How to Plan and Prepare for Retirement: Assessing Your Risk Tolerance

Joshua Dobi |


Planning for retirement requires careful consideration of various factors, including personal investments, retirement plans, life events, and financial goals. Understanding your risk tolerance is a crucial step in navigating the investment universe effectively. At North Main Financial, we try to make it as simple as possible by asking you a series of questions and then allowing the answers to help guide us in the direction that’s most applicable to you. This article explores the importance of risk assessment and how it can influence your retirement planning.


Assessing Risk: Aggressive vs. Conservative

Determining your risk tolerance depends on what you hope to achieve with your retirement savings. Younger individuals with a longer time horizon may opt for more aggressive investment strategies to capitalize on potential growth. However, they must also be aware of the corresponding short-term downside risks. On the other hand, individuals nearing retirement may prefer a more conservative approach to protect against potential losses while sacrificing some growth opportunities.


Considerations for Age:

As we age, our risk tolerance may evolve. With increasing life expectancies, retirement can now span several decades, necessitating a carefully planned financial strategy. It is essential to choose investments that can withstand market fluctuations over extended periods, ensuring your financial security throughout retirement.


Transition from Accumulation to Income-Generation:

As retirement approaches, a shift occurs from the accumulation phase to the income-generation phase. This transition may alter your risk tolerance as you seek to produce a stable income from your investments. Consulting a financial advisor can help you make well-informed decisions aligned with your changing risk appetite.


Avoid Letting Past Experiences Influence Decisions:

It’s natural for past experiences to influence our financial decisions, but it’s crucial not to let them unduly sway us. Be objective and avoid being overly influenced by positive or negative experiences with specific investments. Instead, focus on the future prospects and potential growth of your chosen investments.


Align Investments with Your Goals:

Consider the nature of your investments and how they align with your financial goals. Investments earmarked for short-term goals, like college expenses, may require different risk strategies compared to those intended for long-term retirement planning.


The Power of Good Decisions:

Making well-informed investment decisions can significantly impact your financial future. Even a small percentage difference in average returns over time can lead to substantial differences in your portfolio’s value. Stay proactive and revisit your retirement plan regularly, adapting it to changes in goals, work circumstances, and life events.



Retirement planning necessitates understanding your risk tolerance and aligning your investments with your financial goals. By assessing your risk appetite and seeking guidance from financial advisors, you can make informed choices that pave the way for a secure and comfortable retirement. Regularly reviewing your retirement plan ensures it remains on track and adapted to your evolving needs.


To review your financial plan or talk about your goals in retirement, please contact us at (704)987-1425 or visit our website at We are happy to schedule an introductory meeting with you at no cost or obligation. Remember, investing involves risk, and past performance does not guarantee future results.


These Blogs are provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as investment advice. Any opinions or forecasts contained herein reflect the subjective judgments and assumptions of the authors only and do not necessarily reflect the views of SagePoint Financial.