Order of How Income and Investments Are Used for Expenses in Retirement

What is the order of how income and investments are used for expenses in retirement?

When the primary plan participant is retired, expenses are funded in the following order:

Salary from a spouse/partner who is still working

Required minimum distributions

Deferred compensation payments

Income from entries in the Additional Cash Inflows section

Social Security


Investment growth and principal from taxable and tax-advantaged accounts first, then non-qualified accounts, and finally qualified tax-deferred accounts. However, within those sections, you can control the order of withdrawal.