“Success is where preparation and opportunity meet.” – Bobby Unser, Indianapolis 500 Champion
Once upon a time. we saved in coffee cans and mattresses. Money was liquid and readily available! Then, we saved in bank accounts and CDs. Now, with the popularity of 401(k)s and IRAs, it has become normal to lock up your dollars for decades.
The goal of Wall Street (with help from its Congressional accomplices) is to keep control of your dollars… for as long as possible. Never mind “cash on demand.” Popular financial advice tells you to accumulate money in accounts you have little access to. Then just cross your fingers and hope it is there for you when you need it!
There are clearly upsides to growing investments without interruption. Withdrawals slow growth, plus there is an opportunity cost. But what are the downsides?
As we approach Valentine’s Day, millions of Americans will celebrate with special dinners, cards, flowers, chocolates, and “I love you’s.” Whether you’re a fan of Hallmark Holidays or not (I’m not), hopefully, we can all celebrate love, partnership, marriage, and companionship! And now is a good time to examine the money and relationships — and how to improve both! Because money impacts everything, financial planning with your spouse is tops.
Unfortunately, many couples won’t be celebrating their relationship this week because it was torn apart by conflicts over money. “Money fights predict divorce rates,” says the New York Times. 80 percent of couples fight about money, says a 2014 Money Magazine survey. Research from American Express revealed that 91 percent of couples avoid talking about finances, and only 43 percent discussed money before marriage!
Last week, we published an article summarizing many of the changes the SECURE Act brings to retirement plans. These include new rules regarding retirement plan contributions, distributions, the availability of annuities within plans, maximum contributions for automatic enrollment plans, employer incentives to participate, and more.
This week, we focus on one remaining change—and perhaps biggest challenge—of the SECURE Act: the new rules around inherited IRAs. The stretch IRA strategy is dead and it’s time to seek alternatives. If you believe you may inherit an IRA or leave one to beneficiaries, this is information you need now—before it’s too late to stop Uncle Sam from taking a big chunk of your intended inheritance!
At the end of 2019, Congress passed the biggest bill affecting retirement accounts in more than a decade. (You may have been unaware of it since the news cycle has been filled with the impeachment drama!) Today, we summarize the SECURE Act changes that may impact you in 2020 and beyond. Next week, we’ll have a follow-up article on the impact the SECURE Act will have on inherited IRAs.
The awkward acronym “SECURE” stands for Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act. Signed into law by President Trump before Christmas, the legislation is intended to help Americans increase their retirement savings. Let’s look at how it actually may accomplish that goal—as well as the challenges it brings.
I’ve been blessed with parents, mentors, and role models who have invested in my success. And in turn, I have been told by numerous other advisors and individuals that they count ME as one of their success mentors! (Read about Kim Butler if we haven’t “met”.) I consider it a great privilege to have helped others.
In this article, I’m sharing 10 success principles that have been essential guideposts in my life and work. They are not about financial planning. Most have been gleaned from my own mentors, although perhaps re-phrased a bit. They are the timeless principles I’ve discovered along the way that have made a difference for me. And whether you are a financial advisor, a business owner, a student or an employee, you can apply these 10 principles to transform YOUR results!
In the last 12 months, our opinion about certain investments has not fundamentally changed. You could call us predictable—but we prefer to say that we are consistent! We also believe in strategies that work in every economy. Financial planning without investment management can be hard to do. (Check out Our Ultimate Guide to Financial Planning Myths for our top alternatives to investing.)
A summary of investments and assets we believe can be suitable for some investors:
We like life settlements for asset growth without the roller coaster ride of the stock market. We appreciate the fact that life settlements are completely immune to stock market volatility, interest rate fluctuations, and geopolitical turmoil!
I declared to myself I would buy no clothes and no skin care products in 2019. I had plenty of clothes and there was nothing I needed. And although I do attend professional events and conferences, much of my time is spent home on the farm, where I dress in jeans and the alpacas don’t care. And embarrassingly, I had a whole drawer of skin care products I had received on autoship… barely used. And so, in these two categories, I declared a “no buy year.” And so it was! It felt so good to actually USE what I already had rather than buy what I didn’t really need.
Although I didn’t realize it at the time, there is a growing whole “No-Buy Year” movement! Kate Phillips, my article co-author, helped me research the trend that is helping thousands of consumers free themselves of patterns of overspending.
This website is provided for informational purposes only. The information contained herein should not be construed as the provision of personalized investment advice. Information contained herein is subject to change without notice and should not be considered as a solicitation to buy or sell any security or investment. Investing involves the risk of loss and investors should be prepared to bear potential losses. Past performance may not be indicative of future results and may have been impacted by events and economic conditions that will not prevail in the future.
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