CFG Planner Blog

Posted by Gary Abely, CFP®, AIF®, CPA

Medicare Part B premiums may rise 52% for some seniors if Congressional action does not stop the scheduled increase.  Medicare Part B covers care such as outpatient surgery, lab tests and doctor visits.  Regrettably, the Affordable Care Act has not been successful in stopping the rise in healthcare costs.  Medicare Part B premium is scheduled to rise from $104.90/Mo. to $159.30/Mo. for new Medicare beneficiaries, and those who receive Medicare, but not Social Security.  High income earners could also be faced with increases, whether they receive Social Security or not (Single tax filers earning above $85,000 or $170,000 for Married tax filers).

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Posted by Judi Sanborn, CFP®, AIF®

Minimize your distractions:

  • In boxing, the crowd will either be cheering or booing you, while your opponent will be constantly trying to trick you.  But don’t let your hands fall.
  • There are many distractions when you are managing your own investments:  the media, for one; friend’s well intended advice for another.
  • Rather than acting on an overstated problem in the headlines or a biased opinion, look closely at the root of your portfolio:  the key strength or weakness of your portfolio may not be the same as another.
  • Stay focused/don’t let your hands fall.

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Posted by Roger Johnson, CFP®, AIF®

Many Americans, especially those nearing retirement, are concerned about their financial future and virtually every retiree has some fear of running out of money. Recent setbacks in the real estate market, the stock market and employment status have some wondering if they will ever be able to retire.

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Posted by Nancy Hecht, CFP®, AIF®

Q: I am getting ready to retire and may need some of the money from my company plan right away. Is there any way I can avoid the 20% automatic withholding if the proceeds are paid out to me?

A: You state that you “may” need some of the money right away. In that case I would open up a Rollover IRA, have the proceeds from your company plan sent directly to that account, but have all of the funds deposited into a cash account. If you need to withdraw some money, you will only pay your ordinary income tax on what you withdraw vs. 20% on the whole account balance. If you determine you do not need to take a withdrawal, or can allow the bulk of your account to grow, you can them invest the balance of your account.

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Posted by Nancy Hecht, CFP®, AIF®

Actually, there are two silver linings.

The first is for those considering converting a Traditional IRA to a Roth IRA. As you know, any amount that you convert will be taxed. If your Traditional IRA balance is down, you can convert to a Roth without selling those assets, pay the tax on the lower balance, then wait as the markets recover with the assets in an account with tax-free withdrawals.

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Posted by Denise Kovach, CFP®, AIF®

Divorce can be hazardous to not only your health, but your financial health as well. And it can be expensive. So if you are headed in that direction, take heed to plan carefully ahead of time so you can make rational decisions, not emotional mistakes.

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Posted by Gary Abely, CPA, CFP®, AIF®

Having just been asked this question, I reflect back some 28 years ago when I developed my first “estate” plan at age 22.

Having a mother as an estate-planning attorney taught me a valuable lesson early in life.  Anyone living needs a plan.  Period!  No Excuses!  The plan can be simple at age 22, but a plan is needed nonetheless. Continue reading

Posted by Nancy Hecht, CFP®, AIF®

Over the years, I have met with more than a few people that were not planning on saving for their retirement because they knew they were going to inherit money from their parents.

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Posted by Rynda J. Chappell-Wilk, CFP®, AIF®

I recently went to see my Orthopedic Doctor, Dr. Desai, about a chronic pain in my hip.  His prescription for me was a dreaded dose of physical therapy.  Dreaded because it is time consuming to go every week and it is sometimes hard to tell that you are making any progress along the way.  As a matter of fact, some days I feel worse after the physical therapy than I did before it.  Never the less, he said this was the simplest way to fix my problem, and he actually said out loud, “keep it simple stupid”, and then quickly clarified that he was talking to himself, not to me.

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