“It’s not about the cars, it’s about the people,” said Bill Marsh Jr., co-owner of Bill Marsh Automotive Group in Traverse City. This deep-rooted value came from their father, Bill Marsh Sr., who bought a poor-performing Buick dealership in 1982 and made it a top-performing dealership within the year. He brought his sons Jamie, Bill Jr. and Mike into the business and eventually sold it to them. What does it take to transition a business within the family? It takes a lot of heart and consideration. The Marsh Brothers will be in the studio today to share their experience.
Because, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, Baby Boomers own 2.34 million small businesses in the United States, employing more than 25 million people. That’s a lot at stake for those who fail to plan. We want to help you start the conversation now.
Tune in and find out how the wisdom of Bill Marsh Sr. set his three sons up for success.
When I was in college and falling “in love,” my grandfather told me, “Shea, it’s not when you get married, it’s WHO you marry.” Suddenly it occurred to me that I was more concerned about the time line of life goals than I was about the person. My grandfather had acquired something called “wisdom.” I wonder what advice he would give now, 20 years later. My guess is that it would be the same.
What about you? Are you considering tying the knot in your later years? In some ways the decision gets easier because you know yourself, but on the other hand it gets more complicated because of the dynamics of life. When considering a later marriage, you also have to take into account things like Social Security benefits, insurance, multiple mortgages and beneficiaries (to name a few).
Join us today as we discuss both the financial and emotional considerations of tying the knot … or not!
This week we celebrate 244 years of independence from Great Britain. Though we are a young country, our history is full of amazing courage and tragedy. We are learning. This year has taken a few sharp corners with little to no signs of slowing down. It’s difficult to imagine that we can keep our focus on financial independence when the expansion is long gone, and we are in the very beginning stages of recovery … maybe. Despite all this, Prout Financial Design hopes to be a source of education and encouragement in such disorienting times.
Today, we’re going to look at some fascinating stats alongside financial facts to help you stay on track. While we may not have a lot of control over what is happening around us, the truth is, we can still make choices to help us decide today. That’s the beauty of living in a free country.
How many of you took time during quarantine to reexamine your values?
Did being at home make you realize how much you love family and want to be with them more? Or as an essential worker on the front lines, are you ready to call it quits? Perhaps the new normal isn’t how you want to operate as you finish out your career.
Because of COVID-19, career shifts and early retirement are no longer something that’s five years down the road – they’re now! If there is any silver lining, this might be it. Instead of waiting until this all plays out, maybe it’s time to write the ending now.
Our guest, CPA Jon Sluis, will help you understand what the tax implications are now vs. later. You’ll need to bunch some decisions and spread some out. If you’re ready to stop doing what you’ve always done, together we can help you pivot to make the change happen on your terms.
Like the game, “telephone” the SECURE Act of 2019 and the CARES Act of 2020, is all hearsay between the connections! How do we know this? Because the final message is received at our office when clients sit down and say, “I heard that I don’t have to (fill in the blank).”
We just smile and say, “Not exactly.” The rules are changing around familiar terminology and the truth is getting lost. We hear you! Which is why we are taking time today to clear up some common misconceptions about things like when you have to take your RMDs, deadlines for contributing to IRAs and Roth IRAs, retirement relief and so much more!
Tune in today and let us help take the confusion out of the permanent changes of the SECURE Act and the temporary relief from the CARES Act. There are big differences between the two, and we know how to help you.
The numbers are starting to come in. The Federal Reserve Bank is in the process of spending an amount of money equal to nearly 40% of GDP to offset COVID-19’s effect on the U.S. economy. The U.S. Congress will spend an amount that is about 35% of GDP for the same purpose (RSP Inc.). Meanwhile, the stock market has rebounded with such gusto that even the experts are in shock. We are hearing clients ask, “Did I miss it? Did I miss my chance to take advantage of market lows? Where are we heading now? Should I keep investing?”
While we anticipated an eventual recession, we could have never predicted a pandemic and the entire economic shutdown. The behaviors of the market mirror the emotions of people, and it has been erratic. We wholeheartedly believe that you must know yourself first to know how to participate in market volatility. Tune in today and hear the facts so that you can decide when, in fact, you should jump in. Whether or not you missed it? You’ll have to decide.
In December of 2019, the SECURE Act passed leaving many retirees scratching their heads asking, “How, exactly, does this impact me in the end?” Then, by mid-March of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic hit, creating a national emergency that we are still experiencing today. In other words, COVID-19 is NOT over. This triggered Congress to pass the CARES Act, which provides temporary relief, special distributions, rollovers and provisional loan rules for retirement accounts. What does this mean for you, exactly? It depends.
Today, we are going to cover the common COVID-19 questions from Ed Slott. Shea also has some interesting stats about the cost of healthcare in retirement (yup, it went up), and Heidi wants to tell you what NOT to keep in your safety deposit box at the bank.
Do you know that half of Americans retire earlier than expected? Most of the time the circumstances surrounding retirement are out of their control, yet many non-retirees still believe they will retire on their own terms. Thanks to an Allianz Life study, we have these stats … and they are shocking, right? So, what do you need to know before you go into the unknown? Has the economic shutdown for the last couple of months altered your plan? Is it time to leave, or do you need to extend your stay at the office?
Today, we’ll go through the financial plan checklist to help you decide whether or not you’re ready.
We all know that women tend to live longer than men. According to the CDC, the average American male will live to age 76 and the average American female to age 81. The World Health Organization’s HALE index says that a woman’s extra years tend to be healthy ones. What is even more fascinating is that this is a global truth! Regardless of who goes first (I’m sorry, there’s no better way to say it), you’ll need to know how to properly arrange a spousal beneficiary rollover.
If you don’t take the time to plan now, the court or custodian will do it for you. Do you really want to leave the decisions of your life savings to a stranger? Danger!
Our least favorite topic to discuss is divorce. It’s fairly safe to say that no one gets married thinking that one day it will end. Even if it’s warranted, it hurts to see relationships go their separate ways because it wasn’t the plan. Once a year we discuss this topic so that you (or your family members) can be informed on how to approach the financial complexity of divorce with more confidence. It’s not just about who gets the house. Rather, it’s more about the retirement accounts and future Social Security benefits. Like any other plan, think about the long game and try your best not to react to the short-term.
“Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.”
~ Eleanor Roosevelt
Have you heard this quote before? There aren’t truer words in the world of advising. Day after day, week after week, month after month and decade after decade, we’ve had the privilege of hearing our clients tell their personal stories. We’ve also had the privilege of helping them NOT become an “example” for others of “what not to do.” Luckily, Ed Slott has compiled a list of PRL (private letter rulings) of big mistakes made by others.
Join us today for an hour of storytelling to learn by example. If you can, always choose to learn ahead of time.
Last week, Ed Slott gave us some incredible perspective as we look at the impact COVID-19 has had on retirement planning. The federal government has always been able to change the rules in the ninth inning, as we witnessed with the SECURE Act in 2019, but we’ve never experienced anything quite like this! Today, we are going to have the same conversation with you that we are having with our clients – how to play offense when you feel so defensive.
As the federal government looks to fund the stimulus package, there are rumors of higher tax rates, inflation and long-term impacts on Social Security. Retirement is your responsibility and, honestly, why would you have it any other way, especially as we enter into a COVID culture?
“Just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should!” said our special guest, Ed Slott, CPA and America’s IRA expert! On today’s show, he explains why there is an incredible opportunity for retirees and pre-retirees today. The tax brackets are still low and if you don’t use them, you lose them! So, what does that mean for you? If RMDs are canceled for the year, should you still take yours? What about Roth conversions? Is now a good time?
He answers all of these questions plus more because, “Nothing is for everybody,” which is why you need educated advisors in the financial Olympics.
Times of crisis are extremely stressful. They can either shut us down or spring us into action. If you’re struggling with springing into action, we have a show full of action steps. We hope that it gets you fired up about your financial health even as our reality changes weekly.
Here’s your financial inventory checklist:
o Compare your portfolio to the stock market. Did you do the same, better or worse? Now would be a good time to evaluate your risk tolerance for the future
o Have you reevaluated your will or trust with an attorney?
o Double check your beneficiaries on all your financial/investment accounts
o Reassess your emergency funds. If you need more than what you’ve saved, what other accounts can you draw from?
o Consider pushing back your retirement date – those who pivot plans easily tend to do better in the long run
In this episode Dennis Prout and Heidi Thompson follow up on the CARES Act updates with CPA Jon Sluis.
Earlier this week, our team spoke extensively with Jon Sluis, a local CPA who will join us via phone during today’s program. We took three pages of notes, not including the term sheets from which he relayed information. Over the weekend, Jon read the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act twice (it’s more than 800 pages long ) as well as U.S. Senate Committee Reports, Small Business Administration and Department of Labor summaries, and other summaries. Listen … it’s overwhelming out there, but there is GOOD news … and we are on it. Over the last year, we’ve mentioned many times that the markets were overvalued, and a correction was inevitable. And no one – absolutely no one – could have seen it coming from a virus that affected the global economy. For those of us who spend our days buried in the details trying to dig a way out into daylight, we can see it. There are silver linings all around us, and that is topic of today’s show.
Today, we are going to cover just the tip of the iceberg on what’s all packed into the CARES Act, but believe us – even that is a lot! This includes: the purpose of the stimulus package, how you’ll receive your recovery rebate, whether or not you should pull $100K from your 401(k), why RMDs being waived for 2020 is a benefit to you, and the list goes on.
Some of you have already been practicing social distancing for the past week. For those of you who have just started, welcome! These are wild times. We’ve never seen anything like it. Day to day, we are experiencing a wide range of emotions. It’s important to plan appropriately and not panic, especially when you’ve watched such a drastic decline in your investments. Believe it or not, there are opportunities during a crisis. In order to stay in the long game, it’s good to take advantage of them now.
Topics of discussion today:
· Can I use the income tax deadline to my advantage?
· What are the new IRA contribution deadlines, and can they help me?
· Is now a good time to convert my Roth IRA?
· What if I had planned on retiring this year?
When fear is running rampant in the world, it is a normal reaction to retreat and hide. But as humans, we are designed to survive no matter what. It’s our most primitive calling … to live. Therefore, we work, support and thrive in an economy where our contributions matter and we are rewarded for that. As social distancing increases, it changes the economy, which is already at mercy of the market reactions. The goal of today’s show is to give you perspective. Anytime we face a global crisis, it hits close to home when our survival is threatened.
Join us today as we give you a personal and professional overview of what is currently happening in the market. Remember … this can also be a time of great opportunity. As such, we are going to stay the course. Investing is about the long game, not the short-term gains.
Dennis Prout and Heidi Thompson discuss Social Security and Medicare Taxes in this episode. Tune in to understand options to consider in this current economy.
By some miracle, we were able to get Jon Sluis out of his office during tax season! We aren’t going to waste his time or yours … so we’ve come up with a list of FRESH, relevant questions! So whether you’re planning solo or as a business owner, now is the time to take a closer look at the numbers and strategies available to you.
Today, we’ll ask Jon about the new tax laws and how they are affecting people right now. For business owners, we’ll discuss business income deductions and why they are important to owners. When it comes to saving, we want to know how CPAs and advisors think differently. And when it comes to spending, how do consumers think differently?
Are you working with the right tax professional? With the April deadline fast approaching, you may have already started reviewing your financial documents for your 2019 return. But do you have a qualified professional on your planning team? There are certain questions to ask and criteria to look for before hiring anyone. Tune in today and we’ll give you some questions that may help you!
Also, as promised, we are keeping you up-to-date with the SECURE Act and how it will affect your planning.
Finally … Heidi has some pertinent Health Savings Account information you definitely don’t want to miss!
In this episode Dennis Prout talks about the economy and current situations such as the Coronavirus that could have an impact globally. Also discussed is the Secure Act and and the Required Beginning Date (RBD), which is the date an individual is required to begin taking their Required Minimum Distributions (RMD).
Chances are you have heard about the 3.8% surtax that went into effect in 2013 under the Affordable Care Act – but do you know if and when you might need to pay it? Despite changes to the tax code in recent years, the Medicare tax and net investment income tax remain in effect. This surtax requires that an additional tax be paid by those with investment income, whether from interest, dividends, capital gains or rental properties when they are above the annual income threshold. Trusts and estates are hit especially hard; they reach the income threshold at only $12,950 in 2020. For those still earning wages or self-employment income, there might be an additional 0.9% Medicare tax to consider as well.
New Legislation called The Secure Act passed in 2019 that will be effective for 2020 tax year. Also discussed in this episode is the new IRS form W4.
Dennis, Heidi and the team are back from their annual TD Ameritrade Conference in Orlando, Florida. It’s always a mind-blowing experience to hear from global experts in the world of finance and beyond. So today, we’ll cover exciting topics from blockchain to bitcoin. The global market is getting close to home. In fact, it’s already in your backyard.
And speaking of your yard, if you expect to find a pot of gold buried there, think again. Most families plan on leaving their treasures to charities, which isn’t such a bad idea considering that Millennials are turning out to be the most generous generation yet.