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Living Your Best Life Through Financial Transitions

Our partners at Fidelity offer a compelling illustration of how investors assign value in the relationship with their financial advisor, called the Advice Value Stack® pictured below. At Charter Oak, we are committed to delivering value based on this framework: helping clients achieve goals, increase peace of mind and find fulfillment, or what we call living their best life.


We understand our clients want to live their best life with financial freedom at every stage. If you are in your 20s and 30s, peace of mind and fulfillment may be paying off college debt, making an emergency savings fund, and possibly starting a family. In your 40s and 50s, peace of mind may be found by saving for retirement or for your children’s college, as well as volunteering on a non-profit board, coaching youth sports, or caring for your family. In your 60s and 70s, you may want to focus more on your legacy and getting the most out of retirement.  Or, as we will share later, how to “squeeze all the juice out of retirement”.


At Charter Oak, we constantly remind ourselves that to help our clients truly, we need to provide a solid base of advice and help move our clients toward achieving life fulfillment. Let’s look at the components and how they relate to you, our client. 

 Source: Fidelity


Managing the Money

This is the foundation of financial advice; it includes everything from asset allocation to insurance to cash flow. With your financial plan as our guide, this is the bedrock of how we help clients achieve financial freedom.


Achieving Goals

Financial planning is critical to helping our clients set and reach goals related to retirement, college, legacy and charitable planning. The bedrock of money management is there to help you achieve your goals. 


Peace of Mind

We help our clients feel calm and more in control of their financial lives, in many ways. We know the power of consolidating assets to feel more in control of your finances, knowing there is enough to care for a loved one, or to fully enjoy your daily life knowing a trusted partner is watching the finances.



Feeling happiness and satisfaction in your daily life, by working toward the achievement of life’s purpose and leaving a legacy. We facilitate meaningful conversations to help our clients uncover what fulfillment means to them through all life transitions. 


While many may seem aspirational, we strive to make this a reality for our clients. If you are thinking about retirement, transitioning to it, or already in it, we use the same framework to help you through the stages of retirement. 




Stages of Retirement


Retirement is often seen as a multi-stage process, each with its unique characteristics and challenges. While the specifics can vary from person to person, here are four common stages:


1. Pre-Retirement: This stage typically begins several years before retirement. During this time, individuals often plan and prepare financially for retirement. This may involve maximizing retirement savings, paying off debts, and deciding about pension plans or Social Security benefits. Emotionally, pre-retirement can be a time of anticipation, excitement, and perhaps some anxiety about the transition ahead.


2. Early Retirement: This stage marks the initial phase of retirement, usually spanning the first few years after leaving the workforce. Early retirees may still be relatively active and healthy and often have ambitious plans for spending their newfound free time. This might include traveling, pursuing hobbies, volunteering, or even starting a new business venture. However, early retirees may also encounter challenges adjusting to a new routine, managing their finances, and finding meaningful ways to stay engaged and fulfilled.


3. Mid-Retirement: As retirees move into this stage, they may settle into a more stable and predictable rhythm. By now, they have likely adjusted to the lifestyle changes that come with retirement and have a better understanding of their financial needs and limitations. Mid-retirement can be a time of enjoying the fruits of one's labor, whether that means spending time with family and friends, pursuing personal interests, or simply relaxing and taking things easy. However, retirees may face health issues or other unexpected challenges during this stage, which can require adjustments to their plans and priorities.


4. Late Retirement: This final stage of retirement typically encompasses the later years of life, when individuals may begin to experience declines in health and mobility. Late retirees often require more assistance with daily activities and may need to rely on family members, caregivers, or community resources for support. Despite the challenges that come with aging, many late retirees find ways to maintain a sense of purpose and meaning in their lives, whether through spending time with loved ones, engaging in spiritual practices, or reflecting on the legacy they wish to leave behind.


These stages are not rigidly defined; individuals may transition through them at different paces or experience them differently. However, they can serve as a valuable framework for understanding the different phases of retirement and the unique opportunities and challenges that each stage presents.


There is also the significant psychological impact of retirement. We have shared this before, but this is a favorite at Charter Oak. An entertaining and informative 13-minute TEDx presentation by Dr. Riley Moynes titled The Four Phases of Retirement. The presentation shares an excellent framework for preparing to retire psychologically and “squeeze all of the juice you can out of retirement” because, as Dr. Moynes says, “there is a very good chance you’ll live one-third of your life in retirement.”


At Charter Oak, we strive to help you achieve your life's fulfillment, regardless of your season in life. As always, it is our pleasure to help. Please contact your Charter Oak Financial Advisor for advice and guidance before, during transition, and after retirement.