Archive - February 2012

1
8 Things to Consider Before Rolling Over A 401(k)
2
How To Break Up With Your Bank and Get More From Your Money
3
Here’s Everything You Can Use Your 529 Account For
4
How to Make the Most of Your Charitable Donations
5
The Importance of Talking with Your Parents About Retirement

8 Things to Consider Before Rolling Over A 401(k)

Employers have been giving us lots of opportunities to make this decision of late: when leaving an employer, whether voluntarily or otherwise, we have the opportunity to rollover the qualified retirement plan (QRP) such as a 401(k) from the former employer to either an IRA or a new employer’s QRP.

This decision shouldn’t be taken lightly – although often it is the best option for you.  Moving to an IRA gives you much more control over your destiny, so to speak, by allowing you to choose from the entire universe of allowable investment choices.  Using your new employer’s QRP can …

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How To Break Up With Your Bank and Get More From Your Money

If you are looking to switch banks, here are is what you need to do starting now to make that switch:

Stop auto-pays at your current bank

The big banks focus on convenience; they were the first to figure out banking online makes it difficult to switch institutions. Auto-pays make it that much tougher to leave.

To prepare for the break-up, stop auto-pays; paying everyone manually through your online banking system is fine. Consider getting a regular paycheck instead of direct deposits. Or, find out what your payroll department will require for you to change the direct deposit of your …

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Here’s Everything You Can Use Your 529 Account For

$334,000; that is approximately how much it will cost to send your newborn to a 4-year private college starting in the year 2030. If you have two children, that future expense comes close to current home prices in Los Angeles. The cost of higher education is rising faster than inflation (including food and energy.) It’s no wonder then that many parents are starting to save early for their children’s college education costs. One of the most efficient investment vehicles to help parents accumulate the necessary funds is the recently introduced 529 plan. Officially known as “Qualified Tuition Programs”, 529 plans …

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How to Make the Most of Your Charitable Donations

As a financial advisor who prepares taxes, I see various degrees of substantiation when it comes to non-cash charitable donations (i.e. Goodwill). Everything from handwritten receipts (which don’t work) to detailed records show up in my office.  The difference between the two can affect your taxable bottom line. Remember, the better the substantiation, the easier it is to properly value your donation.

This past Sunday, while the weather was cold and dreary, we decided it was time to clean out our closets.  Molly and I went to work piling up Goodwill items.  We enlisted the help of our kids with …

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The Importance of Talking with Your Parents About Retirement

As we get older the parent-child relationship changes: it can become more of a friendship and in some cases, parents and children completely reverse roles. If your parents have already taken the time to speak to you about the steps they have taken towards retirement planning, consider yourself fortunate. If they haven’t, and you are in communication with them, you should consider talking to them about their financial future.

Parents may assume that their children don’t want to talk about finances and children may feel presumptuous asking about their parents’ money. One thing you might want to do is …

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