Wellness Wednesday: How to protect your financial well-being
Over the last several months, Michigan Medicine leadership has emphasized the need for faculty and staff to take some time and focus on their well-being, both physically and mentally. Doing so helps to reduce feelings of stress and burnout.
It is equally important to remember your financial well-being during this time because feelings of financial strain can lead to added stress and mental fatigue.
While it may seem difficult to look ahead during the ongoing pandemic, planning carefully can improve your overall financial well-being.
Below are some tips to help manage your finances. All faculty and staff are encouraged to contact TIAA or Fidelity Investments representatives with any questions or to review your accounts. Contact information for each vendor is included below.
You can also visit the U-M Human Resources Benefits and Wellness website for more tips and information.
Safeguard your retirement account
It’s vital to take steps to safeguard your retirement savings account(s) and prevent unauthorized use of your identity and information.
You gain access to your account(s) through the TIAA and Fidelity websites and telephone centers by creating a user ID and password, along with other personal identifying information. Therefore, be on the lookout for any type of cybersecurity threats and take steps to prevent them:
- Your user ID and password should be kept strictly confidential, as they serve as your identification and authorization for plan transactions such as transfers and withdrawals.
- If you suspect that someone knows your user ID and/or password, change them immediately and contact TIAA and Fidelity.
- For more information on how TIAA and Fidelity protect your accounts and personal information, visit:
TIAA Security Center
Fidelity Online Security
Review your asset mix
With the Michigan Medicine retirement match contribution on hold for fiscal year 2021, now is a perfect time to review your asset mix and overall retirement portfolio. Updating your asset mix is a great way to improve your financial well-being without having to set aside more of your income.
Use the contact information below to schedule an appointment to review your portfolio and asset mix with a financial planning specialist.
Update your beneficiary
Designating a beneficiary for your life insurance and retirement savings accounts is critical to ensure that benefits are paid to the person or persons you choose in the event of your death, and it helps avoid legal disputes over your accounts.
In addition to designating your beneficiaries when you first enroll in benefits, it is important to update your beneficiary information whenever your circumstances change.
You may change your beneficiary designations at any time. Please note that you will need to designate and update your beneficiaries separately with each of the following, if you are enrolled:
- MetLife (life insurance plans)
- TIAA (retirement savings plans)
- Fidelity Investments (retirement savings plans)
More information can be found on the U-M Human Resources website.
Contact a professional
If you are still feeling overwhelmed or confused by your options and financial decisions, both TIAA and Fidelity Investments offer free one-on-one counseling sessions to U-M faculty and staff.
Consult with a financial planning specialist over the phone to help estimate how much income you will need in retirement, discuss retirement income plans, identify ways to save more and invest more efficiently, and assist with tax considerations.
To schedule an appointment:
- Visit tiaa.org/schedulenow or call 800-732-8353, weekdays 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET
- Visit netbenefits.com/uofm or call 800-642-7131, weekdays 8 a.m. to midnight ET
Learn what to expect before your one-on-one session with a counselor by viewing a brief video.
For more information and resources about how you can focus on your financial health:
- Schedule a free appointment with TIAA or Fidelity to discuss your savings progress, retirement income strategy and investment options.
- Register for live webinars at TIAA Virtual Environment on topics like basic estate planning, foundations of investing, and managing income and debt.
- Sign up for UHR News to find out about upcoming financial education events.
- Find out when you are eligible for retirement, what happens to your benefits in retirement, and your income options in retirement by visiting Planning for Retirement.