You may have heard before that wealth has four phases: accumulation, preservation, distribution, and transfer. There is an order to the flow of money in our lives. Conventional wisdom says to set aside a percentage of our wages and earnings for the long term. Over time and with the help of compounding interest, our investments accumulate typically into the 6, 7, 8, and 9 digits sphere. Along the way, our survival skills kick-in and we want to preserve and protect our money, be it from market risk, unnecessary taxes, unexpected mayhem, or opportunistic predators. In some cases these predators may even be within your own family tree.
When you’re ready to enjoy some of your wealth, you start distributing it to yourself until the inevitable happens (death), which triggers the transfer of any remaining assets to your heirs, government in the form of estate taxes, and charities. As the wealth builder, sustainability speaks to what matters to you. Comprehensive financial planning determines and guides the sustainability of your wealth through each phase.
Interestingly, the sustainable wealth factor eludes most families. In more than 2 out of 3 instances, family wealth fails to outlive the generation following the one that created it. 90% of the time assets are exhausted before the end of the 3rd generation. How sustainable is your plan? Can the pitfalls be avoided with more understanding and a developed strategy? What about sustainable wealth do you wish your future generations to value, cherish, preserve, and sustain?
We are undergoing the largest intergenerational wealth transfer in history according to Boston College’s Center on Wealth and Philanthropy Wealth Transfer Report.
A new report1, May 2014, predicts U.S. wealth transfer of $59 Trillion in the 54-year time period from 2007 – 2061. This estimation – divided among heirs, charities, estate taxes and estate closing costs – will be transferred from 93.6 million American estates. How sure are you that your beneficiaries and heirs/heiresses are prepared to be good stewards?
The opportunity to plan is knocking. Talk to your Allgen advisor. We’re here for you.
Ana Fernandez, CFP®
Teresa Talton, CFP® Candidate
Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, Certified Financial Planner™ and CFP® in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements.