Tag: Ask A Financial Planner

Stay on Course

Coping with Market Volatility: Continuing to Invest May Help You Stay on Course

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER In the current market environment, the value of your holdings may be fluctuating widely — and it’s natural to feel tentative about further investment. But regularly adding to an account that’s designed for a long-term goal may cushion the emotional impact of market swings. If losses are offset even in part… Read more »

Bear Markets Come and Go

Bear Markets Come and Go

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER The longest bull market in history lasted almost 11 years before coronavirus fears and the realities of a seriously disrupted U.S. economy brought it to an end. If you are losing sleep over volatility driven by a cascade of disheartening news, it may help to remember that the stock market is… Read more »

Should I Invest or Pay Off Debt?

Should I Invest My Extra Cash or Use it to Pay Off Debt?

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER To answer this question, you must decide how your money can work best for you. Compare the money you might earn on other investments with the money you would pay on your debt. If you would earn less on investments than you would pay on debts, you should pay off debt…. Read more »

College Saving Options

College Saving Options

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER For the 2019-2020 college year, the average annual cost of attendance (known as the COA) at a four-year public college for in-state students was $26,590, the average cost at a four-year college for out-of-state students was $42,970, and the average cost at a four-year private college was $53,980. The COA figure… Read more »

Coronavirus Concerns?

Coronavirus Concerns? Consider Past Health Crises

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER During the last week of February 2020, the S&P 500 lost 11.49% — the worst week for stocks since the 2008 financial crisis — only to jump by 4.9% on the first Monday in March.¹ By all accounts, the drop was largely driven by ever-increasing fears about the potential effects of… Read more »

Obtaining Financial Aid

Is There Anything I Can Do Now So That My Child Can Obtain More Financial Aid Later?

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER Yes, there are steps you can take now that may help your child obtain more financial aid later. All federally funded financial aid programs use a formula known as the federal methodology to determine how much money a family must contribute towards a child’s educational costs before becoming eligible for financial… Read more »

How Long Should I Hang On To An Investment

How Long Should I Hang On To An Investment?

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER You’ll want to hang on to an investment as long as it meets your objectives. Is it likely to continue to perform as well as or better than comparable investments? Is it still appropriate for your age, risk tolerance and financial goals? Evaluating your investments once or twice a year will… Read more »

How Can I Gauge My Risk Tolerance?

How Can I Gauge My Risk Tolerance?

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER All investments come with some level of risk, and if you’re planning to invest your money, it’s important to be aware of how much volatility you can endure. Consider the following factors: Personality: Are you comfortable putting a portion of your hard-earned dollars at risk in a particular investment? It might be… Read more »

Plan for Retirement

I Think it’s Time to Start Planning for Retirement. Where Do I Begin?

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER To get started, you’ll need to set lifestyle goals for your retirement. At what age do you see yourself retiring, and what would you like to do? You’ll need to account for basic living expenses (food, utilities, transportation, etc.), the cost of a mortgage you may still be paying off, or… Read more »

Changes to Retirement Limits

Are There Any Changes to IRA and Retirement Plan Limits for 2020?

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER Many IRA and retirement plan limits are indexed for inflation each year. On November 6, 2019 the IRS (Notice 2019-59) announced the inflation-adjusted numbers for 2020. The maximum IRA contribution for 2020 is $6,000, unchanged from 2019 (the catch-up limit for those 50 and older also remains unchanged at $1,000). However,… Read more »