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I've heard countless clients tell me how they 'failed' at retirement.  They enjoyed it for the first three weeks or even three months, then yearned to return to work.  They were not ready for it.  In some instances, I take blame for this as I did not adequately prepare them for this new freedom.  The freedom to do what they wanted, when they wanted.  The successful ones were ready for this new way of life, as they had already practiced via a trial run what they were going to do.  The unsuccessful ones didn’t.  They did not plan.

To increase your odds of a successful retirement, here are a few things to keep in mind as you contemplate this new way of life: 

Published in Blog
Wednesday, 20 September 2017 12:00

Ten Financial Hacks for Everyone I Know

My family may be a lot like your family.  We have a doctor, nurse, lawyer, therapist, professor, corporate executive, electrician, engineer, project manager, consultant, public employee, designer, and many more across the occupational spectrum.  I wrote this article so that it applies equally to all of them. 

A bit of background: During our family reunion this year, which we held in the beautiful Outer Banks of North Carolina, I was asked to provide some financial planning advice to our family of 35.  Unfortunately, this never happened given we were all intent on other activities.  Had I had a chance to replay the week, here is a list of 10 items I would consider as financial hacks of sorts that presumes one is already doing the obvious to prepare for retirement:

Published in Blog

Do you know what happens when you die?  I’m not asking in a spiritual or physical sense.  I’m asking about what happens from an estate planning perspective.  Do you know what impact your death has to the financial and developmental well-being of your children?  What if both you and your spouse die at the same time?  What about your house?  Your car?  The things in your closet?  Your financial accounts?  Who makes these decisions and who receives your assets are important to anticipate.

Published in Blog
Monday, 05 December 2016 14:35

Behind the CFP® Designation

"Why am I doing this?" This question crossed my mind more than a few times recently as I detached myself from the real world for hours (days? months?) at a time to study for my CFP® (Certified Financial Planner) Certification Exam. I studied after work until I fell asleep, I studied while I ate lunch, I turned down plans with my friends. I knew it was important for me to get this certification, but why?

Published in Blog
Monday, 31 August 2015 00:00

Playing Politics in Your Portfolio

In case you missed it, we are well into another presidential election season. While I'm not sure we ever took a break from the 2012 round, already the herd of 2016 hopefuls are canvasing the country. Over the next year, Republicans and Democrats will parade themselves in front of every TV camera they can find and pander to every potential voter they stumble across. During that time, you will hear expert after expert talking about the impact of each candidate on everything from stocks to schools. I'm not going to tell you who to vote for or even which candidate will be best for your portfolio. What I will tell you, however, is be careful in making long-term plans based on what might happen next year.
Published in Blog