Why Now Is The Time To Update Your Will

One of the things least thought of but most needed is to update your will. If it’s been awhile since a rewrite of this incredibly important document, might be time to dust it off and make some changes! While cleaning some files out of our filing cabinet (something I’m prone to do at the beginning of every year), I ran across a file folder that has a copy of our will in it. We have the official copy in a safe and a safety deposit box, with this one as a quick reference copy. After reading through it once, it …

Stocks, Bonds or Alternatives? The Answer is Yes.

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When speaking to various groups about pursuing Mastery Of Money, I inevitably get the question, “I have some funds to invest. Where should I put it?” The question is a hotbed of what ifs, if thens, and how much, not to mention the fact that we haven’t talked about your investment horizon, your risk tolerance, your debt levels, and what you are ultimately investing for. The easiest answer, and one we’re hearing from the authors and experts at various financial trade pubs (Kiplinger, Smart Money, Money) is Index Funds and ETFs. An index fund maps the overall basket of companies …

Tracking Your Net Worth Simply and Easily

In the 1930’s classic Think And Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill states that ‘having definiteness of purpose for acquiring wealth is essential for it’s acquisition.’ The quote lives on the door of my office as a constant reminder that if acquiring wealth is the goal, you must have definiteness of purpose for it’s acquisition – in other words an unwavering focus on that goal happening. I find tracking my net worth on a consistent basis to be one of the best ways to keep that focus. Visibility Creates Accountability When you look at the staggeringly low levels of wealth for the …

WHAT EVERY KID NEEDS FOR THE HOLIDAYS

This post is worth $5 if you read to the end! While everyone has their gift giving traditions, what every kid needs for the holidays has little to do with their age, their likes, or what’s on their list to Santa. Throughout my formative years, our holiday tradition was to spend time at my Grandma and Grandpa Carroll’s house in Frederika, Iowa (a small town of “204 friendly people” according to the highway sign). My grandparents were children during the Great Depression and they had profound memories of Christmases gone by where the gifts were few and far between, many …

Mortgage or No Mortgage: Why Your Personal Financial Plan Is Crucial

Whether or not to pay off your mortgage is a very individual decision that is based on a number of factors. My sister and I were having a conversation not too long ago about mortgages as she and her spouse were refinancing their home in Northern California. I was throwing ideas out to her about keeping the original first mortgage they had in place and blasting away the second using a debt elimination tool like Shred My Mortgage. The first mortgage had a healthy balance but a relatively low interest rate and the second mortgage was hovering around $40,000 with …

Love Your Kids? Let Them Struggle.

**Originally published on The Huffington Post – February 7, 2017** “What do you do when your girls are texting you to put money in their account?” This was the first question asked by a group of parents at a college parent night where I had been invited to speak. The look on this particular dad’s face suggested it wasn’t a hypothetical situation but something that was happening occasionally. So I turned the question back on him, “What do you do when your girls are texting you to put money in their account?” “I usually put some in there for them, …

Sizzling Tulips- Why You Shouldn’t Try To Time The Market

What follows is a cautionary tale that perfectly illustrates why – when it comes to investing – we should all avoid trying to time the market. In essence, avoid the sizzle. The year is 1634. The place – Holland. Tulips made their way to the Dutch from Turkey and, being a new flower, were pretty pricey. People were paying a pretty penny for the pretty flower, but the tulip’s hay-day was still yet to come. After the flowers contracted a unique virus that presented itself as a flame-looking pattern on their petals, the craze began. As the variations continued to expand …

Your Financial Survival Guide

With the Dow Jones still above 20,000, most people aren’t giving a second thought to a stock market collapse, a massive devaluation of the dollar, or an attack on our banking system. That being said, now is THE BEST TIME to prepare yourself in the event of a financial armageddon. The problem with high flying economies like ours is they create a false sense of security. Seeing the DOW break 20,000 had some people celebrating the end of the recession, the next goal of 30,000, and rosy futures for all investors. The flip side of this coin is every high …