Resource Library - Financial Planning
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The Wisconsin Retirement System (the state pension plan) will be a source of retirement income for most Wisconsin public school employees. How much do you know about this important benefit? In this three-part series, learn about WRS, how it works, how to read your statement, how benefits are calculated, the different payout options available at retirement, core versus variable fund participation, and much more.
This slimmed-down version the Retirement Income Analysis is appropriate for you if you are 11+ years from retirement and wondering if you’re on track to meet your retirement goals.
Preparing to retire? This highly focused, comprehensive retirement planning service is suitable for Wisconsin public school employees within 10 years of retirement.
Member Benefits' Portfolio Analysis financial planning service is a comprehensive evaluation of your current investment portfolio. Align your portfolio with your financial goals.
Free one-hour financial planning consultation for newer members to help you get on the road to financial security.
It's National Financial Literacy Month. To help you achieve your financial goals, consider these resources that promote financial literacy in April and all year long.
There's a good reason January is Financial Wellness Month. With the new year still fresh with our good intentions, it's a great time to set some personal financial goals for the year. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
Many young educators are facing new financial responsibilities, but it doesn't have to be complicated. Learn more by watching our video.
In our article, “Personal finance lessons: 4 insights for new educators
,” new teacher Molly Walsh Anderson shared important financial lessons she’s learned in part from playing Member Benefits’ Don’t Be Jack interactive board game
. It’s a great way to learn about financial issues that impact Wisconsin public school employees.
Here are thirteen things you can do to improve your financial condition and sense of well-being. 1. Create a budget: A budget allows you to take control of your financial future. It can help you find ways to cut expenses, carving out some extra money for debt payments, retirement savings, and beefing up your emergency fund
Wisconsin public school employees have the unique opportunity to participate in the insurance and retirement savings programs offered by Member Benefits. Did you know that your family—including your spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, and parents in law—may also participate in many of these great programs?
Did you receive a tax refund this year? If so, here are six financially smart ways to spend your tax refund.
Every teacher knows the many important lessons they learned during their early years of teaching, and new
teacher Molly Walsh Anderson likes to pass on her own personal finance lessons to help others.
Here are four insights she learned during her first year that have helped
her navigate new financial realities and responsibilities.
Take a lesson from these eternal creatures and plan for the long term. You aren’t just saving for the day you retire, your savings need to last for many years beyond. We can help you get started or review your current financial plan.
Overlooking the personality flaws, Frankenstein—or the creation of Frankenstein—can help to illustrate the important investment concept of diversification.
Here's just one factor of many we'll help you consider to get a more realistic picture of what you’ll have in retirement when you participate in our Retirement Income Analysis. And don't miss our short testimonial video from the Niehausens!
Our article, Are you retirement ready?, provides an overview of our Retirement Income Analysis (RIA)
financial planning option for Wisconsin public school employees who are
within 10 years of retirement. When you participate in an RIA, we also
get you thinking about things that may not have occurred to you or that
may seem surprising. Here is one example that you may not have
you’re within 10 years of retirement, you may be wondering: Can I
really retire? How do I plan my budget and preserve my assets when I’m no longer
working? Fortunately, Member Benefits can help you answer those
questions and much more with a comprehensive Retirement Income Analysis. P.S. Don't miss our quick testimonial video!
There are five basic steps in Member Benefits' retirement planning process.
You may have read last week's article, Are you retirement ready?
It discusses our Retirement Income Analysis (RIA)
financial planning option and the experience retired Wisconsin educators Karen and Nick Niehausen had when they participated. If you decide to sign up for the RIA, here's what you can expect in the process.
Is debt a problem for you? We share some warning signs to watch for and simple steps to help reduce debt.
Did you know that you can stay insured with us even after you leave your school job or retire? And your Member Benefits’ 403(b) and IRA accounts can remain with us whether you retire, change districts, or change professions?
The decision to save for retirement is an
easy one when you consider the potential future benefits, but how to
invest is often the source of uncertainty and frustration for investors
new and old. At its most basic, how you decide to invest should be based
on what kind of investor you are—your style—so you can make choices
that are right for you.
So, what kind of investor are you? We have some guidance to help you answer that question.
Through careful planning and consistent saving, teachers Paul and Amy Bucheger are well on their way to reaching their financial dreams. The Buchegers have found the recipe for making their dreams a reality.
If you're a saver, chances are at some point you'll be invited to move your retirement money. Before you accept this invitation, take time to understand what the move really means. It may be the most impactful financial decision you make in your lifetime.
As life expectancy increases, you may need to revisit your retirement strategy. Knowing the odds of a long life are in your favor, it may be wise to
review your long-term financial plan. Here are two strategies to help you meet
your potential future needs.
Part 3 of a 3 part series: Despite our best intentions to act rationally, basic impulses and
emotional responses can influence our decisions, often against our
better judgment. We wrap up our series exploring this potential retirement planning mistake and share some keys to successful investing to help keep the dream snatchers (procrastination, fees, and emotion) at bay.
Procrastination. Fees. Emotion. Let them rule your decision making process and you may find them to be your most destructive retirement planning mistakes. The good news is that you actually have control over these dream demons. Here are some ways to stop them in their tracks. (Part 1 of 3)
Welcome to 2016! This can be your year to save more for your retirement.
Start it out right with a few tips to make a lasting financial impact
on your life.
Emotions can wreak havoc on our financial decision making and financial future. Behavioral economist Justin Sydnor sheds light on the psychological influences that cause people to make financial decisions that may be contrary to their own interests.
These are common questions among members who are ten to fifteen years away from retirement age. Unfortunately, the answer is different for everyone. I often start out by suggesting they fill out a Ballpark Estimate form to get a sense of where they are at. The Ballpark Estimate is designed to provide a rough estimate of what you will need to save annually to fund a comfortable retirement.
Having a budget is a key component of any financial plan. It requires an investment of time up front, and it requires you to face the good and the bad of your financial situation. But, the pay off and benefits are long lasting.
If you have specific questions regarding your retirement and/or investment portfolio, or are looking for financial guidance, our Financial Planner may be able to assist. We have several locations available throughout Wisconsin for you to meet with our Planner during the school year. Request your appointment today.
Deciding which financial professional to trust is a very important
decision and shouldn’t be made without some thorough vetting.
Our best advice…ask questions
. Getting the answers to important questions up front will help you avoid surprises (the bad kind) later on.
Is it time to write a "Dear John" letter to your high cost financial planner and product provider?
Our financial planners specialize in working with Wisconsin public school employees. They put the members’ best interests first. There are no commissions attached to our financial planning services, so you receive an unbiased analysis of your situation. Meet our financial planners and learn how you can make an appointment.
Financial planning is a career-long
process—a journey. Every financial
decision you make (or don’t make) along the way can impact when you will
reach your final destination and what it will look like when you
arrive. If you don’t have a plan, make 2016 the year you get it done.
Our financial planners can help tailor a plan to suit your
goals and your situation regardless of where you are at on your journey.
While the younger generation is facing new financial challenges, there are plenty of old school strategies and new solutions to help them make the most of their finances.
In our article, "Bridging the generation savings gap,"
we covered some of the different financial realities that the younger
generation is facing and the importance of continuing to find ways to
save. In today's blog, we share some resources and remedies available to
help manage these new economic challenges.
Investing for retirement is rather boring. And it should be for the
average person employing a long-term investment strategy. If you are
experiencing a rush (or stress) from watching the market every day or
constantly buying and selling stocks like you see in TV and the movies,
you may be taking bigger risks than you should or need to. For most of us, taking a more lackluster, long-term approach to investing is a better way to grow wealth over time. Here are the basic tenants of a
boring investment strategy.
In our article, "Find investing boring? Good
we talked about how, for most of us, taking a more lackluster,
long-term approach to investing is a better way to grow wealth over
time. In today's blog, we share some common traits of investors who are
in it for the long haul.
Jill went up the hill to fatch an early retirement. But Jack started later, so the cost was much greater and he saved all the way 'til the end. Take a lesson from Jack and Jill.
There may be a time when you want to talk to a financial planner or
investment advisor about your financial situation. Before you decide on
someone, be sure to ask them a few key questions.
Many Wisconsin public school employees have told us that the financial
guidance they received from a colleague early in their career had a
profound impact on their financial life. Consider becoming a financial
mentor to your co-workers...there's no need to be an expert. You just
need the desire to help others. We have some tips and resources that can
help you pay your knowledge forward.
Sarah Klein is a 27 year old art teacher—and a Millennial (born 1980 through mid 2000s). It’s a generation now facing adult decisions about their finances. Sarah shares her story about coming into her own financially and learning that, even when dealing with debt, she can and should still save for her future.
Let us answer your retirement savings
questions and make sure your auto and home insurance is providing you
and your family the protection you need.
Free summer financial planning consultations and insurance consultations fill up fast. Call now to schedule yours.
Seminar invites and ads targeted at seniors should be scrutinized for “red flag” language that SEC investigators say is meant to lure you in. Because seniors are a growing segment of investors, financial services firms are increasingly focusing their marketing and sales of investment products to investors in or nearing retirement. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Financial service firms are increasingly focusing on older adults by offering them a free meal in order to
sell their investment products. However, their marketing and sales materials may contain
claims that are exaggerated, misleading, or otherwise unwarranted. If you decide you must attend one of
these seminars, here are some important questions you should ask as well
as some resources to help protect yourself.
Sarah Klein is a 27-year-old art teacher—and a Millennial (born 1980 through mid-2000s). It’s a generation now facing adult decisions about their finances. Sarah shares her story about coming into her own financially and learning that, even when dealing with debt, she can and should still save for her future.
Learn how to avoid the seven common financial mistakes