This blog is dedicated to providing financial advice that you can use. Although generic financial planning information abounds, this blog addresses concerns of professionals early in their careers and those nearing or at retirement.
After over five years of providing personal financial planning services to a variety of clients in different situations, I have developed easy-to-use solutions and ways to explain financial concepts so you can actually use the information to reach your financial goals.
Indeed, many of my clients nearing retirement have told me that they wished that had started saving earlier or better understood their spending and investment choices when they were younger.
My approach in this blog will be to explain a topic and why it matters. I will then provide actions or strategies you can use to make your own decision on how to address the topic. I approach each topic by identifying what makes most financial sense, reduces risk, or is more tax efficient. Of course, other values such as your relationship to money or your attitudes toward savings often outweigh adherence to a strict “dollar and sense” approach. It is important, however, to understand the dollars and sense approach even if you choose a different path on a particular topic.
In particular, I will explain financial concepts of primary concern to two audiences:
- Professionals starting out or early in their careers. Young professionals often have questions on how to balance competing priorities related to savings, debt retirement, college funding, starting a family, retirement savings, home purchases, insurance coverage, and necessary estate documents.
- Individuals and couples who are very close to retirement. Near retirees often have questions related to ensuring sufficient income during retirement, Social Security benefit claiming strategies, preparing for required minimum distributions from tax-deferred retirement assets, rebalancing and drawing down investments, obtaining adequate insurance coverage, and understanding Medicare choices.
I plan to complete the blog in one year so that by the fall of 2015, there will be a body of work that includes the basics of personal financial planning. I have encountered many financial situations and stories that I plan to use to illustrate my approach or to make a point. Along the way, I will include commentary on recent financial developments, changes in the law, and other issues that can influence your financial plan.
Your comments and reactions are welcome. You may take a different tack than the one I express. I don’t expect that everyone will agree with my approach. The key is that this blog will explore one way to address personal finance issues based on my experience. My goal is to give you unvarnished facts and then, based on your goals and concerns, you can use the information as you wish. You will, however, have a baseline understanding of what makes sense financially.