Finance Made Simple

Tax-loss harvesting, or TLH, is a strategy that has been around for a while but may be somewhat misunderstood. In essence, it is the practice of minimizing capital gains tax on investments by offsetting gains and losses, while staying invested in the market.

Are you feeling overwhelmed by your financial situation? Do you find that the business of life has created a permanent white noise that seems to always distract you? If you are feeling this way or similar, you are not alone.

Many people feel bogged down by the demands of life: family, friends, work, bills, finances. These distractions (wonderful though they can be) have the tendency to make us swerve from thinking about our own emotional well being. One of the best ways to take care of yourself this year is to undergo the process of decluttering.

Many pre-retirees have the same question crop up, and there never seems to be a solid definitive answer based on a quick Google search: Should I own my home throughout retirement?

Home ownership is a complicated part of our financial lives. There’s a sense of pride in owning a home, but a hefty mortgage and costly maintenance can cripple your cash flow as a retiree. So - should you own your home during retirement? And if you choose to own instead of renting, what’s the best way to mitigate the risks of home ownership as a retiree?

Most people have a vague understanding of the fact that their health will decline as they age. However, few people take the time to build a financial plan for what will happen if they need assisted living, or long-term care. It’s not a fun topic to think about, but having a strategy in place in case of a worst-case-scenario can provide immeasurable comfort to both you and your family.

Let’s go over what long-term care is, what you can expect if you need it someday, and how to put a plan in place to alleviate some of the financial and emotional pressure if you’re ever faced with long-term care needs for you or a family member.

Talking about money in the workplace can be uncomfortable. Because personal finance tends to be the last taboo topic in our modern world, many people cringe at the thought of bringing up their salary and benefits with their coworkers - or even their boss. However, discussing money at work with your HR department or your boss, and understanding your worth, can be key for employees looking to “level up” in their career.

Estate planning is a fairly daunting task, which is why so many people don’t tackle it at all. In fact, estate planning is one of the number one financial tasks that people put on the back burner. This is true for several reasons:

  1. It’s uncomfortable to think about our own mortality.
  2. Nobody wants to imagine a scenario where they’re physically unable to make decisions for themselves after a tragedy or accident.
  3. It can be upsetting to try and figure out how to care for your spouse, partner, kids, pets, and assets if you haven’t considered it before.

Luckily, estate planning doesn’t have to be as complicated as you might think! Estate planning is not just for the old and wealthy.  Privacy laws make it very difficult for family members to take care of loved ones if the worst should happen. You can get a relatively solid estate plan in place in a few hours or less by following these steps.

Building a Budget that Matches Your Values

Budgeting is never easy. As you move and grow through life, your budget will evolve and change over time. They can be tough to stick to, and all too often we fall off the budgeting bandwagon not because we’re incapable of sticking to a budget, but because our budget just doesn’t fit our lifestyle anymore.

So much of our lives are dictated by time, everything from business to personal fits into its ephemeral framework: planning travel time for road trips, scheduling time for work meetings, letting time slip away with old friends. Our world revolves around time-- chasing it, grasping it, using it.

Starting a relationship later in life can often be both exciting and fulfilling. However, for retirees who are falling in love again, getting married may not be the best next step for either of you financially or otherwise.

Talking about your finances with your children can be uncomfortable, especially if those aren’t conversations you’ve initiated with your kids in the past. Now that your children are adults, and you’re starting to create your estate plan, it’s wise to have a conversation with them about your finances. Before you dive into these discussions, it can be helpful to know what information your adult children need, the best ways to bring up your estate plan with them, and how to involve them in your ongoing planning process without giving up your financial privacy and independence.

You deserve to live a lifestyle that brings you joy - even if you outlive your partner. Creating an individual retirement plan is one way to safeguard yourself against financial scarcity during your years as a retiree, and help to prepare you for the possibility of facing retirement without your life partner by your side.

Relationships run through our lives every day. From family members to friends and coworkers, our daily habits rely on the relationships we cultivate. It seems natural for us to put work into maintaining the relationships we have with other people, but we also have relationships with objects-- tangible things that affect our lives sometimes as deeply as humans do. One of those objects we often forget we are in a relationship with is money.

Money and personal finance makes up a large part of our livelihood and influences our daily habits and decisions. Like any other relationship, our relationship with money can turn toxic if we don’t pay attention.

There seems to be a myth floating around in the world of personal finance about retirement planning. Many finance professionals, and individuals who choose to DIY their finances, focus exclusively on developing a retirement plan that centers on savings - how much to save, what accounts to use for savings, and how to allocate your savings for maximum return.

The retirement savings gap is growing at an alarming rate. Many millennials are overwhelmed with student loans, consumer debt, and historically low pay. Unfortunately, this often means that retirement savings gets put on the back burner while other financial goals and dreams take up the spotlight. To combat this, and to help their younger employees prepare for retirement, many companies have started to implement an opt-out workplace retirement plan.

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Finance Made Simple

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