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.

Grant Tarrant / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y8z8exnx

When counseling someone with a debt problem, I usually have to explain to them that the easy way is often the worst way.

Consider the individual with several maxed out credits cards. Of course they want to get rid of them. So they look at their 401K account and notice there’s enough money in there to pay off all their credit cards.

They tell themselves they can then save all that money they were paying to the credit card company and pay back the 401K.

If they ask my opinion, my answer is usually – “No.”

Paul Inkles / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/yb2g6myd

If you own a small business that involves family members, I’ve got a question for you:

Do you have a family-oriented business or a business-oriented family?

It doesn’t really matter what your answer is…

What if I just showed up one night for dinner at your house? Is it likely you would be there for dinner? And if I asked your kids the “family-oriented business or business-oriented family” question, what kind of answer do you think I’d get?

Mike Houge / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/ybz97dve

The Law of Diminishing Intent.

Even if you’ve never heard of it, you’ve probably experienced it.

I first ran across this idea when reading a piece by consultant Duncan MacPherson.

As he explains it, “In simple terms, the Law of Diminishing Intent states that, when it comes to finishing a task that seems absolutely crucial one moment, our motivation wanes at about the same rate as the task’s significance. This is largely due to the fact that the emotion associated with the action dwindles, causing the motivation required to finish the project to fade.”

Why Save Money?

Nov 8, 2017
Images Money / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y8rjh2s2

Why save money anyway?

I meet folks all the time who say “I’m never going to retire. My philosophy is to live for today and not save a bunch of money for a day I may never reach.”

When someone tells me that, I’m always tempted to respond - why stop there?

If you can simply will your way to work as long as you live, why not just will yourself to not get sick or die?

Not so simple, is it?

simplyrikkles / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y9v96hdz

You are retired. You live comfortably. Sure, no one would say you are rich, but you have more than you need; and whatever assets you may have left once you are gone, you’d like to leave to your children. Maybe some to the grand kids.

Do folks like you…need a will?

Yes, I believe you do.

First, let me offer a very clear disclaimer. I am a financial planner, not an attorney. So anything I say is simply my understanding of the law and should not be considered legal advice. For legal advice, see an attorney.

Secondly, if you have wills, make sure they are valid.

Paul Townsend / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y958pyo7

Many of the really smart people I knew in high school or college are now doctors. I can’t think of any single profession filled with more exceptionally bright individuals.

And yet, what if I told you doctors do no better with their money that the average Joe?

You be the judge.

LC_24 / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y7c97822

For most of us, making decisions feels very difficult.

Making a decision means you are saying yes to one thing and no to a myriad of alternatives (sort of like getting married). Keeping the door open to the perception of unlimited choice usually ends up being unsatisfying … but it keeps the stress of making an actual decision at bay.

Making financial progress (or progress in any realm of life) is only going to happen if you grow in the skill of decision making. Here’s a process you can use to make a hard decision:

Julie Kertesz / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y725bw7f

How many mutual funds do I need to own to be properly diversified?

A lot more than you think.

Sometimes we think about diversification in a very one dimensional sense. Maybe we need to diversify our thinking … about diversification.

First of all diversification is fancy language for not putting all your eggs in one basket. It is the art and science of embracing variety over specificity for the purpose of reducing the risk of significant loss.

Hamza Butt / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y8zjkqpr

Last week we identified four bases you need to cover in your planning for retirement income: you need contentment for emotional health, a baseline budget for financial health, and a budget for both expected big stuff and unexpected bad stuff to make sure neither causes your financial house to collapse on your head.

Hamza Butt / Flickr.com https://tinyurl.com/y8zjkqpr

Have you ever read or heard that on average you’re going to need 70% of your working income in retirement.

Be careful when mixing averages and real life. If I put one foot in a bucket of ice and the other foot on a hot stove, on average, I’m comfortable. But in real life…

There are four things you need for a financially and emotionally (yes the two are linked) healthy retirement:

Pages