Author - jim@blankenshipfinancial.com (Jim Blankenship)

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Why track expenses?
2
Defined Benefit Pensions
3
Splitting Inherited IRAs
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The Granddaddy of ’em All: Keogh Plans
5
Why We Include Real Estate in Investment Portfolios

Why track expenses?

One of the primary things that we suggest to clients is to track expenses. In some cases, this means noting down each expense as you make it, daily, so that even the incidental cash outlays are tracked. Another way to do this is to use an automated method, one of the many apps available, to monitor your expenses through your credit card and bank accounts. Either way, when you track expenses there are a couple of outcomes that can have a positive influence on your financial life. The first is that you become more aware of each outlay of money,… Read More

Defined Benefit Pensions

A defined benefit pension is a type of retirement plan that your employer may offer as the only plan offered, or in conjunction with a 401(k) plan. If you have access to a defined benefit pension or are currently participating in one, you are in rare company as these types of plans are becoming few and far between. Defined benefit pensions are different from 401(k)-type plans (called defined contribution plans) in several ways. One of the biggest differences is the fact that the employer is responsible for the funding of the plan in addition to accepting all the investment risk… Read More

Splitting Inherited IRAs

In the case of an inherited IRA, splitting it often is desirable in order to better accommodate a distribution plan after the primary owner dies. This can be done prior to the death of the IRA owner, or it could be done after the death of the IRA owner, as long as it’s accomplished before the end of the year following the year of death. Why is this important? When an IRA is inherited by a non-spouse individual, that individual is required to begin taking distribution of that IRA. The required distribution is based either upon the heir’s age or… Read More

The Granddaddy of ’em All: Keogh Plans

Ah, the poor, misunderstood and neglected Keogh (KEE-og) Plan. You don’t get the press that your fancy relatives 401(k), IRA and Roth, or even SIMPLE achieve… it seems as if the investment discussion world is completely abandoning you.
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First brought into existence in 1962 (yes, it’s a late-boomer like me!) the Keogh or HR10 plan is essentially a vehicle that allows the self-employed to establish pension plans just like the big companies can. A Keogh plan can be either a defined benefit (traditional pension) or a defined contribution (such as a 401(k)) plan. The Keogh plan has the same attributes… Read More

Why We Include Real Estate in Investment Portfolios

We construct portfolios out of various asset types in order to diversify, or spread out our risk. To spread risk we choose multiple asset types of differing profiles. Most often these asset types include domestic equities (US-based stocks) and domestic fixed income (US-based bonds), which provide for basic diversification. Then, we include additional asset types in order to achieve further diversification. Examples of additional asset types include commodities, foreign equities, foreign-denominated bonds, and real estate. It is important to keep in mind as we review various asset classes for inclusion in our portfolio, that we must achieve appropriate return for… Read More

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