Baby boomers should be reviewing their retirement portfolios once a year and tweaking or re-balancing them, if necessary, says Delia Fernandez, a fee-only certified financial planner.
Fernandez is the founder of Fernandez Financial Advisory in Los Alamitos.
She had that suggestion and more for Marymount College math professor Patrick Webster, 63 and his wife Susie Martin, 54, who also works at Marymount.
The couple had managed to amass savings of more than $1 million, but they were still worried.
Webster and Martin had weathered four stock market contractions and were worried that their finances would not survive another one, but they had only talked about seeking financial advice and never acted on it.
Martin hadn't reviewed her investments since opening her retirement accounts with Marymount College several years ago.
Webster said he had a tendency "to become frozen when it comes to selling stocks and reinvesting," which, he said, was once reason he lost a bundle in the dot-com boom and bust.
With both Webster and Martin fearing another double-digit stock market contraction in the next few years, it was good that they finally sought out advice.
With a portfolio heavily weighted to riskier equity funds, the couple was going to take a hard hit in a stock market crash.
Now that Fernandez has the couple shifting their exposure to equity funds to between 60% and 65%, she still says they need to pay more attention.
"Don't look at it every day. That will just give you a heart attack," said Fernandez. "People spend too much time worrying about the noise in the news every week instead of taking a long range view."
Fernandez added "but they really should review their investments once a year. That will usually do the trick."