Are YOU on the Roadmap to Retirement?



David, as I come to you for opening remarks about what we\’re going to cover today. The litmus test is in for the month of March from a Nielsen standpoint in this business. Another incredible thumbs up for a Saturday morning slot, and that\’s a big shout out to the Thrive army and the continuing growing audience who continues to find a way to get to us.

Right. It\’s exciting news to hear.

Yeah, I was excited when I heard it this week.

Yeah, you know what, it\’s the fuel for us to get here to the studio at 6:00 AM, that we need to know that we\’ve got a following out there. We hear the feedback all the time as well. At the workshops when people finally come in, we promote it. We talk to people about the show, a lot of the concepts that we talk about our workshop, we review in a much deeper level on the radio show. They\’re archived on iTunes, they\’re archived on Google Play Store under Live With Thrive.

People can get those podcasts on our site and through SoundCloud. So, we\’re excited to hear those are the results.

Yeah, and you can also go to, and you\’ll find a link to listen to the radio show, you\’ll find lots of ways to communicate with David, with Karen, and with Bret. But as we get started, I\’ll tell you about a workshop coming up on the 24th at the Southampton free library in Southampton at 947 State Road that\’ll be on the 24th. More details as the show rolls along. I\’m really excited about your topic of conversation today. David, I don\’t want to be disrespectful to Karen.

So, you\’re not excited about my topic. Is that what you\’re saying?

Before I come to Bret, I am very, very excited about David\’s topic. As a matter of fact, I\’m going to zip it and I\’m not going to say anything when David speaks today.

We don\’t believe that Joe.

I know.

That\’s all good Krause. We\’ve got a good lineup today. I\’m going to actually talk about because it\’s something that Karen I are currently involved with, part of our game plan is to have a residence down in the state of Florida. Before we go, we\’ve certainly looked at a bunch of real estate and all that type of stuff, and our youngest daughter is now going to be attending university down in Florida. It gives us even a higher degree of motivation. But you start to do your research. As financial planners, we\’ve been conditioned and trained to always plot and plan. So, that\’s what we\’re doing.

We\’re going to talk a little bit about what States are most tax friendly? If people are thinking about downsizing and moving to a new location during retirement, we\’re going to tell you a little bit about the tax advantages and where those states are.

Yeah. And I think it\’s a very important discussion. It\’s very important information to have because I think sometimes we don\’t often think about. I know it took me 20 years to finally settle in and start to zero in and understand, for example, how the state of New Jersey handles retirees and what that actually means. I didn\’t think about that when I bought the townhouse 22 years ago. I always thought I was going to end up in Cape May as a resident when I retired. So, the research is very good.

Yeah, New Jersey as an example is only moderately tax friendly, as compared to very tax friendly. A little bit of that information could be helpful.

All right, good stuff. We\’ll have that with David segment when we get to that here. It\’s a full hour, promise to give you a lot of good information. Bret. I know you were traveling during the week what\’s on your agenda today?

Yeah, I actually had the opportunity to go to the Midwest and actually just had some conversations with people that are in our industry. It was very good, candid conversation, and it was open. We were there for a wrestling tournament. I\’ll share that with you and just talking about some of the importance of independent versus captive etc. Just want to spend some time talking about the importance of those things.

Sounds good. Good stuff. Bret coming up in segment number two. Last, certainly not least, and always an energized segment as Karen Bezar. Hello Karen, how are you?

After two cups of coffee, I\’m energized. Yeah, I\’ll tell you that. So Bret, did you know I grew up in the Midwest?

I did not.

I did. I lived in Elgin, Illinois, right outside Chicago.

That was one of the teams that was out there too.

Was it? See that. He didn\’t even know that. I had my Midwestern twang before I moved here in high school. I used to talk like that and used to drink my pop.

Yeah, I was exposed to new chains like Quaker Loop. I heard Quaker like the oil but there\’s like a whole burger chain out there, like Quaker. It was neat. It was my first experience into that part of the country. So, it was neat.

Yeah, good stuff.

It\’s a very cool place, part of the country. I agree. I\’m going to talk about some things that sound too good to be true, and maybe they are. Because we got an interesting phone call. Didn\’t even tell you we got a voicemail saying that our credit card was going to be charged $3,000 if we didn\’t call and cancel this contract that we had in one of these, they say Microsoft or whatever. It\’s all a scam. He\’s looking at me like what?

It is for people that aren\’t familiar or some of the older retired people or people like my mom’s age.

We\’re coming off a tax day, where one of the ways that a lot of times people fall victim are with  these erroneous phone calls where they\’re insisting on payment for taxes owed and all of these different things. Very important, good stuff, and good details. We\’ll get to Karen Bezar with that conversation as well. This is Roadmap To Retirement, the radio show that one upcoming workshop for the 24th of April is at the Southampton Free Library, 947 Street road in Southampton. Go to and you can get information and you can get registered. And then when we get out of the month of April, and we get into May, there\’s a whole lineup of workshops that are scheduled and you\’ll find all of them listed right on

1-800-516-5861 is the number, that\’s another important piece of information to write down.

Bret, I\’m interested to hear about your travels out to the Midwest.

Yeah, talking about sports. We got the Sixers playoffs going on right now. You talked about Tiger, but guess what\’s coming up this Thursday. It\’s Eagles time again. NFL Draft.

NFL Draft on Thursday night.

Always Eagles.

It doesn\’t matter who does what, it\’s always Eagles season. This past week, I actually had the opportunity to take my son Nathaniel out to Iowa to a wrestling tournament. The good thing was it was a team tournament. So I got to sit in the stands and actually did about 10 cases of planning while sitting in the arena watching and waiting between matches. For all those who have been to wrestling tournaments over the years, you may have felt my pain, nine matches and two days and a lot of watching around and stuff like that. But it was great spending some time with him.

But you know what, I met some of the parents on the team. There are for all around the state of Pennsylvania. Two of them in particular are in our business as well. They work with companies of what we call our captive agencies.

Today, I want to talk about the importance because I think these guys, we were just having some dialogue saw some of the importance between captive versus independent. They work for, and I\’m not going to mention the names of the companies that they work with but, there are companies out there that are captive. You might find like a Guardian or New York Life or a Mass Mutual, Prudential, there\’s a bunch of them that are out there. The belief is and what you see is normally when someone is representing those companies where they are employees of them, typically they got two products each and every time no matter what.

I worked in an environment like that previously, before we started Thrive here. When we left, we saw the importance of being out in the independent channel, which is what we are. In Thrive, we have our own independent insurance channel, and then we\’re a registered investment advisory firm. Again, we don\’t have any allegiances to any one company. That\’s such a big deal. Because I started asking them questions.

Just in simple terms, Bret, just for clarity, that means that you have the ability to present or provide the right situation for the client.

It\’s the importance of being a fiduciary. These guys were as well. It\’s a hard time always justifying, hey, if I\’m working with a fiduciary, how can one company\’s solution be at 110% of the time if I worked for that company? It sometimes makes you wonder.

We started talking about the Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review. They looked at me like, oh, what\’s that? I\’ve never heard of that before. I go, \”You shouldn\’t have because we created it.\” I went through and understood and said, \”Hey, you know how you guys sit there and you talk with her. What are your typical conversations that it sounds like?\” When they say, \”Hey, when we sit down we got there a fact find with somebody and we come back, and we come back and we present.\” I go, \”What do you show?\” They say, \”We sell them some insurance solutions, and we show them how they could reposition their portfolio. And then maybe they should go buy an annuity.\” And then they stopped, and I go, \”What else?\” They\’re like, \”What do you mean?” I say, \”What else do you talk to them about besides that stuff?\” And they said, \”Well, that\’s pretty much it. That\’s the industry.\” I\’m like, \”What are you talking about?\”

They\’re like, \”What\’s that thing you were just telling me about, that Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review?\” I be like, \”To be honest with you. I feel your pain because I worked in that environment before.” When we came out and Karen David and I started Thrive, we said that\’s not the way things should be. Again, we talk about the importance of the Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review, and we talk about things like health care, and Medicare surcharges.

These guys are looking at me. I\’m talking about industry vets. These aren\’t like 22-year old’s straight out of college. I\’m talking about people who have been in the business 10, 15, 20 years and just looking at me. They\’re like, \”Medicare subsidies, what are you talking about there?\” Then we talk about income distribution. They talk maybe income distribution a tiny bit, but I can tell you what they don\’t talk about Krausey, is tax efficiency.

When you start talking about putting all those different puzzle pieces together, and they start seeing the value in it. Because I\’m like, \”Well, what do you do when someone has a question on taxes, or you start running reports on people?\” They\’re like, \”We just put in a number or they\’re in a 24% bracket, or it\’s all assumptions. It\’s like, now, suddenly, you\’re using the same tax rate on every single person. Is that customized? Maybe you\’re customizing your investments, but are you doing a plan for anybody? Are you actually putting all those different puzzle pieces together?\”

They\’re just looking at me, and they\’re just like, \”Well, how do you guys do that? How do you guys do what you do?\” I was like, \”Hey, we have an educator’s heart. We\’re advocates out there in the community, and we go out there, we\’re not doing dinner workshops, people that are coming looking for a steak dinner or something like that. We\’re looking for people that are passionate about trying to better their situation and just trying to get an education. Try and put some of those puzzle pieces together.”

I\’m looking at you in the same look, only I\’m looking at you that way, because I\’m wondering how you couldn\’t do it this way. That to me is one of the most significant things about what Thrive Financial means, and who you are to the listening audience. What you provide is just incredible information. It\’s really incredible.

Again, there are fiduciaries that do work for captive agencies and some that are independent as well. But there\’s also a lot of non-licensed. One of the gentlemen there did not have their fiduciary license. Take that back. Yeah, they did not have their fiduciary license. So, we start talking about the difference between what\’s a fiduciary, you\’re always doing what\’s in the best interest of the client. Again, if I\’m always doing what\’s in the best interest of the client, at least from our perspective, here at Thrive, we believe that it should not be the vanilla factory. How can one company be the best product every single time?


To be honest with you, that\’s the environment that I grew up in, where do you know what flavor of ice cream, I know what flavor of ice cream you like Krausey. I know David, Karen and you, because there\’s no way you all like vanilla. I call it Baskin Robbins, we got all 31 flavors, because sometimes it\’s mint chocolate chip, and sometimes it\’s peach. Sometimes it\’s a vanilla or it\’s chocolate. Everybody\’s situation is different. How can you have the same solution every single time from the exact same company every single time? It makes you wonder, it makes you think.

Again, when I started talking about this with the gentleman that I was chatting with there, it made them look and they\’re like, \”Are you guys expanding?\” Which made me laugh. It meant that our story was a little bit compelling. I was like, \”We are but not to where you\’re at. We know where we\’re at in the Greater Philadelphia area, and a lot of the gentleman that I was chatting with were out in the Pittsburgh area.\” They just said, it\’s an interesting perspective.

But then the next words out of their mouth are, \”I\’ve been here forever, and it\’d be hard for me to pivot because my clients\’ been used to me being here.\” I looked at him, I go, \”So, that\’s the answer? Because I\’ve done what I\’ve done forever.” Again, we\’re creatures of habit, we just continue to do the same thing over and over and over. Again, it\’s taking a stance, it\’s again, it\’s being an advocate out there in the community, it\’s sitting down with people and talking about putting those puzzle pieces together.

We start talking about things like file and restrict and widow benefits and getting spousal benefits. Talking about social security, and they\’re looking at me like, \”What do you mean? I thought you just take it when you retire.\” It\’s like, \”Come on, I know you guys are playing me. You guys have been in this business for way too long.\” And they\’re like, \”To be honest with you, they don\’t want us to talk about it.\” \”What do you mean they don\’t let you talk about it? \” They\’ll be like, \”We\’re not experts. We don\’t work with the government.\” I go, \”You know, the government\’s not supposed to be giving advice to people on social security either. So, you\’re telling me you\’re managing their investments and no one\’s guiding anybody?\” I\’m starting to put those pieces together? Like how often you\’re talking to the accountant, how often are you talking to the estate attorney? How often you trying to give people advice, whether we talk about things like Roth conversions? David did a great job talking about that last week, about just continually putting those puzzle pieces together.

Not just giving them, \”Hey, let\’s go 60% in stocks and 40% in bonds.\” Is that an important piece of it? Yeah, but what did I say? Piece. It\’s not the only thing, it\’s a piece. We start talking about, and that\’s why we got passionate, and we branded the Thrive Retirement Roadmap Review, because that\’s the importance of putting all those puzzle pieces together to give people. Again, we always say people never plan to fail, but rather fail to plan. Then what\’s a shame that\’s out there is that people are going out and meeting with people that should be working in their best interest, which unfortunately, is not always the case. But they\’re not even putting plans together for people.

Again, we conduct our workshops, David always ask people a great question. Say, \”Hey when you come in and meet with us as coming and part of that complimentary session, do me a favor and bring in your written income plan.\” People look at you like, \”What the heck are you talking about? Income plan, written income plan?” I’ll be like, \”Yeah.\” Be like, \”Do you know how you get paid. Every two weeks. I get my paycheck, it comes in, it comes in. Now when you\’re retired, you happen to get a Social Security check every month, maybe you get a pension check every month. But when we start talking about filling the gap, how I\’m going to be able to continue with the same quality of life that I become accustomed to. But now it\’s a new normal.\” Again, we\’re creatures of habit. And again, we need to have that roadmap. Again, you meet people that are already in retirement, but we love the people that are still a couple years away from retirement as well. Because you give them that roadmap where it\’s not too late to make some of those critical decisions, are we talking about making rational decisions as opposed to emotional.

And then of course, the inevitable will occur. Something will pop up or something will happen that is not expected.

You mean life.

Life. If you\’re not on the roadmap, you don\’t have that roadmap.

It\’s all about being flexible. There\’s so many times that I see people that are getting into plans and they\’re stuck, and they can\’t pivot, they can\’t get out. Because they said, \”Hey, I came up with my plan.\” That\’s what I told my advisor. \”You\’re trying to tell me every business owner that\’s listening, every business plan you ever put together happened exactly the way it was supposed to, exactly when it was supposed to. \”

I can go on and on and on about all the different scenarios of how life interrupts. Even as Thrive\’s now, an eight-year-old company, as much as we call it, again, you got to be flexible. Because then you got to be able to adapt. As life changes, your plan has to change with it as well. Who\’s going to get sick, what\’s the age gap got to be? There\’s so many assumptions, you got to take some of them in there. But again, you got to personalize things and be proactive. Again, when we talk about taxes and so forth, because taxes look a heck of a lot different when the first one of us passes away as well.

Again, that\’s the importance of us talking about that Thrive Retirement Roadmap review. Again, if that\’s not something where you have a comprehensive plan on your behalf. You know what\’s best about it Krausey? It\’s complimentary.


[bctt tweet=\”If you\’re not on the roadmap, you don\’t have a roadmap\” via=\”no\”]

Do you know how many times people are paying thousands of dollars for that plan? We go through it. Again, it\’s just our educators heart of just simply giving back to the community.

The number of reports that make up the roadmap, four. There\’s four of them, complimentary reports that get you started on the roadmap to retirement. Bret, nice job today. Welcome home from the Midwest. Nice to have you back here.

Karen Bezar now joining us here, how are you doing today?

Good. I\’m excited to see what you\’re going to cover. A lot to cover under the, if it\’s too good to be true, it probably is topic or that\’s the headline.

Yeah, that\’s definitely the headline. I just wanted to let Bret know that he brought up Baskin Robbins, and when I lived out in Illinois area, it wasn\’t called Baskin Robbins, it was called 31 flavors. But I was a Philadelphia girl, moved out to the Midwest. Went from the Midwest back to Philadelphia and I\’m very happy to be home because I was around Chicago Bear fans and it was a little uncomfortable and we missed our tasty cakes and all of that. So, happy to be back in Philadelphia. I\’ve been here a long time.

Well, I\’m glad that we learned today that you were from the Midwest.

How about that?

Yeah, that\’s good stuff.

I was a Midwestern girl for five years. Yeah Dave, we got this phone call and it said that if we didn\’t call that our credit card was going to be charged. Said that some company \”pretend company\” went out of business. Anyway, long story short, they were trying to scam money out of us. I called, and they said they wanted to verify our credit card information.

I\’m not that gullible, but unfortunately somebody who\’s older might not be with it as much, not as technologically savvy. I\’m far from technologically savvy, but people like my mom\’s age range or David\’s parents can definitely get fooled by that. I went on my trusty website They actually have a too good to be true checklist. Oddly enough, the very first thing on here is, we will give you a free lunch or dinner and teach you how to invest your money.

Okay. That\’s pretty comical.

Yeah. It says, don\’t be tempted by a free lunch and some well-dressed well-spoken salesperson. These seminars are usually just a way to get you into a room where you\’ll be pressured to buy financial products or make investments that you will likely don\’t need or that come with a great deal of risk.

We talk about our seminars and our workshops. I just wanted to bring that up again and say first of all, you\’re not going to get a meal from us. Just some homemade cookies, some coffee and some tea, and just some good information and that is it.

Can I add one thing into that statement?


Of all of the workshops that have ever been given by Thrive Financial, nothing has ever been sold or presented to be sold, ever.

Just free brochures, sometimes we\’ve given away free books some nights and free cookie.

But nothing\’s for sale.

Nothing\’s for sale. Even if you ask us that night, no, Nothing-

I want to buy something from you. No, the answer is no.

Nothing\’s going to happen. Nothing\’s going to happen. If you\’re out there and a little skeptical when you hear oh, come to one of our workshops, it\’s free, and then we offer the complimentary consultation which I\’ll review again the reports that you didn\’t touch on last time. But, we do offer to review four reports that we\’re going to run specifically geared towards your information; Social Security maximization. We use a software called Riskalyze, which basically gives you a second opinion on your current investment strategy. We look at all the risk involved you might have and we look at the inside fees that sometimes people aren\’t aware of.

We run a stress analysis, which we use software for that as well. And then Bret\’s favorite thing, tax clarity, which shows you, you\’re going to be treated to how we treat our clients. It\’s eye opening for some people. And again, it\’s a two-part process and it\’s all complimentary.

It\’s okay to ask that question. It\’s smart to ask that question to make sure there\’s no charge for coming in and meeting with us.

When this topic comes up, I often hear a statement that David makes so often, when we reach a point, if you\’re not interested in being a client, That\’s okay.

That\’s okay, we get it.

You might get some clarity on things. Like we\’ve said before, some people don\’t need our help. Some people do need our help and don\’t take us up on the offer, and that\’s okay too. Bret also brought up about plans? How can the advisors he was talking to, how can you make a plan for somebody if you\’re not projecting what taxation is going to look like for them?

With our clients that we have, we review these reports frequently, at least on an annual basis to make sure because things change. Just like you said, things definitely change. You never know where life\’s going to lead you or what\’s going to happen. If you\’re out there and you\’re questioning, or you want to come in, take a look at our website,

It was just funny to me or phony I guess we would say is that\’s one of the first things is they\’re warning people. Again, please come out, come to a workshop. Check us out on the website before you come out. It\’s all 100% complimentary.


But just a few other things there. We know people have just had to file their taxes. We\’ve gotten a call from the IRS as well. Just those robot calls. You\’re never going to get a phone call from them, you\’re going to get a letter if there\’s a problem, but it\’s scary. There\’s people out there that do the wrong things for the wrong reasons. You just have to be weary of that.

By the way, the people that are calling, they\’re professional. Their intention is to create fear. Their intention is to extract money. Their intention is to sound like they\’re legitimate. I don\’t want you to feel odd if you\’ve been duped or if you find yourself unsure. They\’re clever, these people are clever. That\’s why I think it\’s important to always raise it not as an issue, but raise it as a question.

Right. Just a couple other things out there. Here\’s another topic they brought up is we can erase your bad credit score, if you have credit problems. Somebody\’s going to charge you money up front to do some type of work like that. It\’s probably not in your best interest because they\’re really just going to take your money and they\’re not going to help you anyway.

Here\’s another one here, it says, the IRS made an error in your taxes and we\’ll refund the money if you fill in your social security number on the attached form. Again, that\’s something that you don\’t want to do. Very importantly, I know Medicare just changes recently, your Medicare card needs to have your social security number on it. I know they\’ve updated it. But we\’ve actually had one of our employees lost her wallet last week and they actually saw on camera somebody picked up her wallet and took her wallet. I said, that\’s just another reason, don\’t keep your social security number in there at all.

It\’s a shame that people are out there and they\’re going to do that. But from us, you will get honesty and you will get fiduciary responsibility from us here at Thrive Financial.

To that point actually, in terms of preserving that information when you come in for a complimentary review. You need the details, but you don\’t need the details. We need information, but we don\’t need details. We need information.

Your social, and we don\’t need account numbers. We just need you to share some information with us, which is also important.

Good stuff. You\’re I want to keep letting listeners know about that website. All kinds of good stuff to be able to read and absorb at your leisure. Good stuff from Karen Bezar. Karen, thank you. This is Roadmap To Retirement, the radio show as we take you into the break. I\’ll let the listening audience know when we come back. I\’ll turn it over to David Bezar. I\’ll go on autopilot, and I\’ll listen to the information that he\’s going to provide. It should be good conversation today. Back in a moment.

Let\’s get right to David Bezar for our final segment of this Saturday morning. I\’m all ears David for this segment, to learn about the best places. This is a list that I have great interest in.

Awesome. We\’ll jump right into it. A lot of times we hear from folks to come visit with us that they\’re considering downsizing and maybe moving out of the area and getting close to their kids and grand kids or for whatever particular reason. That always transitions into a conversation about what\’s the taxation like in that state, which is not sometimes things that people consider.

Let me go through the list real quick, and then we\’ll cover what to talk about. Obviously, this isn\’t a complete list, but this is a snapshot of the good, the bad and the ugly. States that are considered a very, very tax friendly, states that either have no state income tax, no tax on retirement income or a significant tax deduction on retirement income. In addition, states in this particular list, have very friendly sales, property, estate and inheritance tax rules and rates.

Just a couple states you would figure that\’s it, right? Because we\’re asking a lot there.

Krausey has his pen out here.

I\’m taking notes, I\’m writing down.

Here we go. Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Nevada, South Dakota and Wyoming are considered very, very tax friendly. States that are tax friendly, states that do not tax on Social Security income and offer an additional deduction on some or all other forms of retirement income. Generally states in this category also have the relatively friendly sales, property estate and inheritance tax rate.

Those states Joe, a little bit larger are Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia. Then, those were the states that were considered tax friendly.

Just in a quick shot from here. Delaware was on the list, Pennsylvania was on the list, Virginia was on the list?

Yes, and South Carolina.

And South Carolina makes the list. Okay.

Yep. Moderately tax friendly, states that offer smaller deductions on some are all forms of retirement income. The sales, property estate, inheritance and income tax rates in this category range in friendliness based on the degree of retirement deductions available. That list is, let\’s see here; Arizona, DC, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Utah and Wisconsin.

Those are those states. And then the following are states that are just not very tax friendly. They\’re just mean states. They\’re just mean. California, Connecticut, Maine, Minnesota, Nebraska, Rhode Island and Vermont. For me on that last list, like anyway, Connecticut, Maine, Minnesota, Nebraska, Rhode Island and Vermont would be out because they\’re too cold.

I know where he was going there. That isn’t happening.

It\’s good that those states are off my list for moving to anyway because of the cold. Let\’s talk a couple minutes here about retirement tax friendliness. What does this all mean? For seniors who plan to move to a new city or state for the retirement, there are a number of different factors to consider. Obviously, weather, which I just mentioned, is important to many retirees as our amenities and attractions such as golf courses, beaches, parks, senior centers. And then another major consideration is the cost of living in certain areas. Taxes are a big part of that cost of living, and this is an area that people don\’t necessarily take into consideration.

When we meet with people, what we have found through our analysis is that they make decisions randomly. They don\’t necessarily go through the list and try to figure out, because a lot of times we don\’t even know what questions to ask. We don\’t even know that there are things to consider, which we\’ve pulled back the curtains on that, on a lot of different topics on this show.

State and local taxes can have a particular significant effect on retirees. Income tax on things like social security retirement benefits and retirement account withdraws, they actually vary widely from one state to the next. You got to be again conscious of what that tax treatment will be for a particular state that you may move to.

Let\’s move down. Let\’s talk to social security for a second. Most states do not tax Social Security income at all. Most states don\’t. Some of these like Texas and Florida don\’t even have an income tax. Others provide a specific deduction or exemption for Social Security retirement benefits. Among the 13 states that do tax Social Security income in some way, seven provide for some sort of deduction or credit to limit or offset the cost for that particular tax for the retirees. The remaining six states, Minnesota, North Dakota, Nebraska, Rhode Island, Vermont and West Virginia, tax all Social Security income that is taxed at the federal level.


That\’s a big deal. Let me repeat those states; Minnesota, North Dakota, Nebraska, Rhode Island, Vermont, and West Virginia. Those are not very favorable from a Social Security standpoint. Then we have to take into consideration, Joe, our retirement accounts and our pension income. The way the state handles retirement account and pension income can have a huge impact on the finances of the retiree. 22 states do not provide any kind of deduction, exemption or credit on withdraws from a retirement account such as a 401(K) or an IRA.

How might that affect the typical retiree? Let\’s say you have an effective state tax rate in one of these states, that is 4%. Your annual income from the 401K is $30,000. That would add up to taxes of $1,200 on that retirement account income. Taxes that you wouldn\’t have to pay in states like Alaska, which has no income tax, Mississippi, which exempts retirement account income. Bret, Pennsylvania, any taxes?

Social Security, IRA pension, we\’re good to go.

We\’re good to go. No taxes. All right.

Second oldest state in the Commonwealth.

There we go. Exemptions for pension income are more common. Only nine states fully tax income from a government pension. While 16 states tax income from a private employer pension. The other states either exempt that income or provide a deduction or credit against it. Again, important to know, Joe, which of these states have the different features to it. Go ahead.

I\’m just trying to compartmentalize all the different states, the ones that would mean something to me would be Florida.


Delaware. If I\’m here.

Very good.

Delaware is very good. South Carolina is good.

Don\’t forget PA.

And Pennsylvania. I won\’t take for granted Pennsylvania because we\’re in Pennsylvania.

People will give us a call. If they\’re interested they call us at 800-516-5861. We\’ll read the list to them on the phone. This is a good state, here\’s the reasons why, here\’s the reasons why not. Pretty simple. Obviously, a big one that\’s come into play is property taxes. Home ownership is good way for seniors to lock in their housing costs for the long run, so that they don\’t have to worry about shifts and housing or rental market.

In some states however, high property taxes or property taxes that can grow rapidly from one year to the next, serve to discourage retires from owning a home. So, property tax rates and rules are drastically different in every state. So, something we really got to look into. Example, in Jersey, most homeowners are going to spend at least $7,000 annually in property taxes. In Alabama, most homeowners spend less than $600.

Now, not a reason to go to Alabama necessarily unless you love the Crimson Tide, but certainly a reason to stay the heck out of New Jersey.

[bctt tweet=\” Property tax rates and rules are drastically different in every state.\” via=\”no\”]

Exactly, that\’s what I was going to say.

Here\’s some of the fallout of that, Joe. We\’re looking at property in Florida right now. Guess who\’s moving to Florida? All the New Jersey folks. They\’re moving down because they don\’t want to deal with the estate taxes. And these taxes you can\’t write them off, over $10,000 now, you can\’t write them off. What that\’s doing is it\’s driving the prices up down in Florida now, because there\’s less-

So, buy now.

Interest rates are nice and low. All that.

It might be a good spot in five years.

Do you hear Joe, Karen? Do you hear this expert?

Got to buy now.

Got to buy now. That\’s a lot of what\’s going on. Again, there\’s more to talk about related, because inheritance tax, you would never really think about that. But there\’s some changes that are being considered by some of the different presidential candidates. Right now it\’s not easy to get into that category, but it could become much easier to fall into that inheritance tax category in the future. Some states, they could be as high as 10%. Here in Pennsylvania, it\’s 4.5%, but it could be as high as 10% depending on the states.

If you inherit some money from a parent or whatever it is, that\’s a big deal. Again, people want to give us a call 800-516-5861. This is a topic that\’s near and dear to our heart, Taxes, we know what we\’re talking about. We can help out.

Good stuff from David Bezar today. I\’d love to one of these weeks David, cover the discussion of, should I sell my house and rent or does it make sense as a retiree to continue to own my home whether I have a mortgage or not? It\’s a question that a lot of people would like to know.

You know what the answer is on that one?

What is it?

It depends. Everyone\’s situation is different.

Good answer. On that note. I\’ll say goodbye. On behalf of David and Karen Bezar, on behalf of Bret Elam and on behalf of all of our listeners, and all of the members of the Thrive army, thank you, everybody. See you next time.


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