Financial Wellness @ Work

Know Your Limits

With New Year’s Eve celebrations right around the corner, it is important to know your limits.I don’t mean your limit on glasses of champagne and calorie intake, although those limits are also pretty important while you ring in the new year. Uncle Sam has some changes in store as we head into 2015.  Read more

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Do You Have The Right Life Insurance Coverage?

Yeah, I know what you’re probably thinking. This is not the most exciting topic to think about and other areas of the financial life planning process such as money management, paying off debt, and investing for retirement tend to get more of our attention. Still, it’s worth a quick review on why life insurance is necessary and who should buy it. In fact, this part of the discussion should come before getting to specific amounts that you should own. Read more

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The Do’s and Don’ts of Student Loan Repayments

My oldest child, Rachel, is a junior in high school, and while we enjoy having her around the house, we know that soon she’ll be looking into college. In case you haven’t looked lately, the average cost for a four-year in-state public institution is $9,139—and that’s just for tuition and fees! Over four years, that’s going to cost upwards of around $40,000. By itself that might not seem so bad, but when you consider that Rachel has three younger brothers, that price tag starts to look awfully daunting. Read more

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Are You Afraid of Your Student Loan Debt?

What’s really scaring you this Halloween? If you have student loans,  getting that bill might rank pretty high on the list. After all, no one likes owing tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars  that will seemingly take forever to pay off. That doesn’t mean paying off your student loans should be your only or even top financial priority though. Here are some other goals that you might want to prioritize first. Read more

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Why Wait Until Next Year to Plan Your Future?

It seems like every fall I try to take some time to enjoy a few minutes of solitude and reflect on the experiences of the current year. This is also a time where I usually acknowledge that the to-do list that I created earlier in the year still reveals some unfinished business. As a financial planner, I’ll admit that this includes some things on my family’s financial planning checklist that still need some attention.  Read more

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Sometimes It’s Okay to Punt

Football season is an exciting time of year as fall has officially arrived and even the hot and humid southern states get some relief. Personally speaking, I am a college football person. Although I may be an unbiased financial educator, there is admittedly a great deal of bias when it comes to my allegiance to certain colleges and universities on the football field. You will likely hear screams of “Roll Tide,” “Go Tigers” (the orange ones from Clemson in the Palmetto State), and occasionally “Go Wildcats” (K-State- I have to support my grad school) if you are in my neighborhood on a typical college football weekend. (Yes, similar to my investment portfolio, I like to maintain a diversified portfolio of schools to support but also have the documents to prove that I am not a fair-weather fan of the first two programs on my list.) Read more

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Should You Use a Fee-Only Advisor?

Last week, we discussed the dangers of using  a commissioned-based financial advisor. One way to avoid those conflicts of interest is to work with a fee-only (not fee-based, which is fees PLUS commissions) advisor. Instead of selling investments for a commission, they typically charge a fee that’s a percentage of the assets they manage for you. You can search for a fee-only advisor through NAPFA, the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors. Read more

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The Three Most Useless Things a Financial Columnist Tells You

I often like to question much of the conventional wisdom of the financial services industry so I was intrigued when I saw this article titled “The four most useless things financial advisors tell you” by Howard Gold. Instead, I found myself questioning most of the conclusions in the article itself as pretty useless (with one exception). Let’s take a look at each of these “four most useless things:” Read more

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Student Loan Debt? There’s an App For That

Student loans may be viewed as a form of “good debt” because of the many doors a college education can potentially open throughout our lifetime.Still, paying off student loans can become a major headache (especially if you are trying to balance other competing financial priorities like paying off credit card debt or saving for emergencies). Total student loan debt in this country now exceeds $1 trillion and 7 out of every 10 college students graduate with student loan obligations.  Read more

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