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Retirement, Real Estate and I Bonds: We Answer Your Questions

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Stacy’s been offering money guidance for 41 years: 10 as a financial adviser and 31 as a personal finance reporter. Miranda’s been writing and podcasting about money since 2005. But they still learn more every day.

We hope you want to learn new things, too! And that’s why we periodically answer your questions: the ones you send to us at [email protected].

Today, we’ve got some great questions on topics like retirement and annuities, I bonds, real estate and the best time to buy a TV.

As usual, host Stacy Johnson is joined by financial journalist Miranda Marquit. Listening in and sometimes contributing is producer Aaron Freeman.

Before we start, remember this isn’t financial advice. We can only make observations and share what we might do. So make sure to do your own research and take responsibility for your own money.

You can watch this episode below, or if you’d prefer to listen, you can do that with the player at the top of this article or download the episode wherever you get your podcasts:

Don’t forget to check out our podcast page for more episodes designed to help you make the most of your money and our YouTube page for more videos.

Your retirement questions

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We tackle the following questions about retirement:

  • Arben: Do you recommend fixed index annuities as an option along with other forms of investing, like SEP IRA, 401(k), traditional IRA?
  • Elizabeth: What are some tax-efficient ways to spend IRA accounts once retired? How about real estate, especially in highly inflated areas like California? Is it worth taking out IRA funds to buy a house in a higher-cost area at this time?
  • Joseph: My question is about RMDs. Is the required distribution age 72 or is it now 73? I turned 72 in Sept 2022. I keep reading that the new age now is 73. Can you confirm this?

If you want more reading about retirement, we have some great articles and podcast episodes on various retirement topics:

Questions about I bonds and inflation

With Series I savings bonds paying much higher yields than they have in years because the yield is tied to inflation, it’s no surprise people are interested in them. We also had a question about inflation and how to save money during this time.

  • Margaret: Where does one purchase I bonds?
  • Jerry: Can you purchase two I bonds, one for the husband and one for the wife?
  • Heather: As inflation increases and our pay remains the same, how does one continue to eat well and manage a home with all the rising costs in grocery and retail stores? Any ideas for average folks to live well while our money is not going as far?

Not only do we answer questions about I bonds, but we have plenty of resources on how to use them in your own strategy and how to tackle inflation in your own life.

Other questions: buying a TV, spender vs. saver, where to keep cash and more

We answer questions about the best time to buy a TV (maybe it’s not Black Friday), what happens if you marry a spender but are a saver, where you should keep your cash and what happens to your mortgage when the company gets bought out.

  • Sharli: My mortgage company has been bought out by a bigger company. I’m a 78-year-old widow and am concerned that they will charge me more. Can the company make changes to my original mortgage and force me to pay more each month? I’m already squeezed to the max and want to be able to keep my home.
  • El four: I often hear Stacy say to keep money in cash. I don’t know what that means. I know you don’t mean to sock it away in a sock drawer, but do you mean it should be in some type of precious metals ETF, a low-interest money market account, or what? I have money in a brokerage “settlement” account that I guess earns more than at my bank (0.06%), but is that the best place to put “cash” right now? Thanks.
  • Frustrated Wife: So, my husband refuses to save any of his money. He is 71 years old, is retired and has high blood pressure, diabetes and fibromyalgia. He is currently living off of his Social Security with no other savings and believes that his money is to be spent to enjoy life and not to have to save it. I am 71 years old as well and work full time. I’ve run out of reasons to give him as to why he should be saving his money as he grows older. Are there any suggestions you can give me to help him understand the importance of saving money?
  • Jeff: I appreciate the info you provide daily. Any idea when the best time to buy a TV is? I’ve heard before the Super Bowl is a good time for sales. Thoughts?

For more information and ideas on handling mortgages, saving money and dealing with partner money issues, check out the following resources:

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About the hosts

Stacy Johnson founded Money Talks News in 1991. He’s a CPA, and he has also earned licenses in stocks, commodities, options principal, mutual funds, life insurance, securities supervisor and real estate.

Miranda Marquit, MBA, is a financial expert, writer and speaker. She’s been covering personal finance and investing topics for almost 20 years. When not writing and podcasting, she enjoys travel, reading and the outdoors.

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