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Social Security Planning Social Security and Medicare are faced with declining revenues and increasing...
Forty somethings You have hit your stride: established in your career, home and family.  When...
Estate Planning Never a pleasant topic, it is the end game and therefore no one is comfortable...
College Funding College Funding College costs have been increasing faster than the general...
Credit Cards Too many American families are burdened with credit card debt.  The average...
Converting Retirement Acc... In 2010, income tests were removed which prevented many individuals from...

Social Security Planning

Social Security and Medicare are faced with declining revenues and increasing expenses. Now, more than ever, it is up to the individual American to be proactive in saving for retirement. It is highly unlikely that Social Security or Medicare would be abolished. The programs will be “tweaked and tuned” by Congress to ensure sustainability. The potential tweaking and tunings are well known: delay age for...

Roth IRAs

Roth IRAs were legislated in 1997 and are named after the late Senator William. Roth from  Delaware. There are some similarities with traditional IRAs and some significant differences. Similar to traditional IRAs 2017 & 2018 maximum contribution is $5,500 Those  50 and older can contribute an additional $1,000 in 2017 & 2018. The $5,500 maximum contribution and catch up provision apply in the aggregate for the IRAs...

College Funding

College costs continue to increase, although the rate of increase has slowed.   Every fall, the College Board releases updated figures for college expenses.  Here are the numbers for the current school year, 2017-2018: In state Public College and Universities Out of State Public College and Universities Private College and Universities 2 year Public Colleges Tuition $9,970 $25,620 $34,740 $3,570 Room...

Personal Tax Planning Strategies

It is important to properly plan one’s tax responsibility. Like individual taxpayers, the Federal and State governments have experienced financial distress and are becoming more aggressive in collecting taxes. A sound tax plan will help to minimize taxes and avoid surprises. Here are some general tips: Adjust W4 with employer to minimize over/under withholding. For tax year 2017, “Bunch” miscellaneous and medical...

Retirement Planning

Social Security and Medicare are faced with declining revenues and increasing expenses. Now, more than ever, it is up to the individual American to be proactive in saving for retirement.   Contribute to Employer Retirement Plans such as 401(k)s, 403(b)s, 457s. 2017 maximum contribution is $18,000; 2018 maximum contribution is $18,500. Those 50 and older can contribute an additional $6,000 in 2017 and...

60 and Life is Good!

The “Golden Years” have arrived, a bit too quickly, but here you are!  Now is the time to enjoy the harvest of all of your previous efforts:  family, lifestyle and perhaps some wealth.  Thirty years ago, this was imagined to be a carefree situation: travel, enjoy life with your partner, be involved with activities that you desire to be involved with; no longer burdened by tasks that felt more like obligations!  Many...

Annual Financial Review

Medical professionals suggest an annual checkup. Mechanics recommend regular auto maintenance. Shouldn’t your financial life have an annual checkup or tune up? Please take some time every year to self examine your financial situation. You can do this on your own or with the help of your professional advisors. Items to be reviewed and some details to analyze include: Cash Flow & Debt Management Verify adequate cash...

Annuities

Annuities are often misunderstood by investors due in large part to the complex nature of this financial product.  Conceptually, an annuity is a contract, typically between an individual and a financial institution.  Generally, the individual will make a single payment or a series of payments into the contract.  At some point in time, the financial institution will begin to pay the individual, based on the contract. In...