“It is not love that makes a relationship complicated; it is the people in it who do.”

— Unknown

This lighthearted statement seems quite fitting as we ponder our relationships.  All relationships are complex because humans are complex. Whether the romantic devotion of a loving couple, the adoration shared between parent and child or even the collaborative camaraderie among colleagues, relationships can be challenging at times, and they require hard work. Our relationship with money is no different, it too requires our attention and dedication. 

Like it or not, we need money in our lives.  It is a medium necessary to helping us achieve our goals and cannot be ignored. We cannot divorce, disown, or move on from this association. It is a relationship that needs to be cared for, nurtured, and understood so that it can flourish into a prosperous bond. 

Whether your connection with money is marked by love, hate, or some combination of the two, we can take steps to make that relationship less complicated. By following the ‘3 Cs’ of conventional relationship advice anyone can simplify the complexities and make the most of this life-long union. 


This is one of the most important aspects of any relationship. Communicating your personal objectives is paramount to achieving your goals. Identifying, and clearly stating, what is important to you is the first step. A financial plan is a great tool to document and fully communicate your goals in an organized fashion and aids in creating a solid foundation for good decisions.


With any relationship, there may need to be some give and take. Life can can lead us down an unexpected path, our goals may shift over time, or one goal may take precedence over another. At times we may find ourselves veering off-track from the achievement of our goals. Sometimes, a compromise needs to be made.  Conflicting goals and resources may require prioritizing decisions or making concessions that are vital to attaining what is truly most important in our lives. An open conversation with your financial professional can help you make sense of these situations, navigate the journey with you, and may help illuminate creative solutions that will keep you on target.


Deciding that you are truly committed and willing to do what it takes to be successful to reach your financial goals is an important first step. It does take more than mere words, actions will be necessary to strengthen the bond and take charge of the outcomes that are within our control. It may not take place overnight, but with dedication and perseverance over time, we can achieve our desired results.

So, what should a thriving relationship with money look like? It does not matter whether your goal is ultimately a comfortable retirement, putting your children through college, or leaving a lasting legacy, all relationships are personal and specific to your particular set of circumstances. Keeping that in mind, there are some general rules of thumb that you can use to evaluate the current status of your relationship with money. We have identified the following Wealth Planning Targets, and although they are not a substitute for a comprehensive financial plan, they are a starting point for consideration.

  1. Retirement Withdrawals: 2.5% -3.5% maximum portfolio withdrawals depending on the length of retirement.   

If you plan on being retired for 25 years, have an allocation of 60% stocks and 40% bonds and plan to take 6% inflation-adjusted withdrawals, you have a 30-40% chance that your assets will outlast your 25-year horizon. This means that when 1,000 Monte Carlo simulations are run, the assets lasted at least 25 years in 300-400 simulations and ran out in 600-700. A withdrawal rate with a probability of success of 80% or greater is generally considered a successful strategy.

A loving, healthy relationship with money is achievable, it does not need to be complicated. Like every quality relationship, it is worth the work, and doesn’t need to be faced alone. Your financial planner can assist you in maintaining your commitment and managing necessary compromise toward the achievement of your life’s desires. Through the creation of a plan that clearly communicates your goals, accounts for variable scenarios, and provides practical, measurable steps, we can live the life we’ve imagined for ourselves.

Contact Jill Branthoover for more information on this topic. 


This material is provided for informational purposes only. It is not to be construed as an offer to buy or sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any financial instruments or to participate in any particular trading strategy. This material does not constitute tax, legal, investment or any other type of professional advice. You should consult with a qualified tax, legal or financial advisor prior to making a decision. Certain assumptions may have been made by these sources in compiling such information, and changes in such assumptions may have material impact on the information presented herein. The financial instruments discussed in this report may not be suitable for all investors and investors must make their own investment decisions based upon their specific financial situations and investment objectives. Except where otherwise indicated herein, the information provided herein is based on matters as they exist as of the date of preparation, and may not be updated or otherwise revised to reflect information that subsequently becomes available, or changes occurring after the date hereof. These materials do not take into account your specific circumstances and we do not represent that this material is complete or applicable to your situation.
The information provided is hypothetical in nature, does not reflect actual investment results, and is not a guarantee of future results. No reliance should be placed on any such information when making an investment decision. Nothing herein is intended as an endorsement by any person of Sequoia nor should the information be construed as a statement of a typical client’s experience with Sequoia. Sequoia Financial Group, LLC makes no representations or warranties with respect to the accuracy, reliability, or utility of information obtained from third-parties. Certain assumptions may have been made by these sources in compiling such information, and changes to assumptions may have material impact on the information presented in these materials. While we have taken great care in the preparation of these materials, we cannot be responsible for clerical, computational, or other errors.
Investment advisory services offered through Sequoia Financial Advisors, LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Registration as an investment adviser does not imply a certain level of skill or training

The views expressed represent the opinion of Sequoia Financial Group. The views are subject to change and are not intended as a forecast or guarantee of future results. This material is for informational purposes only. It does not constitute investment advice and is not intended as an endorsement of any specific investment. Stated information is derived from proprietary and nonproprietary sources that have not been independently verified for accuracy or completeness. While Sequoia believes the information to be accurate and reliable, we do not claim or have responsibility for its completeness, accuracy, or reliability. Statements of future expectations, estimates, projections, and other forward-looking statements are based on available information and Sequoia’s view as of the time of these statements. Accordingly, such statements are inherently speculative as they are based on assumptions that may involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results, performance or events may differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. Investing in equity securities involves risks, including the potential loss of principal. While equities may offer the potential for greater long-term growth than most debt securities, they generally have higher volatility. Past performance is not an indication of future results. Investment advisory services offered through Sequoia Financial Advisors, LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Registration as an investment advisor does not imply a certain level of skill or training.

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Investment advisory services offered through Sequoia Financial Advisors, LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Registration as an investment advisor does not imply a certain level of skill or training.

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