Archives for Blog

Retire at 62? Consider These 2 Factors First

If you’re in your fifties, you are probably beginning to feel more concerned about retirement. At this point in time, most of us begin to seriously evaluate our ability to retire someday, we kick our savings into high gear, and we start trying to pinpoint a target retirement date. Most of us assume that we’ll work until “sixty-something”, but beyond that guess, we aren’t really sure when we’ll retire. It is often a good idea to wait until you reach full retirement age, as defined by Social Security, so that you can access your full scheduled benefits. However, because Social
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What Does a “Credit Freeze” Do?

In 2017, a security breach through Equifax leaked personal data on 143 million Americans. With their names, addresses, and Social Security numbers now potentially in the hands of hackers, many of those individuals decided to utilize a credit freeze to protect their identities. You might even be considering this move yourself, if your information was breached (or is compromised in the future). But, what exactly happens when you freeze your credit? Essentially this means that the three major credit reporting bureaus can no longer provide your credit history when requested by new creditors. So, if someone applies for a credit
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Will the Federal Rate Hike Affect You?

We always strive to bring you the financial news that will affect you personally, whether good or bad. Of course, events can impact us all differently, so often the effects of a particular news item will depend upon your own situation. That’s certainly the case with the interest rate hike, announced last month by the Federal Reserve. The increase of about 1.5 to 1.75 percent came along with an encouraging statement, regarding low unemployment, job gains, and an overall improving economy. Typically, a strengthening economy is great news for all of us, but how will the interest rate hike affect
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5 Potential Tax Pitfalls That Could Affect Your Retirement

Once you retire, many areas of life will become much simpler: No more work commute, career wardrobe, boring meetings, and hectic schedule! Hopefully retirement will feel like smooth sailing by comparison to your working years. However, one area of life might feel more complicated, at least at first… Watch out for these five income tax pitfalls, which are common amongst retirees. You’re retired, but your spouse is still working (or vice versa). Make sure you fill out that W-4 form correctly, or you might underpay your income taxes throughout the year. This situation can also occur if you’ve retired, but
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Yes, You Can Afford a Life Insurance Policy

Most people know that life insurance can be an invaluable resource, in the event of an untimely death. Not only are funeral and burial expenses prohibitive these days; most families would struggle to survive on only one income. Yet, many people resist enrolling in a life insurance plan because they view the premiums as yet another monthly expense. Most of us don’t enjoy paying bills, especially for something that seems a bit abstract. We have a bit of good news: Life insurance is actually more affordable than you probably believe and yes, you can afford a policy! Can you afford
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8 Things to Do Before You Retire

Retirement planning is not something you can accomplish in one day, or even one year. Truly, we should all plan for retirement from the very first day of our careers, spanning several decades! However, you will certainly accelerate your retirement planning efforts over the last few years of your working life. The following is by no means a complete list of the steps you will need to take, but it should help you focus your planning. Rearrange your priorities. If you haven’t already, make sure that you’re making your own future a top priority. Retirement savings and life insurance premiums
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5 Questions to Ask Before Claiming Social Security

Social Security will provide a predictable portion of your income in retirement, so you’re counting on those benefits being available when you’re ready to claim them. However, the claims process is actually much more complicated than many people believe, giving you plenty of opportunities to make minor (or occasionally major) mistakes. Before you set your target retirement date and file your claim for Social Security, make sure you can answer these questions. What is your full retirement age? Over the years, policy changes have raised the full retirement age, according to your birth date. You need to have this information
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7 Signs You’re Not Saving Enough for Retirement

Even though it’s years away, we will all retire someday. Therefore, saving for retirement is an issue that affects everyone. But if you start asking around, you might find that many people have no idea whether they’re saving enough for retirement. In the worst-case scenarios, they know they aren’t saving enough – or at all! To evaluate your savings plan, ask yourself these questions… What is your savings rate? You should be able to answer this question off the top of your head. If you don’t know how much you’re setting aside for retirement each pay period, that’s a major
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5 Basic 401(k) Facts You Need to Know

For many Americans, a 401(k) is their primary, or only, mode of investing in their future. It seems to be understood by most people that if your employer offers a 401(k), you should definitely take advantage of it by making contributions. But beyond that, many people feel lost. Utilizing a 401(k) to your best advantage involves a lot more than simply making contributions and hoping for the best. Take the time to learn at least these 5 basic facts about your 401(k), and you will begin to understand more about it (and possibly use it to better advantage). Your 401(k)
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4 Trends That Might Affect Retirees This Year

Many of us only pay attention to politics every four years, during the Presidential election season. But the truth is that progress is happening all the time, particularly with regard to state-by-state changes. In fact, things that happen on a statewide level usually affect us as much, if not more, than national policy changes! With that idea in mind, the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) has announced that they will lobby state legislators for the following changes this year. Keep in mind that these trends won’t necessarily become law, but do reflect growing awareness of the needs of retired
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Categories: Blog.