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Client Services – The Right Puzzle Pieces

There are four financial disciplines among the "puzzle pieces" below that are critical to getting ahead financially. The order in which these disciplines are developed is also critical. 

Learning about the hierarchy of these financial disciplines, and using the right product, can help revolutionize your financial future!

For whatever reason, many people try to acquire these financial disciplines backward. They believe that if they invest first, then they will have enough money to pay off their debts. And once debt payments stop, then they’ll be able to afford to save something. Then by the time they get around to protecting, the protection may be much more expensive, and their health may have deteriorated. This may cause the cost of protection to rise, or perhaps they may be uninsurable.

We know that investment income is not likely to replace savings, and using investment income alone is no way to pay off debt quickly. Still, there are numerous people who call our company because they want to “get enough money together so that they can start investing.”

Many of these people have consumer debt or student loans, maybe both, but they believe “investing” is “where it’s at.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Ironically, the less we know about some things, the more they seem like a good idea. It’s the axiom of “ignorance is bliss.”

Income Tax Strategies

Objectives – Work with your tax advisor to develop tax efficient strategies both now and in the future. There are two ways to reduce taxes; Reduce income, or Increase Deductions. Very few Americans use tax planning, yet income tax strategies form the foundation of any successful financial plan.
Tax Playbook1040 Calc |  Tax HistoryForms | Tables |1040 |  Capital Gains |   Home Sales  |How an HSA Works

Cash Flow | Debt Elimination Planning 

Saving should be the second financial discipline that people develop. The biggest catch to saving is that you need to actually save the money. Many people invest money and think that they’re saving. Investing is not saving! To count as savings, the money needs to be in a safe place that does not expose it to market risk, or any other risk of loss.

Managing debt naturally follows saving and should be the third financial discipline. There are many people who will get a much higher return by managing the debt they have before they invest. Think credit card debt, student loans or almost any other consumer debt. Managing debt doesn’t necessarily mean pay off all debt. Some debt can be good, if it provides better cash flow or better tax treatment. Managing debt means keeping the good debt and executing a plan to pay off bad debt

Objectives – Design a strategy that identifies potential savings in taxes, insurance premiums or unallocated income that can be redirected to your savings and investments. There are two ways to find out where your excess is going. Keep track of every penny or the ACH (Automated Clearing House) way. Start saving most of the surplus. In a couple months, you will know where it is going ... or better yet you won’t miss it and you will be that much closer to retirement.
Number? | Debt | Inflation | Great PasswordBudget 

College | Education Planning

Objectives – Structure an appropriate college strategy using UTMA, UGMA, 529 Plans, Education IRA’s and ROTH IRA’s for your children. The evaluation is based on the number of children, their ages, educational plans, school selection, possible scholarships and student loans that may be available, student earnings and family income.
101 |500K Baby | RetFunds? | How Much? | Student Loans  | Student Loan Debt   

Retirement Planning

Objectives – Design and implement a plan to avoid outliving your income during your retirement years. We calculate your total income, expenses and taxes during your stated life expectancy. The evaluation reveals potential issues that may cause you to outlive your income and helps you adjusts your working and savings strategy to select an appropriate retirement date and savings goal to reduce or eliminate the shortfall.
PERA Buyback? | Social Security | Medicare Ready? |SS How To | SS#  | Hype   | Traps | Bucket  | Healthy Body |  Women  | 18 Years | Sequence of Returns | Compare | Fruitful | Timing Risk  | Tax Diversification | HSA | ChecklistSS-Quote  | PERA-Quote |  

Protection Planning

Protection should always be the first financial discipline. Without protection, clients risk leaving family, business associates, dependents and creditors in a difficult spot. Protection is even more important than saving because, for a small sum, insurance will provide several times more protection than what individual can save in a short period of time.

Objectives – Design a strategy that provides for your needs and goals after your death. We fund two key areas: First, funding that covers funeral and burial expenses. Second, we fund for the Loss of Income to your loved ones. We also fund three key periods: Until children are age 18, until retirement of the surviving spouse, and during retirement of the surviving spouse.
Protect | Basics | Risk | Needs | DNA | Exit | Group? | Individual Term | Gift |  Quote  |

Estate Planning

Objectives – Simplify disposing of your estate in a manner that meets your objectives. Provide enough money to meet known and expected settlement expenses due to death. Preserve the assets you have worked hard to accumulate. Provide funds for education expenses and debt repayment. Reduce estate and income taxes, administrative expenses, executor’s fees and attorney fees.
101|  Will? |  Giving | Digital Estate  | ILIT | Special Needs |  Blended Families  | Inventory | Critical | Probate | Test  |

Disability Planning

Objectives – Implement a disability income policy that pays a monthly benefit if you are unable to work because of an accident or illness. The practical and prudent alternative in dealing with disability is to transfer the risk to a disability insurance company. Other alternatives are: Build up sufficient personal savings. Borrow the funds from family or the bank. Sell Assets. You rarely receive true value in a forced sale.
Basics | How Much? |   50 to 70% | Quiz | Self Insure | Quote  |

Long Term Care Planning

Objectives – Design a long term care plan to help you avoid seriously eroding or exhausting your assets. This strategy accounts for a broad range of health care, personal care, rehabilitation, and social services for ill or disabled people who need help with their daily activities. On 10/15/2020 The US Department of Health shared that almost 70% of people over age 65 will require some long-term care.
Extended Care | Cost of Care | Self Insure | Threat | Quote |

Investment Planning

Investing should always be the last financial discipline, not just because of the risk of losing both earnings and capital, but because people will have better financial acumen after developing the first three disciplines.

Objectives – Design and customize your portfolio with the flexibility designed to weather market risk and capitalize on periods of good returns. Review current asset allocation, risk tolerance, and desired rates of return. While past performance is not a guarantee of future results, evaluate recent performance trends to determine historic opportunity and risk if market reversals repeated the patterns of the 2008 market downturn. Design an investment policy statement that aligns with your goals and clearly states your asset allocation objectives.
Cycle | Reality  | #72 | Inflation | Headed? | Risk | Compound | Stocks | Emotion | Volatility  |  The Bubble  | Risk Tolerance |  Riskalyze