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Life, Dollars, and Sense

The Value of a Real Financial Planner and Retirement Planning

"Results from this study demonstrate the importance of differentiating between financial planners whose primary objective is to sell financial products versus financial planners who create a retirement plan by first quantifying retirement goals and objectives." This is the very last sentence in a

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  • Storing and Easily Locating Your Vital Documents

    Do you know where to locate your birth certificate? How about your passport? How about your will, power of attorney, or health care directive? Many of us store these documents in a 'secure' location such as a fire-safe at home or bank safe-deposit box. But what if you need quick access to any of these documents?

    How to Increase Your Returns with Tax-Savvy Investing

    After market-risk and inflation-risk, which investors take great strides to mitigate through sound investment practices, taxation-risk presents the biggest obstacle to building wealth. A sound investment strategy not only seeks to generate returns on your capital, it also seeks to preserve as much of your capital as possible to keep it working for you.

    What Planning Lessons Can We Learn From The President's Tax Return?

    Last week the White House released the President's 2013 tax return. Being curious financial professionals we decided to take a look and see if there are any financial planning lessons that can be learned from the tax return of the most powerful couple on the planet.

    Getting Savings Off to a Strong Start in 2014

    In response to the last blog posted here near the end of 2013 I received an e-mail from a fairly new client with the same title of this post.

    One Percent for the One Percent? Think About Your Future Self Instead

    Last November I wrote a post that challenged readers to save an additional one percent of their income for 2013. If you read that post, did you accept the challenge?

    How Does the Government Shutdown Impact My Portfolio?

    As a financial planner I get quite a few e-mails each day from various professional journals and online financial blogs, most of which get a quick scan, and then very quickly placed in my delete folder. Over the past few days I have been amused with several messages asking how the government shutdown will impact investors, or impact advisors.

    How Does Current Events Impact My Investment Portfolio?

    There is quite an industry built on trying to understand how news will impact stocks and other investments.

    Can Money Buy Happiness?

    Many of us ask and wonder about this question. In a new book, Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending, authors Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton argue that money can buy happiness, but one needs to understand which spending decisions will deliver more happiness.

    Do We Overvalue What We Own?

    I recently completed an online class by Professor Dan Ariely of Duke University. One of my favorite weeks during the class was The Psychology of Money. The 'endowment effect' was one of the more interesting topics discussed. This relates to how we value something that we own more than someone else might value the same exact object.

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