Retirement Planning

Seven Ways to Fool Yourself

By Cambridge Partners’ Managing Partner, Jacob Wolt

The philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein once said that nothing is as difficult for people as not deceiving themselves. But while most self-delusions are relatively costless, those relating to investment can come with a hefty price tag.

Psychologists call this tendency to select facts which suit our own internal beliefs as “confirmation bias”. A related ingrained tendency, known as “hindsight bias”, involves seeing everything as obvious and predictable after the fact.

These biases, or ways of protecting our egos from reality, are evident among many investors every day and are often encouraged by the media. Here are seven common manifestations of how investors fool themselves:

1.  “Everyone could see that market crash coming”. Have you noticed how people become experts after the fact? But if “everyone” could see a correction coming, why wasn’t “everyone” profiting from it? You don’t need forecasts.
2.  “I only invest in ‘blue-chip’ companies.” People often gravitate to the familiar and to shares they see as ‘solid’. But a company’s profile and whether or not it is a good investment are not necessarily correlated. Better to diversify.
3. “I’m waiting for more certainty.” The emotions triggered by volatility are understandable. But acting on those emotions can be counterproductive. Uncertainty goes with investing. In the long term, discipline is rewarded.
4.  “I know about this industry, so I’m going to buy the stock.” People often assume that success in investment requires specialist knowledge of a sector. But that information is usually already in the price. Trust the market instead.
5.  “It was still a good call, but no-one saw this coming.” Isn’t that the point? You can rationalise a stock specific bet as much as you like, but events or external influences can conspire against you. Spread your risk instead.
6.  “I’m going to restrict my portfolio to the strongest economies.” If an economy performs strongly, that will no doubt be reflected in stock prices. What moves prices is news. And news relates to the unexpected. So work with the market.
7.  “OK, it was a bad idea, but I don’t want to sell at a loss.” We can put too much faith in individual stocks. And holding onto a losing bet can mean missing opportunities elsewhere. Portfolio structure is what determines performance.

This is by no means an exhaustive list. In fact, the capacity for us as human beings to delude ourselves in the world of investment is never ending.

But overcoming self-deception is not impossible. It just starts with the idea of recognising that as humans we are not wired for disciplined investing. We will always find one way or another of rationalising an emotional reaction to market events.

But that’s why even experienced investors engage advisers who know them, and who understand their circumstances, risk appetites and long-term goals. The role of that adviser is to listen to and acknowledge our very human fears, while keeping us in the plans we committed to at our most lucid and logical.

We will always try to fool ourselves. But to quote another great philosopher, the essence of self-discipline is to do the important thing rather than the urgent thing.

Our thanks to Jim Parker for his assistance in creating this article.

Nobody Told Me

For the last 30 years, I have had the opportunity to attend great seminars, training courses, conferences, and read many good books and articles.  I very much enjoy my role as a financial adviser, constantly trying to learn more so I can provide better advice.

Jonathan Clements, a long-time personal finance columnist for The Wall Street Journal, is one of my favourite authors. He recently wrote an article on his website reflecting on his learnings and what he wished he had been told in his twenties, or told more loudly so he would have listened.

  1. A smaller home will enable you to save and invest earlier to accrue retirement income-producing assets.
  2. Pay off your mortgage as soon as you can. Your mortgage interest rate will typically be higher than the post-tax return from many investments.
  3. Watching the market doesn’t improve portfolio performance. It’s just a huge time waster.
  4. Nobody knows what the short-term investment performance will be. Clements wrote that one of the downsides of working as a columnist for The Wall Street Journal  was that “…you hear all kinds of smart, articulate experts offering eloquent predictions of plummeting share prices and skyrocketing interest rates that – needless to say – turn out to be hopelessly, pathetically wrong.”[i]
  5. You will end up treasuring almost nothing you buy. Most of the stuff we buy gets thrown away. This is where millennials seem to be wiser than us baby boomers.  They are more focused on experiences than possessions.
  6. Will our future self approve of the decisions we make today? Pondering our future self doesn’t just improve financial decisions. It can also help us make smarter choices about eating, drinking, and exercising.
  7. Relax, things will work out. As I meet with younger lawyers and professionals, I sometimes see a glimpse of the anxiety that I suffered in my 20s and 30s. In the early years of your career there is so much uncertainty. What sort of career, you will have? How will financial markets perform? What misfortunes might come my way? Clements encourages by saying “…if you regularly take the right steps – work hard, save part of every paycheck, resist the siren song of get-rich-quick schemes – good things should happen. It isn’t guaranteed. But it is highly likely. So, for goodness sake, fret less about the distant future, and focus more on doing the right things each and every day.”[ii]

Some great thoughts from Jonathan Clements on the Humble Dollar website.  I trust one or two of his observations resonate with you.

Andrew Nuttall is an Authorised Financial Adviser with Cambridge Partners, a fee only financial advisory practice based in Christchurch.  Andrew’s Disclosure Statement is available free of charge and on demand.  He can be contacted at telephone 03 364 9119.




Creating a Birds Eye View of Your Future

We might be facing an uncertain future in the next year or so.  But, given how well we are doing in our fight against COVID-19, it’s fair to assume that our country’s long-term future will be very bright indeed.

But what about YOUR long-term future? 

Now is a great time to sit down with your partner and spend a valuable few minutes creating a picture of how you want this to be, using this short video as a guide.


10 Things You Should Do Right Now

From Jacob Wolt, Managing Partner Cambridge Partners

We live in history making times. Feelings of uncertainty, worry and anxiety are understandable. The challenge for us all is to focus on the things we can control and to let go of the things we can’t.

Humanity has been through many difficult periods in the past such as; the Great Depression, Spanish Flu’ pandemic, two world wars  and the global financial crisis. They were all difficult times but the world got through them.

This current crisis too will pass and, thankfully, the seeds of optimism are evolving that there is a way through this.  From an investor’s perspective this period of significant market volatility also will eventually pass.

Every market decline is driven by a slightly different set of circumstances and events, but the best response to each is usually the same.  Here are ten time-proven tips, to help keep things in perspective:

  1. Cambridge Partners has helped you establish a balance between your growth (equity) and defensive (high quality bond) assets to ensure that you can withstand temporary falls in the value of your portfolio. If necessary, we’ll rebalance your portfolio to make sure you have the right level of equities to benefit from future market rises.
  2. Be confident that your defensive assets will come into their own, protecting your portfolio from some of the equity market falls. Be confident that you have many investment eggs held in different baskets.
  3. If you’re taking an income from your portfolio, remember that if equities have fallen in value, you’ll be taking your income from your bonds, not selling equities when they’re down.
  4. Remember that without risk there wouldn’t be any reward. Whilst short term movements in share markets can be unsettling, by holding growth assets you are positioned to reap higher long-term returns.  Remember also that you most likely hold fixed interest bonds in your portfolio, so any decline in your portfolio won’t be as much as headline market falls indicate.
  5. Don’t measure your portfolio’s performance from the top of the market, but over a longer and more sensible time-frame.
  6. Don’t look at your portfolio value too often – get on with more important things. If you’re looking every day, then think about how this behaviour is affecting you, and if it worries you, then stop.
  7. Accept that you cannot time when to be in and out of markets – it’s simply not possible.
  8. If markets have fallen, remember that you still own everything you did before. A fall does not turn into a loss unless you sell your investments. If you don’t need the money, why sell?
  9. Research has found we perhaps feel twice as much pain from losses as we experience pleasure from gains.
  10. Control what you can – financial markets may be volatile, but your financial life doesn’t have to be. There’s so much that you can control including your own emotional response to the market’s turmoil.






Suddenly Single – Financial Advice for Women in a Life Transition

It is sobering to think that around 80% of women will die single, compared to only 20% from men.

These statistics reinforce the need for any woman who finds themselves unexpectedly in control of their finances – whether by choice or unhappy circumstances – to have access to unbiased, expert and empathetic financial advice.

In this brief video, Cambridge Partners’ financial adviser, Pip Kean, shares some of the issues faced by women who find themselves suddenly single.

Cashflow Modelling Explained

Many people struggle to actually ‘see’ what they will need to secure the sort of retirement they hope to enjoy. 

In this short video, Cambridge Partner Andrew Nutttall diagrams the six key variables that you need to consider if you want to enjoy a secure retirement.

How to Retire with Less Golf and More Satisfaction

This fascinating article by New York-based author and financial commentator Carl Richards turns the whole concept of retirement on its head and asks some thought-provoking questions which we all need to consider if we are within even ten years of retirement.
Our thanks to Carl  for this article.

Today, I want to talk to you about retirement.  You know, that thing we spend our whole lives working towards… a mythical land of golf, gold watches, and umbrella drinks. Isn’t that exciting?

Here’s a quick history lesson: The idea of retirement dates back to 1881, when Otto Von Bismarck, the chancellor of Germany, cooked it up hoping to defuse the growing Marxist threat to good old fashioned capitalism. Like most things that are almost a century and a half old, the idea of retirement is rather outdated.

For starters, we’re living longer now than ever before. If you reach 65 today, according to the Social Security Administration, you can expect to live around 20 more years. This doesn’t just pose large money questions. It also brings up a certain existential crisis: namely, are we really supposed to believe that golf will keep us emotionally satisfied for the last 20 years of our lives?

…I have worked with precisely zero individuals who went from full-time work to full-time leisure at 65. Instead, what I have seen over and over are people planning creatively for other options later in life. Now, that often involves scaling back a bit, or even changing careers around 55 or 60 and working for another 15-20 years.

In many cases, I’ve seen people:
1- “Retire” from jobs they hated a decade earlier than they thought financially possible;
2- Get a new part-time job in something they found more fulfilling;
3- Use the income from that work to cover their expenses.

Now, these “retirees” can’t keep growing their retirement accounts once they quit. But they also often don’t need to dip into their retirement savings while they remain working part-time. Don’t underestimate the effect of another decade of compound interest at that point in your life.

All that said, the biggest reason to rethink the traditional retirement model is this:

If you realize you aren’t going to retire, then maybe you don’t have to keep working a job that’s slowly driving you insane.

For many people, retirement is the light at the end of a deep, dark tunnel called a career.

What if we flipped that notion on its head, and the end goal wasn’t to stop doing the wrong kind of work, but to start doing the right kind of work instead?

Just imagine how liberating that would feel…

Or maybe that long-awaited retirement party, the gold watch, and an umbrella drink on a beach is worth it after all. And hey, there’s always golf, right?

Top 3 Most Common Challenges for Retirees

Most retiring baby boomers can expect to be “in retirement” for at least 20 or 25 years. Here are the top three challenges that are commonly faced by those entering retirement:

1) Lack of long-term financial resources.
Many people lack the financial resources to finance their dreams of “25 years of fun,” and are postponing planning for retirement in the wake of previous market volatility, rising house prices, job changes and increasing education costs. Often financial advisers hear from clients that they “may have to phase in my retirement because I don’t think that we can afford it yet.” And some people who have retired are realising that, in fact, they can no longer afford to be “retired.” Many have entered their 50s and 60s with mortgages and high debt loads. This trend has been observed over the past ten to fifteen years as increasing numbers move toward their retirement date. Today, New Zealand’s ratio of household debt to income is one of the highest in the developed world (OECD, 2016).

2) Supporting children and parents
Many of today’s pre-retirees face the problem of having children still at home while dealing with ageing parents who also require support. The concept of the “sandwich generation” has become the “club sandwich generation” for some households. In some cases, there are adult children living at home and baby boomers providing care giving for older parents at the same time.

3) Changing workplace environments
The workplace has changed over the past few decades and this will have a significant impact on how retirement is viewed. Not only do we have more women in the workplace, but also there is a significant move toward self-employment, working at an older age and part-time work.

The content from this blogpost is from our book ‘So You Think You Are Ready To Retire’ a self-guide book to prepare you for retirement, you can receive your free electronic version of this book here:

Get your free ebook here

For a made to measure advice around your retirement contact us.

Living Your Values in Retirement

Your retirement is a time when you can truly live your  life in a way that is true to the values that you have. Psychiatrist Abraham Maslow called this state “self-actualization” (Maslow, 1943).

Simply put, retirement gives you the opportunity to become the person you really are, free of the pushes and pulls of daily life. That is not to say that you are immune from demands or obligations, but rather that you have framed your life goals in terms of those deeply held values that define you.

Maslow developed his “needs” pyramid as a way to describe how our needs frame our actions. Some have interpreted the pyramid as a progression through our lives. However, a better way to look at it is to understand that you may have setbacks along the way that will refocus you on lower levels of the pyramid.

For example, a financial setback may drive you all the way back to your safety needs and your preoccupation to protect what you have. Similarly, earlier in life you may have moved to the self-actualization need and had everything below looked after. Suddenly, you lose a spouse and are left with a feeling of loneliness that focuses your attention on your need for social contact.

The lowest level of the needs pyramid that is threatened will probably be your current concern. And that’s the problem with getting older—there will be many things in your life that will move you up and down Maslow’s pyramid.

The top two layers of the values pyramid represent your need for a sense of purpose and achievement.  This is usually a driving force in most people’s working life, but also in your overall life, including retirement. These needs don’t go away, though many retirees feel that retiring from work also means retiring from the need to strive for something.

Values represent your deepest desires, including how you want to relate to others, to your world, to your sense of purpose. In fact, it can be argued that values are the key driver of your sense of personal accomplishment.

When you retire, that doesn’t go away. In fact, if you have decided that your retirement transition is going to be one of self-actualization, these will be the drivers of many of the important retirement achievements and goals that you have!

Next month we will look at the values the will guide your transition into retirement – what is really important, what will shape your legacy and what makes you happy.

If you’d like to check just how much you really do understand about this phase of life, take this quick quiz. You might be surprised at some of the answers!


Visualising the Next Phase of Your Life

We’ve all heard the old saying “If you don’t know where you are going, how will you know when you get there?”   This saying is extremely apt when it comes to thinking about your retirement.

So it might be a good time to ask yourself a few questions to help define your retirement in clearer terms:

  • What does ‘being retired’ mean to you?
  • What would an average week in retirement look like for you five years from now?
  • What challenges do you see along the way?
  • What fears do you have about this next phase of life?
  • What would you like to accomplish for yourself?

Your retirement will be very different from that of your parents.  But it will also be different from that of your friends, colleagues, or the people next door.  You need to define your retirement in your own terms, not what the experts – or your mates – say.

You also need to realise that retirement is a transition, not a destination!  Most retiring baby boomers can expect to be ‘in retirement’ for at least 20 or 25 years – a long time in anyone’s language.

None of us can truly control what those years will be bring, but we can control our attitude to them.  The reality is that true zest for life comes from within and can best be nurtured by looking closely at your attitudes and view of life, in order to discover the parts that may require some change and intentional rethinking.

“I’m at the top of my game – and I don’t feel old!”

Here’s a very interesting interview from retirement commissioner, Diane Maxwell, which screened on TV3 this morning. Well worth a read or watch in its entirety, but here are some of the key points:
– Most ‘retirees’ don’t feel old – ‘they are fit, healthy and active and want to get up in the morning and do something’.
– Most kiwis want to retire when they are aged between 68 and 72 NOT 65
– 63% of people don’t believe they will have enough to retire on when the time comes
Diane Maxwell was reluctant to put a figure on just how much any one person needs for retirement as needs and expectations vary.  But she did suggest that one of the key tools to help was to always have a three month buffer – in other words enough money in the bank to tide you over for three months if you weren’t able to earn money during that time.
This was necessary regardless of age because it helped protect against a downward spiral of additional debt which could happen at any time, and seriously compromise long-term savings plans.
And what was the message she was getting back from those she talked to who had either reached or were close to retirement? “Don’t write me off – I’m at the top of my game, and I don’t feel old!”

Read or watch the full interview here



We need a second life, like the Japanese

In the past retirement was often referred to as the ‘third age’ – following on as it did from our first age which was one of education, and our second which focussed on our work and careers.

This concept no longer fits life today, where we are encouraged to include elements of education, work and leisure at all stages of our lives, and where many will continue to work well into their 60s, 70s and even beyond.

The Japanese have a second life – and so can we!

The Japanese have an interesting concept to describe this phase of life. They call it ‘Second Life’ and it refers more to a state of mind than a workplace or financial issue. The Japanese believe that when a person reaches middle age, he or she becomes a ‘respected elder’ in society. The respected elder has gained a perspective on life that comes from introspection, experience and perspective. (You might like to run that past a son, daughter or grandchild next time they snigger in a less than respectful way at your lack of understanding of modern technology or other current trends!)

The interesting thing about the Japanese concept is that it relates more to who you are rather than what you are going to do, so is an internal concept. This is a healthy way of thinking at any time but especially as retirement – with all its major life changes and adjustments – approaches. Entering Second Life means transitioning one’s mind into this next stage of life. This is the period in your life when your family responsibilities have changed and you can focus on your ‘inner peace’, get closer to your soul, and use your wisdom to benefit younger generations.

This next phase of your life gives you the opportunity to:

  1. Find life’s meaning and tie your life plan more closely to the values and life goals you may have always had but not had time for in the past.
  2. Achieve life balance – retirement can be a fulfilling combination of quality leisure, satisfying work and a pursuit of self-knowledge.
  3. Realise lifelong dreams – this is a time to turn your dreams into goals by creating the strategy needed to make them happen.

Life is for Living

All the technical talk about investment and superannuation and asset allocation overlooks a few key principles for everyone – life is for living and it’s important to strike a balance in all things, including saving versus spending.  Jim Parker from Dimensional – a highly regarded author and business journalist – has shared these great insights about how to manage the tension between enjoying what you have today and putting money aside for the future.

How Much Do You Need?
Feeling more comfortable about saving for retirement often comes down to setting out in practical terms the kind of lifestyle you want. You also need to consider the costs of aged care and inevitable medical bills. Your Cambridge Advisor will be able to sit down and help you work out how much is enough – and the sooner you can do this, the better.

Finding Your Own Balance
Most people are constantly trying to strike a balance between enjoying life now and ensuring they have the resources to enjoy life later. The good news is there is no ideal balance. It depends on your own goals, needs, resources and expectations. But there are ways of thinking through this challenge.
How do you strike the right balance between saving for the future and enjoying life now? Start by accepting there is no such thing as perfect.

The YOLO Principle
Many people live unnecessarily frugal lives in retirement for fear of running down their principal. But isn’t enjoying the money you’ve saved the entire point? Yes, there is a risk of running out of money. Equally, there is a risk that you never enjoy what you have. Tony Isola recommends the ‘YOLO’ Principle (You Only Live Once).
Which is the bigger worry in retirement – running out of money, or failing to enjoy the money you have saved? Only you can answer that question, but having a clear picture of what you have and how long it will last will definitely help you decide.

Important Update re our Retirement Seminars with Barry LaValley

 Our Wednesday evening session is now full, and there are just a few places left in the two Thursday sessions. So to help meet the high demand we have been able to add an additional seminar on Monday 12th March – 4.30pm for a 5pm start. To secure your place on either Monday or Thursday, please email or click here for more information.

Take 3 hours to sort out the rest of your life

If you’re within ten years of retiring, or have recently retired, you’ll know exactly what you’re retiring from – and why. But the big question is, how well do you know what it is you’re retiring to? Taking a few hours to build a much clearer picture of how you are going to spend this next (and potentially very long) stage of your life could well be the difference between enjoying, or just enduring, your retirement.

You are probably already aware that Cambridge Partners have worked with Barry Lavalley – a leading authority on retirement and lifestyle planning – to produce the book ‘So you think you are ready to retire?’.

Now we’re delighted to announce that we are bringing Barry back to Christchurch for a series of unique retirement planning workshops. This enjoyable and information session will help you gain a better understanding of your next phase of life, as we work through a wide range of issues around retirement, including some you may not have even considered!

You will learn:

  • Five things that may surprise and shock you about retirement
  • The formula for retirement happiness, based on solid research
  • The keys to making a successful transition
  • The ‘ideal’ retirement personality for getting the most out of retirement
  • Why money is not the key to a successful retirement
  • How you can retire on considerably less than you think
  • The differing role that money plays as you get older

You will receive a free workbook, plus a copy of the book ‘So You Think You Are Ready To Retire’.

Sessions will be three hours and will be run at the Canterbury Club, 129 Cambridge Terrace, Christchurch, at 5.30pm Wednesday 14th March, and 10am and 3pm Thursday 15th March. Morning session will start with coffee and refreshments, afternoon and evening session will conclude with drinks and nibbles.

UPDATE 5 MARCH – please note the Wednesday evening and Thursday afternoon sessions are now full, and there are limited spaces left at the session on Thursday morning, so in order to meet demand we have added an additional session on Monday – 4.30pm for a 5pm start.

Please rsvp by 6th March to Chloe Wolt –

Due to anticipated high demand we suggested you reply quickly to secure your place at the time most suitable to you. If you have a partner, we strongly recommend both of you attend.

Fulfilling vs. Time-Filling

Time seems to be of the essence when you retire and what you do with that time now becomes a decision what you will do with it. Yet, there is a big difference between “time-filling” activities and “fulfilling” activities.

With 168 hours in a week, 56 hours of that roughly spent sleeping, leaving you 112 hours to fill. Traditionally work would take up about 55 hours only leaving 57 hours to yourself. By taking away this prominent feature in your life you almost double your time for yourself and your own chosen activities. Have you thought carefully about how you will spend your time?

Psychologist Mihály Csíkszentmihályi first wrote about the idea of flow activities when he observed people getting “lost” in their work and in themselves. There are many terms to describe the feeling such as, “in the zone” or “in the moment”. When you are in this there is no room for anxiety, depression or doubt.

Flow occurs when we are able to direct our attention to one activity and one activity only. People often describe the following characteristics:

  • Feeling of control
  • General feeling of well-being
  • Altered sense of time
  • There is merging of action and awareness
  • There is an integration of mind and body
  • Sense of place

It can occur in the most mundane of tasks similar to reading, exercise, mediation, playing music or gardening. It also does not have to be solitary. Group activities can also create flow such as volunteering, hiking, team sports and conversations. All of these activities bring joy and contentment to a person.

It is always important to do fulfilling activities and fill time in the next phase of life by putting yourself in the zone, relieving stress and getting away from it all. That brings the answer to the question of how will you spend your time, back to another question: What brings you joy?

The content from this blogpost is from our book ‘So You Think You Are Ready To Retire’ a self-guide book to prepare you for retirement, it can be purchased here:

Buy it here

For a made to measure advice around your retirement contact us.

Creating Your Own Bucket List

For those that remember the film starring Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson “The Bucket List” in 2007, you will be assimilated to the term. However, simply put it is a list of all the things you want to do and a set of goals that you would like to achieve “before you kick the bucket”.

When sitting down to create this it can be hard to go any further than some of the obvious. But, when creating your list it is not just about the goal and the things you write down initially. You may have always wanted to see New York but this is just a representation of the importance of travel that is part of your values. Your values are powerful drivers for your sense of achievement.

So, when setting out to write your ultimate bucket list here are some things to consider:

  • List your values and identify activities that would allow you to engage in the values that you have.
  • Think about sub areas of your life such as health, personal, work, spirituality, family, relationships leisure and community.

When you answer these questions about your values you can then delve into continuing your list beyond those that were written down primarily. All should be taking the SMART goal approach.

Specific: Goals need to be as specific as possible to make them real.

Measurable: Goals need to be able to be quantified.

Achievable: All goals need to be realistic and achievable. Not necessarily straight away but at some point in time.

Realistic: Goals need to be realistic and worthwhile.

Time-bound: Put down a date to make yourself accountable.

The content from this blogpost is from our book ‘So You Think You Are Ready To Retire’ a self-guide book to prepare you for retirement.

For a made to measure advice around your retirement or to order your copy of our book, contact us.





Five Keys to Unlocking Financial Comfort

With the world being fast paced, there are many changes that are occurring constantly that can have us worrying about the future and whether the past has prepared us. One of the biggest changes in your life is retirement. It marks a new phase in your life, as did leaving home or moving into a full-time job for the first time. Having to worry about your financial position simultaneously to the mental challenges that come with retirement can be difficult. For some of us thinking about money and finances can cause a headache at the best of times!

There are five keys to achieving that definition of financial comfort in your retirement transition:

Key One: Education on Financial Matters

Throughout your life you may have made your living through being financially savvy or picked up knowledge from your own mistakes, others mistakes or from the basics you learnt throughout your education, part time jobs or current jobs.

What is most important to remember are the investment options open to you, tax considerations, where interest rates and heading and investment markets. It is not about becoming a financial expert but understanding enough so that the issue of money is less stressful.

Key Two: ‘The Meaning of Money’

We have all grown up with views on the meaning of money and for many it acts as an emotional catalyst. Understanding how you view money and how this links to stress is important is maintaining a sense of comfort.

Key Three: Efficiency

Speaking of efficiency, you know where you spend your money and allocate resources to maximise it.

Key Four: Efficacy

Part of financial comfort comes from the knowledge that you are using your money in a way that moves beyond just looking after the cost of living and normal expenses and moves towards using you money in ways that promote your core values.

Key Five: Equilibrium

All these elements must be balanced and at an equilibrium. “It is not only what money is, but what money does that matters.”

The content from this blogpost is from our book ‘So You Think You Are Ready To Retire’ a self-guide book to prepare you for retirement, it can be purchased here:

Buy it here

For a made to measure advice around your retirement contact us.


The 8 Different Stages to a Happy Retirement

Although many pre-retirees look forward to retirement as one long (well-earned) vacation, in reality there are often six to eight different phases.


The fantasy stage is those last years of work prior to retirement. The concept of a retirement lifestyle is more fiction than fact, but right now you dream about all of the things you want to do in this next phase of life. Dreams of trips to be taken or toys to be bought mark the fantasy stage. This is what most people think of when they think of no work or responsibilities.


The excitement stage is the year prior to retirement. Pre-retirees focus on the retirement date in the same way as we would the start of a holiday or anticipation of a special event. Here you should focus on finalising plans and strategies for the future.


The stress phase is when reality sets in. Now that retirement has started, it’s common for new retirees in the first year to focus on fears and concerns about this new life. Going from a busy and well-structured life to unstructured time is not as easy as it sounds. Often the routine of work is missed and some struggle to find a replacement.


The honeymoon phase kicks in one to three years after retirement. Retirees try to do all of the things that they had dreamt of in the fantasy stage. This is the perpetual long weekend.


The routine stage kicks in around roughly the three-year point. This is after the initial glow wears off, and the fact that retirement is a day-to-day way of living becomes apparent.


The disenchantment phase commonly occurs between four to six years after retirement. However, it can occur any time. Most often, the disenchantment stage is marked by recognition of your mortality. Depression is common and due to health issues or a bereavement, a retiree’s spirit is often challenged.


A reorientation occurs when a successful retiree makes an adjustment to his or her new reality.


The final stage of contentment is reached when the retiree begins to adjust to the new life he or she has created. Those who struggle to accept and adjust to this new way of life are likely to stay in the disenchantment stage.

The content from this blogpost is from our book ‘So You Think You Are Ready To Retire’ a self-guide book to prepare you for retirement, it can be purchased here:

For made to measure advice around your retirement, or to purchase our book contact us.

4 Reasons Why Women Need to Be Invested in Their Families’ Financial Situations

Men are often said to have more familiarity with financial matters, but there is more than a 90% chance that at some point the woman will be the sole financial decision-maker in the household.

Why is this the case?

Women live longer. Women born today are expected to outlive men by almost four years (Statistics New Zealand, 2015). This means they need to save more than men because it is likely they will have more years of retirement to fund. Women represent just over half (51.3%) of the total New Zealand population. However, they represent 54.1% of the overall population above the age of 65, and 64.3% of the population above the age of 85 (Statistics New Zealand, 2014). Therefore, many women will need even more help to handle those extra years, given their prospects for greater longevity.

Women tend to be the major caregivers for elder parents. Caregiving and managing parental assets will affect both men and women, but will probably be more relevant for a woman than a man (Department of Labour, 2011).

Women are more likely to live alone in retirement. Issues such as household budgeting, health care, financial planning, legacy issues and investment management will be increasingly taken on by women.

Women will take an active role in family finances in the future. Increasingly, more women control the family finances. Our advice has always been that the woman in the relationship should be prepared to take over family finances at a moment’s notice.

The content from this blogpost is from our book ‘So You Think You Are Ready To Retire’ a self-guide book to prepare you for retirement, it can be purchased here:

 For made to measure advice around your retirement or to purchase your copy of our book, contact us.


Happy Retirement Does Not Necessarily Mean Happy Finances

When we talk with pre-retirees the majority say that they believe the key to happiness is having enough money to enjoy their lives. But, happiness has nothing to do with aging or money. Studies have continuously shown that our brains are more often programmed to be optimistic than pessimistic as we grow older.

Yet, when we talk with those already retired, they place more importance on good relationships and good health. Money becomes less important with retirees compared to other aspects of their lives, such as nurturing relationships and engaging in fulfilling activities.

Achieving your goals will certainly help you live a happy life. However, happiness itself is not a goal; it is a precondition to living the life that you want.

PERMA is an acronym that describes five conditions said to lead to “authentic happiness at any age.” PERMA should be the values you aspire to achieve a happy retirement. That is:

Positive emotion

This content from this blogpost is from our book ‘So You Think You Are Ready To Retire’ a self-guide book to prepare you for retirement, it can be purchased here:

For a made to measure advice around your retirement or to purchase your copy of our book contact us.

So You Think You Are Ready To Retire?

Cambridge Partners and world retirement expert launch book ‘So You’re Ready To Retire?’ for New Zealand pre and post retirees.

Barry LaValley is a leading Canadian educator, expert in retirement and author of the book: ‘So you think you are ready to retire?’. After successfully launching his book in North-America (2014) and Australia (2016), Cambridge Partners has co-written a new edition, specifically aimed at New Zealanders.

The book is a self-educate book that prepares pre and post retirees to cope with the psychological and financial aspects of retirement in New Zealand. Based on Cambridge Partners’ and LaValley’s long career and experience they both conclude that for most people retirement does not just have a financial impact, but can involve an unexpected emotional one. ‘So you think you are ready to retire?’, is the result of 30 years of working in the field of retirement, psychology and transition issues faced by pre and post retirees around the world. It includes personal global stories and thought provoking exercises for the reader.

Buy it here