30 Jan
January 30, 2020

Most families are surprised when they see their personal Net Worth Statement documented for the first time. Often, total net worth is larger than they had thought! As we go through life, we tend to collect many possessions which fill our houses, garages, and closets. Similarly, with our financial lives we collect accounts, assets, and debts and never put in the effort to see how the puzzle fits together and how to best build a financial plan.

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18 Dec
December 18, 2019

Slow Down and Pay Attention

We all have hectic lives. From caring for young children, to helping our aging parents, along with balancing a busy career and community commitments, it seems that there is never enough time. However, when it comes to your financial security, it is important to slow down and think about what is important to you.

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04 Jun
June 04, 2019

Since childhood, many of us have set financial goals. Perhaps it was saving for our first bike or an ice cream treat, or simply enjoying our first taste of wealth as it accumulated in the piggy bank. Whether these actions were influenced by our parents attempting to teach responsibility or it turned out to be an innate personality trait, the process of establishing a goal and seeing the fruits of that accomplishment is as important as ever.

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17 Dec
December 17, 2014

If you had the ability to take a refund of your Social Security tax withholding and invest the money yourself, would you do it? What about if the system changed and you were required to contribute your equivalent current withholding to a tax-deferred investment account from the beginning? 

Let’s review question number one first:

Pretend for a moment that you are 22, new to the workforce, and earning $35,000 annually.  The Social Security Administration continues as is during your first 10 years of

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01 Apr
April 01, 2014

Myth or Fact #1: You can only contribute to a 529 plan sponsored by your home state.

Myth. U.S. residents can take advantage of 529 plans available in any state across the country. Though there sometimes can be benefits of contributing to your home state plan, more often than not, the out-of-state choice is much better from a total cost and ease of use standpoint. Even if your home state plan offers a tax incentive for participation, make sure

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27 Mar
March 27, 2014

I read an interesting article this week about a financial advisor in New Jersey that put forth the idea that the age of an advisor and experience level of an advisor are not always synonymous. Being part of the “Millennial” generation, I have to admit I have a bias where this is concerned, but there is definitely some truth in the words he wrote.

Mr. Zagarola contends that individuals seeking a long-term relationship with a financial advisor

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02 Oct
October 02, 2013

Jimi Hendrix. Howard Hughes. Abraham Lincoln.

Different eras, different professions, different abilities, same problem.

No, the problem was not because all three had drug issues, obsessive compulsive disorder, or other eccentricities. The problem was simply that all three failed to plan for life beyond the grave!

It probably does not surprise you that Jimi Hendrix failed to plan, given the lifestyleand times in which he lived. But how could Howard Hughes leave an estate valued at more than $2 billion without any intentions?

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31 Jan
January 31, 2013

If you’re like me, then you likely salivated over new TV technology for the last few years while watching pixelated people, pets, and scenery on your analog rear-projection TV. This was most evident on Super Bowl Sunday. Because I grew green with jealousy each time I went to a friend’s house, and because I decided I couldn’t see the football on my own screen, I “splurged” on my very own 32″ Samsung LED TV (less than $400). That was

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11 Sep
September 11, 2012

Recently, multi-generational IRAs (MGIRAs or “Stretch IRAs”) have become an increasingly popular financial planning tool among advisors looking to assist their clients in preserving wealth for future generations. In fact, an April 2012 article implies that this is a relatively new concept. I can assure you that “Stretch IRAs” have been around for a long, long time!

In the most basic sense, this tool “stretches” IRA distributions over the life expectancy of the next generation to maximize tax deferral and

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22 Jun
June 22, 2012

Okay, I agree with you. Over the last few months the stock market has been volatile and uncooperative. Does this mean you should panic? Probably not. Does this mean that it may make sense to talk to your advisor about your allocation? Maybe. One thing I do know is that risk and return are related, and eventually, the price investors pay in volatility will ultimately pay dividends in the form of wealth. So, how can you deal with the

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19 Mar
March 19, 2012

I cannot imagine that it is easy to decide which major headline or story should be published on any particular day. After all, articles on oil speculation, Apple’s new-look iPad, and the next landing spot for Peyton Manning all seemed to tickle my fancy during my personal media review today. Out of these three topics, I was particularly intrigued by Peyton Manning’s next destination because of my significant interest in professional football. I happened to be in my

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