4 Ways to Lower Your Tax Bill

January 18, 2018
With the start of a new year, we look forward to the arrival of spring and sunnier days, but January also marks the beginning of the often dreaded tax season. While some of us get excited for a long-awaited tax refund, many stress over getting their taxes filed correctly and paid on time. The December passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law means the upcoming tax season may be all the more stressful as Tax Day nears. With this in mind, we want to discuss four tax strategies that could help you save money on your tax bills in 2018. Read more

Combating Stress at Work Through Financial Wellness

January 5, 2018
Dealing with personal finances can be stressful, and that stress can have a negative impact on several aspects of a person’s life including personal relationships, physical health and performance on the job.

A 2015 survey by the American Psychological Association found money was the top source of stress for American adults. (1) Whether it is worrying about debt, paying bills or planning for retirement, financial concerns are at the forefront of our psyche. Read more

Planning for Your Special Needs Child – Key Dates

December 1, 2017
Planning for your special needs child often focuses around public benefits and preserving those benefits through a Special Needs Trust.  These are certainly important components of Special Needs planning.  However, there are important time critical steps to take as your special child develops into an adult.  Here is a summary of some of those steps: Read more

Sequence of Returns

November 1, 2017
One of the biggest risks to a successful retirement plan is sequence of returns risk. Also known as timing risk, sequence of returns risk is the potential for lower or negative returns during the initial period in which the investor makes withdrawals from a portfolio. If left undefended, sequence of returns risk can significantly affect the outcome of a retirement plan.

First, let’s understand what sequence of returns risk is. In the example below, we invest $100,000 each in two portfolios. In both portfolios, we withdraw $5,000 per year inflated at 3%. Both portfolios earn an average arithmetic return of 6.5% over the next 20 years.  In Portfolio A, we see four years of initial negative returns, and in Portfolio B, we see four years of initial positive returns. By year 20, Portfolio A has run out of money, while Portfolio B still has a balance of $87,054.
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October 2, 2017
Investing and risk go hand-and-hand, and generally speaking, the more risky an investment is, the greater the potential return. Different investments have different types of risk. Some risk can be eliminated or at least minimized through diversification, but there is an inherent risk in investing regardless of which type of investment you choose. Diversification does not assure a profit or protect against market loss.  All investments involve risk, including possible loss of principal.

With that in mind, let’s explore some of the types of risk that can affect your investments.

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Financial Wellness

July 27, 2017
In today’s competitive hiring environment, it is important for businesses to offer their employees competitive benefits in order to lure and retain top talent.

Many companies offer employees benefits packages that include savings plans, pensions and stock options, but employees are often left to their own devices when implementing decisions on their financial future. Read more

Active vs. Passive Investing – An Unbiased Look at The Two Strategies

July 5, 2017
Active and passive management are talked about a lot these days. With all of the rhetoric, we rarely see anyone truly going through the two strategies without pushing for an angle or adding a sales pitch to the end. This can make it difficult to wade through the noise. This hasn’t served us well, so let’s make a change. How about an article that purely delivers the facts about each method and lets the reader digest and conclude for themselves what is the best way to invest money. Read more

IRS Advantages with Life Insurance

June 15, 2017

Nothing is certain except death and taxes, Benjamin Franklin once wrote. However, life insurance policies can afford us a brighter outlook by providing strategies to reduce taxes. Making the choice to purchase life insurance is a decision to protect your loved ones and help them maintain their quality of life. When establishing this legacy for a partner or child, it is important to consider the tax minimizing incentives of different policies.

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Shedding Light on Potential Tax Reforms

February 16, 2017
It’s safe to say that the last 90 days have been trying for many Americans. Don’t despair, there may be some good news about tax reforms. We could be facing the first significant tax reform since 1986!

Let’s shed light on some exciting possibilities:
– Elimination of the ACA Surtax: as you know there is currently a 3.8% tax on income above $200,000 ($250,000 filed jointly) for the Affordable Care Act. Read more