This article was originally written for and published on Forbes
As we settle into 2021, we can finally, finally say goodbye to a year that brought countless challenges and the upheaval of normal life for almost all of us.
I’m sure most folks are saying good riddance, too.
The bar for making 2021 a good year might be pretty low, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make an effort to plan ahead and consider what you can proactively do to set yourself up for maximum success.
When it comes to your finances, that combination — planning and proactivity — are extremely powerful forces that you can use to your advantage. …
A version of this article was originally written for & published on Business Insider
If you want to plan well for retirement, you probably know you should start saving as soon as possible and take advantage of benefits like an employer-sponsored retirement plan… but beyond that, it’s not easy to get clarity on what you should do for an event that might be 20 or more years into the future.
Don’t let that stop you from getting proactive and staying engaged in the process, though. With a little help, retirement planning can feel less overwhelming.
You can start by making sure you’re not leaving any major planning to-dos undone. Here are 3 things that should be on your radar, but that I often see 30- and 40-somethings forget about when it comes to saving and investing for retirement. …
A version of this piece was originally written for and published on Business Insider
I’m a financial planner, and I specialize in designing strategies for working professionals in their 30s and 40s
Most people are experiencing a lot of transitions and milestones at these ages, and almost every decision you make or goal you set has major financial implications. Doing the right financial planning at these critical stages can make the difference between being “just okay,” and building serious wealth.
After spending over 20 years in the financial planning industry, I’ve gotten pretty good at spotting the people most likely to be successful — even before we start working on their plan. …
A version of this piece was originally written for and published on Kiplinger
There is no shortage of great content available for those who want to build a sound retirement plan, from books and podcasts to hiring your own personal financial advisor to optimize your planning efforts.
While the amount of information out there can be overwhelming, the benefit of such volume is that you’re less likely today than ever before to leave something critical out of your retirement planning, or to forget something altogether…but there is one big exception to that.
And this factor that you may be at the most risk of forgetting has nothing to do with your finances. …
This post was originally written for & published on Beyond Your Hammock
Unless you’ve been living on Pluto for the last few months, you know there’s a big election just weeks away in the U.S.
And investors want to know: what does the outcome of that election that mean for the economy?
Perhaps more importantly, what does it mean for your investment portfolio? Should you think about changing your investment strategy now?
Short answer: probably not.
It might seem surprising given the volatility we expect to see in the market because of the election. …
This article was originally written for & published on Business Insider
If you’ve ever spoken with a financial advisor — or even looked into a robo-advisor, for that matter — to learn more about investing money, then you’ve probably heard of “risk tolerance” or taken a risk-tolerance questionnaire.
The higher your tolerance, conventional wisdom says, the more risk you can take with your investments. The lower your tolerance, the more conservative you may want to be with your portfolio.
But your risk tolerance is only a measure of your emotional capacity to take risks. It tells us nothing about your actual ability to afford to realize them. …
This article was originally written for & published on Forbes
Most of us know it’s important to save, and understand saving money for the future is a critical action step to achieving goals, being able to retire, and building assets.
But things quickly go from the very obvious to rather uncertain when you start talking about how much you need to save each month.
Determining how much you need to save to meet your goals and enjoy financial security is difficult because rules of thumb can only get you so far. …
This piece was originally written for and published on Business Insider.
Getting life insurance is not on most people’s priority lists. It can feel like a hassle to go through the process of scheduling an exam and sharing your medical history.
The reality, however, is that life insurance can be a useful part of your overall plan to make sure your assets, your property, and the financial security of your loved ones can withstand the worst-case scenario of your sudden death.
This is especially true if you have minor children or dependents. In general, you may not need life insurance until you have someone who is financially dependent on you, because life insurance is designed to protect those individuals from financial hardship if you (and your income) were no longer here. …
This article was originally written for an published on Kiplinger
Plans have a tendency to become outdated the moment they’re set down on paper. Once you have a financial plan, don’t let it get stale. You’ll want to review your plan often, even when things in your life don’t seem hectic or eventful — in fact, I’d argue that those are the best times to sit down, give your full attention to your finances, and do a thorough review.
But aside from that, there are other specific triggers in life that tell you it’s time to take a look at your plan, get reacquainted with it, and potentially make changes. …
This article was originally written for and published on Beyond Your Hammock
The other day, my wife, Kali, mentioned she wanted to thank me for something.
We recently bought a home we both love in upstate New York. It sits on a little mountain and has an incredible, western-facing view.
We were sitting on the deck watching a gorgeous sunset (an activity we don’t imagine tiring of anytime soon), when she said this, and added that it was a bit of a long story to explain.
She said that earlier that day, she was looking out the bedroom window and had a flashback to a time we went to a summer barbecue at a house on Cape Cod. …