facebook twitter instagram linkedin google youtube vimeo tumblr yelp rss email podcast blog external search


 Planning for retirement can be like planning a trip into the unknown.
Why do it alone?

Download your 3 Retirement Checklists



There are times when you research a company and you just want to know if they have helped people like you. As a financial services company, we can’t provide testimonials, however we can highlight some situations we’ve worked on – maybe they’ll be similar to yours?


Joanne has been running her business for the last 15 years, and the last 10 years it had consistently grown. However, her marriage had failed during that time. She was now living by herself, trying to juggle the responsibilities of her business and employees and managing her growing wealth following the divorce. She knew she had to focus on the business and have someone else manage the finer details of her financial plan and investments. She needed someone to look at her business finances as well as her personal finances, and ensure they were both complimenting each other.

As part of their plan, we:

  • Organized her financial picture into an easy-to-understand summary.
  • Designed a process to streamline how business and profits impacted her personal situation.
  • Had multiple discussions regarding what retirement might look like – both in the best circumstances and if times became tough.
  • Designed a prudent investment portfolio that aligned with the optimum amount of risk Joanne wanted to take, while also planning for a long-term investment outlook.
  • Put a retirement plan in place to aid long-term savings and save on taxes.
  • Coordinated a business succession plan so the full value of her business would be financially recognized when she wanted to retire.

pre-retirement financial planning image


Retirement financial planning image


Andrew and Jennifer both come from a prudent, middle-class background and worked at the executive level for most of their careers – Andrew in the banking industry and Jennifer in bio-tech. They had been taught how to save by their parents, but even that training didn’t quench the nervousness and anxiety they felt being on the doorstep of retirement. While they didn’t have too much time to make any adjustments, they were able to implement a plan that eased their concerns and paved the wave for an enjoyable retirement.

As part of their plan, we:

  • Changed their retirement savings strategy so they had a more tax-balanced portfolio in retirement.
  • Reviewed their current insurance coverage so they understood how to transition into retirement without leaving gaps in coverage, or incurring significantly higher premiums.
  • Examined their current spending to understand what lifestyle their assets would support.
  • Explored how they would want to work in “encore careers” and how to balance this with having more free time to explore their passions.
  • Discussed the approaches they could take with their investments given the fact they may not need all of the money, and how they may want to manage these funds.
  • Made a “bucket-list” of things they wanted to achieve in retirement and understood if they could afford all those things.
  • Discussed potential changes to their estate plan and account titling, as they wanted to gift some of their money to charity and grandchildren.



Beth has been retired for three years. She’s done some fun things in that time, but is now realizing that retirement is going to be a long time, and a recent inheritance from her Mother will substantially change her situation.

As part of her plan, we:

  • Understood what fun things she had accomplished and what they meant to her. We also explored ways of finding the same joy without spending the same amount of money.
  • Planned how her inheritance may change her financial picture and how that should be incorporated into her current financial plan.
  • Reviewed her investments and aligned them to her new realization that she will have more than enough money to live comfortably.
  • Explored how she could be helping others with her newly-found wealth and how much joy that would bring her and others..

Retired financial planning image

Download your 3 Retirement Checklists



Need a visual of our services?

Download our Service Matrix

Download your 3 Retirement Checklists



Dave Grant CFP Financial Planner in Barrington IllinoisHere's the important stuff:

When I initially work with clients, my aim is to say as little as possible. I want you to share your story, and I will probe with questions as needed. I want you to feel that you have a safe space to share the experiences you've had in life and with money, whether they are good or bad. I want to give you the freedom to explore what life will look like, knowing that I will be able to do the relevant analysis to tell you if it will be possible. 

But most of all, I want to work with clients who trust our relationship and understand that they shape what it looks like, not the other way around.

Now here's the technical stuff......

My name is Dave Grant. I am a financial planner and have been providing fee-only financial advice to clients since 2007. Having worked in fee-only firms of various sizes before starting my own firm in 2013, I have advised clients ranging from young professionals, oil executives to happily retired, blue-collar families. I now focus on working with individuals 5-10 years away from retirement.

In 2013, I launched my own financial planning practice called Finance for Teachers, Inc. with the purpose of serving K-12 educators in Illinois. Finance for Teachers is now a leading resource for assisting teachers with their personal finances, being used by approximately 100,000 educators each year. Wanting to open up my services to those not involved in the world of education and more towards those focused on having meaningful conversations surrounding retirement, I re-branded my firm into Retirement Matters, Inc. in 2016.

I am an advocate for providing financial advice using a fee-only model, which means I only get paid by my clients - not through product commissions or other means. I believe that everybody who needs financial advice should be able to receive it, not doubt the quality of advice they receive or be in doubt regarding the amount they are paying.

I am an internationally known planner specializing in how younger financial planners can excel in their career. I write a column for Financial Planning magazine, consult with financial planning technology companies, and have earned various awards for this work.

I live in Cary, work in Barrington, am married to a middle school Math teacher (Highland Middle School, Libertyville) and am a father to two boys. I'm a proud member of the Board of Directors for YMCA Camp Duncan in Fox Lake, IL and love serving as a mentor through Kids Hope USA. As a dual-citizen of the USA and UK, I am a chocolate connoisseur and think more milk in chocolate makes it taste better. I was devastated when Kraft bought Cadbury.


Hi! We're Wistia. We provide business video hosting to attract, engage, and delight

Wistia video thumbnail - Retirement Matters

Thanks for reporting a problem. We'll attach technical data about this session to help us figure out the issue. Which of these best describes the problem?

Any other details or context?



I Do What I Love 

I have a passion for helping people with their financial lives. I find joy in walking pre-retirees through their final working years and watching them build confidence to tackle what comes next. I care more about understanding my client’s deepest concerns in their life and how they want their future to look, than the balance of their investment accounts.  

Money Is Much More Than Numbers 

With a background in psychology, I understand that money is about much more than numbers. With clients, I like to discuss their thoughts about money and how their life until this point might be impacting the decisions they make today. Only once this is understood do we discuss any financial strategies that will impact your future. 

My Mission is to Help the People of “Chicago-land” Plan for Retirement 

I am happy to call the Midwest home after immigrating from the UK more than a decade ago, and love working with the people in the suburbs of Chicago. I have lived in the Chicago suburbs since I graduated from University in England, and it has truly become home – but not so much that I have learned the names of the expressways, as I still use the numbers! In fact, I took all of the photos on this website during my own adventures.

When it comes to conversations, I like to carry them out in a “Midwest manner” – relaxed, cheerful and straight-to-the-point. I provide fee-only, impartial financial guidance, whether clients work with me on just one project or for many years – it’s all about what works for them. And hopefully, you.

Retirement Matters best serves clients who want to devote time to understanding how best to prepare for retirement, both emotionally and financially. This is typically an individual five years (or less) from retirement, have a household income of over $150,000, and be consistently saving to increase their net worth. A typical client will be excited about planning their next steps, looking forward to receiving financial guidance and implementing suggestions, and have saved diligently throughout their career.

We might be a good fit to work together if:

  • You understand that you need assistance managing your finances and need the guidance of a professional.
  • You want to transfer the burden of managing your finances to someone else so you can enjoy more time pursuing the things you enjoy.
  • You are prepared to devote the time needed to having an impactful conversation about your financial life

Anthony & Associates Certified Public Accounts logo

As part of our Wealth Management services, we work with Anthony & Associates, LLC to assist clients in reviewing, planning and filing their tax returns. 

Anthony & Associates, LLC located in Barrington, IL is a small, personal CPA firm focused on the tax and accounting needs of small businesses and individuals. They provide tax planning and compliance services, individual tax prep and filing, business formation, and book-keeping/payroll for small businesses.

Ready To Lift The Weight Of “Am I Doing This Right?” Off Your Shoulders? Let’s Work Together


The financial planning process can seem vague if you’ve never been through it. But there is a definitive method to putting your financial plan in place. Here are some graphics which should help explain it:

Click to Enlarge Image


Initially, we’re going to spend a lot of time talking about you. This is where you get to tell your story, whether it be about money or otherwise. Many experiences influence how we deal with money so we’ll explore various areas of your life. You’ll get prompted with questions and I’ll listen while taking copious notes. We’ll explore where you’ve come from, where you see yourself now, and what you want the future to look like. If you’re not sure - there’s no pressure - we’ll put some loose parameters on it, and work with those.

Click to Enlarge Image


Then I’ll give you a list of things I’ll need to start putting a plan together. You’ll go away and gather data and submit it to your personal document vault.

I’ll then spend at least a couple of weeks analyzing your situation through various lenses and designing various scenarios for how you can achieve what you would like in the future. The important thing to remember is that this is YOUR plan, I’m just going to give you some guidelines and options on how to achieve it.

Once we’ve discussed which options and recommendations you’re comfortable with, you’ll either make changes or I’ll work with you to implement them (depending on the service you select).


If you’ve decided to retain me on an ongoing basis, we’ll talk regularly - via email, phone and in-person. We’ll make sure your plan fits your life as it changes, and that you’re still able to achieve everything you’ve set out to do.

I help clients design their perfect life, and then optimize their financial situation.


From the day I started working as a financial advisor in 2007, I have always operated as a fee-only planner, meaning my compensation comes solely from the fees my clients pay, not from commissions or other third-party referral fees.  This significantly reduces potential conflicts of interest, and ensures the advice I provide is always in your best interest. 

As a Fee-Only planner, I receive no compensation from any product recommended. I do not represent any product or company; I only represent you. 

Fee-Only planners have always been held to the Fiduciary Standard, which requires us to put our client’s interest above our own. It consists of a duty of loyalty and care, and acting in the best interest of the client. We are bound by a Code of Ethics, which was adopted by the CFP Board to establish the highest principles and standards.

The favorite part of my job is seeing the sense of relief on client's faces when I show them what their retirement will look like.


Client Logins


Useful Links

Want to read more about preparing for retirement? Our blog is below:


Loading Posts...

View All

Money is more than just numbers. 

We take as much time as you need to explore what it means to you.


Dave Grant CFP Financial Planner Barrington Illinois

Dave Grant, CFP®


Phone:  847-558-6991

Email:  dave@retirementmattersillinois.com

Office:  18-5 E. Dundee Road Suite 200, Barrington IL 60010