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How to retire during a pandemic

If you are close to retirement age, but not sure if it’s a good time to retire, we talked to the experts to find out.
Updated: Jun. 9, 2020 at 8:15 AM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -

Many that were close to retirement may feel like their plans have been flipped upside down. Local financial planner John Vandergriff, with Blue Ridge Wealth Planners said that your plans don’t have to change, even if you’ve been laid off.

“If they can, go ahead and file for unemployment because the rules have become differen’t than they were. You’re able to get not only get more money from the state, but the federal supplment and you’re able to get it for a longer period of time,” said Vandergriff.

“Really trying to make the decision to retire now if possible is a good idea. People are worried about that because markets have taken values down and they’re not back up to where they were even at the beginning at the year, but what we tell people is we don’t know what more uncertainity is going to be in the markets in the future so if we can make retirement work now we want to make that possible by maybe changing the way we are investing our money, trying to protect this money nowthat we’ve had a dramatic decrease," said Vandergriff.

The CARES Act also has special provisions for people age 59.5, “There are some allowances in there to be able to access money in a larger account in their 401K than previously,” he said. “It’s a great opportunity to take that money out and have the taxes delayed on it,” he said.

If you feel intemidated Vandergriff said talking to an advisor can help. "It can help expose you to questions you may not know the answers to or questions you didn’t know to ask.

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