How to Help Clients Hopelessly Behind in Retirement Planning

Financial Advisor Talking To Senior Couple At Home
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At tax time, many accountants offer clients advice concerning things to do differently next year; being inadequately prepared for retirement is a problem most Americans face and an opportunity for CPAs to help.

Some clients simply give up. Your salaried clients might say they will never be able to afford to retire and will be carried out of their office feet first someday. Other clients who own businesses find the vast majority of their wealth is tied up in the firm.  What’s their exit strategy?

These are areas where your help can range from offering free advice to providing advisory services focused on retirement planning or business valuation.

10 Discussion Points

As an experienced professional, you can offer an objective point of view.  The first step to helping a client solve a problem is defining the scope.

Let’s assume you’ve already taken this step. You bring enormous value because you are a fiduciary. You are selling advice, not a product and business valuation is also a billable transaction, so here are 10 points you can discuss with your clients regarding their retirement plans.

  1. The Three Options. Assuming your client is behind the eight ball concerning tax deferred retirement savings, they have three basic options: Save more while they are working, decide to postpone retirement and work longer and consider reducing the amount of income they expect in retirement.  It’s likely they won’t like any of the choice, but it’s a starting point.

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About Bryce Sanders

Bryce Sanders

Bryce Sanders is president of Perceptive Business Solutions Inc. in New Hope, Pennsylvania. He provides high-net-worth client acquisition training for the financial services industry. His book, Captivating the Wealthy Investor, can be found on


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