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South Burlington, VT

I Don’t Know How to Manage my 401(k) Rollover

Your worry: I don’t know how to manage my money, and now I’m retiring

The issue: You’ve worked for a long time and have contributed to your 401(k) plan. You’ve always had guidance and help from your employer in how to invest your retirement savings. You might have just retired or you’re going to retire soon and now you have to manage your own money. You’re worried that you’re not going to do the right things.

Dont_know_how_to_save_401kYour story: You’ve saved your entire working career. Over your working timeframe you’ve managed to accumulate a lot of money. You never felt like you were denying yourself to save; you just did it on a regular basis.

For the first twenty years you saved, it never felt like you were making any progress. Then, one day you woke up, looked at your statements and found you had started to accumulate a lot of money.

Retirement looked like something you might enjoy. The only problem is, you’re a little scared about having to manage all of the money you’ve accumulated. You really never paid a lot of attention to your investments. After all, you had a 401(k) at work and you always had advice from the investment company.

Now you have to invest the money yourself and you’re not even sure how to rollover your account to your own IRA. All of it feels hard, and more than a little complicated. You would like some help and you want to make sure you’re not taken advantage of. Your main goal is to make sure you’re being responsible with the money that you’ve accumulated.

Issues you might have...


  • I don't know anything about investing my own money. 
  • I want to get advice and I don't know how much it should cost or whether my advisor will work in my interest. 
  • I'm more than a little afraid that my investments might drop a lot. I don't want to re-visit what happened to my portfolio in 2008. 
  • I feel intimidated when my investment advisor uses lots of technical terms to explain to me what they think I should do. 
  • I don't want to spend all of my time managing my investments. I want to have someone take care of them and I don't want to be taken advantage of. 


  • You should learn the basics of investing and what some of the terminology of investing is and what it means. 
  • You will want to understand what being a fiduciary means and look at what are standard costs in the industry. 
  • You will want to learn about asset allocation and using your money wisely while in retirement. Learning what is different in retirement investing is important. 
  • If your advisor uses lots of technical terms, make sure they stop and use normal language. When they use technical terms, make sure they explain what those terms mean to you. 
  • Have your investment advisor help you understand how to monitor your accounts. Be clear about your goals and make sure your goals are realistic. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. 
Basics of Investment Management