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The 7% Solution: You CAN Afford A Comfortable Retirement [Kindle Edition]

John Graves
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $8.00

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Book Description

Our parents taught us thrift: living within our means, saving, avoiding debt and tithing. If we have followed these ideas, we are well placed to retire. Learn how to build and maintain your own retirement income portfolio with this new book. Author John Graves shows you how to earn as much as 7% income for your comfortable retirement. Using individual stocks and bonds in a moderately conservative manner, he helps you build and maintain your retirement portfolio.

Editorial Reviews


The 7% Solution has just been awarded the prestigious national book award from The Independent Book Publishers Assoc. It has been awarded the gold medal for best personal finance book for 2012.

"The Living Now Awards are presented each year to honor books that improve our lives. During these trying times, when the middle class is disappearing, family budgets are shrinking and the changing climate is inspiring a more 'green' approach, now is the time to read about enriching our lives in wholesome, Earth-friendly ways. These awards celebrate the innovation and creativity of newly published books in lifestyle categories from cooking to fitness to spiritual and financial health. That's what great books do: help us imagine change and give us information to make change happen. Books are the perfect thing to inspire and to inform us about keeping ourselves and the Earth healthy." --Jim Barnes, Award Director, IBPA

Product Details

  • File Size: 755 KB
  • Print Length: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Safe Harbor Publishing (April 2, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B008FD0BSA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #778,144 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
The tile of this book refers both to the classic Sherlock Holmes story, and to the long term average return from the stock market. It also refers to the author's contention that the traditional 4% rule of thumb for investment withdrawals is too conservative. He believes- promises- that by following his recommendations, the average investor can generate a 7% annual return. How well does he make his case?

The bulk of this book is not advice, but basic background and explanation of the various investments instruments available to the average non-specialist investor, and this part of the book is first rate. Graves does an excellent job of clarifying the often opaque terminology of investments, and explaining the relative risks of different instruments, and to a degree, how to compare risks. He closes each chapter with an assignment to the reader designed to reinforce the lessons taught. All this is very well done, and I would strongly recommend this book just on the strength of how well he educates the attentive reader. There are a few areas where I think the author missed some very important points. Social Security, for one. It's a significant part of most retiree's income, and there are important tax consequences to consider when deciding when to start drawing on SS. Someone with a significant post-retirement income might draw more on that and put off SS to get a significantly higher Social Security check later on.

Risk is also mentioned, but not really treated in detail. The section on annuities suggest that with annuities there's a tradeoff between returns and risk- the investor might accept a 3% nominal return in exchange for no risk. But if course there's significant inflationary risk. A modest 2.5% annual inflation means a 3% annuity has a real return of only 0.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
World traveler, independent financial advisor, and author, John Graves, gives-back in his "The 7% Solution" with a proven, step-by-step program for retirees (or those soon to be) that will provide for an affordable and comfortable retirement. The program is rooted in the author's 26 years of experience advising others how to become better stewards of their resources.

Better stewards means we need to fully understand some ideas that run counter to the common wisdom found in the generally agreed upon principles of financial planning and portfolio management. They include:

* When you retire, you will need less capital than what you have been told you need.
* Your annual income needs will fluctuate.
* You may live longer than you (and planners) think.
* Financial models used to design portfolios are cartoons. Follow them at your peril.
* The key assumption of most retirement planning tools - a 4% return - is too low a target. It almost certainly assures failure.
* Portfolio challenges we face are different from what a portfolio manager thinks we face.

The book's title, "The 7% Solution," implies that the reader will learn how to generate as much as 7% in annual income distributions. This will be useful for both investors who want to go it alone as well as those preferring financial advisors. For the latter group, the book's value will be in fulfilling his/her responsibilities on being aware and informed of investment strategies, income personal needs, and income vehicles (stocks, bonds, low maintenance investments like mutual funds, annuities, MLPs, BDCs, and other income sources like real estate and REITs).
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hits the Nail On the Head! April 1, 2012
John H. Graves has brought to us a serious but very reader-friendly book about those items we are afraid to admit we don't understand and are uncomfortable seeking professional guidance for answers: the terms, definitions, differences, and significances of the various forms of investing money in order to have a secure retirement. Right off the bat he offers the following definition and purpose of this terrific little book: 'The book is called 'The 7 % Solution' because it will show you how your investment portfolio may generate as much as 7% distribution rate for your retirement income. You'll also learn how to determine your retirement needs, how to identify your resources of income in retirement, how to evaluate, select, monitor, and manage a variety of investments, from simple to complex.' Now, if that doesn't make the reader feel comfortable in what is to follow then read on.

In very easy to understand terms Graves gives ideas and explanations, follows these with worksheets to immediately relate to the information given thus far, and then slowly takes us step by step through chapters including: Bringing YOUR retirement into Focus; First Things First - Capturing Your Data; A Brief Word on Investment (really terrific chapter!); Stepping into Stocks; Embracing Bonds; Exploring Low Maintenance Investments - Mutual Funds, EFTs and CEFs; The Case for Annuities; Other Income Resources - Real Estate, REITs, Business Buyouts; Designing the 7% Portfolio; Maintaining and Monitoring your Portfolio; The Taxman Cometh; Getting the Most Out of Your Retirement Years. If the reader doesn't know the meaning of some of these abbreviations just mentioned, by the end of this book you will!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Very good book with a lot of good information.
Published 9 months ago by Bill B
4.0 out of 5 stars Sensible and simple retirement investment guide
This doesn't recommend specific investments, but it does cut through the complicated investment landscape to offer a simple strategy. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Canyonjo
5.0 out of 5 stars the best!!!
Just about the best retirement book I have read. This convinced me to take control of my finances and leave (most) the mutual fund charges behind.
Published 23 months ago by T. Snowden
1.0 out of 5 stars Dangerous advice
A couple of thoughts on the advice offered in this book:

1) The investment approach advocated in this book comes down to chasing yield. Read more
Published on March 20, 2013 by Todd Schanel
5.0 out of 5 stars Solid and interesting approach
This is one of the more useful books that I have read on the issue of income investing, a topic on which I consider myself something of an expert. Read more
Published on January 7, 2013 by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, If a Little Elitist
I am just entering retirement, and I am a do-it-yourself (DIY) investor. This book is right up my alley, as it is concerned with showing investors how to be DIY investors planning... Read more
Published on July 3, 2012 by J.P.P.
4.0 out of 5 stars Helpful
I am at that point in my life where it seems as though retirement is now an ever present `danger' in my life. Read more
Published on June 16, 2012 by Tina
5.0 out of 5 stars Great tool for anyone planning on retirement...that is everyone btw
This book is full of strategies and advice on how to handle your retirement. I was impressed with the fact that the author laid it out in such an easy to follow method. Read more
Published on May 23, 2012 by Book Him Danno
4.0 out of 5 stars Live To Read
Chartered financial consultant, chartered life underwriter, author Graves explains the variety of financial products and suggests how each would benefit a recently retired or... Read more
Published on May 21, 2012 by Chels
5.0 out of 5 stars Retire with easy steps created just for you.
The 7% Solution by John H. Graves

You can afford to retire comfortably. If you want to learn how to manage your money to be able to live a comfortable retirement, then... Read more
Published on May 14, 2012 by Jackie Paulson
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More About the Author

John Graves, ChFC, CLU has spent 28 years advising people how to become
better stewards of their resources. As an independent financial advisor, he focuses on designing and maintaining clients' portfolios consistent with their needs, rather than some market paradigm. John is a Chartered Life Underwriter and Chartered Financial Consultant through The American College in Bryn Mawr Pennsylvania.

He has traveled extensively, with more than 80 countries' stamps in his passport. His avocation is adventure. He has sailed to Hawaii several times as well as across the Atlantic and throughout the Mediterranean and Caribbean. He has trekked the Andes, the Sahara, the Taklamakan, the Serengeti, and the Namib.

In his previous career, John was a chef.

John agrees with Benjamin Graham that the search for value is far more interesting than a brief joy ride in the markets. His passion is sharing knowledge with others so that they, too, might embrace all that life has to offer.

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