Healthy Concepts
Stacie Patchett

Stacie Patchett

To contact Stacie Patchett, call 920-628-3700 or email her at [email protected].

This column was prepared by Thrivent Financial with an article from Broadridge Investor Communication Solutions Inc. ©2012 for local distribution by Thrivent Financial Representative Stacie Patchett. She has her office at 4321 N Ballard Rd in Appleton and can also be reached at 920-628-3700.

About Thrivent Financial 

Thrivent Financial is a financial services organization that helps Christians be wise with money and live generously. As a membership organization, it offers its more than 2 million member-owners a broad range of products, services and guidance from financial representatives nationwide. For more than a century it has helped members make wise money choices that reflect their values while providing them opportunities to demonstrate their generosity where they live, work and worship. For more information, visit Thrivent.com. You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter.

Insurance products issued or offered by Thrivent Financial, the marketing name for Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, Appleton, WI. Not all products are available in all states. Securities and investment advisory services are offered through Thrivent Investment Management Inc., 625 Fourth Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55415, a FINRA and SIPC member and a wholly owned subsidiary of Thrivent. Thrivent Financial representatives are registered representatives of Thrivent Investment Management Inc. They are also licensed insurance agents/producers of Thrivent. For additional important information, visit Thrivent.com/disclosures.

Thrivent Financial for Lutherans and its respective associates and employees cannot provide legal, accounting, or tax advice or services. Work with your Thrivent Financial representative, and as appropriate your attorney and/or tax professional for additional information.

Website URL: http://Thrivent.com

No matter where you are in your life, you have a lot of decisions to make. When to buy your first house. What school to attend. Is it the right time for a job change? As things change in life, those changes influence your financial decisions too.

Following is a high-level overview of the financial information you should be aware of and consider during the various stages of your life. This is intended to be informative only, and everyone’s needs will vary based on their personal situation. You should always seek advice from a licensed professional when considering the purchase of financial products.

In your 20s

In your 20s, you’re usually just starting off in your first job and struggling to make ends meet; beginning to build a financial portfolio is probably not at the top of your to-do list. However, this can be a critical time as it can set your financial foundation for the rest of your life. A top priority should be building an emergency savings account to help you get through an unexpected loss of a job or a large and unexpected financial obligation. This should be separate from your normal savings and should only be drawn from under extraordinary circumstances. Also consider looking into disability income insurance to make sure your income and savings are both protected if you were ever unable to work due to a long-term illness or injury. Disability income insurance will serve you well throughout your career but the sooner you purchase, the better protected you’ll be. Additionally, this can be a time to begin thinking about starting an investment portfolio if you have the means, as the longer you’re invested the greater potential for long-term growth. Work with a financial professional to ensure your investments align with your appropriate level of risk for your specific situation.

In your 30s

Your 30s are the prime time to continue building a solid financial future. Hopefully you’re comfortable in your career, perhaps have gotten married and may even have begun building a family. This is when your financial options start to open up and you may want to start thinking about life insurance to offer protection for your family’s future against an unexpected death and loss of income. Term insurance for yourself and coverage for your children are usually affordable, easy to procure and can offer additional financial protection for you and your family.

This is also when you should be getting serious about your savings plans. Retirement savings should be at the top of your mind as you’ve started to make more money in your 30s and are becoming more comfortable navigating your bills and expenses. IRAs, 401(k)s, annuities and other retirement savings tools are important for you at this stage since the earlier you start saving, the more you’ll accumulate. And it’s never too early to start thinking about college savings for children.

In your 40s

In your 40s, many people have teenage children, tackle new challenges and opportunities in their professional lives and have established a level of income they can rely on comfortably. You can start to work with your child to investigate the various options (savings, aid, loans, grants, etc.) to help pay for postsecondary education. This also might be a time to start considering additional life insurance, as your assets and need for protection have grown as you’ve prospered both personally and professionally. Since you’re probably about halfway through your career, you should also start to keep an eye on the retirement horizon and on your overall retirement strategy. Make sure it aligns with your goals and dreams for after your career ends.

In your 50s

Your 50s are an exciting time in your financial life. Your children have probably left the nest and retirement is just around the corner. You should think about establishing a floor of guaranteed income, possibly by purchasing an annuity or insurance product, to meet your essential expenses that will continue into your retirement. This is the time to start considering how you want to live in retirement and beyond. What level of income would you like after you retire and how will you maintain your standard of living? Are you protecting your savings from the high costs of extended care? Whether you’re looking to purchase long-term care insurance or not, this is also a time when you should discuss your extended care plans with loved ones, and how that might affect everyone involved.

In your 60s

In your 60s, your retirement has probably arrived or is right around the corner. This is where managing assets, investments and financial strategies are critical. Even at this stage of life it is important for you to have some of your financial assets in an investment portfolio carefully managed for growth consistent with your risk profile. Meeting regularly with your financial representative at this life stage will help you stay on track with your financial goals. This is also a time to consider leaving a legacy through a life insurance policy that designates your children or a favorite charity as a beneficiary. The death benefit from life insurance can ensure that your spirit of generosity lives on and the causes you care about will be supported in the future. Another option for securing your future is Medicare supplement insurance, which will help with medical bills not covered by Medicare. This protection can help safeguard your retirement assets from additional costly medical bills.

No financial journey is the same. We all have different needs and goals at different stages of our lives. However, with a solid financial program in place along with the support of a financial professional, you can be prepared to make a lifetime of wise financial choices. 

If you are the parent of a college-bound student, you may soon face a whole new world of an empty nest, financial aid and questions about doing laundry. What you might not realize, though, is that with this new transition, there are some important considerations you need to keep top of mind, specifically life insurance and the updating of legal documents.

Below are some important tips (besides never mix your whites and darks) as your kids leave the nest. 

Life insurance needs

Although it may not be top of mind during this exciting time, it is important to make sure you have the right level of life insurance coverage. 

  • No one wants to think about the unthinkable, but you might want to increase your own life insurance coverage or obtain coverage on your student if:
  • Your current coverage would not be sufficient to pay off student loan debt and meet the surviving spouse’s other financial needs, too. 
  • You take out a Parent PLUS or home equity loan. 
  • You co-sign with your child on a student loan. 

Legal document needs

Strange as it may sound, if a college student age 18 or older is hospitalized while at school and is unable to communicate, the parents might not automatically have the right to tell doctors and hospital staff what medical procedures to use or not use. Also, if the adult student is not able to communicate for an extended time, parents might not be authorized to move funds from the student’s accounts. As legal adults, students over the age of 18 need their own advance medical directives, health care agent form and durable power of attorney for financial management, naming those who could legally act on their behalf. Below are some key terms and ideas to discuss with an attorney to ensure you’re prepared in the event that your child is incapacitated. 

Important definitions

  • Advance medical directive – Allows you to plan your health care before you may be unable to make sound decisions yourself.
  • Health care agent form – Allows you to appoint another person to make your health care decisions for you if you are unable to communicate them yourself.
  • Durable power of attorney for financial management – Gives someone the right to make financial decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.

Leaving for school opens up a whole new world for both children and their families. By taking a few minutes to review your financial and legal situation now, you will be prepared for this new stage of your life. 

On Tuesday, September 26, Dan Bellerud of Thrivent Financial will present a college planning workshop. This free 90-minute college planning workshop will help attendees learn how academics, admissions and financial strategies can work together to help save money on college — without jeopardizing the financial and retirement strategies of parents. The workshop will take place from 6-7:30 p.m. at Liberty Hall, located at 800 Eisenhower Drive in Kimberly. To reserve a spot, call Stacie at 920-628-3700 or email her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Subscribe Today
Community Partners Directory
Find a Newsstand
Community Calendar