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Articles tagged with: tax planning

Do You Know Your Financial Independence Day?

25 June 2020

Do You Know Your Financial Independence Day?

Independence Day is one of America’s favorite summer holidays. What is one of your favorite traditions on Independence Day: fireworks, hotdogs, parades? In this blog, I want to talk about another kind of Independence Day, your Financial Independence Day.

If money and time were not an issue, what kind of activities would you be doing over the next twelve months? The day when work becomes optional—when you can choose to stop working and start doing those activities that you enjoy while maintaining your current standard of living—is the day you’ve reached your financial independence day. This day is the end result of a process of determining your retirement income goals, the actions, and the decisions necessary to achieve those goals. Retirement planning is, in essence, preparation for life after paid work ends, not just financially, but in terms of lifestyle choices, such as how to spend time in retirement, where to live, when to completely quit working.

A Plan for Every Stage of Life

People often deny themselves their dreams because they don’t understand the resources needed. This is why it’s important that I get their list of dreams during a discovery meeting in order to explore options and tell them what’s realistic. If a goal is unrealistic based on current net worth, income, and expenses, I can make suggestions for changes to get them to a better place. I can run some scenarios to show if they are spending too much now to retire in their target year, and I can offer recommendations. Financial independence isn’t necessarily just about retirement; it could involve the pursuit of a new career.

Understanding the ‘Rich Person Roth’

08 June 2020

Understanding the ‘Rich Person Roth’

Recent world events have made it clearer than ever that it’s imperative to have a long-term financial strategy that allows you to weather volatile economic times. The Roth IRA is a popular tax-minimizing strategy, as it allows for tax-free growth and withdrawals in retirement, and many people make it part of their long-term financial plan. Unfortunately, high-income earners are either limited or ineligible when it comes to Roth contributions. At the moment, that means single individuals with incomes greater than $139,000 and couples with incomes greater than $206,000 in the year 2020 can’t take advantage of Roth IRAs the way those under these thresholds can.

Fortunately, there are a few ways around this. A Backdoor Roth lets you convert a traditional IRA to a Roth – even if your income precludes you from contributing directly to a Roth – through what amounts to some intricate paperwork. We help clients do this carefully and make sure that they report them properly on the tax returns.  The option I’ll discuss below, however, is a different type of tax-advantaged investment altogether. It’s called the Rich Person Roth and, though it’s not for everyone, it can be incredibly valuable for some high earners.

A Man is Not a Plan

30 April 2019

A Man is Not a Plan

Recently I heard a story from a 67-year old woman who had gotten divorced after twenty years of marriage. She had raised her daughter at home while she was younger and she didn't get much at all from the divorce. She is now collecting about $900 per month from Social Security income and working part-time to get by while sharing an apartment with others. She is fearful about her financial future because she has never managed money before and it's hard for her to find a job at her age. This month, I also heard another story about a woman who confided to her granddaughter in college that she had stayed in an abusive marriage for many years because she didn't have any control of money. Later, this woman's death resulted from falling down the stairs and was later confirmed not to be an accident. In fact, her abusive husband pushed her down the stairs. Staying because of money had literally cost her her life.

Must-Know Facts About Health Savings Account

27 December 2018

Must-Know Facts About Health Savings Account

A Health Savings Account (HSA) can be a powerful tool to help you save and invest, now, to pay for your qualified medical expenses (QMEs) during retirement.  The HSA has become popular as more and more employers move to high deductible health plans (HDHP) in order to reduce insurance premiums.  Employees must choose the HDHPs instead of traditional health insurance plans if they want to use their HSAs to fill the gap.  I have used HSAs personally for about 10 years and I want to share these essential facts with you:

Withdrawal Strategies During Retirement

31 October 2018

Withdrawal Strategies During Retirement

You may have heard of the 4% rule for withdrawals during retirement as you approach your retirement. I would like to clarify this rule in this blog post and offer some thoughts on how to withdraw from your nest egg to make the money last for at least your lifetime.

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