Wisdom on Wealth

Wednesday at 7:45 a.m.

Everyone has money questions, whether it's what to do about retirement, or how to invest for the first time. Each week, Byron Moore offers practical, down-to-earth advice on handling money; and shows that even though money is important, paying attention to it can keep it from ruling your life.

frankieleon / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/ycktk7nk

With interest rates so low, does it still make sense to keep a pile of cash on hand for emergencies?

Short answer: yes!

You may have a line of credit at your bank or a credit card with high spending limits. Btu not a single one of your credit cards comes with a lifetime guarantee. You could get a letter in the mail any day informing you that your bank no longer wishes to extend you credit (under any circumstances) and your credit cards can be canceled with little notice.

Cash … can’t be canceled.

Here are a few reasons why you need to save money:

Advice for Young Adults

Apr 13, 2018
Michael Newman / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/yavegt8n

The only question I get asked more than “which way is the stock market about to go?!” is “Can you give some advice to my young adult children so they don’t end up like me?”

SO…Kids, you heard your mom (or dad). You don’t have to make the same financial mistakes they did. You can do better (and believe me, they want you to!).

Here then is a short list of actions you can take, which if followed reasonably well, will give you the best chance possible for a successful financial life.

Best of all, It’s pretty simple.

Exit Planning

Apr 11, 2018
Chris Griffith / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/yawlybyn

You own a business…together. 

Most couples that are in business together know that in order for them to retire, they’ll have to do something with the business. You’ll either have to sell it to a third party or pass it on to the kids…assuming they have more than a passing interest in the business.

If you’ve been married long enough to have adult children (and you’re still together), you’ve figured out that incessant nagging isn’t a good idea. So, congratulations there.

Timothy K. Hamilton / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y7blnhhn

Are you ready to retire?

How would you know?

Retirement is certainly about financial readiness. But it is also about so much more than that. I think it is important that you address some very important issues:

First, Are you emotionally ready to retire? Work is a great source of identity for most of us. Just read the death announcements. “Joe Blow, 66, a plumber, died.” That’s it – how old he was when he died, and what he did for a living while he lived.

Thomas Hawk / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/ybe4gzea

Last week, I reviewed the identify crisis suffered by insurance companies, who forgot they are primarily security providers and not investment managers.

History shows that no matter how you package it, using the cash values of a life insurance policy as an investment accumulation vehicle is rarely a good idea.

What escapes many, however, is the corresponding truth that investments are usually very poor insurance.

Pictures of Money / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/ydcara3c

Life insurance. We need it. We hate it. We don’t really understand it. But we know we don’t want to be sold it.

If I had a message for life insurance companies, it would be this:

When you forget who you are, it’s easy to lose your focus.

The two decades spanning the 1980s and 1990s represent one of the most lucrative periods in history for investors. It was a time of declining interest rates, expanded borrowing, baby boomer buying and a growth in productivity made possible by the dawn of the personal computer.

Hamza Butt / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/ybocuhyo

Welcome to age 70. Believe me, you don’t look a day over 69.

If you’re not quite to age 70, don’t worry…its coming sooner than you think!

What happens at age 70…or 70 ½ to be precise?

That’s the age Uncle Sam says you must begin taking a required minimum distribution (RMD) each year out of your IRA. And if you don’t do it, you’ll owe a 50% penalty on every dime you fail to withdraw on time, plus the taxes due. I’m not kidding – they are serious about this stuff!

Your Example is More Important Than Your Words

Feb 21, 2018
Michael Lehet / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y93e89ok

Adult children. Sometimes it seems they just don’t get it, right?

So what can you do to help your adult children not repeat the same financial mistakes you made at their age?

…not a thing.

There is no way to guarantee your kids won’t repeat your mistakes. In fact, most of the time, that’s exactly what happens.

Here’s the problem - your words don’t carry much weight when your way of life contradicts those words.

Jake Kitchener / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y7yt6shv

How much money do you need to save?

The answer: enough.

What other answer makes sense?

OK. But “enough” to do what?

Enough to make you financially free during your working years and enough to make going to work optional as soon as possible.

GotCredit / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/yabzglhq

Are you too…fraud friendly?

Unfortunately, too many Americans are susceptible to financial fraud.

Financial fraud solicitations are everywhere. It’s hard to tell how widespread the problem is because people tend to under-report. Who wants to get ripped off, then admit to the world what an idiot they’ve been? It’s a double whammy most folks are unwilling to stomach.

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