3 of 3
BACKNEXT
David and Judy McMickens, Gardendale, Ala.
Rescue Strategy: Delay Tapping the Nest Egg
Ages; 72 and 64

In 2000, a year after David McMickens retired from his 40-year job as a State Farm supervisor, he and his wife Judy lost half of their $500,000 portfolio when the tech bubble burst. It's not hard to see how: At the time, they had 90% of their savings in stocks -- a risky allocation for their age and retirement status.

But the McMickens didn't panic. Between their Social Security benefits, pensions and ample cash in the bank, they simply delayed tapping their nest egg, giving it time to bounce back. By 2005 it had, and they began working with financial planner Stephen Iaconis to create a more balanced portfolio, now 60% in stocks and 40% in bonds. Though they've lost 24% in the past year, their experience taught them not to worry; once again, they're relying on pensions and Social Security ($80,000 a year), plus a cash cushion ($75,000), to help them postpone tapping savings. Says David: "We can just sit tight and wait for our nest egg to grow again." --Ismat Sarah Mangla

More galleries
Last updated March 09 2009: 10:12 AM ET
More Galleries
Tools to make your money grow You've started saving and built a financial base. Time for a few new strategies and tools to get your money to grow even more. From real estate to IRAs, here are some tips. More
Ready to start saving? Here's how to do it right When you are just starting out or finally starting to get serious about saving, the basics will get you far. Here are more than a dozen tips that will help you lay the base for building your net worth. More
Our biggest money highs and lows How much money do you need to feel rich? What are your biggest money mistakes? Money magazine surveyed 1,000 Americans for the answers to these and other questions. See how your answers stack up. More

Special Offer
Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer LIBOR Warning: Neither BBA Enterprises Limited, nor the BBA LIBOR Contributor Banks, nor Reuters, can be held liable for any irregularity or inaccuracy of BBA LIBOR. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.