Don’t Let Rising Interest Rates Catch You by Surprise

You’ve probably heard the news that the Federal Reserve has been raising its benchmark federal funds rate. The Fed doesn’t directly control consumer interest rates, but changes to the federal funds rate (which is the rate banks use to lend funds to each other overnight within the Federal Reserve system) often affect consumer borrowing costs. …

Alternatives To Long-Term Care Insurance

The costs of long-term care can be overwhelming, potentially exhausting retirement income and savings. You may be thinking about buying long-term care insurance (LTCI) to help cover some of the potential costs of long-term care, but LTCI can be expensive, and if you do buy the coverage, you probably hope you never have to use …

Will I owe income taxes when I sell my home?

In general, when you sell your home, any amount you receive over your cost basis (what you paid for the home, plus capital improvements, plus the costs of selling the home) is subject to capital gains taxes. However, if you owned and used the home as your principal residence for a total of two out …

Do I need to file a gift tax return?

If you transfer money or property to anyone in any year without receiving something of at least equal value in return, you may need to file a federal gift tax return (Form 709) by the April tax filing deadline. If you live in one of the few states that also impose a gift tax, you …

Why a Life Insurance Claim May Be Denied

Life insurance can be an important financial tool for you and your family. For example, life insurance can help replace earnings that would cease upon your death. It can provide a legacy for your children or grandchildren, and can even be used to make a charitable gift after your death. However, the fact that you’ve …

Don’t Forget to Include Memory Loss When Planning for Retirement

When planning for retirement, an important factor that is often overlooked is the potential for declining cognitive skills associated with aging. Cognitive impairment (CI), often attributable to dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, can have profound implications for your overall health and well-being, particularly during retirement. The cost of care can absorb income and significantly deplete retirement …

Investing That Makes an Impact

Socially responsible investing (SRI) has come to represent various investment strategies that favor companies with business practices generally viewed as socially responsible, ethical, and/or sustainable. Overall, investor interest in SRI has been gaining momentum. In fact, the number of investment funds incorporating ESG (environmental, social, and governance) factors has increased 12% in the last two …

What is a Funeral Trust and a Pet Trust?

Funeral Trust A funeral trust is an arrangement entered into with a provider of funeral or burial services. Prepaying funeral expenses may allow you to “lock in” costs for future funeral or burial services at an agreed-upon price. The funeral home sometimes serves as trustee (manager of trust assets), and you usually fund the trust …

Setting Up A SIMPLE IRA Plan: It’s Simple!

Looking for a retirement plan for your employees that’s easy and inexpensive to administer? Well, there may be a simple answer: the Savings Incentive Match Plan for Employees of Small Employers, better known as the SIMPLE IRA plan. A SIMPLE IRA plan lets your employees defer up to $12,500 in 2017 ($15,500 if age 50 …

4 Things To Do In The 4 Years Before College

College is a huge financial undertaking. With costs increasing every year and the prospect of too much student debt at the forefront of many families’ minds, it’s more important than ever to be an educated college consumer. Go into the planning process wisely with these four steps. Have questions? We’re here to help. ┬áPlease fill …