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Navigating the Financial Journey: When & Why You May Need a Financial Advisor

Navigating the Financial Journey: When & Why You May Need a Financial Advisor

January 20, 2023

Throughout your life, you will reach certain milestone life stages where it can be particularly beneficial to work with a financial advisor. Whether you've just graduated college or are nearing retirement, a financial advisor can help you navigate the financial challenges and opportunities that come with each stage of life.  

Here are some of the key milestone ages when a financial advisor can be beneficial:

20s and 30s

As you begin your career and start to build your savings, a financial advisor can help you understand how to create a budget and start saving for your future. This phase of life can often include milestone moments like marriage, having children, and purchasing a first home.  A financial advisor can provide support & clarity around all of these important, life-changing moments.   Additionally, an advisor,  can also help you understand the basics of investing and can guide you in building a diversified portfolio that will grow over time.

40s and 50s

As you approach your peak earning years and start thinking about retirement, a financial advisor can help you understand the different retirement savings options available to you and how to best plan for your golden years.

For example, when you turn 50, you can contribute more to your chosen retirement plan, and a financial advisor can guide you on what strategy would work best for you. At age 55, catch-up contributions kick in if you're eligible to contribute to a Health Savings Account (HSA). Want to know a fun fact? The “Rule of 55” is an IRS provision that allows workers who leave their job after reaching age 50 to start taking penalty-free distributions from their current employer’s retirement plan.  These distributions are still taxable, but the early withdrawal penalty is waived.j. Towards the end of this stage, your financial advisor may start discussing more retirement topics, like Roth conversions, Social Security and insurance, with you to help transition you to the next phase of life. They can also help you understand the ins and outs of Social Security and other retirement benefits.


As you approach retirement, a financial advisor can help you understand how to best withdraw from your savings and can help you create a retirement income plan that will allow you to live comfortably without running out of money. In this life stage, you will reach several milestone ages.

When you turn 62, you can start receiving Social Security income, which may reduce your monthly benefits versus waiting until your Social Security full retirement age. At age 65, you can sign up for Medicare—keep in mind that the initial enrollment period begins three months before you turn 65 and ends three months after you turn 65. Missing this period may result in a monthly late-enrollment penalty. Lastly, you will reach Full Retirement Age in your 60s, and the specific age is determined by your birth year. For people born between 1943 and 1954, the Full Retirement Age is 66, and 67 for those born after 1960.

70s and Beyond

Once you reach your 70s, many of your financial discussions will be related to establishing transitions of your assets and wealth distribution to your loved ones. That said, there are still some specific milestone ages to keep in mind.

At age 70, the benefit increases you receive from Social Security from delaying retirement stops—you don’t have to start collecting at 70, but your benefit will no longer increase past this age. At 70 ½, you become eligible to donate up to $100,000 per year to one or more charities directly from your Individual Retirement Account (IRA). The benefit? Qualified Charitable Donations (QCDs) are not taxed, making them a terrific way to reduce your tax liability.

As you can see, each stage of life necessitates important financial considerations. Working with a financial advisor can help you understand these considerations and make informed decisions that will allow you to achieve your financial goals.

Overall, working with a financial advisor is a smart choice at any stage of life, whether you're just starting out or nearing retirement. They can help you navigate the complex world of personal finance and create a plan that will allow you to achieve your financial goals. For more information on your unique situation and how a financial advisor can best support you in your current life stage, reach out to our team. We specialize in customized financial advice for your life.