RETIRESMART!: HOW TO PLAN FOR A TAX-FREE RETIREMENT
Mark Anthony Grimaldi
Page Publishing, Inc (2019)
Reviewed by Jan Freeman for Reader Views (2/2020)
Mark Anthony Grimaldi’s informative book offers a guide to prepare for a comfortable retirement by using IRS rules in your favor. He explains how to pay the least amount of taxes while saving the maximum amount of money. He even discusses how to leave your money to your heirs, paying the least amount of taxes and allowing the most benefit from the inheritance. “RetireSMART!: How to Plan for a Tax-Free Retirement” is well thought out and clearly stated.
Mr. Grimaldi says that his guide is mostly aimed at millennials; however, he says that anyone can benefit from the plan. Obviously, people who have been in the work force longer and are closer to retirement will see less benefit because they will have less time to implement the plan. It appears to me that anyone can benefit from the knowledge put forth and may even be inspired to be more creative in saving and investing. (It is also necessary to say that some people will find this way of saving and investing to be somewhat risky.)
There are chapters devoted to discussion of how to calculate how much needs to be saved in order to retire comfortably; paying off debt; the need to understand taxation; getting the government out of your retirement plan; why it’s advisable to get out of any 401(k) a person is currently contributing to; target-date retirement funds; choosing a financial adviser; and getting ready to retire when the time comes. These complicated subjects are laid out so that anyone can understand them.
Getting out of debt before retirement is discussed at length. I was impressed with Mr. Grimaldi’s instruction:
How to Fix Your High Credit Card Balance.
1. Stop using your credit cards.
2. Pay off the cards with the highest interest rates first.
3. Stop saving money and put all that money toward debt.
4. Have a garage sale and put all that money toward debt.
How Not to Fix Your High Credit Card Balance.
1. Do not pull money from your retirement account;
2. Do not take out a consolidation loan. If you do, you will only run up the cards again before the loan is paid off.
Excellent, clear advice that will benefit anyone implementing such a plan.
The author’s ideas on investing, getting out of debt, planning for retirement and even benefitting the next generation through tax-free inheritance are worth reading. It is difficult for many people to be disciplined with money, especially if they can’t see what it means later in life. Mr. Grimaldi has laid out a plan worth considering and offers lessons in handling money that will help anyone but will be of the most benefit to young people. I wish I had read “RetireSMART!: How to Plan for a Tax-Free Retirement” a long time ago!