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foundation of financial literacy

A Foundation of Financial Literacy

We are often asked about “financial literacy.” The phrase refers to the ability to understand and use various financial skills, and is the foundation of your relationship with money. A strong foundation of financial literacy will generally make you less vulnerable to financial fraud, and can help support you in

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caught off-guard

Don’t be Caught Off-Guard

We are always reading articles reminding us that social security is often not enough to support our needs in retirement. No one should be financially caught off-guard when they retire, which is why it may be of interest to you to think about a Fixed Index Annuity as an option.

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What if

The “What Ifs” Down the Road

We’ve received some inquiries this past month about a few topics. “What if” you end up having to go into a nursing home? “What if” you’re living in an independent living facility and need to move over to assisted living? Are your financial products going to pay you in a

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to consider

What to Consider

This recent article (click here to read) is about what key features to consider when choosing a fixed index annuity during a time of market unease. It helps us to understand details like how FIAs can help act as a source of guaranteed income, even when the markets are declining. 

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Enough

When is Enough Enough?

Even if you’re able to add up what you spend today, trying to determine what you will need when you retire is difficult because your spending is sure to change. While perhaps you won’t have a mortgage payment anymore, you may be asked to contribute to your grandchildren’s education, or

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need gap

The Need Gap

“According to the 2022 Insurance Barometer Study, conducted by LIMRA and Life Happens, 106 million adults lack life insurance, or adequate coverage. The need gap, what people have versus what they said they need, is at an all-time high and more than double what it was 12 years ago. The

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Insurance

Insurance

As we’ve seen from the news over this past week, many were caught up in the hurricane, and many did not have insurance that suited their needs. This is the case for many people because a natural tendency when purchasing something that pays money for a future event is to

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insurance company grade

What Does An A+ Mean?

We all remember our school days of worrying about the grades we would receive. What does it mean when an insurance company gets graded? Insurance companies are rated with a letter grade to indicate their ability to meet their continuing obligations. An A+ rating means that they are considered superior.

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withdrawal rate

The Four Percent Rule

Someone asked us this past week if we would explain what the “Four Percent” rule is and how it came about. The Four Percent rule is based on a study by a financial advisor named William Bengen. His study suggested that one could safely withdraw 4% of their starting portfolio

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Retirement

What Assumptions Apply to You?

There was an interesting article the other day in the Wall Street Journal. The article discussed a recent survey of workers in their 60’s who were asked about their retirement preferences. The author found that the assumptions that are usually embedded in retirement income calculators–for example, good health, not wanting

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Happiness

What Can Money Buy You?

“Money can’t buy happiness” is an adage that some people live by, and others ignore. According to a recent Purdue study: “income can correlate with emotional well-being and life satisfaction.” But, as a recent GoBankingRates article tells us, the price of happiness differs (apparently) depending on the State you live

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indexed investment

How You Make Money With an Annuity

A fixed indexed annuity is a type of annuity contract between you and an insurance company. It generally promises to provide returns that are based on a link to the performance of a market index. You usually make one initial lump sum payment to the insurance company. That payment is

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Retirement

Guiding You Through 

We continue to read articles confirming that, while it certainly is an arduous task to work for decades and plan ahead to afford a comfortable retirement, what continues to unsettle many is the actual transition into a life post-workforce. For example, concerns about losing one’s routine, the fading away of

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Enough

How Much is Really Enough to Retire?

How much would you consider to be “enough money to retire?” Yes, you want to have enough money to ensure that you don’t go broke, and can afford basic expenses like food, housing, and medical care, but is that really “enough?” What goals do you want to reach in retirement,

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money

Did You Know Money is Only Half the Story?

Retirement planning seems to always be all about numbers. Your strategy centers around one question: Do your financial assets provide enough income to fund your desired retirement lifestyle? But, to quote a recent article from Kiplinger, “Ask any retiree, and they will likely tell you that it is only half

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retirement savings

How do You Compare?

Curious about how you compare to others? The “How America Saves 2022” report referenced recently by CNBC might give you that information.  The report states the average retirement savings account balances by age: For those within the 55 to 64 age bracket, the average savings account balance is $256,200. For

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Inflation

What Exactly Does That Mean?

There has been a lot of talk recently about a recession: whether or not one will come, what it would mean, and how it would affect each of us. A recession is defined by the National Bureau of Economic Research as “a significant decline in economic activity that is spread

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Social security retirement benefits

How Much Can You Earn and Still Get Your SS Benefits?

Let’s start by explaining that when you begin receiving Social Security retirement benefits, you are considered officially “retired” by the Social Security Administration (SSA). You can receive Social Security checks and still work at the same time. However, since you are now “retired” there is a limit to how much

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Roth IRA

Converting your IRA

With the downturn in the market these past few months, there is increasing talk about the pros and cons of converting an existing diminished IRA account into a Roth IRA.  Both types of IRAs are designed to help you save for retirement while providing a tax advantage, but they do

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challenges of retirement

The Biggest Challenges of Retirement

We often think of retirement in terms of ‘having enough money.’ However, there are other considerations. This article dives into these other considerations and divides them into three categories: Regret, Health, and Identity. Interestingly, the author tells us that financial worries weren’t among the top three considerations. Over 15,000 retirees,

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