We get it. Managing your retirement investments can be challenging. Along with the millions of other things you have to do with your time, examining your retirement investment portfolio sometimes doesn’t even crack the top ten. If investing seems like too much for you to handle on your own, consider partnering with an investment advisor to help navigate some of the confusion. When you do take a look at your current investments here are some tips you should consider:
Don’t panic, you are investing for the long-term. Don’t let short-term emotions dictate how you invest your long-term assets. You should continually reassess your goals and carefully consider adjustments when appropriate. Remember you are not investing for today, but the future.
Understand how much risk you are willing to take. Sure, you are more than willing to accept the large returns that an aggressive portfolio may receive, but are you also willing to accept the large loss that an aggressive portfolio is bound to receive from time to time? Risk tolerance is a matter of how much you can lose and still meet your basic goals, while being able to sleep at night. Periodically perform a quick checkup by taking a risk quiz to determine your comfort level.
Stay diversified. Asset allocation is the driving force behind what determines investment return. If you have a well-diversified portfolio, history shows you will recover over time, as will the security markets. Well-diversified portfolios contain bonds and stocks (both domestic and international), as well as investments in large, medium, and small-sized companies. How you construct a well-diversified portfolio is based on your risk tolerance.
Rebalance your account periodically. Set a schedule for rebalancing your portfolio and stick to it. Regular rebalancing keeps the portfolio in line with your risk tolerance and avoids any surprises.
Don’t time the market. Timing the market will not improve investment results and is more likely to result in disappointing returns. With a well-diversified portfolio and a buy and hold strategy, you have the best chance of maximizing your returns over the long-term.
Don’t chase investment returns. It’s tempting to move your account into funds that performed well over the last year or last quarter. Human nature is to chase investments that have recently done well; however, last year’s winners are no guarantee of this year’s winners.
Do you have questions about your personal financial plan? Contact our experts today!
Tracy Burke, CFP®, ChFC®
Partner & Investment Consultant