September 07, 2023
Listen to Podcast Episode:
On this edition of Ask KT & Suze Anything, Suze answers questions about investing, finding out potential Social Security benefits, ROTH SEP and the 5 Year Rule and more.
Intro / Outro: All right, Suze KT. Are you ready for today's podcast? Yeah,
Intro / Outro: of course, we're ready because we are unstoppable. Yeah. Baby
Intro / Outro: Music In.
Suze: September 7th, 2023.
KT: Wait! Suze is lying...it's really we're recording this but it's really not September 7th. You're gonna listen to this on September 7th. But today is like a week before we're in Florida and we're recording this in Florida because when you listen to this, what you're about to hear on September 7th, Suze and I are going to be eating a ton of pasta in Italy.
Suze: I don't eat carbs.
KT: You're gonna love it. They have, um, they have gluten free pasta
KT: we'll be in Italy.
Suze: Yeah. But do you know what tomorrow is
Suze: In pretend world that we're in? It's September 8th.
KT: Oh, we're going to be in Italy and it's our anniversary wedding, wedding anniversary. We have lots of anniversaries as you all know. Those of you are very familiar with KT and Suze...
Suze: But it will be our 13th.. wedding anniversary we were married in South Africa...
KT: But the 21st anniversary of being the forever..
KT: 22nd. Forever anniversary.
Suze: She's not good with any kind of numbers.
KT: I was never good with numbers. Ok, let's get to it, Suze. Here we go.
Suze: Did you welcome them to the women in Money?
KT: That's your job.
Suze: So, but really everybody, welcome to the Women and Money podcast. This is the Ask KT and Suze Anything edition if you want, you can write in a question to: Ask Suze Podcast...
KT: ... at gmail dot com.
Suze: Well, at least you knew the last end of it, right. If you write in a question,
Suze: KT may choose it to be on the podcast when I will answer it. However, as many, many, many of, you know, I read all these emails and more likely than not, I answer them directly to you if it kind of makes sense that I should do so. So
Suze: you never know you might want to take advantage of that. All right, KT!
KT: So here's the first one and she said, remember I'm the one that selects them and I selected this because it says Suze Slap Down required. Please help. This is from Brooke. Hi, KT and Suze. I love the podcast very much and look forward to it every week. I only wish it was every day. You don't watch what you wish for.
KT: So Brooke goes on to tell us all of my ducks are in a row. No debt, emergency fund, retirement will and trust. But I require a Suze Slap down in one area.
KT: I have about $150,000 sitting in my retirement account and it is not invested. I know that I should have been value cost averaging into VTI, but I kept hearing that the market was going to crash and now the market is high and I am paralyzed. Suze, please tell me what to do next. I really appreciate it and adore you both. Now, wait, listen to this: PS - this is the part I'm gonna watch your face get really red.
KT: My financial advisor is telling me to get a structured annuity, but I have listened enough to know that it's a bad idea. You have taught me so much.
Suze: A structured annuity? A structured annuity usually happens when you've gotten a settlement from an accident or something. And it's a very large settlement and rather than,
Suze: and invest in it and doing all these things, you can take that settlement income, tax free and put it in what's called a structured annuity. So you get monthly payments for the rest of your life. They structure it for you. So I don't even know what your financial advisor is thinking about. But Brooke, this is just for you. Listen closely. (The sound of a slap)
KT: What was that?
Suze: A Slap down!
KT: I thought you were like kid a bug or something. I thought that was a mosquito.
Suze: No, that was a slap down. She asked for...
KT: Wait, ready. This is a slap. (KT slaps herself)
Suze: Wait, don't hit yourself.
KT: Wait, that's a slip.
Suze: This was a slap. (Suze hits the table) the Anyway. Stop enough. I'm so sorry. Right. It's what happens when you're in Italy. Not. All right. Here's what I would say to you,
Suze: which is
Suze: the one word that jumped out at me from your email was the word paralyzed.
Suze: So you obviously are somebody who's afraid to invest in the stock market. Ok. No problem, given that interest rates are currently so high.
Suze: I'm afraid that if you were to invest right now, chances are the markets could really go down and then you would just be so upset. So let's take the high road. There is nothing wrong. Given that your money has been sitting there for a number of years making absolutely nothing. There is nothing wrong within your retirement account
Suze: to take the $150,000 and divide it into two sums, $50,000 that you're just going to leave in a high yield money market fund should be making about 4.5% interest for you right now. So wherever you are, make sure you look for their government money market fund and just leave $50,000 in there.
Suze: Now, also where you are invested with your retirement account, I have no doubt that they offer treasury bills, notes and bonds. So with the $100,000 that is left,
Suze: I want you to put $20,000 in a three month T bill, $20,000 in a six month T bill $20,000 in a two year treasury note $20,000 into a 10 year treasury note and another $20,000 into a 30 year treasury bond.
Suze: So you will have money coming due every few months, every few years. If interest rates continue to go up the money that you put into the three month and the six month, even possibly the two year, you'll be able to reinvest at a higher interest rate.
Suze: Interest rates start to go down. You have a good sum of money, $40,000 locked in to the higher interest rates. And if interest rates start to go down, the value especially of the 30 year bond will absolutely skyrocket on you. And as time goes on,
Suze: if you like what you're seeing or you like how it feels, then you could add a little bit $10,000 to each one of these from the 50,000 that you have in a money market account.
Suze: So if in fact, interest rates start to go down Brooke, I would probably then take that $50,000 and put it in another 30 year treasury bond. That's what I would do. You have nothing to be afraid of. You can never lose any money here. You have money coming to
Suze: you when you need it and that is your plan and now you're not paralyzed.
KT: There you go. Ok. Next question is from...
Suze: Wait, that's all you say. There you go. You didn't think that was brilliant.
KT: I thought that was brilliant, but I just want to make sure she got the order, right? Maybe you can say it one more time.
Suze: She can listen to it again. She, she's got it. She got it.
KT: Because that's like five investments.
Suze: Wait, can I just tell you a little story or do we not have time for a little story?
KT: Make it short.
Suze: Right. So, so funny where she said that she wished that we would have this podcast every single day. I'll never forget when the Oprah producer, Diane Hudson and everybody at back at the time, executive producer, they wanted me to have my own show every single day on money.
Suze: And I said to them, no, no, you can't do that. People can't take money every single day. Especially way back then I said, if we do that, they're gonna hate you, they're gonna hate me. Once a week is at most, in my opinion that people can really dive deep into a money issue, which I proved true on the Suze Orman show, which was on
Suze: the air for 13 years. But now everybody all 600 some odd episodes you can watch for free streaming on Freevee. You should watch it. It's fun.
KT: Amaon baby. All right. Next question is from Ed and Cathy. Thank you both so much for the invaluable service you offer the world. I like they say the world. I like that. Especially since we're in Italy. My question has to do with CDS. When choosing where to purchase a CD. Some CDS are not call protected. I intend to choose those that are call protected as I have in the past had a CD called in
KT: and I lost the opportunity to continue making a better rate on it. Please comment. Suze, I picked this one in particular because I want you to explain what a call is and what call protected is.
Suze: Do you want that to be your quizzie?
KT: No, no, just educate us.
Suze: So when interest rates are high, everybody as they are now and probably even going higher, believe it or not,
Suze: which is why when you're staging into like a 30 year bond or whatever, do it with small amounts of money until they've really reached their top or a 10 year treasury note, do it that way. However, when interest rates are high like this, a lot of banks, credit unions, whatever it may be
Suze: like to know that if interest rates start to go down rather than having locked in 5% for X amount of time
Suze: that they can call that bond or that CD from UK T they can take it back, they can pay you all the money that you put in. You don't lose any money, but you lost the interest rate because now they can take that money and lend it out again, maybe at four or 3%. So it doesn't cost them as much. So their carrying charges have gone down.
Suze: But when you get your money back and you go to reinvest it, you can't get that 5% because interest rates now are low. So, many CDs, especially those that are offered through brokerage firms have what's called a callable CD where the issuer can call it back any time they want
Suze: A non callable CD means if you get a CD for five years, all five years, you're gonna get that interest rate. Nobody can call it and take that CD away from you.
KT: So which one is better?
Suze: Absolutely a non callable one. Do not, do not, do not in this interest rate environment, ever get a callable bond or
Suze: certificate of deposit.
KT: So that's good to know. So when people listening, go to buy one, make sure...
Suze: That it is not, callable. I don't care if it's even offering you a higher interest rate right now. Unless it's for a very short period of time, but a short period of time, they're not gonna offer it.
KT: Don't get one. Ok. Next question is from Mary.
KT: Thank you for the wonderful advice over the years, Suze. I'm 62. I was married for 36 years and divorced in 2019. So how can I find out what I might get under my ex's social security versus mine? We are not on speaking terms and she said his choice.
KT: I know what I would get under mine. But the only way I seem to find to learn what it would be under his is by filing for social security and then they'll check. So this, she doesn't want to do that. She said, can you start the process for social security and then decide to wait to actually start collecting, can you?
Suze: How old is she?
Suze: Yeah. You want to know what you could do, girlfriend, believe it or not, Mary
Suze: is, and this is something, listen closely. I am sure most of you don't have a clue about. You could file and start getting
Suze: your social security or his. They'll tell you whichever one's higher. 50% of his or 100% of yours. Let's say you filed and you started to get your social security at 62. Now you're all freaking out because you're all like Suze said, never touch it before 70 na na na. All right. Listen to me
Suze: and for one year you get those payments, you have 12 months from the time that you started to collect social security to decide you don't want it anymore. And then all of a sudden you give all the money back but you give it back without interest.
Suze: So you could take those social security payments, put it in a money market fund right now, making 4.5% interest, earn all the interest on that month in and month out.
Suze: And then at the end, go back to social security, give him all the money back with no interest and then you will have known what you would have gotten not only from your ex spouse, but you would have made a little extra money as well. I know, KT's looking at me.
KT: So, wait, I'm gonna ask you. So, I'm gonna ask you a question. She's probably still wondering
KT: if she did that great idea because she'll make a couple thousand dollars possibly.
Suze: Well, not that much but she, well, it depends how much her social security is going to be. She could, she could, but that extra, but she will know then what her ex's benefit would be because they will give her and they will tell her and then it will be a combination of either 50% of his or 100% of hers. However,
Suze: she could also call social security, make an appointment with them. I happen to know the number by heart for many reasons, but it's 1 800 772 1213.
Suze: I love, I always love the 1213. Ok. Right. Don't ask me why I remember it.
KT: Wait, let's do it one more time. 800 772 1213. that
Suze: You can call there, make an appointment, everybody. And as long as you were married for at least 10 years, which is in this case, she was, right. And you know, your former spouse's name,
Suze: the date and place of birth of not only him but possibly even his parents, possibly his parents name and his social or her social security number.
Suze: You can probably find out what you wanna find out. Remember, you can claim, even if your ex has remarried, you can claim even if your ex hasn't retired and isn't receiving social security benefits and
Suze: you just need to know that, but your ex does have to be at least 62 years of age. And at that point, no matter when you claim, you would get 50% of his or her social security benefit at their full retirement age, even though they might not be collecting. Next question, KT
KT: So I have one more thing to add to that, if she were to do that and, and find out and then take it for a year and give the money back. Does that jeopardize what she does at the age of 70?
Suze: Not on any level.
KT: OK. That's all I wanted to make sure Suze.
Suze: I think it's a brilliant, I still, I know maybe you'll get mad at me. I still don't understand
Suze: how social security allows you to do that but not charge you any interest on that money. It's like getting an interest free loan from them as long as you can pay it back within 12 months. Years ago, KT, I wrote about this in one of my books and it's never changed.
Suze: It's always been this way. It's just absolutely crazy. Anyway, go on.
KT: OK. Next question is from Nanette. I, I love that name.
Suze: I knew you did...
KT: and then you call her Nan for short. I like that too. Like some people are called Nanny...
Suze: Oh just read the email.
KT: Hi, Suze. I'm 63 years old and I have an opportunity to take a cash option out of my pension. My company stopped contributing to the pension on July 1st 2018, I have the option to take a lump sum of around $69,000 and a monthly pension benefit of $213 a month until I die. Or I can start taking my
KT: pension when I'm 65 years old at a monthly benefit of $732 a month until I die. I'm still employed. I will not retire until I'm 65. Could you please help me with this decision?
KT: I'm gonna guess you're going to go for the 732.
Suze: You're gonna guess that should, that have been your quizzie?
KT: Probably, I... would I get it right?
Suze: It depends, but probably ding. Right. So, Nanette, here's the one thing that I don't know is, are you money strapped? Are you healthy? Whatever... because if you get what my key here was, they stopped contributing to the pension
Suze: 2018, what that meant was they kind of wanted you, the pension was too rich. They wanted all of you out of the pension. So even though I know it sounds good to have a $69,000 lump sum of money all of a sudden and $213 a month. If you took that $69,000 and you did an ira rollover with it, let's just say,
Suze: and you put it in treasuries to keep it safe and sound. You would make approximately $2760 a year on that at about 4.5% interest or that is approximately, I think $230 a month, you add that to your pension of $213 a month.
Suze: That would give you a total of $443. Not bad, except if you just waited two more years,
Suze: you would get $732 a month, which is $289 more per month than the other way, which is 65% more on your money. And then if we reverse calculated it, you should see KT as she's looking at me, you would look at it like how much money would you need in your IRA
Suze: generating 4.5% a year to give you $732 a month, which is $8784. I believe a year.
Suze: You would need, if my calculations here are correct, you should all double check them about $195,000 in your ira rollover
Suze: at 4.5% to give you about $8700 a year of interest. So I have to tell you in this particular situation, if you do not need that 69,000, if you don't have any beneficiaries whatsoever, everything else is good
Suze: and you're gonna retire at 65 I would so just take the $732 a month hands down. They don't want you to take that. But that's what I would take. Why are you looking at me like that?
KT: Because it, because of the what if sin life, that's why this is a very important decision.
KT: And you said right up front, if only you knew a little bit more about Nanette's personal needs financially and healthwise because...
Suze: and if it's family that needs the money.
KT: Right, it's that 69,000 upfront
KT: that's already in her hands.
Suze: But I have a gut. Remember it's not in her hands, KT that 69,000 then is rolled over to an IRA rollover if she goes because that's how it works, right? Otherwise it's all taxable to her in one year.
Suze: So because it's part of her pension, it's rolled over to an Ira rollover and any money she takes out of there is totally taxable to her. So it's not like she would have access to $69,000 tax free. She would have to pay taxes on it. So it wouldn't even be that, which makes the case even more. So I have to tell you
Suze: without knowing enough about you. I would absolutely go with the 732 also. I just have to say something to you. KT, normally a person doesn't just go for a life only option like this unless they really don't have any beneficiaries and they're not thinking about that. So, I have a feeling Nannette, that,
Suze: you know, you don't have any beneficiaries if I'm right on that. Oh, you should. So take the 772. It's not even funny. Sorry. 732.. 0h, well, see, now I screwed up my numbers, the 732. It's not even funny. All right.
KT: Ok, next question is from Libby
KT: Hi, Suze and KT. You mentioned Roth SEP IRAs in your recent podcast. Are they subject to the five-year rule? I can find very little about them on the internet. Thanks for all you do. So let's remind everybody a Roth SEP IRA is brand new.
Suze: It's brand new and yes. However, whenever you see the word
Suze: Roth in front of anything, they are always subjected to the five year rule. And if you don't know what that is, you have to listen to the podcast of the past.
KT: We have lots of them about Roth.
Suze: We have now over 500. Do you know September 3rd was our 500th.
KT: 500th. Congratulations.
Suze: Thank you.
KT: 500. Wow.
Suze: Am I in 250 of them?
Suze: I have no idea.
KT: Actually, we added me in like maybe after a couple of years.
Suze: I don't remember. But why did it take us so long.
KT: I don't know. It's been fun for you, right?
Suze: Wanna know the truth
Suze: without you. I probably would have stopped the podcast a while ago.
KT: Oh, don't say that Suze. That's not true.
Suze: It's so true.
KT: It's not true, everybody, she would keep rolling on.
Suze: I don't know if that's true. Everybody.
KT: All right. Here we go. From Nicky. We're never gonna stop.
Suze: No KT, No Suze.
KT: (singing) Never gonna let you go. Gonna hold you in my arms forever. Hi, KT and Suze. I've been a faithful listener.
Suze: Wait, did you do that because it's our anniversary tomorrow?
KT: No, because we're never going to stop. But I can't wait for an anniversary again. What are we going to do? We're in Italy.
Suze: Buy me a new gold chain.
KT: Oh, for her little necklace. This one gets stuck...
Suze: On my scar
KT: On her little, yeah. Gets stuck on her little neck scar. Ok. Ready? Hi, KT and Suze, again from Nikki. I've been a faithful listener of your show.
Suze: What does that mean again from Nikki? Has she written it before?
KT: No, I said again because we just interrupted the intro. All right. So next question, Suze is from Nikki.
KT: Ready? My husband and I each purchased a 10,000 I bond in May of 2022. Our daughter, our daughter is starting college in September and we have agreed to provide $5000 in assistance for educational expenses for the school year.
KT: I read somewhere that the interest earned on I bonds is not taxable if you use it for educational expenses. Is that true?
Suze: Well, it could be, it depends on their income...
KT: Would it make sense... Would it make sense to cash out all or part of one of the bonds
KT: to use for her educational expenses? We are in a higher tax bracket with over 200 K in annual income. Nikki and Robert.
Suze: It' aint gonna work for you, girl. So, my dear Nikki and Robert.
Suze: Nope, this doesn't apply to you because your annual income is $200,000. I don't know if that's your A G I or your gross. But the truth of the matter is if you are married filing jointly, the max is one
Suze: $167,800 to be able to take money out of an I Bond and use it for a qualified educational expense with no taxes. By the way, if you're single, that amount is $106,850 is the max.
Suze: And if you happen to be married, filing single, you can't do it at all. So, in this particular situation, you're not going to be able to do it. All right, KT, next.
KT: Ok. Next question is from Kelly...
Suze: Wait, am I impressing you today with my knowledge.
KT: Your numbers are off the charts. I mean you're so smart.
Suze: It's what happens when you're in Italy.
KT: I'm not, I was going to start to sing something,
Suze: What were you going to sing?
KT: An Italian song. I'm not going to sing it.
Suze: Come on, just give me one.
KT: (KT starts singing "Mambo Italiano") Right. Hi KT and Suze,
KT: I analyzed how much guaranteed income I will have in retirement at 67. Good for you, Kelly, that you even did this. She's 61 and I think I will fall short of about $500 a month to cover my basic expenses.
KT: I would feel more secure if I could guarantee just that much more future income. I currently have about 380,000 saved about one third of that's in a Roth. Reading your book...
Suze: I was gonna say, I bet she read my book.
KT: She did but listen to what she wants to do. This is a little, I'm not sure if you'll like it, reading your book and listening to your
KT: podcast. I understand you recommend income annuities only.
Suze: Yes. Only for her situation.
KT: Ok. Hold on. When I search for those online, I am finding fixed variable deferred and immediate but nothing called income annuity.
KT: Is there a link you could share to direct me to the right place so I don't get this thing wrong. Also, Suze, do you advise immediate or deferred? I don't need the money for six ish years. First of all, good for you, Kelly. I'm real proud of you.
Suze: What I'm talking about in the ultimate retirement guide for 50 plus, which is my last book.
KT: You should all read it.
Suze: That's now four years old, right? But so relevant still
Suze: is that a lot of people want to cover their actual expenses and sometimes when they add up their social security, their pension, their interest, whatever it may be like, Kelly did she finds she's about $500 a month short. So therefore, if she were to get an immediate annuity, it could possibly depending what interest rates are at the time,
Suze: have to put in X amount of money to get that $500 a month. Kelly, since you do not need this for six-ish years, I would not be doing it yet. You don't have to do it yet,
Suze: but just keep watching interest rates because when interest rates start to go up and there's gonna come a time when they've topped out, I don't know when that will be, that is the time that you really want to do it.
Suze: And it's called an immediate annuity. I would not be doing a deferred annuity in this situation at all. I would be doing an immediate annuity, which simply means as soon as you put a lump sum into this annuity,
Suze: they guarantee you an income for the rest of your life no matter how long you happen to live, which is what might make you feel secure, which is the goal of money. So it's called an
Suze: immediate annuity, but don't do it yet, girlfriend, try to postpone it as long as possible because hey, we don't know, interest rates could be going up here for quite a while yet. We don't know or they could have hit their top and that's why you put little by little amounts all over the place. All right. Yes.
KT: Ok, Suze. Next question from Sarah. I love your show. Have your books. Have your must haves and follow your advice.
KT: I like that. Your must haves.
KT: I have a quick question for you. I had LTC insurance through my employer when I was laid off. The only insurance that was portable was my health insurance.
Suze: I read this one, by the way.
KT: I know you're going to send her to Phyllis.
Suze: I did send send her to Phyllis.
KT: Allright, we'll tell you in a minute who Phyllis is. Everything else, extra life insurance and LTC went away. They said I couldn't take it with me. I paid into those accounts for almost five years and now I'm thinking, should I even bother with contributing through my next employer? It seems like a waste of money if you don't stay with the company up until retirement.
KT: What are your thoughts, Suze? I'm shopping for a new policy since I'm 59. I want to capture a decent rate before I hit 60. Thank you so much for all you guys do.
Suze: All right. So do you remember at the beginning of this I said that I go through these and I read them and it's really impossible, everybody to keep up on every single thing that's out there.
Suze: So, and to be an expert on every single part of it. So sometimes when it comes to student loans and information there, if it's a question that I cannot answer. I'll send it to Mark Kantowitz who is absolutely the nation's expert. If in fact, it's a question like this on long term care, then I send it to Phyllis Shelton
Suze: Phyllis at got LTC dot com. That's where I send it to. And Phyllis always gets back to the person because in my opinion, she is the expert on long term care insurance and has helped thousands of you for free and KT as well.
KT: I, I got, I bought my policy through Phyllis. It's unbelievable.
Suze: But here's the thing again, it's Phyllis Phyllis at got ltc - long term care insurance. LTC I dot com. I sent this email from Sarah to Phyllis and while KT was reading it
Suze: and I went on to my little iphone and I got the response because Phyllis copies me on every single thing she sends directly to you. So I would like to read to you right now exactly what Phyllis wrote to Sarah because then you'll understand what happens on the Women and Money podcast and how we really are here to help you.
Suze: Hi, Sarah. I'm really glad you asked Suze about this. I am her person for all inquiries related to LTC insurance and I can tell you that your employer was 100% wrong.
Suze: Your policy was portable. All you have to do is call the insurance company with your policy number and they would have billed you directly instead of through payroll deduction with your employer.
Suze: You don't say how long it has been since this happened, but I would still call the insurance company and tell them what happened, that your employer gave you incorrect information. In fact, if you give me a contact at your employer, I will be happy to call and explain this so that no one else will lose a policy.
Suze: So I want you to think about that. I want you to think about that. So Phyllis, we love you. I know that you wrote Sarah directly. So Sarah got this information directly and there you go, KT...
KT: It's time...
Suze: But we kind of went over with that. But you did your little quizze,
Suze: you had a little quizzie with that. Yeah. And well, I'll save the quizzie that I have for you till next time. When we record again, where will we be? Maybe we will be in Spain.
KT: Oh Yeah. Does everyone know we're going back to the camino?
Suze: I think we told them that.
KT: Oh my God, that's gonna be so great, right?
Suze: So anyway, so
Suze: Adios is not Italian.
KT: No, arrivederci is "And until we meet again" and is Italian and Adios is.. or hasta luego - see you later
Suze: Anyway. So until next time, there's really only one thing that we want you to say every
Suze: single day and it goes like this today, wherever I go, I will create a more peaceful, loving, joyful world. And if you do that, what happens, KT?
Suze: You will be unstoppable. Bye bye now.
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