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20000

DOW 20,000 … the more things change, the more they stay the same!

DOW 20,000. Is that good? Or is that bad? Guess what – this is simply another way point much like DOW 15,000 was, or DOW 10,000, or pick any DOW number. The Power of the Markets Markets don’t know your specific emotions and behaviors – so the markets march on ignoring them. It is best […]

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Rent vs Buy? What are the considerations?

Before you consider obtaining more debt for a mortgage, how much mortgage should you get? Lenders look at what is called your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio (with target ratio percentages). So what is your DTI ratio? This calculator determines your DTI for you and also discusses the various considerations debt may have. Both sites above help […]

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Tapping a 401k – is it age 55 or 59 1/2? Strategy?

Most people are aware of the 59 1/2 age rule to begin withdrawing money from an IRA without tax penalty. Few are aware that age 55 is when this applies to a 401k. What are your options? Caveat (of course): you need to have left your employer – how doesn’t matter – at 55 or […]

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Investing long term? Don’t overlook the inflation factor.

Even a low inflation amount can lead to loss of purchasing power over the long term. So investing (not savings – see last week’s post) is for the long term because investing also should overcome this insidious effect. Savings typically fall victim to inflation, while prudent investing does not. Here is a short article on […]

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Spending Shocks, Budgets and Savings: Working and Retired

Whether you are still working, or retired, most people haven’t structured their budgets for spending shocks. In truth if you spend less than you could, regardless of working or retired, you build in a buffer that helps keep stress on your financial life lower. Most recognize the below as logical. Yet, many spend everything that comes […]

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Debt – what happens when you’re gone?

Most people have a better understanding about inheriting assets. But few understand what happens with debt! “What Happens to Your Debt After you Die” in US News by Geoff Williams talks about the cautionary tales of not understanding what debt may be forgiven and what debt must be paid. Thus … your actions before going may put your […]

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Reverse Mortgages

“What’s the Deal with Reverse Mortgages?”

On occasion I change my mind on a topic when the facts have changed. Reverse Mortgages are in that category. The program has undergone many improvements as a result of the Reverse Mortgage Stabilization Act of 2013. Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECM) are called Reverse Mortgages for short. “HECMs help seniors remain financially secure by […]

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Younger than 59 1/2 and need money from your IRA?

Most people are aware that they need to wait until they’re 59 1/2, or older, to withdraw money from their IRA without tax penalties. Many are unaware that they could, if needed, withdraw money from their IRA without penalty. This post isn’t about what is called 72t or Substantially Equal Periodic Payments per se. There […]

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What changes when your kid turns 18?

We don’t simply throw a switch and forget about our children when they turn 18. But … legally a lot changes and we have no say for them at that point. They may be living close, or living far. It doesn’t matter. Not having a couple of key documents, even for them just starting out, could […]

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Tagoftrust

Are you a beneficiary of a trust?

What are your rights when you’re a beneficiary of a trust? What if you’re NOT the trustee, but only the beneficiary, and you are having trouble getting information from the trustee. You see the trustee is responsible for administering the trust on behalf of the beneficiaries – not for themselves, unless the trustee also happens […]

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