Janie Monroe, CFP®

Budgeting is planning how to allocate your money for current and future use. It is a skill that is not exclusive to finance. Many of us are already masters at budgeting our time, energy, and other essential resources. Then why is it so hard to budget our money? One of the main reasons is the presumed complexity. Like many things in life, income and expenses are not always predictable. Take the day ahead for example. You have 24 hours and most of us know how we’ll spend it. If you have extra time you can do things that make you happy now or something that might make you better in the future. If you need more time, you’ll cut less important things out. The same thought process applies to budgeting your money.

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Posted: August 25, 2020 | In: Articles

Jonathan Dunham, CFP®

Roth IRAs are one of, if not the most, powerful retirement vehicles available. The power comes from the tax-free growth, which allows you to withdraw the funds in retirement without any tax consequences. Sound too good to be true? The answer depends on your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI), which can be calculated by adding your adjusted gross income (AGI) plus certain deductions and tax-exempt interest. For 2020, if you are single with MAGI greater than $124,000 or married filing jointly and with MAGI greater than $196,000, your Roth IRA contribution limit is either phased out or eliminated. However, if you fall into either of those categories, don’t fret! In this article we’ll introduce a sophisticated planning technique that allows high income earners (and their spouses) to legally avoid the income limitations on Roth contributions by making a Backdoor Roth Contribution.

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Posted: June 30, 2020 | In: Articles

Alexander J. Gross, CFP®, CPA/PFS®, AEP®

Family members and friends are frequently asked to serve as a trustee of a trust because of their close relationship with the settlor (the trust’s creator) and their families, as well as familiarity with the settlor’s wishes. While it is an honor to be asked to serve in this role, it can also be a significant burden. Trustees have a great responsibility to carry out the terms of the trust, and one should fully understand the importance and risks involved before agreeing to take on this role.

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Posted: June 10, 2020 | In: Articles

Alexander J. Gross, CFP®, CPA/PFS®, AEP®

On Friday March 27, 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law in response to the COVID-19 global pandemic.  This $2 trillion stimulus package aims to soften the economic blow caused by the pandemic and includes a wide range of provisions for both individuals and businesses. Read More..

Posted: April 3, 2020 | In: Articles

Lauren N. Desforge, CFP®, CPA/PFS, CDFA®, AEP®

Like many people, you’ve probably heard of the term “Roth,” but may not be sure what it is and whether you should have a Roth as part of your retirement savings strategy. In this article, we’ll highlight some reasons you may want to directly invest in a Roth or convert to a Roth.
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Posted: December 12, 2019 | In: Articles

Evan P. Kaplan, CFP®

Kids dream of finding a map to long-lost treasure. As adults, the closest we may come is to our own long-lost assets. According to the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators, one in ten Americans have unclaimed property, and each year, states return over $3 billion in assets to their rightful owners!  With the end of the year approaching, now is a great time to search the database to see if you have any money to claim—and it only takes a few minutes to look.
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Posted: December 11, 2019 | In: Articles

Evan P. Kaplan, CFP®

Where will your income come from in retirement? For many, individual retirement account (IRA) distributions comprise an important part of their retirement income and are often the result of decades of hard-earned savings. Understanding the ins and outs of IRA distributions will enable you to make the best decisions when it comes time for you to kick back and relax. So follow these five steps and remember to consult a financial professional if you need more guidance.
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Posted: October 17, 2019 | In: Articles

Darlene R. DahlCPA/PFS, CDFA®, AEP®

Referred to as the “great wealth transfer,” baby boomers will be transferring over $68 trillion in assets to Generation X (born 1965-1980) and Millennial (born 1981-1997) children and grandchildren over the next quarter-decade. Planning for the transfer of wealth to younger generations includes addressing key questions, such as:

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Posted: July 10, 2019 | In: Articles

Janie MonroeCFP®

As the school year wraps up for students across the country, for many families, college is right around the corner. The cost of college is now one of the largest expenses many Americans incur. While the costs of higher education can vary depending on the type of school, location, and financial assistance, early preparation is always a good idea. One of the best ways to start saving is in a 529 plan, a tax-advantaged educational savings account.

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Posted: May 21, 2019 | In: Articles