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Financial Planning Archives - Page 11 of 12 - Wealthspire Advisors

investing mistakes

What Should I Do With My Old 401(k)?

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It’s a question that comes up often – what should I do with my old 401(k)? There is no one-size-fits-all answer, and responses provided by financial advisors will be increasingly scrutinized if the Department of Labor’s (DOL) fiduciary rule is enacted. The rule mandates that advisors providing retirement advice act in the best interest of the client, which is called a fiduciary responsibility. The purpose is to protect retirement funds from professionals looking to profit at the expense of investors’ interests and ensure that the advice investors receive is right for them. Sontag Advisory, which has been a fiduciary since…
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tax-loss harvesting

A Closer Look at Tax-Loss Harvesting

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Tax-loss harvesting (TLH) is an important practice that can improve the after-tax returns of investors’ portfolios.  Below, we discuss the benefits, best practices, and limitations of TLH. What is it? Tax-loss harvesting is the process of selling a security at a loss, then using the proceeds from that sale to purchase a similar security.  The realized loss can now be used to offset existing or future realized gains as well as a limited amount of what is considered “ordinary income” for IRS purposes.  The concept behind TLH is to generate a tax deduction without negatively impacting the returns of your…
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Understanding the Proposed Regulations for FLPs and Family Businesses

By and Blog
If you’re a family business owner or you created a family limited partnership (FLP), you may be wondering about the proposed Treasury Regulations that were released earlier this month.  You may have even tried to read an article or two on the topic.  If you’re wondering whether you should care about the proposed regulations and why, please read on. Background Valuation discounts for transfers of business interests between family members can be a powerful gift and estate tax planning tool.  Most discounts relevant to this discussion can be put into two general classifications: (1) lack of control, and (2) lack…
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estate plan

What to Expect When You’re Taking on Debt

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My wife and I recently purchased our first home, which was not nearly as fun as an episode of HGTV’s House Hunters makes it out to be. After actively searching for months and putting offers in and losing out on six different houses, we finally grabbed the brass ring with our new home. To do that we had to beat out seven competing offers after seeing the home for only 20 minutes during an open house on its first day on the market. Overall it was a stressful experience, but we ended up with a beautiful home that will serve…
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Basics of Disability Planning

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Currently over 37 million Americans are classified as disabled, statistically the average American worker has a 1 in 4 chance of becoming disabled during their career. Nearly everyone can benefit from the creation of a basic disability plan. A basic disability plan should allow your chosen representative to make financial and medical decisions on your behalf if you are incapable of doing so. It is a position of extreme power and you should consider many factors when choosing your representative. The basic building blocks of disability planning typically involve the signing of a power of attorney, health care proxy and…
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Basics of Property Ownership

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Tenants in Common, Joint Tenants with Rights of Survivorship and Tenants by the Entirety The way in which you hold title to your assets can have a major impact on your estate plan. Different ownership types grant various levels of authority to titleholders and dictate what happens after an owner passes away.  Two common types of ownership are “tenants in common” (TIC) and “joint tenants with rights of survivorship” (JTWROS). Individuals who own property as TIC own a percentage of the property. These percentages can be equal or unequal.  When one tenant dies, her percentage interest would generally pass to…
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life insurance

How Much Life Insurance Do I Need?

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The prospect of our inevitable journey to the pearly gates is a tough conversation to have in any context, let alone attaching a dollar amount to our existence. However, for many people, life insurance is the backbone of any strong financial plan. Without it, all your other financial goals can easily fall apart. Life insurance can replace lost income, pay off debts, leave a charitable legacy, and create an income and estate tax-free pool of capital, if structured correctly. But how much life insurance do I need, if any? As with most questions, the answer depends on the facts and…
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fiduciary

John Oliver & The Fiduciary Standard

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In his most recent episode, John Oliver did a great job uncovering several issues that plan sponsors and participants might find in their 401k plan.  We are proud to say our approach to advising retirement plans addresses all of these issues: Fiduciary– Many “financial advisors” do not act as a fiduciary to their clients, meaning they can act in a sales-like capacity (broker) rather than acting in their clients’ best interests.  Simply put – find someone who, both in practice and by law, must act in your best interest.  Sontag Advisory acts as a 3(38) ERISA fiduciary to our corporate retirement plan clients,…
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female advisors

Planning Considerations for Millennials

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Below, I explore some common planning considerations and issues that I encounter on a regular basis when working with clients and prospects in my generation, as well as steps that our firm has taken to better serve Millennial clients. Common Planning Considerations for Millennials Saving philosophy.  Many Millennials believe they are too young to have to worry about saving, which often reflects a belief that building retirement savings requires large financial sacrifices.  This is not true.  Education about the power of compounding over long periods of time can provide confidence that taking small steps, starting now, may be all that is…
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