Financial Planning

401(k) Contribution Limit Goes Up in 2020

By |2020-01-15T08:35:41-05:00January 15th, 2020|Financial Planning, Retirement|

Call it a gift. Call it crazy. Call it whatever you want. But it’s good news. The IRS will let you put more money into your 401(k) account in 2020. The maximum contribution to a 401(k) this year is $19,500, up from $19,000 in 2019. If you are age 50 or older, you can make an additional $6,500 catch-up contribution [...]

Keeping your IRA a Little Longer

By |2020-01-08T13:29:28-05:00January 8th, 2020|Financial Planning, Retirement|

Americans are living much longer. Some are running out of money before their death and need additional assistance from the Federal Government, which puts more strain on a system that’s bringing in less money than it’s paying retirees. On January 1, 2020, the SECURE Act (Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement) took effect, allowing you to save more and [...]

Red Flags Over Labor

By |2019-11-06T20:49:07-05:00November 6th, 2019|Economy, Federal Reserve/Monetary Policy, Financial Planning|

NOTE: originally published Friday, Nov 1 Better-than-expected is the new strong. Even I’m amazed at the satisfaction being taken with October’s payroll numbers. While you never focus too much on one monthly estimate, this time it might be time to do so. But not for those other reasons. Sure, GM caused some disruption and the Census is winding down, both [...]

Will or Trust – Which Should I Have?

By |2019-11-06T11:48:22-05:00November 6th, 2019|Estate Planning, Financial Planning|

Do I need a will or a trust? That’s the most basic question to begin creating an estate plan. And, let’s face it, you really do want a say in who gets what after your gone. That’s just human nature. Without some kind of legal instructions, you can’t guarantee that your wishes will be carried out. So, is a will [...]

Things You Didn’t Know Were Tax Deductions

By |2019-10-23T15:04:28-04:00October 23rd, 2019|Financial Planning|

Have you ever had that sick feeling in the pit of your stomach when you realize there was a tax deduction you could have taken and didn’t? There’s just something deflating about knowing Uncle Sam got more of your money than he had to. The folks at TurboTax have come up with a list of deductions you shouldn’t overlook:   [...]

2020 Social Security Cost of Living Numbers Released

By |2019-10-17T16:19:40-04:00October 17th, 2019|Financial Planning, Retirement|

This is the time of year when leaves fall and the Social Security Administration announces the annual cost of living adjustment (COLA) for people receiving Social Security. For 2020 the increase will be 1.6 percent, or about $24 per month, raising the average monthly individual payout to $1503. It will boost the maximum retirement benefit by $150 to $3011 per [...]

The Alarming Growth of Elder Bankruptcy

By |2019-10-16T13:48:05-04:00October 14th, 2019|Financial Planning, Retirement|

Being elderly in America has more than its share of issues—affording proper healthcare, being forced to work much longer because of the need for health insurance or not having saved enough for retirement. Now, throw one more financial demon into the mix. More and more elders are being forced into bankruptcy. In 1991, elder bankruptcies made up 2% of total [...]

Roth IRA Conversion Traps to Avoid

By |2019-10-10T14:08:59-04:00October 10th, 2019|Financial Planning, Retirement|

Since the Roth IRA was created by the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997, it’ been an appealing addition to retirement planning. While contributions to a Roth are not tax-deductible, the trade-off is tax-free and penalty-free withdrawals after you cross the age of 59 ½. The withdrawal benefit is one reason many people consider converting their traditional IRAs to Roth IRAs. [...]

Medicare: Don’t Set It And Forget It

By |2019-10-02T08:37:56-04:00October 2nd, 2019|Financial Planning, Retirement|

It may be one of the biggest misconceptions people have about Medicare—thinking that when they’re eligible they can enroll and then they’re set for life—set it and forget it. Nothing could be further from the truth. Never changing your Medicare plan can be a costly mistake. Every year, insurance companies make changes to the Medicare plans they offer. Those changes [...]