Retirement Readiness

Dear Garden State Trust:

I’m old enough to retire, but I’m not sure I’m ready yet. I think I have strong financial resources, but I don’t know if they are enough to make me financially independent for the rest of my life. Retirement seems so terribly uncertain to me. When should I make the jump?

—Standing on the Cusp

Dear Standing:

First off, your situation is quite common, your hesitation quite understandable. Many people are working well into their retirement years, longer than they expected to when they began their careers. In some cases, financial necessity is the driver, but in other cases, a few more years of work may result in a retirement that is substantially more comfortable, making luxuries affordable.

Do you get personal satisfaction from your job? Are the daily job stresses outweighed by your sense of accomplishment? If not, do you expect that to change?

Keep in mind that for most retirees, tax obligations go down, sometimes dramatically. So the financial resources that you’ve accumulated may go farther than you realize.

Finally, how is your health? How long did your parents live? That information may help you to estimate your own longevity. What are the things that you hope to do with the rest of your life? How much time might that take?

Sorting through questions such as these may help you to determine the optimal date for beginning your retirement.

Do you have a question concerning wealth management or trusts? Send your inquiry to

(February 2019)
© 2019 M.A. Co. All rights reserved.

I Didn’t Know You Could Ship That!

Valentine’s day is right around the corner, and many of us are still struggling to come up with a new great idea to celebrate the event. There is nothing wrong with reusing a great idea, and doing so may even add to a sense of renewal or tradition.

Sometimes, a gift is all about trying to help someone reconnect with home. Depending on where home is, here are four ideas you may still be able to get in time for Valentines day, items that most people do not yet realize are shippable products:

1. Authentic NY Bagels. The unique texture and taste of a New York bagel is nostalgic for some people, especially if they grew up with it. Thus, several companies have started overnight shipping of bagels all over the United States so that they could be experienced anywhere. NewYorkerBagels has 15+ flavors and a monthly subscription that may be worth experimenting with if you don’t know what the favorite is already:

2. Authentic Midwestern Summer Sausage. If your loved one grew up in the Midwest, it’s likely they could get a taste of home if they had some Wisconsin summer sausage and cheese. This seems like a growth market with more companies expanding local operations to have a shipping component – here’s an award-winning company you may not of heard of (they have a fun back-story too):

3. Wine or Liquor. Wine and liquor can be shipped to New Jersey, so you could get rare bottles such as a vintage Chartreuse V.E.P not generally available at your local liquor store. You could consider a small batch bourbon that’s only brewed and sold in a different part of the country where your loved one or spouse is from. This site aggregates information from companies that will sell alcohol online, and makes it easy to find what you’re looking for:

If you’d like to get wine, but don’t know how to choose which to try – here’s a company that will match up your palate with a quiz and recommend wines for you:

4. Snow. In New Jersey, you might be wondering why you would ever buy snow for a loved one on Valentine’s day, since you’re likely sick of snow already. However, if you recently relocated to a southern climate and know your significant other is missing home, here’s a way to have it come to you:

Note – These are just ideas, Garden State Trust Company is not endorsing these companies or products, and is not being paid to advertise them.

Last year – we explored each of the five largest gift giving categories and what the ultra-wealthy might give too. From chocolate that comes from trees for which DNA has been traced back thousands of years, to roses that would continue to bloom for a year with no maintenance – we’d love to get feedback from anyone who tried one of those ideas. If you haven’t seen that list – it can be viewed here:

We hope everyone has a wonderful Valentine’s day!