfer into.
If you are over 59 1/2 yrs old most 401K administrators allow what is called an “inservice transfer” to any IRA custodian of your choice (tax free / penalty free). If you stay “IN” the current 401K you are going to remain exposed to the Wall Street Casino or have to move to Cash positions with very little growth.
Look into “active, tactically managed accounts” available through Registered Investment Advisors (and their Investment Advisor Reps). These accounts utilize strategies for preservation and growth that are very different than the traditional “Buy and Hold, Asset Allocation, Modern Portfolio Theory” that continues to be preached by the Brokerage community. These Active, Tactical strategies are flat fee accounts that have excellent (steady) growth records .... not the Roller Coaster of the “Buy and Hold” philosophy.
Have you considered a “Reverse Mortgage”? Might be worth looking into before you liquidate the other assets and expose yourself to the taxes and loss of reserve from liquidation. What happens to the house when you “graduate” to the other side? What other income are you receiving? Have you elected Social Security yet? Are you married / divorced?
Contributing to a ROTH IRA "WILL NOT" reduce your taxes for this year (or any year in which a contribution is made). ROTH IRA's are funded with after tax contributions. A traditional IRA will allow your taxable income to be reduced in each year you make a contribution to it (subject to income limits, etc ...).
While contributing to a ROTH IRA creates TAX FREE Income for the future I really don't think that is the best scenario for someone that is 65 years old. There really isn't enough time for the tax advantages of a ROTH IRA to work for you. Perhaps you should look at other "Tax Advantaged" plans that could leverage tax free "living benefits" to you and tax free "legacy benefits" to your spouse / family down the road ....
I find it a bit of a concern that in response to your "fees" question your employer and 401K financial company said that the employer "pays for all the fees". This just ISN'T SO! While the employer pays for most (if not all) of the administrative fees for sponsoring / administering the plan with all the attendant IRS reporting and Securities Regulation .... for them to say (or perhaps you misunderstood .... or they misunderstood) that the fees are all paid by them is incorrect. Within the 401K plan you have several funds to choose from in which your money (and the employer match ... hopefully there is a match ....) can be invested. There are internal management fees and even perhaps transaction fees that are being charged for the ongoing management and activity within those funds. That is a fee being paid by YOU as it is reducing your net return on your invested money.
As a general rule, I recommend active participation in a 401K IF there is a matching agreement from the employer. In other words, if you invest 6% of your payroll (pre-tax) the employer matches your contribution with a contribution of their own into your 401K account. Ideally they match dollar for dollar up to a cap (4% to 6% is common). That is FREE MONEY!!!! If there is not a match from your employer, you might want to consider other tax advantaged options like a personal ROTH IRA, etc.
One more suggestion ... BE CAREFUL about the equity / risk exposure right now .... I feel a Market Correction is on the horizon and I would hate for you to be too exposed to high risk / high volatility positions. You might want to consider some "Stable Value" or "Defensive" positions until the Market Correction occurs and then re-evaluate your allocations for growth opportunities that follow. Earning 6% to 10% over the next year or so is not as important as protecting yourself from a potential 30% (or more) loss when the Market Correction occurs.
Feel free to visit our website for other financial information or to contact me or one of our independent advisors. www.oxfordwealthnm.com --- Lynn B. Thurgood, CLU, CAS --- Rio Rancho, NM