David Giertz is President of Nationwide Financial’s Distribution team, and has over 30 years of experience in the financial services and advice industry. In that time he has learned many financial advisers neglect a critical aspect of the overall financial picture of their clients, and it costs both the clients and the advisers a lot of money. Too many financial advisers ignore the topic of Social Security. They apparently believe people can handle applying for Social Security retirement benefits without their help. That is true, but that doesn’t mean their clients don’t need help and advice to maximize their benefits.
And many people do not understand how their Social Security benefits are calculated. In a survey by the Nationwide Retirement Institute, 86% of people within ten years of retirement did not know all the factors that go into how much money they will receive. According to Giertz, advisers see many people make the mistake of thinking 62 is the age to retire. Too many do not understand how much that reduces their future benefits. They take the money just because it’s there.
Social Security is a complex topic. The Social Security Handbook contains 2700 rules. Most financial advisers do not understand them all, so they lack confidence and, therefore, don’t bring up the subject. However, that means their clients make mistakes that can cost them up to $300,000 over the rest of their lifetimes.
Or it can cost the adviser. Because four out of five of the people who completed the survey said they would switch advisers if their current adviser did not talk about Social Security.
David Giertz credits his success in his career and life to what his mother told him. Work hard, look on the positive side and learn something new every day. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science from Millikin University, and received an Executive MBA from the University of Miami. He began working for Nationwide Financial in 1999 as Regional Vice President of the Southeast Territory.