Should I go with mid-risk investments?

My husband always penny pinched and put money in Fidelity retirement and DIY Vanguard acts. After he became diagnosed with advanced Alzheimers, I didn't know both offered financial counseling. I moved all of our money to a local financial advisor who wanted to purchase only conservative bonds. He has cost me money by not investing in profitable stocks. Am I wrong to be less conservative? I want to fire him and move to a company that takes more risks, but not high risk. What do you suggest? Along with my hubby having advanced Alzheimer's, I have a fatal lung disease. I'm ok now, but I will need a transplant in a about a year. I'll need money for my care at that time (3-4 months).

Investing, Choosing an Advisor, Stocks
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September 2017
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It sounds like the financial advisor recommended investments based on your age. There is a financial services rule of thumb that says that you should reduce risk as you are getting older. I see it a little differently. I help my clients with their investments based on their risk tolerance and their financial plan. Here's a basic idea of what I think would be the right way to invest:

1) Any money you will need over the next year should be held in cash equivalents. I know banks do not pay much right now, but I don't think it is worth investing in the markets and trying to get 5-7% gains and risk taking a 20% loss.

2) Any money you will need within the next 2-5 years would be invested conservatively. 

3) Any needs that are longer than 5 years can be invested more aggressively depending on your risk tolerance. 

The reason for this structure is that we know that stocks offer the best growth prospects for our investment in the markets over the long-term. However, we also know that they are volatile in the short-term. The idea is to shuffle money from Step 3 to 2 and Step 2 to 1 every year to meet your retirement needs while reducing the risk of having a drop in the market affect our lifestyle. 

Not all financial advisors think alike. Finding one that helps you plan your finances in a way that makes sense to you is important. If your advisor do not offer the type of advice you need, it might be time for you to look for another one.

I hope this helps.

October 2017
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