401(K)’s for Days

It’s one of those weekends where we start the weekend of potentially an extended week, David, going into the holiday week with the way the 4th of July falls this year. But nevertheless, a good morning to you. Full house today, great show, and certainly nice to be back.

Good morning to you, Joe. Excited to be here this morning, definitely fired up. This weekend coming up always confuses me on whether I’m supposed to show up at work or not, so thanks for giving us some guidance on that.

Absolutely.

Yeah, it’s crazy out there. But great show lined up for us today, excited. Big Jim is here from Del-Val Insurance, so we got a lot of-

Well, the nice thing about having Jim join us on the show today, he has some success stories from this program that we’re going to talk about, so I’m super excited about introducing or bringing Jim Muehlbronner for Del-Val Insurance into the program. As you can see from all of my notes, weekly now my notes are starting to accumulate, and they’re starting to build up, David, and I think the deeper we get into conversations, sometimes the harder it is to understand. For me, being a part of this program, I’m constantly trying to process the information that we’re delivering to the audience.

Yeah, Joe. I think that’s a great point, and I think it’s something that we here at Thrive have got to be conscious of. Bret and I have talked a lot about the content of our workshops recently, because we’ve gone to this whole new level. I mean, we’ve really excelled at teaching the attendees, the audience that shows up, some really interesting tax concepts and how to potentially learn what Wall Street and wealthy people and big financial institutions understand about money and taxes, but it’s kind of been kept away from Main Street for a long time.

We kind of feel like it’s our obligation, it’s our duty to kind of bridge that gap. To be honest with you, we’re kind of feeling our way through it a little bit because it can get to be a little bit of overload. It can a lot of technical information, and we’re trying to figure out how to communicate it in a good way that people get it. I think what we hope for at the worst-case scenario is that it just creates intrigue, so it starts that conversation, and then when we sit down kneecap to kneecap, we could really go through the details and help our folks understand what we’re talking about.

As the show rolls on here this morning on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT, I will give out a list of upcoming workshops for the beginning of July, which will occur or fall in, coming in after the 4th of July. Bret Elam is here. Bret, on the schedule today. The last couple of weeks you spent a lot of time talking about details. More details today. What are you going to talk about, sir?

Today we’re just going to talk about the importance of being fiscally responsible, and what I mean but that again, I also like to talk about circumstances in which people can save money, but again, just always being aware of not only bills you must pay, but the fees, and unwarranted fees, and most importantly the hidden fees. It’s always the hidden fees that can derail us. So, I just want to bring that to our attention.

If I put a hundred people in the studio right now and ask them about fees, how many people in the studio would have no idea? I’ll lead by raising my hand. We don’t pay attention to fees, do we?

Oh, my gosh. Yeah. The story I’m going to be sharing with you, the report says that half of people don’t realize what their fees are within their 401(k), and I’ll be quite honest with you. With as many people that David, Karen, and myself sit down with, 50% would be great if that means how many people know. I would tell you that probably 90% of their people don’t realize what fees they’re paying inside of their 401(k). So, again, always need to be conscious of all those different things.

Yeah and stay with us as we get into that segment after the first commercial break. It’s a real good reminder for the listening audience, all of these little details all add up into whether or not you’re going to have the right plan, Karen, for your retirement. That’s ultimately why we gather every week.

So, I met with a lot of people the past two weeks, and we brought up things that they weren’t aware of. That’s why we formed Thrive Financial Services, and that’s why we do what we do, because they had advisors that were so unaware of certain things, and it actually cost some people some money.

Yeah. When you don’t have the answers, or if the professionals that they’re dealing with don’t have the answers, respectfully, you’re in trouble, or potentially, it creates a scenario for you that once you make a decision, you’re forced, as we all are, to live with the decision. David, before I come back to you, I want to introduce everybody to Jim Muehlbronner. He’s not new to the program, but we welcome him back. Jim, I teased the audience about some success stories that you’re going to talk about. I don’t want to get into them now, but boy, I love to hear success stories, real great, good stuff.

It’s great to hear about people saving money, improving coverages. I guess I have four or so different little case studies here, success stories, real world examples of how you can help yourself by reaching out to us.

Yeah, and when you hear the commercial advertised, or you hear the commercial airing for Del-Val Insurance that airs during Roadmap to Retirement, the radio show, or perhaps you hear it during the week right here on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT, there’s that reference in the commercial to saving up to 40%, and these examples that you have today are real good indicators or real good realities for people. David, back to you. Before we get to the commercial break, as we roll into our first break, on your agenda today you’re going to cover what?

Joe, I’m going to talk a little bit about some client situations as well because I think they’re very enlightening. I think it gives our audience some insight to what it’s like to come through the workshop process, come in for that complimentary consultation, the Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review, because I think sometimes the unknown. Right? Some people don’t know if they want. It might be too uncomfortable. It might be scary. We just kind of want to unload and show people what it looks like so maybe some of that fear drops away.

Yeah, a good way to get into the first commercial break. You know, I’ve always proudly professed that radio is theater of the mind, so I encourage the listening audience today, and at all times when you listen to the radio program, to visualize what it’s going to be, and if you are a little gun shy about going into a workshop, perhaps after today we’ll get an opportunity to convince you to give it a try. Remember, nothing is for sale. We’ll get to our first commercial break here on Roadmap to Retirement, the radio show, right here on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT.

Our planning team works around the clock to ensure safety for our clients

And back here on Roadmap to Retirement, the radio show. Thank you so much for tuning in on this Saturday morning. Don’t forget to go to thrivefinancialservices.com. If you scroll down to the middle of the opening page, you’ll see the workshops listed, and you have a good way to click on, and you can go through and get registered for an upcoming workshop. Before we get into the commercial break, I’ll give you the lead on upcoming workshops on the 9th, the 10th, and the 11th of July. Bret?

When we meet people all the time, talking about that Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review, we’re always trying to help the bottom line. When I talk about the bottom line, talking about growing people’s overall net worth, there’s three ways to accomplish that. First one, we can go make more money. So, that’s the growth on the overall portfolio. Again, we’re pretty good at it, but again, nobody has that crystal ball. The second one, fees, and which is what I’m going to talk about today, is again, needing to be aware of fees that you are paying, and then if you are paying fees, what are you getting for those fees? Then the last way you can help the bottom line is related to taxes, again, being proactive, and I think David’s going to chat about that maybe a little bit later here today.

So, again, having certainty, again, we can have certainty about fees, and we can have certainty related to taxes.

So, we want to talk about them here today. So, I’m talking about fees, and today I want to talk about your 401(k). The most amount of people’s assets overall are sitting inside of 401(k)’s, and I just want to read a couple stats here, Krausey, talking about overall fees. Yale University law professor did a study on 3,500 401(k) plans, and you ready for this? When we talk about overall fees, the study found that the problem of excess fees is sufficiently severe that in 16% of plans, ready for this, young participants would do better to forego the tax benefits of a 401(k) savings, which is crazy.

When people come in, we make them aware of different things. Click To Tweet

Again, we need to understand everything’s related as to where we should put our money. Everybody thinks the 401(k), the 401(k), the 401(k). Again, we need to be conscious of all those different fees. Here’s another one for you. I shared with it a little bit as we kicked things off, is that half of 401(k) plan participants were not aware of fees that they were paying in their 401(k), and ready for this? It’s 22% of people mistakenly believe they paid no fees at all related to their 401(k)’s. We see that all the time, and we’re doing a couple thousand plans on an annual basis where David, Karen, myself, and the rest of the team here at Thrive are constantly having these conversations with people.

Now, why wouldn’t they know? Why wouldn’t we realize that? I mean, 22%, that’s a lot of people that don’t know.

Yeah. So, the very first thing I always think about is transparency. 60 Minutes, Bloomberg, a lot of, I guess, third parties have done some great studies, and then people just aren’t aware. Again, we always tell people, “You know that book they send you once a year as it relates to your retirement plan?” I go, “You read that, right,” and they’re like, “What are you talking about?” I go, “You know, the font, too. You can read that.” They’re like, “No, I don’t.” I go, “That has all your fees in there.” So, number one, people aren’t aware of it. Again, it looks like just trash, no big deal. Let’s put it away. Then the other part of it is when we talk about 401(k)s, that’s very difficult.

Again, you talk to a company like a Fidelity, a Vanguard who run 85%, 90% of all 401(k) plans that are out there. Sometimes it’s who that person is that you get on the phone as to what fees they’re going to tell you about, and then it’s just making people aware of how you can go find those fees, because if you ask, you need to be given that information, because when we start talking about fees, and here are the three main categories of fees we need to be conscious of, people are used to investment fees. That’s like the internal cost, and those are the easiest ones to find that you are paying, but when we start talking about individual service fees, plan administration fees, these fees are not easy to find or identify, but becomes a major drain as it relates to people’s 401(k) plans.

Here’s an example, Krause. Let’s just assume, and where this becomes very important, again, now we’re here. The first half of the year is now done, and we continue to see tremendous volatilities, ups and downs, and ups and downs, meaning we better be conscious of every single dollar that we’re paying as related to our overall cost. So, let’s say we have a hypothetical $10,000 investment, and let’s just assume a 6% rate of return going on for 25 years. In the first example, there’s 2% in overall fees that are being paid. Okay? Versus in example number two, now we only have a half percent as it relates to fees.

In the first example, with a 2% fee over 25 years, 43% of the overall returns are eroded when you start talking about compounding interest, are eroded at the end of 25 years, versus if you’re only paying a half percent fee, only 13% of the overall performance is reduced by fees. Now, again, when you work with a professional, we’ve talked about the article so many times on this show as well about the importance in working with someone who may charge you a fee. Again, we talked about if you are paying a fee, what is the value I’m getting for that fee? I can tell you you’re not getting much value out of a plan administration fee. You’re not getting much value out of an investment fee itself.

Sometimes that individual service fees, like with what we do here at Thrive, it’s identifying what am I getting for a fee, if indeed I’m charging it? Again, Vanguard’s done some phenomenal studies talking about the importance of working with people like here at Thrive, and that’s part of that complimentary Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review, is making people aware, again, going through the education, because nobody wants to pay any more fees than you need to, and again, the problem is people just aren’t aware of what those fees are.

43%

Yes. Erosion of the value, and you don’t even know it’s happening.

You don’t even know it’s happening.

That’s amazing.

I mean, we’re just looking at the total. We’re just looking at the number.

We’re not looking at the details.

That’s it. That’s it. Want to hear the scariest thing?

The average fee within a typical 401(k) retirement plan is approximately about two-and-a-half percent, the average fee. The good news is it’s down from a couple years ago, from 3.17%, but I just said the average fee is still over 2% of all plans that are out there. It’s what our job is here, is to be advocates, educators out there, so that you can be more aware so that when you make decisions, so that when people say, “You should move money from your 401(k) to your IRA,” why should I do that? One, you get a lot more transparency in your fees. Number two, you get a lot more options as to what you can do with those assets. That doesn’t mean every time. Again, we talk about things on a general basis here on the radio, and again, that’s why we offer that personalized complimentary session when people come in, just to make them aware of different things.

Bret, let me just hop in for quick second.

Yeah, please.

We see a ton of people on a weekly basis, and one of the things Bret actually said in the article is that people are aware of their expensive management fee in the investments, and from a practical experience, I’ll tell you there’s nothing further from the truth.

I agree.

They do not know what the expense ratio fees of their mutual funds or their ETFs, and one of the comments, because we’re talking about 401(k)’s, is we also see a lot of people that are former employees that still have their 401(k) with the plan at their previous job. One of the big things that should be done, if people are listening today, if that’s you, you should be moving that to a self-directed IRA account, because you’re going to lose those plan administration fees. You’re also going to have the ability to open up the spectrum of what investment you can make, and then you should strategically be looking for investments that have very, very, very low expense fees. Vanguard, Fidelity, BlackRock are companies today that are fighting each other to the bottom, meaning who can charge the least amount of fees in their investment accounts. So, I would really encourage people, if they’re listening, that’s something they should take action on immediately.

Yeah, and that might be a new term for the listeners, self-directed IRA. That may be something where we may do an entire program just on trying to understand how that will help you or what that actually means. If you need to do that, should you do that? I don’t even know the answer. I don’t know if the answer’s yes or if the answer is no.

Yeah. Again, what David just said, 99% of the time the answer is yes at the end of the day. So just be aware of it. Again, don’t take the ostrich approach we need to be aware of fees that we’re paying overall. Another spot, too, I know I just had the opportunity to sit with Jim this morning as well, just talking about myself on a personal basis, just reviewing our homeowner’s and auto policies as well, and we were talking about fees as one thing. Another one, talking about working with somebody local, and I was telling him the story. I was just up in Canada a couple weeks ago, and I was used to renting cars here in the states, and they just say, “Hey, do you want insurance coverage?” I say, “No.” Well, it doesn’t work that way in Canada, and I found that out the hard way. As I was ready to go rent a car, they were like, “Do you want insurance?” I said, “No.” They’re like, “Well, we just need a copy of your deck card, of your homeowner’s,” or pardon me-

Declarations, yeah.

“… of your auto policy.” So, fortunately from Canada I was able to get a hold of Jim’s team at Del-Val as opposed to calling some 1-800 number in the middle of the night and was stuck, but graciously, they were able to pick up the phone and get me taken care of, so I appreciate what your team had done as well. Talk about the importance of fees and some of the experiences. Maybe you’ve seen this, too, Jim.

Yeah. Well, you’re welcome. We love to service our clients.

Thank you.

Jamie is great at that.

Yes.

Yeah. You know that the fees, in terms of insurance policies, typically come down to premiums, I guess. There are no fees per say, other than the premiums you pay for the coverage you have, but a lot of people pay a lot more premium than they need to, and they may not have the coverage to justify what they’re paying.

Here’s one thing that I think is the same. We don’t understand the details, whether it’s our homeowner’s policy, our automotive policy, our 401(k) policy.

It’s conventional wisdom.

Yeah.

Just do it.

I hate to be self-incriminating, but that’s the reality of what it is. Yes?

Yeah. Well, let me say this, though. Going back to fees, Bret, I’ve met clients that think that I, as an independent agent, charge a fee, versus going direct to Geico or going direct to Progressive. We do not charge a fee. Pay the same premium through us. There’s no additional fee for our services. We can quote you with all the different carriers we represent, and there’s no fee. You don’t pay your premium and then a fee to us.

It’s a big deal.

We analyze and evaluate all current and future market trends in the financial industry

It’s a misconception.

It’s a big deal for people who don’t know that.

We’ll come back to you, Jim, and give you an opportunity to relay or share some of those success stories in terms of how they work and what they mean. Bret, good job today in terms of, I think, what is the start of a conversation, getting people to understand and realize fees in perhaps your 401(k) as you reference that. Also make sure to come out and experience a Thrive Financial complimentary workshop.

Yes, and I encourage people to come out and come take a look. It’s a lot of fun, so to speak.

I think it’s fun, but I think it’s informative.

It’s definitely informative, but we also make it so you can understand it, and you really get a lot out of it. So, please take a look at our website.

All right, yep. Karen, continue.

Yeah, yeah. So, over the past couple weeks I met with a lot of people, and I saw a lot of mistakes and things that they didn’t even know about or they weren’t aware of. A lot of these people had advisors, and I think that’s a testament to why we formed Thrive Financial Services, is there are advisors out there, and they help people grow their money, but it comes to a point when you’re planning on retiring and looking to retire that you need somebody in your corner who’s really focused on retirement as a whole, and I’m just going to jump into a couple of things that I see a lot that people aren’t aware of, one of the big things is these Medicare surcharges that people aren’t aware of, and I had it happen with a couple that I met.

She actually had a husband pass away, and now she was remarried some years later, but her husband who passed away left some money for his son’s, IRA money. She didn’t have an advisor who understands the way we do how taxes will affect things, and how you take income, how it will show Medicare surcharges. So, it was a decent amount, and she took the money, and it was left to her, but she took it out of the goodness of her heart and gave it to her husband’s sons. What it did, and what the advisor didn’t help her understand or tell her about is if you take that money, it’s going to show up as income, and then you’re going to be in Medicare we call surcharge territory.

But just as an example, if you’re a married couple in 2019, if your income is between 170, and it goes over 170 up to $214,000, you’re going to end up paying $54.10 each more on your Medicare. So, that makes your Medicare per person $189.60. That’s just your part B, and there are so many things that people aren’t even aware of with Medicare, some crazy things people didn’t sign up for part B because they didn’t think they had to, because they were on their wife’s insurance. We know as advisors that you must at least sign up for part B. You don’t have to take it, and there’s more information to that. Can you not take it? Can you take it?

If you don’t sign up for it in time and just suspend it, you’re going to end up paying more for part B when you actually needed… If it’s, say, age 70, they actually kind of penalize you. So, the reason we formed Thrive is we are aware of all these nuances in retirement, and I’m going to kick it over to Jim because we’re independent, and we are not an 800 number as well. We are there if our clients need us, just like Jim. If you have a problem, I had to ask him a question today, and I know that I don’t have to call, like he said, an 800 number at Geico and get a stranger. He knows us, and he knows our whole situation.

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Well, thanks, Karen. You know, I heard you saying you wanted to help people, and that’s why you guys started Thrive.

Let me just give you a little background on Del-Val Insurance Group. My partner and I, prior to starting Del-Val Insurance Group, were what’s call captive agents. We were employees of one insurance company. We represented that company and its products solely. The disconnect there is that if you’re a client of ours at that time, my only option for you is that company. Right?

Right.

No one company’s perfect for everybody. So, when we formed Del-Val Insurance Group, it is an independent insurance agent. We represent many different companies, so we have a lot of different fits for a lot of different situations. I have a couple different case studies here, Krausey. I know you’ll surely cut me off when it’s time, won’t you?

I will.

Okay.

But I do want to get the information out, because in reviewing the information, they are great, great examples.

Yeah. I tried to grab a cross-spectrum of some recent cases we wrote. Let me start off with one from Chestnut Hill, which is a northwest part of Philly. This was a couple. They have one car between then and a renter’s insurance policy. They were with Progressive paying $1,649 a year for the package. We were able to move them to Travelers at $1,146 a year. So, Krausey, that’s a $509-a-year savings or 31% savings, depending how you prefer to look at it. Abington, Montgomery County, this is a married couple that had a couple cars, a home, and an umbrella policy. They were with Liberty Mutual paying $2,354 a year. We moved them to Progressive at $1,936 a year for the package. $418 savings, 18% savings.

I’ll end with the big bang here. This was a family from Pipersville, which is in Upper Bucks County. Like a lot of you listeners out there, these people had six cars, five drivers. So, they got three kids, all with their own cars, and an extra car. So, six cars, five drivers, an auto, I’m sorry, a homeowner’s policy and an umbrella policy. They were with Nationwide at $14,024 a year for the whole package. We were able to move them with a company called MAPFRE, who was a very big company, actually. It’s not overly well known in Pennsylvania, but they are terrific with youthful drivers, especially when you have youthful principal operators. MAPFRE on the package was $9,657. That’s a $4,367-a-year savings we were able to get them. That’s 31%.

Wow. If you’re sitting there with six cars and five drivers, and three of those drivers are students, that’s significant.

Well, the last case is a 31% savings. They saved almost $4,400 a year.

Wow.

My first case was a 31% savings. They saved $500 a year. So, 30% can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people, but in both cases, I’m sure both families were very happy with the savings. One thing, I don’t know if you guys picked this up, but we’re an independent agency. We represent a lot of different companies. We represent every company that I just mentioned, the companies that-

Yeah, I was going to ask you, you referenced Progressive, you referenced Travelers, you referenced them all.

We took one from Progressive. We put another one with progressive. So, the moral of the story there is you need choices. We have 15 different package companies, but Progressive’s a great company, Nationwide’s a great company, but not every company’s great for each scenario.

You sound like Baskin Robbins over there.

Yeah.

Yeah, here’s the one important underlying bullet point, I think. If I’m one of those individuals in the three examples that you provided, and I’m online trying to do that, I’m not making the progress that I make if I deal with an individual who can call the insurance company, who can explain the details. Is that accurate?

Right. That’s certainly is. My last example there, the person was paying $14,000 with Nationwide, six cars, five drivers, and when you look up a five-year driving record or loss history on somebody like that, there’s going to be some things that pop up. It just statistically has to happen.

With so many drivers?

That took a little massaging with the underwriter. I had to call the underwriter, explain a couple different things to get them to accept the case. Once I lay it out a little more vividly for the underwriter, then what you would just see running an MVR or a loss history, the underwriter said, “Yeah. You know what? That makes sense. We’ll take the risk.

Joe, that right there is the biggest issue.

Yeah. I mean, I’m not having any dialogue with an underwriter.

That’s it.

If you go to an 800 number or you’re just on the web, you don’t have an advocate, which is what we completely preach here at Thrive, is we want to build a team of advocates to work on your behalf. Jim calling the underwriters and explaining what happened made all the difference in the world in that particular situation.

Krausey, one last example…

This was a guy, lives in Philly. He had auto, home, umbrella, He had auto, and home too. He did not have an umbrella, but he rented a duplex, rented out the upstairs, wise financial move for a lot of people, but he did not have an umbrella. So, we were able to save this guy a thousand dollars, add the umbrella on there for $250. He’s still saving $750. Now he’s got proper coverage. He’s got a rental exposure, which should be a red light to anybody that doesn’t have an umbrella to get an umbrella, if you have rental property or properties.

Great stuff from Jim Muehlbronner from Del-Val Insurance. Dvigi.com is the website. Del-Val Insurance is partner of Roadmap to Retirement. They have been with us. We’ve had Jim on the program many, many times, and of course when those dollars are saved, they go into a new bucket for retirement and can be used as part of the process.

Those are annual savings, too. It’s not just the one year. It’s every year.

Yeah, that’s good stuff.

Just incredible, the amount education that you’re delivering around the Delaware Valley.

Every cent towards retirement makes a difference!

Yeah, Joe. We appreciate that, and again, you know we do this because of the requests. Right? I mean, it’s just people bringing people to the workshops, and the amount of value that we’re bringing to people’s lives into retirement, which you don’t get a do-over. Right? So, you have to do it right the first time. It’s been very helpful. You know, one of the things I want to talk about quickly, is some of the feedback that we’ve gotten from some of the recent workshops, and it’s a little worrisome, and that’s why I really want to address it. So, if you’re part of the listening audience, and a lot of you have come to our workshop, and I think you’re sharing it with other people that are going to come to the workshop, this has been recent feedback.

So, people who had scheduled appointments and consultations to come in for the Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review ended up canceling. We don’t put any pressure, and as advocates, we just want to empower people with education. We don’t push. We don’t have to sell. It’s a really nice situation. But with do inquire, and say, “What changed your mind? You were at the workshop. You took the time to come out. You registered. You visited,” so on and so forth, and it was interesting, what we heard. People called up their existing advisors asking to get copies of brokerage statements, IRA statements, 401(k) statements, and then the advisors were inquiring about why they would need that.

So, our people are good people. They just tell the truth. They said, “Well, I’m going to go get a second opinion visiting with Thrive Financial Services.” What ensued after that is really what I think has given the financial service industry a bit of a black eye, because the advisors just went berserk. They really just started hammering their clients, making them feel very bad about questioning. “Why would you need a second opinion? Why are you doubting the work that we’re doing,” and so on, and so forth, and that just comes out of a position of weakness and lack of abundance and things of that sort, but what a disservice for what they are supposed to be acting a fiduciary for their client and making sure that all good things are there.

You know, I’ve told the story a bunch of times on radio, Joe, that when I got diagnosed with cancer, the first thing that popped into my mind was I’m not going to accept that answer. Now it turned out that the answer was right, but I went and got four other opinions and ended up settling and having my surgery down at Johns Hopkins because I felt that was in my best interest, and that surgeon proved to be true. Right? Same thing kind of here, is that if you question your advisor, and they reel back on you, making you feel bad about going out and trying to get more education about your future, especially if it’s just a second opinion, I would really kind of encourage people to start questioning that relationship.

Yeah. Let me drive that point home to the listening audience, because I think it’s a valid point.

I think it’s a good one because I think if the role were reversed, if it were the other side where one of our listeners or one of the members of the Thrive Army was calling you to say, “Hey, I’m looking at challenging or I’m looking at learning or getting a second opinion on what we’ve discussed,” you’re okay with that. That’s the beauty of this program. It’s why I sit in this chair for the last two years. I believe so much in the ability for people to be able to understand what’s right.

I think that’s a great point, Joe, and that’s the absolute truth. Look, nobody knows everything. Right? So, if a new idea pops up or whatever, hey, listen, go. Go check it out. Bring back the information. If you ultimately find out that that advisor brings more value, good luck, God bless. We’re all about that. Again, it’s because we come from a position of abundance. We know that what we’re doing is right. We took the time, energy, focus to get ourselves to this point. I don’t think there’s other organizations that are doing it the way that we do, but if you find one and it’s a better relationship for you, we just go shake hands and wish each other well. I mean, that’s what it comes down to.

Yeah, and we constantly say, and people hear me say it more than you, that nothing is for sale. We don’t have anything for sale when you come to the workshop during the week.

Yeah, and it’s the hardest thing for people listening and the people who attend, and I address that in the workshops. I say, “Look. We are part of a national 501(c)(3) not-for-profit. That’s what we do in our part-time world, and that’s why we do these educational workshops, but our full-time business is that we run a wealth management firm and retirement income planning specialist firm.” So, now I say, “Now that you know that this is being hosted by a financial advisor, how many of you, raise your hand, feel that we’re going to try to sell you something tonight,” and it’s 100% of the hands go up, and I say, “Great. That’s awesome. So, now we know where we stand. Right? Now, if you’re a cynic, nothing I can do. If you’re at least skeptical, then my job for the next hour is to prove to you that we’re not going to try to sell you anything. We’re just going to try to bring good value, and if you decide ultimately that you want to become our client, that ball’s in your court. You let us know. You’ll never get an ounce of pressure from us.

Let me get an unsolicited opinion from Jim Muehlbronner from Del-Val Insurance who has been a partner on this radio program. You’ve been part of Roadmap to Retirement for going into our second year now, Jim. You don’t work for Thrive.

It dawned on me that the version of that in my business is that I’ll run into people that say, “Well, I’ve dealt with this agent or this company for 10, 20 years because my parents dealt with that company,” and I certainly respect that loyalty to that company or to that agent, but they’re doing themselves a disservice if they don’t have somebody like Del-Val Insurance Group, to toot my own horn, but have somebody look at that, run rates with a lot of different companies, at least let you know where you stand. It may be that you’re doing the right thing staying with that person or that company for all those years, but as per my case studies earlier, you may find out that you were overpaying a lot, and you may have the wrong coverage.

Yeah, four good case studies. I did some quick math when we went into the commercial break.

That’s about 22K in potential savings if you look at that and put it all together, and David, that kind of is why I transitioned out of Jim’s conversation in the last segment. When those dollars are realized, that creates opportunity for people on the doorstep of retirement or in retirement to go into another bucket and create opportunity for themselves.

Sure. Yeah, and it’s either that it just frees up cashflow, makes life a little bit better and easier. It could go into additional savings to build a more robust retirement. It just gives you options. That’s the most important thing, and if you can just find some extra dollars, and again, what we just discussed, whichever one of them, it’s going to be a positive. It’s interesting because sometimes auto and homeowner’s does get overlooked when people are thinking about retirement because of what Jim said. It’s just a body at rest tends to stay at rest. Right? So, we have loyalty, and that’s what I started my segment with. It was very worrisome that people were putting loyalty over their retirement future.

Sometimes I tell just a quick little story. Karen and I, and this is a joke, but if we go to the movies, any couple, you and your wife go to the movies, Joe, and as you’re walking into a movie theater, you happen to see your financial advisor or your auto and homeowner’s insurance agent. “Hey, how you doing? What’s going on,” and so forth, and you sit down, you get your popcorn, and your wife nudges you in the ribs a little bit, says, “I think we left the lights on in the car,” and you run back out to see if the lights are on in the car, and of course they’re not, and you turn back around to the movie theater, and it’s completely engulfed in flames. Your insurance agent’s in there, and your wife’s in there, Joe. What are you doing? Right? Where’s the loyalty? Now, you got to be careful who, I guess, you ask this question to. Right?

Yeah, right.

That’s what it comes down to, but I know you well, Joe, and it’s going to be your wife. Right?

But you get my point. The loyalty, when it’s that dire of a situation, just goes out the window, and that’s what I really encourage people when they’re trying… because you don’t get a do-over. Right? So, my gosh, you’re going to take the opinion of somebody who just got hostile with you about your retirement planning, and you’re going to put that as an emotion over what could end up happening in retirement?

With Bret’s segment today, with Karen’s segment today, these Medicare surcharges that Karen talked about, people have no understanding of how that works or how to avoid it. The avoidance of those Medicare surcharges is a big darn deal.

We see people where, whether it’s a husband or wife, passes first, end up spending two to three times more in Medicare costs than they did while they were married. Right? That’s a big darn deal. Bret’s talking about the fees based on 401(k) plans, expense management fees that we see. We have a wonderful analytical tool that we offer as part of that Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review. It’s called Riskalyze. People can go to our website at thrivefinancialservices.com and pull down a report on that. That does the expense management analysis on mutual funds and ETFs. So, right there you’ll be able to see for yourself without even coming in and seeing us, Joe. That’s the type of information we offer.

All right, good stuff from David Bezar. That’s going to bring our show to a close on Roadmap to Retirement, the radio show. Jimmy, before we say goodbye, I do want to thank you for coming in. Four great examples from four listeners, saving them an incredible amount of money. Nice job by you, so well done.

Yeah, real world stuff, Krausey.

Get that shoulder taken care of, will you?

I will. Elbow, tricep.

Stay out of the men’s league. Dvigi.com is for Del-Val Insurance. That’s going to do it for this week’s edition of Roadmap to Retirement, the radio show. We certainly thank all of our listeners for being a part of the program. Until next Saturday, I’m Joe Krause. See you next time, everybody.

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