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Exemplar Editorial

Have a Plan, Not Just a Stock Portfolio

 

Have a Plan, Not Just a Stock Portfolio

Diversification still matters. One day, this bull market will end.

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock-Retirement-Plan-Savings-Senio-small.jpgIn the first quarter of 2017, the bull market seemed unstoppable. The Dow Jones Industrial Average soared past 20,000 and closed at all-time highs on 12 consecutive trading days. The Nasdaq Composite gained almost 10% in three months.1

 

An eight-year-old bull market is rare. This current bull is the second longest since the end of World War II; only the 1990-2000 bull run surpasses it. Since 1945, the average bull market has lasted 57 months.2

Key Estate Planning Mistakes to Avoid

 

Key Estate Planning Mistakes to Avoid

Too many people make these common errors.

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock-Estate-planning-worksheet-small.jpgMany affluent professionals and business owners put estate planning on hold. Only the courts and lawyers stand to benefit from their procrastination. While inaction is the biggest estate planning error, several other major mistakes can occur. The following blunders can lead to major problems.

When Someone Dies Without a Will

 

When Someone Dies Without a Will

Where do things proceed from that point?

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock-Last-Will-And-Testament-small.jpgEvery day, people die intestate. In legalese, that means without a will. This opens the door for the courts to decide what happens with their estates.

 

When no valid will exists, state intestacy laws dictate how assets are distributed. These laws divide an estate evenly (or equitably) among heirs. Any assets held in joint tenancy go to the joint owner. Assets held in a trust transfer to the trust beneficiaries (with spouses getting a share of those assets in some states). Community property goes to a spouse or partner in community property states.1

Building an Emergency Fund

 

Building an Emergency Fund

Everyone should aim to have a cash reserve.

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock--152564342 emergency fund small.jpgWe all would love to have a little extra cash on hand for emergencies. Saving up that cash can be a challenge – but with a little effort, that challenge can be met.

 

 

Imagine a 30-year-old couple with no real savings. Let’s call them Kurt and Diana. Together, they earn about $8,000 a month, but their household finances are being squeezed by education debt, rent, and the high cost of living in an affluent metro area. They have about $300 in the bank between them, and they just learned they have a baby on the way. Their need to save has never been greater. How can they do it?

Robo-Advisors vs. Human Advisors

 

Robo-Advisors vs. Human Advisors

 

If an investor chooses a non-human financial advisor, what price could they end up paying?

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock--brain vs computer.jpgInvestors have a choice today that they did not have a decade ago. They can seek investing and retirement planning guidance from a human financial advisor or put their invested assets in the hands of a robo-advisor – a software program that maintains their portfolio.

 

Why would an investor want to leave all that decision making up to a computer? In this era of cybercrime and “flash crashes” on Wall Street, doesn’t that seem a little chancy?

America Saves Week (February 27-March 4, 2017)

 

America Saves Week

How much are you setting aside on behalf of your goals?

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock-Basket-Egg-Investment-Portfoli-small.jpg“Set a goal, make a plan, and save automatically.” This is the motto of America Saves Week, which begins on February 27.

 

America Saves – a project of the American Savings Education Council – calls on Americans to do all three of those things to try and improve their finances. Each winter, it surveys Americans to see how well (or poorly) they are saving. The survey is in its tenth year, and perhaps some recent trends will be reversed in the 2017 edition.

10 Ways A Wealth Advisor Can Help

bigstock-Piggy-Banks-With-Savings small.jpg

 

People often view financial advice through a single lens, as investment advice. However, there’s a big difference between simply managing your investment portfolio (one aspect of your overall finances) and a holistic approach to coordinating your entire financial picture. Only a full-service, independent wealth advisor provides the critical planning services and advice you require across your financial life to eliminate any conflicts and create alignment between your various strategies. And that can make the difference between remaining on track and falling short of your financial objectives or timeline.

Managing Money Well as a Couple

 

Managing Money Well as a Couple

 

What are the keys in planning to grow wealthy together?

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock-Young-Married-Couple-With-Many-163632509.jpgWhen you marry or simply share a household with someone, your financial life changes – and your approach to managing your money may change as well. To succeed as a couple, you may also have to succeed financially. The good news is that is usually not so difficult.

 

At some point, you will have to ask yourselves some money questions – questions that pertain not only to your shared finances, but also to your individual finances. Waiting too long to ask (or answer) those questions might carry an emotional price. In the 2016 TD Bank Love & Money survey of 1,902 consumers who said they were in relationships, 42% of the respondents who described themselves as “unhappy” cited their number one financial error as “waiting too long” to discuss money matters with their significant other.1

What Could You Do With Your Tax Refund?

 

What Could You Do With Your Tax Refund?

Instead of just spending the money, you could plan to pay yourself.

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock-Tax-Return-Check-3982587.jpgAbout 70% of taxpayers receive sizable refunds from the Internal Revenue Service. Just how sizable? The average refund totals about $2,800.1

 

What do households do with that money? It varies. Last year, consumer financial services company Bankrate asked Americans about their plans for their federal tax refunds. Thirty-one percent of the respondents to Bankrate’s survey said that they would save or invest those dollars, and 28% indicated they would attack their debts with the money. Another 27% said they would buy food with that cash or use it to pay utility bills. Just 6% said they would earmark their refunds for shopping sprees or vacations.2

Making and Keeping Financial Resolutions (Updated January 2017)

Making & Keeping Financial New Year’s Resolutions

What could you do (or do differently) in the months ahead?

 

Provided by Exemplar Financial Network

 

bigstock-Vector-New-Year-s-Resolutions--15424310.jpgHow will your money habits change in 2017? What decisions or behaviors might help your personal finances, your retirement prospects, or your net worth?

 

Each year presents a “clean slate,” so as one year ebbs into another, it is natural to think about what you might do (or do differently) in the 12 months ahead.

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