If you're 10 to 20 years away from retirement, Suze says there's no reason to panic. "As long as you are invested in good quality mutual funds, diversified across the board, as this all goes down, you're buying more shares," she says. "The more shares you buy, eventually, when it turns around ... the more money you'll make."
The situation is more serious for men and women planning to leave the workforce in the next year. Suze says if you recently lost money in the stock market, there isn't time to recover your losses. "The harsh reality there is what? You are going to have to work more," she says. "For something to recover—even at an 8 or 9 percent annual average rate of return—it could take you 12 years to get back there."
If you need to start dipping into your savings in the next 10 years, Suze says it's best to take your money out of the stock market and invest in CDs and treasury bills or bonds. "For those people who need the money to be safe and sound, you need it to generate income now. You have to come out [of the stock market] at this point," she says. "It doesn't mean you can't go back in."
Suze says people may also want to start rearranging their funds. "You might put your money in something that gives you a dividend of 4 or 5 percent, so even though it's low, you're getting your income so you can live off of it," she says. "Then if the markets go back up in those areas, you'll make your money back."