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Make 2007 Your Best Year Ever

Last week, I extolled the value of listing the successes of the past year as well as taking time to count your blessings. Few of us take the time to stop and take stock of our lives but if you take a moment to reflect, you will find that you, in fact, accomplished quite a […]

The Christmas Gift

Tomorrow is one of the most important days of the year for people of the Christian faith as we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ and His ultimate gift of everlasting life.  Regardless of your faith, this is the time for everyone to stop and recognize how blessed we all are.  Certainly we live in […]

The Heart of Christmas on a Shoestring Budget

With only a few days left until Christmas, you’re probably busy with last minute shopping.  Hopefully, if you followed my advice in my December 3rd column, you’ll be able to finish the holidays in good financial shape.  However, some of you may find that you’re out of money but still have names on your gift […]

Drop Dead Deadlines

Whether you plan to establish a retirement plan, grab some last minute tax deductions or make gifts to charities, you’ll want to make sure to meet the required December 31 deadline for these strategies:    Retirement Planning.   ·        If you are a business owner planning to set up and fund a qualified retirement plan […]

A New Strategy for Roth IRAs

In this final installment of my series on IRAs, I’ll discuss the various rules that regulate IRA accounts, specifically Roth IRAs.  As you know, you do not receive a tax deduction for contributions to a Roth IRA but your earnings grow tax deferred and, most importantly, withdrawals made during retirement are tax free.  Unlike regular […]

Nightmares of Inherited IRAs

Last week, I discussed year end planning steps if you are over age 70 ½ and have one or more retirement accounts.  But, what must you do if you have inherited an IRA?  Depending on the circumstances, the rules are equally complex and the penalties for not following the rules can be substantial.  Let’s look […]

Over Age 70? Avoid These IRA Mistakes!

Last week, I discussed some of the tax advantages of using your IRA for charitable gifting.  This week, I’ll focus on IRA planning that needs to be done now in order to avoid costly penalties of missed deadlines.  I am currently working with a client whose wife passed away earlier this year.  Since she was […]

Giving Away Your IRA

One of the best ways to accumulate wealth continues to be investing in retirement plans such as IRAs and 401(k)s.  After all, you receive an immediate deduction for your contribution based on your highest marginal tax bracket and your money grows tax free, in many cases for decades,  In fact, retirement plan investing will, in […]

Over Age 65? Make $300 for 1 Hour’s Work!

These days, in spite of fluctuating house prices, the good news is that most homeowners have found that home ownership has been one of their best investments over the past decade.  The bad news is that with rising values, they face increasing expenses in the form of property taxes.  Your property tax bill is based […]

Annuities Revisited-Part II

Last week I began a discussion about the options available under annuity contracts.  Over the past few years, annuities have become increasingly sophisticated and, unfortunately all the more confusing to the consumer.  This week, I’ll finish my review of annuities and explain what you should be aware of when choosing a particular contract option.   […]