Posts by Strategic Financial Planning

7 Budgeting Tips For July

Budgeting can help you achieve your goals faster. Once you realize that budgeting can help you achieve the goals you’ve set out for yourself, you may find the process inspiring. Think of your budget as a spending plan Think of your budget as your “how-to” plan for spending your money rather than what you “can’t” spend. The upside is that by budgeting for short- and long-term expenditures, you can spend money without feeling guilty about it, because you’ve actually planned to spend it! With a budget, you will simply be allocating all your expenditures with a means to an end,
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Categories: Financial Literacy and Financial Planning.

It’s Annuity Awareness Month. How much do you know about annuities?

Because June is Annuity Awareness Month, here is an overview about them. Annuity product designs and types continue to evolve, primarily to meet the demands of people nearing retirement. In addition to their original purpose of providing retirement income, insurance companies have developed hybrid policies, adding features to address the multiple risks consumers face as they get older. The most important thing you should know about annuities is that they are insurance policies, or contracts between you and an insurance company. Guarantees in them are backed by the financial strength and claims-paying ability of the issuing insurance company. As with
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Categories: Financial Literacy and Retirement Planning.

5 Ways to Give Your Finances a $pring Cleaning

Spring is here! Time to get your finances in shipshape condition. Here are five ideas to get you started.   Check your credit reports. While you’re reviewing your expenses and debts in order to see how you are faring in terms of staying within your personal budget, make sure that there aren’t any expenses or debts on your credit report that aren’t yours. It’s free to check your credit reports once a year to ensure no one has used your name or identity to make unauthorized purchases. Here is what to do: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0155-free-credit-reports   Consider banking / credit card changes.
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Categories: Financial Planning.

Interest rates, bond prices and inflation are related. Here’s how.

The Federal Reserve “Part of the mission given to the Federal Reserve by Congress is to keep [consumer] prices stable–that is, to keep prices from rising or falling too quickly. The Federal Reserve sees a rate of inflation of 2 percent per year–as measured by a particular price index, called the price index for personal consumption expenditures–as the right amount of inflation. “The Federal Reserve seeks to control inflation by influencing interest rates. When inflation is too high, the Federal Reserve typically raises interest rates to slow the economy and bring inflation down. When inflation is too low, the Federal
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Categories: Retirement Risks.

7 Tips to Resolve Financial Issues Between Couples

No matter how long you have been together, financial issues can wreak havoc on a committed relationship. According to Investopedia, some of the top money issues between partners include money/personality style clashes, debt, personal spending, children, and extended family differences. When couples don’t agree about spending and saving habits, it can lead to stress, arguments and resentment. Here are seven ways you can address financial issues positively, preferably before they arise. Understand Your Money Styles Think of some extreme examples of money styles in your circle. Like your friend, the foodie, who won’t touch a bottle of wine that costs
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Categories: Financial Planning.

5 Highlights of the New Stimulus Package

What the latest round of funding may mean for you. The $900 billion Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 (2021 CAA) was signed into law by President Trump on December 28th as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact employers and employees. The new package resembles March’s $2.2 trillion CARES Act, but will only be $920 billion, with roughly half of that—$429 billion—being paid for with unspent CARES funds.   Here’s a quick recap of five key highlights:   Stimulus Checks The new law authorized a second round of $600 checks for people with income that meets the criteria. The checks start
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Categories: Legislation.

Your Annual Financial To-Do List

Things you can do for your future as the year unfolds. What financial, business, or life priorities do you need to address for the coming year? Now is an excellent time to think about the investing, saving, or budgeting methods you could employ toward specific objectives, from building your retirement fund to managing your taxes. You have plenty of choices. Here are a few ideas to consider:   Can you contribute more to your retirement plans this year? In 2021, the contribution limit for a Roth or traditional individual retirement account (IRA) is expected to remain at $6,000 ($7,000 for
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Categories: Financial Planning.

10 Reasons You Need a Financial Plan

October is Financial Planning Month which serves as a useful, annual checkpoint to make sure you are on track to meet your financial goals. A written, up-to-date financial plan encompasses not only investments, but risk management solutions, tax reduction strategies and estate planning. 10 Reasons You Need a Financial Plan To have one comprehensive document to address your finances. Financial planning provides one summary location for everything related to your family’s financial life. From your budget, to your savings, to your investments, to your retirement, a financial plan helps you consider your finances in a holistic manner, and gives you
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Categories: Financial Planning.

What is a Roth Conversion?

To understand what a Roth conversion is, you must first understand some of the basics about the different types of retirement accounts, called “qualified accounts.” Pensions Also called defined-benefit plans, pensions are paid for by employers. They have largely gone away for Americans in the private sector starting with the passage of three laws during the Reagan administration, the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act passed in 1982, The Retirement Equity Act of 1984, and The Tax Reform Act and Single Employer Pension Plan enacted in 1986. The lack of pensions is one reason why it’s important for people to
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Categories: Retirement Planning and Tax Planning.

How Rich Do You Have to Be in Order to Retire?

Even though perceptions have changed during the pandemic with more Americans now saying they need less money to feel rich1, when it comes to retirement, most people are still unclear about how much they will need to have saved before they can quit their jobs. The answer to that question is different for every person. Here are some of the things you need to think about in order to get a realistic retirement number in mind.   What do you want to do during retirement? Where will you live? Different people have different retirement goals and visions. You may not
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Categories: Retirement and Retirement Planning.