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What’s on our mind? You can read about it in our blog. Whether it’s ideas from the investment services world or concepts from the financial industry, you can read about it here. And once in a while, we may throw in a movie review or some other surprise. So keep checking in. We’re glad to have you reading along.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Conventional advice tells you that, for retirement, you need $1 million to $1.5 million saved, or that you need 10 to 12 times your current annual salary. For example, if you make $100,000 per year, you’ll need $1 million to $1.2...

 

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Investment risk doesn’t apply to only a select few investments, it applies to everything because every investment has its own sets of risk. Do you know what they are? Are there ways to avoid them, or at least limit how they...

 

Monday, August 13, 2018

A credit card, like a hammer, is a tool in your financial tool belt. If you use it carefully and responsibly, it may help improve your financial life. But how do you use a credit card effectively? Are there certain rules I should...

 

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Wealth, what is it? In a sense, it’s your net worth. Net worth is your assets minus your liabilities. For a comfortable retirement, you’ll want to see that number tick upwards over the course of your working career. But how...

 

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Saving money and cutting expenses is only one part of being financially healthy, but it’s a big one. If you save money you have more to invest and grow for your future. But how do you save money? Here’s a good list of ways...

 

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Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Investing is an important part of your financial life. What’s more important is investing for the long-term.With a long time horizon, you have the ability to ignore short-term market volatility and you have the ability to let...

 

Sunday, July 29, 2018

What does financial health mean? Roughly, it’s how your financial landscape looks in accordance with your age and time horizon. A financially healthy life would be one with little to no debt, an emergency fund, and a retirement...

 

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Estate planning is a very important step in the financial planning process.What does it mean, what are the steps, and what’s the most effective way to plan?Let’s dive into these questions in this estate planning guide.Click...

 

Sunday, July 22, 2018

College is expensive. You have to pay for school, and you have to pay for food, clothes, and a place to live. There are a variety of ways to help alleviate the cost of a college education, however. Let’s explore some of them....

 

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Tariff. It’s a word that you’ve probably hear a lot lately, but do you know what it means, how it’s applied, and how it’ll affect you? What is a tariff? In its most basic form, a tariff is a tax on goods...

 

Sunday, July 15, 2018

This may sound pretty obvious, but fees can really hurt your retirement savings. That said, what is an appropriate fee to be charged? Where are those fees coming from? Is a financial advisor worth the cost? In this article, I provide...

 

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Nowadays, health insurance and the medical care you receive is expensive. There are some products available to help you with those expenses, however. Enter in the HSA and the FSA. These two products are making it easier for consumers...

 

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Insurance can take many forms, but one of the most important and often most overlooked is life insurance. If you have a family or anyone that relies on you to support them, you need life insurance. Even if you don’t have a family...

 

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Debt, if used poorly, can have a very negative effect on your health, your finances, and your future. Do you know the kinds of debt that are available to you? Do you know how debt can affect your life? Knowing the answers to these two...

 

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

How many of you have had an unplanned expense recently? How much was it $500? $1,000? Unplanned expenses are anything but, unplanned. Sure, we don’t know when they will occur, but they will occur. Being able to “plan”...

 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Long-term care is an ugly subject to discuss. Nobody wants to think about these types of situations playing out, but it's definitely something you need to talk about with your family. Before you can do that, though, you need the facts....

 

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

26% of American adults have no savings and 36% of American adults have no retirement savings. (Source) This is a scary statistic, but the truth of the matter is that not everyone can save for retirement. However, there are ways, even...

 

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

There are many things to look forward to in retirement, including time and money to spend on your own terms. However, you need to thoroughly plan for how your money is spent and where it is spent. These looming questions...

 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Did you know that the most common age people begin receiving Social Security is 62? Did you also know that taking your Social Security early can reduce your monthly benefit by as much as 25%? So why do people take it early and what is...

 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

The money you save and invest is just that, yours. So how you invest should be tailored to your specific risk tolerance and time horizon. But what does that mean? In this post, I will expand on risk tolerance and time horizon.

 

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

With all the recent talk about interest rates, employment, and volatility, I thought I would clear some things up. Is an increase in interest rates good or bad? Is full employment good or bad? Is high-volatility good or bad? Let's find...

 

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Planning and saving for retirement can be very challenging. Over the last six weeks, we've gone over ways to plan and save for retirement in each decade of life up to the 70s. Though each decade did have their unique differences and...

 

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

By the time you reach 70, about 80% of Americans have retired. That said, your income will be or has been reduced because you aren't working anymore. You will have to take some necessary steps to ensure that the money you have saved to...

 

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

For most people, your 60s is the decade in which you retire. You've worked your butt off for the past 40 years or more, and you're probably looking forward to kicking back and relaxing in retirement. But are you ready? The median...

 

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Next step in our series. We've reached the 50s. At this point in life, a lot of you will be empty nesters. Kids are off to college or through college and starting their lives. Though this is sad, it probably frees up some money and...

 

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Planning and saving for retirement is important at any age. However, your 40s bring about new challenges that can derail your plans. At this point in your life, you are probably married with some kids. Those kids are probably getting...

 

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Your 30s bring about significant changes in your life. Odds are you are now married or in a committed relationship, and you probably have kids or are at least thinking about it. Along with a person to share your life with and a child...

 

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Retirement is an important goal that all of us have in common. No matter what age, this is an achievement after decades in the labor force. That said, planning for retirement comes with different goals and different challenges. For...

 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Happy New Year! It’s time to review our finances and figure out how we can make them better in 2018. In this post we will give focus to retirement savings. No matter what stage your finances are in, there is always something you...

 

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Retiring out of state is one thing, but could you retire in a completely different country? You may be surprised at the advantages and disadvantages. Retiring abroad can be incredibly affordable, but you may have to do without many of...

 

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Where you retire could be as important as when you retire. I covered it briefly here, but we need to dive deeper into this. One of the more popular thoughts about where to retire is retiring out of state, with Florida being the common...

 

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Over the past few weeks, I’ve written a lot about retirement and what you can do to get yourself ready for it. These posts have focused on the financial side of retirement, but there is much more to it than money. In...

 

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

How much should you save for retirement? This question, as well as when should I retire and when should I start Social Security are probably the top questions regarding retirement. Knowing how much you need gives you a very clear...

 

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Income during Retirement 11-29-17 You just finished your last shift. You have worked for 30+ years and hopefully, get to spend the next 30+ living the good life. Retiring can be a difficult decision for a lot of people. Others...

 

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Social Security FAQs Social Security is a vital program in our society. It supports people with qualifying disabilities and supplements income for retired persons. There are, however, challenging concepts and subtle nuances about...

 

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

During retirement, most of us will receive our income from a variety of places. Some of us will receive pensions. Many of us will receive/generate income from our retirement savings. Most or all of us will receive some benefits via...

 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

The question about when you should retire can be a difficult one to answer. You may love what you do and choose to never retire. On the flip side, you could hate what you do and decide to retire early. There is also the possibility...

 

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Retirement is around the corner. You have saved for decades using retirement plans and have also paid into a system for decades known as Social Security. During retirement, everyone treats Social Security differently. Some people...

 

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

When retirement gets closer, you often think about a couple of things. How’s my health? Have I saved enough money? Should we move to a smaller home? Regarding retirement and life in general, these are all very important questions...

 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Your credit score could be the single most important number in your life. Your credit score will have an impact on most parts of your life, including, but not limited to, where you live, where you work, and what you drive. Improving...

 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Being the biggest purchase most people will ever make, buying a home is a very big step. Owning a home, however, is not for everyone. There are several items that should be taken into account when figuring out if you can buy a home....

 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

When it comes to having people in your corner, there are a couple of professions you should spend a significant amount of time researching. The three I think of, in no particular order, are your doctor, your insurance agent, your...

 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

There are many things that contribute to your financial success, including making a plan, sticking to that plan, and avoiding any big mistakes along the way. Most often, you find financial success long after your journey began and each...

 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

With numerous wild fires on the west coast and two hurricanes drilling the south over the last month, it’s fair to say nature is unforgiving.It is also unpredictable. Yes, hurricanes generally happen around the same time every...

 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Credit cards, like any financial instrument in society, have a purpose. That purpose will vary from person to person but usually revolve around a select few: making purchases with money you don’t have, building your credit...

 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

The question of how much money you should save is a very frequent topic among financial professionals. The standard answer is to use the budget 50/30/20. This says that 50% of your income should be used for necessities like rent, food,...

 

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

When you are saving your money, you need a place to put it. You can’t tuck it under your mattress, so it needs to go to an institution designed for holding money. That can either be a bank or a credit union. They share many...

 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Continuing our path to financial literacy, this week’s topic is about bank accounts. However, banks are not the only institutions that offer these types of accounts; you can also get them at credit unions and other financial...

 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Last week’s post I talked about the poor state of financial literacy in this country. This week’s post will cover one of the most basics parts of finance, your paycheck stub. There is a difference between your wage x hours...

 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

When I do research for my blog posts, I try to read from many different sources to get various perspectives. When doing research for this post, however, I found some frightening facts. The level of financial literacy in the United...

 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

No matter where you are in your life, there are always ways to improve your finances. Below are some tips on how to do just that. Set Goals This should be your first priority. By setting goals, you give yourself something to work for...

 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Debt is a four letter word that can take many different forms. It can credit card debt, an auto loan, a mortgage, school loan, as well as many others. Debt, sometimes a necessity, can also be a nuisance when it comes to your total...

 

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The home buying process is both exciting and nerve-racking. You want to become a homeowner, but you want everything to go smoothly and you certainly don’t want to make a mistake. There are certain things you should do while in...

 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Millennials, also known as Generation Y, is the generation born between 1982 and 2004. Most of us (I am also a Millennial) have graduated college and have started a career. There are also some who probably have started families. There...

 

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

For many, retirement seems like a time in the future they will never reach. For others, it seems right around the corner. Whether you’re facing one year or many, there are things you need to do to prepare for this new stage in...

 

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Next week is one of the most historic and well celebrated days in our country’s history. On July 4th we commemorate the day the United States of America declared independence. With the celebration comes a potentially large bill....

 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

After decades in the labor force, you are finally ready to retire. Now that you are here, you must switch your mentality from saving to spending. For most, this change is difficult and will take time to get used to. From there, you...

 

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Most of the time when people think of investments, they think of two things: stocks and bonds. Last week I discussed stocks and this week will be bonds. Bonds are debt issued by a business or a government. With stocks, the share holder...

 

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

In last week’s post I talked about the different types of investments. This week I will start explaining some of those investments, starting with stocks. A stock is a form of ownership in a company. When a business wants to raise...

 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

In the world of investing, there is more than just stocks and bonds. There are additional types of investments, such as commodities or real estate. When you buy a common stock you are buying a piece of a company. Some of the more...

 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

In recent news we saw Apple (APPL) passed the $800 billion mark in market capitalization. Based on that metric, that makes it the most valuable company in the world. But what is market capitalization, more commonly known as market cap?...

 

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

When you start investing, there are several options as to where to invest. You can buy stocks or bonds of a specific company or you can buy a fund that holds several different types of stocks or bonds. There are three types of funds:...

 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

In the stock market, you have many different options where to invest. There are thousands of stocks spread across different company sizes, regions, and sectors. In this post I am going to discuss the different sectors and their...

 

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

With the market near all time highs, I feel it necessary to discuss bull markets. A bull market is essentially a market that is continually increasing. The bull market we are experiencing now is the second longest in history. It has...

 

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

With the stock markets near all time highs and several thousand pounds of bombs being dropped over the last week, I feel it is fitting to talk about bear markets. What is it? A bear market occurs when the stock market has fallen 20% or...

 

Monday, April 10, 2017

Diversification is a popular tool to manage risk when investing. Selecting various types of investments helps avoid putting “all of your eggs in one basket.” Below is an example to help explain. In an economy there are...

 

Sunday, March 26, 2017

I am pleased to announce that my wife, Katie, and I are expecting. Our baby is due at the end of August or the beginning of September, depending on when he/she decides to come out. After a period of excitement and getting a little plan...

 

Monday, March 13, 2017

The 401(k) is currently the most popular retirement vehicle used for businesses and corporations. There is a version of the 401(k) that is very beneficial for the business owner, without hurting employee’s ability to save for...

 

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Last post I spoke about how to choose a retirement plan. That post and the ones prior were directed towards for-profit businesses. What if you have a non-profit or work at a public institution? What are your options? The 403(b), also...

 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

In the past two months, I have explained the advantages, disadvantages and features of five different types of retirement plans: traditional and Roth IRA, 401(k), SIMPLE IRA, and SEP IRA. These are probably the most popular retirement...

 

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

There were two items from this week that could have an impact on consumers; the proposed 20% tariff on goods imported from Mexico and President Trump pulling the remaining Affordable Healthcare Ads for the last week of open enrollment....

 

Thursday, January 26, 2017

The last few blog posts, we have focused on retirement accounts. Specifically, retirement accounts applicable to businesses, big and small. We will continue this concept and discuss SEP IRA plans. What Is It? SEP IRA is short for...

 

Sunday, January 22, 2017

On Friday, Donald Trump was officially sworn in as our 45th President. He has said he will get right to work and “hit the ground running.” With all of his proposed policies, there are a few that could have a significant...

 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Last post detailed interest rates in lieu of the SIMPLE IRAs I had originally planned. This time I will resume the schedule and inform you about these IRAs. What Are Simple IRAs? The SIMPLE IRA is a retirement plan used for small...

 

Monday, December 19, 2016

This post was meant to be about Simple IRAs, but I chose instead to reflect on the Federal Reserve’s (FED) decision to raise interest rates for the second time this year and how these increases will affect the market. The Economy...

 

Thursday, December 8, 2016

As far retirement plans go, the 401(k) is the leader of the pack. Due to their favorable amenities, regulations, and the dramatic decrease of the employee pension, the 401(k) has quickly become the most widely used method of saving for...

 

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

In my last blog post I discussed whether Social Security will be around in the future. I concluded that post by referencing some products and services at our disposal to assist with retirement income needs. In this post I'll review...

 

Sunday, October 23, 2016

With the United States Presidential Election just around the corner, there is one area of concern that both candidates need to address — Social Security. The first question I commonly hear regarding Social Security (SS) is, "Is...

 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

There are two scenarios where lack of planning and communication regarding inheritances can create discourse – not receiving an expected inheritance and receiving an unexpected inheritance. Although both situations can cause...

 

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Births, deaths, marriages, divorces – important events and people change throughout your life. Have your beneficiary designations changed accordingly? Your insurance policies, pension plans, individual retirement plans, annuities...

 

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Probate can be costly and time consuming. We’ll show you a few potential ways to save. When Elvis Presley died, his estate was worth more than $10 million dollars1. Then it went through probate. After appraisal costs, legal fees,...

 

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Try to avoid reacting emotionally when the markets are turbulent. Experiencing market volatility is a normal part of investing in stocks. Still, when the market goes down, it’s natural to feel apprehensive and wonder how long the...

 

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Withdrawing savings from an IRA is one option to pay for college tuition. But is it a good idea? Are you faced with the dilemma of having to save for your own retirement while at the same time trying to put money aside to fund your...

 

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Retirement can mean the beginning of a new life. Here are a few common dangers to avoid. Retirement planning is a tricky process, and one that requires careful planning and patience. But even if you have a retirement plan and a clear...

 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Making sure you have a will and a financial power of attorney are two crucial steps in the estate planning process. Deciding how you want to be remembered after you’re gone can be one of the most important decisions you make. Do you...

 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

When it comes to your employer sponsored 401(k) plan, knowing your options goes a long way in helping make better decisions. If you are exploring your career options or perhaps planning ahead towards retirement, here are some options...

 

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Last month the Federal Reserve (FED) raised interest rates for the first time in almost 10 years. Leading up to and following the interest rate increase, the stock market has been very volatile. Interest rates increases along with...

 

Monday, January 4, 2016

Congratulations on making it through 2015! This past year we experienced global tragedies, the start of a long presidential race, a large decline in oil and gas prices, and a very volatile stock market. Now is the time to get a plan in...

 

Sunday, December 20, 2015

It’s that time of year again. The time of office parties, dinners, and the gathering of family and friends. And we can't leave out the giving and receiving of presents. Depending on your particular situation, you could end up spending...

 

Monday, November 9, 2015

There are very few things in our country that have as significant impact on our financial status as interest rates. How high or low interest rates are could have an extraordinary impact on what we are able to afford and how efficiently...

 

Friday, August 21, 2015

A Bear Couple Days In two days time the market has declined about 6%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) specifically has dropped just about 900 points. Now when the market goes down this much, it can put the investing public in a...