Running Out of Money is Biggest Concern of CPA Financial Planners’ Clients

It is no wonder, since Baby Boomers are retiring with an average of only $104,000 in savings.

Forty-one percent of CPA financial planners say that their clients’ biggest concern is running out of money in retirement, according to a survey by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ (AICPA) Personal Financial Planning Section (PFS). This survey of 500 CPA financial planners found that their clients’ second biggest concern is maintaining their current lifestyle, cited by 29%, followed by rising health care costs, which 11% of CPA financial planners say is weighing on their clients’ minds.

The Baby Boomers currently retiring are doing so at age 62, with an average nest egg of $104,000, according to the AICPA.

“Since people are living longer, not having enough money in retirement is a legitimate concern, and financial planners should have those difficult conversations with clients about planning for unexpected events and curbing spending, if necessary,” says Susan Tillery, chair of the AICPA’s PFS Credential Committee. “Developing a comprehensive financial plan, which is flexible and includes tax strategies to increase income in retirement, can address many financial worries confronting retirees.”

The survey also found that during clients’ first 10 years of retirement, their biggest fears were a sharp decline in the value of their investments (52%), followed by serious illness, including dementia and/or diminished capacity (24%) and helping their children or grandchildren (11%).

After 10 years of retirement, 44% of clients become worried about serious illness, followed by a sharp decline in the value of their investments (28%) and the possibility of having to move into an assisted care facility (19%).

“It is understandable that clients are increasingly worried about the financial implications of their health as they age,” Tillery says. “CPA financial planners can help alleviate these concerns by having frank discussions with their clients and addressing their financial fears.”