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RealSteps>Retirement® Resource Guide

This guide includes information and tools to help you take action and manage your retirement goals.

Resource Guide (PDF)

Asset Allocation

The topic explains how a diversified portfolio can help reduce investment risk and, if successful, lead to more consistent results over time.

Asset Allocation (PDF)

Charitable Gifts Planning

There are a variety of ways to make charitable gifts. Here are some answers to questions about charitable gifting options and strategies you may want to consider.

Planning Your Charitable Gifts (PDF)

Disability Income Insurance

The need to protect your earning power during the working years should not be overlooked.  The topic explains risks, the potential value of coverage and how it can work and why other forms of coverage such as Social Security Disability Insurance or employer group insurance may come up short.

Disability Income Insurance (PDF)

Estate Planning

Regardless of the value of your estate, it’s important to establish a plan for how your assets are distributed at your death.

Estate Planning (PDF)

Gift and Estate Taxes

Learn about effective ways to reduce the size of your estate and its potential tax exposure.

Gift and Estate Taxes (PDF)

Inherited Retirement Accounts

Know your options before establishing or withdrawing money from an inherited IRA.

Inherited Retirement Accounts (PDF)


Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are a tax-advantaged way to help build savings for retirement. Answers to some common questions about IRAs and a side-by-side comparison of traditional and Roth IRAs.


Know Your Dates

An understanding of considerations and strategies by Age can be critical to retirement planning. These can range from the ability to make “catch-up” contributions into IRAs and workplace retirement plans, begin claiming Social Security and Medicare at the appropriate time, and start receiving required minimum distributions from some savings plans.

Know Your Dates (PDF)

Long-Term Care

Americans are living longer than ever before. Understand the potential impact long-term care may have on your plans for retirement and the important benefits that long term care insurance may provide you.

Long-Term Care (PDF)


A federal health insurance program.  Answers to many common questions about Medicare and Medicare Advantage including a breakdown of current costs for Medicare Part B and Part D (prescription drug) coverage.

Medicare (PDF)

Net Unrealized Appreciation

If you own company stock within an employee-sponsored plan, you have flexibility to use a provision of the tax law referred to as Net Unrealized Appreciation (NUA). This provision may provide a potential tax-saving opportunity for you. Learn more about the factors to consider in determining whether an NUA strategy is right for you.

Net Unrealized Appreciation (PDF)

Reliable Retirement Income

Understand and consider the options and potential income solutions as well as challenges to helping generate reliable retirement income.

Reliable Retirement Income (PDF)

Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs)

Savings accumulated in a traditional IRA and other qualified retirement accounts must eventually be distributed to you starting at age 70 ½.  Understand and follow the rules for withdrawing your savings.

Required Minimum Distributions (PDF)

Savings Strategies

Disciplined savings habits and the power of compound interest can make a meaningful difference to your savings for retirement.

Savings Strategies (PDF)

Social Security

The age at which you decide to draw on Social Security can impact your financial future. Here are answers to basic questions you may have about Social Security.

Social Security (PDF)

Stock Compensation Plans

Stock options and other stock-related compensation (such as Employee Stock Purchase Plans or Restricted Stock) are increasingly used in today’s workplace to reward key employees. Here are answers to questions you may have about stock compensation received through your employer.

Stock Compensation Plans (PDF)

Taxes in Retirement

Not all retirement income sources are taxed the same way. Here are answers to questions you may have about taxes in retirement, plus strategies that could minimize your tax liability.

Taxes in Retirement (PDF)


529 College Savings Plans

Learn about a tax-advantaged savings plan designed to help families save money for future college expenses.

529 College Savings Plans (PDF)

Applying for Federal Student Aid

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) helps determine whether a student qualifies for federal and state grants and loans. It is one of the main factors used by colleges to determine how much the college will contribute to the total aid package. Learn why every family should complete the FAFSA.

Applying for Federal Student Aid (PDF)

Education Planning: Realities and Resolutions

A special report providing insights and guidance to planning and paying for higher education.

Education Planning: Realities and Resolutions (PDF)

Education Saving and Funding Strategies

Families with a plan fund about 30% more for college than families without a plan. Learn more about saving strategies and various college saving vehicles.

Education Saving and Funding Strategies (PDF)

Preparing for College

Use these student and parent checklists to help prepare for college. Early academic and financial preparation is essential for college-bound students and their families.

Preparing for College (PDF)

Life Events 

Divorce – Managing the Financial Aspects

The end of a marriage can be one of life’s most challenging times, emotionally and financially. Here is a discussion of some of the most important financial matters that we believe you should consider during divorce process.

Managing the Financial Aspects of Divorce (PDF)

Planning for End-Of-Life

Here are some answers to some of the most common questions you may have about managing affairs as the end of life approaches.

Planning for End-Of-Life (PDF)

Losing a Spouse – Navigating the Financial Aspects

A discussion of the varied financial matters you may need to deal with as you face the loss of a spouse.

Navigating the Financial Aspects of Losing a Spouse (PDF)

Marriage – Preparing for Money Matters

Getting married can have financial advantages and challenges. Here are answers to some of the questions you may have about becoming financially prepared for marriage.

Preparing for Money Matters (PDF)

Purchasing a First Home

Buying a home is a big commitment. Here are considerations that may help you navigate the many decisions surrounding the purchase of a home.

Purchasing a First Home (PDF)

Specialty Topics 

Business Owners - Gift and Estate Taxes

Business owners should consider the estate tax consequences of any business transfer strategies. Here are answers to important questions about gift and estate strategies that owners of a family business should consider.

Gift and Estate Taxes for Family Business Owners (PDF)

Business Owners – Retirement Realities

A specialized guide to help business owners sort through the complexities of retirement planning.

Retirement Realities for Business Owners (PDF)

Farm and Ranch Owners – Retirement Realities

A specialized guide to help farm and ranch owners sort through the complexities of retirement planning.

Retirement Realities for Farm and Ranch Owners (PDF)

Health Care – Retirement Realities

A specialized report on the impact of health care expenses in retirement, including key considerations to keep in mind as you plan for retirement.

Realities of Health Care in Retirement (PDF)

Income Planning – Retirement Realities

Given the many challenges retirees face, including unpredictable markets, changing tax laws and longer life expectances, funding a reliable income stream in retirement is substantially more challenging today. This report outlines a comprehensive process for creating a plan that may provide reliable income in retirement.

Realities of Income Planning in Retirement (PDF)

Modern Families – Financial Insights

Modern families (blended, multigenerational, same-sex, single, immigrant, etc.) make up 70 percent of the U.S. population. This report explores financial challenges specific to different family structures and provides guidance on how to prepare for a more secure financial future.

Financial Insights for Modern Families (PDF)

Planning Checklist for Families

The Planning Checklist for Families is a guide to help you organize important personal records and documents. If a challenging or unexpected event happens in your life, it's important for families and decision makers to have adequate information to manage your affairs.

Planning Checklist for Families (PDF)

Retirement – Realities and Resolutions

Insights and guidance about the changing landscape that affects retirement planning across the wealth management spectrum.

Retirement Realities and Resolutions (PDF)

Women – Retirement Realities

A specialized report designed to provide insights, guidance and resources to help women be better prepared for retirement.

Retirement Realities for Women (PDF)


Budget Worksheet

Use this worksheet to create a budget. Manage your money by documenting your income and expenses to help reach your financial goals.

Budget Worksheet (PDF)

Expense Worksheet

Estimate current monthly expenses as a starting point for your retirement needs.

Expense worksheet (PDF)

Retirement Calculator

Retirement Calculator

Run the numbers

Estimate what it may take to save for your retirement.

Retirement Calculator

RealSteps>Retirement® Resource Guide

This guide includes information and tools to help you take action and manage your retirement goals.


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