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Are you saving too much?

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By Michael O’Connor

Working in the finance space, I get a lot of questions about savings such as am I saving enough, how much do I need to save for retirement, and how can I save more?

And I get it; uncertainty around money can be one of the leading causes of stress.

According to Northwestern Mutual's 2018 Planning & Progress Study, 48% of US adults experienced "high" or "moderate" levels of anxiety around their level of savings.

Increasing your savings can be a sure-fire way to provide the peace of mind necessary to alleviate this stress.

But is there a downside here?

Does our preoccupation with savings inhibit other areas of our lives and at what point does saving money have diminishing rates of utility?

The allure of early retirement cannot be denied; paying your mortgage off a few years early is compelling, but continuously foregoing what you want now in the name of saving for 'the future' may not be as necessary as we think.

Despite the anxiety and focus around saving, the evidence suggests that many individuals seem to be saving too much.

Recent studies from the Investment and Wealth Institute have shown that only one in seven retirees are withdrawing principal from their retirement within a given year. The remaining retirees live off of their investments or even less.

According to a study by United Income, 'The average retired adult who dies in their 60s leaves behind $296k in net wealth, $313k in their 70s, $315k in their 80s, and $238k in their 90s'.

In short, retiree wealth tends to go up, not down, with age.

This suggests that more people should be asking, "Am I saving too much?" rather than "Am I saving enough?"

Stop guessing and make a plan.

Financial planning is not simply about blindly saving as much as possible. Your finances should facilitate your life, not perpetually inhibit it until such time as you have saved an arbitrary amount that you deem adequate enough to allow you do the things you want.

So, where do you start?

Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. It depends on your own personal situation, your income and your lifestyle.

With that said, there are general benchmarks that can be used when assessing your savings levels.

Start saving 6% at age 25 and ramp up savings by one percent each year until reaching an appropriate level, typically around 15%, including any employer contributions.

Savings of between 1 and 1.5 times your current gross wage at age 35 is a solid target to aim for.
Most people looking to retire around the age of 65 should aim for assets totalling between seven and 13-and-a-half times their pre-retirement gross income.

These general numbers won't apply to everyone, and a more robust financial plan is essential, but this should help to get the ball rolling.

A more in-depth financial plan should incorporate future project earnings, inheritance, the progressive compounding of your investments over time and the reduction in your spending rate over time as you move away from your most capital-intensive years.

It is essential that you take the time to figure out what you are truly saving for. Clarity around your exact requirement will ensure you strike the balance between spending in the present and saving smartly for the future.

To learn more about how to get started go to www.theislandinvestor.com.

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Camera Club ready to celebrate its 21st anniversary

Killarney Camera Club is ready for the new season and as well as celebrating their 21st birthday – they’re also looking for new members. Next Thursday night they will be […]

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Killarney Camera Club is ready for the new season and as well as celebrating their 21st birthday – they’re also looking for new members.

Next Thursday night they will be holding an Open Night at 7.30pm in the Plaza Suite at The Brehon Hotel.

The club meets every other Thursday at 7.30pm and is open to everyone with an interest in photography, including a junior membership category for 16 to 17-year-olds.

“Whether you’re a complete beginner, or you already know your way around a camera, everyone is welcome,” Deirdre Donohue from the club said.

The club activities include speaker nights, outings, project nights and competitions. At part of the club’s 21st celebrations they will be mounting an exhibition at Killarney House in late October.

“As well as a warm welcome, including tea and biscuits, the Open Night will feature a presentation, by professional photographer Micheál O’Sullivan, of his wonderful landscapes, so come along for a lovely evening of chat and photography!”

If you have any queries, you can contact the club secretary via email at secretary@killarneycameraclub.ie.

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Dancing classes set to unite communities

By Michelle Crean There’s no language barrier when it comes to dancing – which is why one local group is organising classes to unite communities. KASI, the Killarney Immigrant Support […]

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By Michelle Crean

There’s no language barrier when it comes to dancing – which is why one local group is organising classes to unite communities.

KASI, the Killarney Immigrant Support Centre, has teamed up with dance instructor John Moriarty to teach both Ukrainians and multiple cultures living in Kerry Irish set dancing steps from next week.

The first class will take place on Tuesday evenings, starting next week (September 27) at St Mary’s Parish Hall at 6.30pm and all are welcome to join.

The idea is to help Ukrainians living in Killarney and Kerry to come and have fun and get to know locals better, KASI coordinator, Marilyn Catapat-Counihan, explained to the Killarney Advertiser.

“We have a women’s group for all ages where we do crochet, sewing and art and crafts, where they can talk which is good. I had the music on and they were dancing. I asked if they would like to do dancing classes so I organised it with John Moriarty who is well known in Killarney.”

She added that the women are very excited to learn set dancing and get to know other people from the area.

“Sometimes when you meet new people the language can be a barrier and when you’re dancing everybody is moving. He will open it to everyone so there’ll be integration, it’s fun as well. They are all very excited.”

To find out more contact John on 086 1579381.

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