Financial Wellness @ Work

Can The IRS Help You Save For Retirement?

Saving for retirement is a must these days and retirement confidence in general is pretty low. Our recent retirement preparedness study revealed that only about 20% of employees feel they’re on track to reach their desired income in retirement. In order to bridge this gap, it’s no secret many of us need to save more.  Read more

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Surprising Info About “The Rich”

I love facts that challenge the conventional wisdom.  That’s why this article from US News & World Report was so enjoyable to read.  The “8 Biggest Myths About The Rich” were all things that I’ve heard people say when making assumptions about people with means.  Here’s my take on some of the myths and what I’ve seen in my career with investors most would call rich. Read more

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Should You Have an Anti-Budget?

A friend of mine recently sent me this blog post called “How the Anti-Budget Can Save Your Wallet.” The basic premise is that a traditional budget isn’t realistic for most people because they just don’t stick to it and it isn’t even necessary to have one. Instead, it suggests simply setting aside your savings first (at least 20% of your income) and just spending the rest without having to categorize each of your expenses. Read more

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Social Security Myth #4: Collecting a Spousal Benefit Reduces the Amount Your Spouse Will Receive

One of the most valuable aspects of the Social Security formula is the accrual of spousal benefits for couples that have been married for at least one year at the time they file for benefits. However, some think of these benefits as a pool of money that somehow is split between the two of them. For this reason, they sometimes fall under the misconception that if one of them starts to collect a spousal benefit, the other’s benefit will be reduced. Read more

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How to Manage Student Loan Debt in Retirement

You’ve worked hard both in the professional world and at home raising your family and retirement is just around the corner. Now it is your turn to relax – somewhat — and do the things you love and want to do. But what if you haven’t finished paying off your student loan debt?  Read more

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What I Am Teaching My Kids About Money

As you may know from following this blog, I have just completed my dissertation and other requirements to earn my Ph.D in Personal Financial Planning from Kansas State University so we now have two proud Wildcat alums on staff here. (Doug Spencer is the other. He personifies loyalty to one’s alma mater and has plenty of purple shirts in his wardrobe to prove it.)  Read more

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A Comeback Story

America loves an underdog.  I see it in sports all the time, and there are countless movies that end with the little guy triumphing over the big bad guy.As a society, we love to see someone prevailing against the odds.  I saw this article about companies that were left for dead but rebounded to find success again and it reminded me of how much we love a comeback tale in particular. Read more

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How to Minimize Your Investment Costs

In my last 2 blog posts, I discussed the various ways financial advisors can be paid and how they can present conflicts of interest to an advisor. But how would your actual investment returns be affected? Let’s take a look at some scenarios: Read more

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Social Security Myth #3: You Will Lose Benefits If You Collect While You Are Working

In my previous two blog posts, I’ve addressed the myths of Social Security insolvency and calculating Social Security using final average earnings. Next up is a myth concerning the receipt of benefits while employed. Most of us know that the earliest we can collect a Social Security retirement benefit is age 62, but that doesn’t mean most of us plan to stop working by then. For this reason, I am often asked about the implications of collecting a Social Security benefit while working. Read more

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Repair or Replace?

After being towed to the auto repair shop, my stepson got the bad news last week that his beloved 2005 sporty Monte Carlo needs a new transmission.  He can pay $2,600 for a new one or $1,800 for a rebuilt transmission, but either way, the cost of the repair is almost what the car is worth, according to Kelly Blue Book.  No matter how much he loves his car, he’s come to the realization that it doesn’t make sense to dump any more money into a clunker car with over 160,000 miles.  He’s seen a lot of good times in the Monte Carlo, but now as a new dad of a toddler, having a two-door sports car has become a drag.  Read more

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