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A couple reviewing their revocable trust with their Wealthspire Financial Planner.

Revocable Trusts vs. Irrevocable Trusts: What Is the Difference?

By Blog
A trust is an ideal way for individuals to transfer assets either during life or after their passing. At a basic level, a trust is a separate legal entity created to hold certain assets. Once these assets are placed in the trust, they are managed by the trustee. The trust document instructs the trustee on how to manage the trust assets and distribute them to beneficiaries. Individuals and families often use trusts for estate planning purposes, such as to avoid probate, minimize estate taxes, and seamlessly transfer intergenerational wealth.  Let’s take a look at revocable and irrevocable trusts and the…
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dow 36000

Dow 36,000 Revisited

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On October 1, 1999, in the midst of the tech stock mania of that era, James K. Glassman and Kevin Hassett published their notorious book, Dow 36,000: The New Strategy for Profiting from the Coming Rise in the Stock Market. When the tech bubble burst the next March, Glassman and Hassett became the butt of many jokes for the audacity and timing of the book. In full disclosure, I know and like Jim Glassman and he has been very kind to me in my career; but Jim and Kevin forgot a seminal piece of old Wall Street wisdom – it’s…
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The Case for Exit Planning & Why I Earned My Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA) Credential

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In my wealth management practice, I focus on helping business owners and corporate executives achieve quality of life and financial freedom. For some time now, I have been interested in exit planning for business owners. This interest led me to engage with other advisors and business owners as a Tri-State member of the Exit Planning Exchange and to obtain my CEPA (Certified Exit Planning Advisor) credential from the Exit Planning Institute. As CEPA professionals, we think of exit planning as a roadmap for fulfillment in our clients’ business and personal lives. We want to help our client entrepreneurs create transferable…
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tax law changes

Tax Proposals: Big Changes to Come

By and Blog
On November 3, the House Rules Committee updated the October 28 revised reconciliation bill for the Build Back Better Act – H.R. 5376, which differed from the original draft released on September 13. Below is a summary of the changes: Income and Investments The top individual tax bracket remains 37% (versus an increase to 39.6%). Enacts a 5% surtax on modified adjusted gross income over $10,000,000, and an additional 3% surtax on modified adjusted gross income over $25,000,000 (versus a 3% surtax on incomes above $5,000,000). Trusts and estates will be subject to lower thresholds at $200,000 and $500,000 of MAGI (newly added). The top capital…
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investors just starting out

3 Financial Skills for Investors Who Are Just Starting Out

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When starting out, knowing how to manage your money can feel daunting. In this post, we will offer simple steps to help you begin taking control of your financial life. #1: Set Priorities and Goals When you get your first paycheck, it is easy to want to spend it all right away, but what are all the things you should be putting your money toward with these limited resources? Strategies to help you save regularly and effectively: Automatically direct a portion of your paycheck to your separate savings account. Studies show that if you don’t see the money, it makes…
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lifestyle creep

3 Tips to Help Junior Partners Avoid Lifestyle Creep

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Lifestyle creep, or lifestyle inflation – when expenses rapidly rise to match newfound income – ensnares countless newly minted partners. Often there are underlying social pressures from peers or colleagues to keep up with new levels of conspicuous consumption. New indulgences and one-time splurges quickly become everyday necessities. It may begin innocently enough with a new car, a small remodel to an existing home, or a generous contribution to one’s alma mater, but it can quickly snowball into completely spending bonus checks before they’ve even been deposited. So, who cares? After all, you’ve sacrificed a lot to get where you…
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Brief Update: New Executive Order May Help Small Businesses

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Last week, President Biden announced an executive order aimed at accelerating the country’s path out of the pandemic. There are three elements in the “Protecting Our Economic Recovery” portion of the plan, each of which is expected to be fleshed out more in the future. The most notable change is an increase in the maximum amount of funding small businesses can borrow through the COVID Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, from $500,000 to $2 million. This program provides long-term loans from the Small Business Administration at low interest rates – 3.75% fixed for businesses; 2.75% for private nonprofits –…
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family finances

What Everyone Should Know About Their Family Finances

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I work with many clients who have lost a spouse, gone through a divorce, or are wondering what they should do if something happens to their significant other who has been managing the money and finances. We also work with many clients who find themselves in a position of having to manage their parent’s finances. No matter the situation, it is important for each person to be involved in the family finances – knowing where things are, who to call, and what to do in case an unforeseen event occurs. Maintaining transparency and having candid conversations about finances can also…
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backdoor roth contribution

The Benefits of a Backdoor Roth Contribution

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The most popular retirement account of the past decade is the Roth IRA. It offers tax-free growth, tax-free withdrawals after age 59.5, and no minimum distribution requirements. Unlike traditional IRAs, Roths are funded with after-tax dollars, which means there is no deduction for a contribution. Evaluating whether to contribute to a pre-tax or Roth IRA is a common exercise. Many are drawn to the upfront benefit because of the tax savings and/or they expect their rate will decline in retirement. However, if your time horizon is decades, Roth savers are much more likely to end up with more after-tax money.…
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Solo 401k

Why the Self-Employed Should Consider a Solo 401k

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Self-employed individuals have multiple options to save for retirement and invest in a tax-efficient manner. One of those options, the Solo 401(k), can be particularly attractive to entrepreneurs running their own business, including those with both a 9-to-5 corporate employer and a “side-hustle” that earns them additional income. What is a Solo 401(k)? A Solo 401(k) plan, also commonly referred to as a solo-k or uni-k, is just like any other 401(k) plan, but is designed to cover a self-employed person with no employees other than his or her spouse. Because it covers only one employee, there is no burdensome…
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