If you care about the privacy of your financial information, your credit history, and your charge-card numbers, you can protect yourself from criminals. Identity theft is the fastest growing financial crime in the U.S.

It can be as simple as someone stealing your credit-card number and charging merchandise to your account. Or it can be much more far-reaching. A crook could use your name, birth date, and Social Security number to take over your bank accounts or set up new ones.

Financial institutions are liable for most unauthorized charges. The worst effect could be on your credit history. It could prevent you from getting a mortgage, a job, or good auto insurance rates. Ways to protect your identity include:

* Don’t put bank statements or credit-card offers into the trash where they can be picked up by someone else.

* Use a paper shredder for every piece of junk mail, usable checks from your credit-card company, and bank statements. Destroy records you no longer need: bank statements, credit-card receipts, health-insurance reimbursements. Shredders are cheap and easy to use.

* If mail theft is a problem, get a lockable mailbox. Don’t put letters or payments on your mailbox for

the postman to pick up. Anyone else can too.

* Buy a credit report at least once a year and check it carefully.

* Don’t carry rarely used credit cards, extra identification, or anything that shows your birth date. One authority recommends using your passport for ID. It doesn’t give your address.

To get a credit report, call Equifax at (800) 685-1111; Experian at (888) 397-3742; or TransUnion at (800) 916-8800. Reports cost $8.50, according to Business Week. To stop pre-approved credit card offers, call (888) 567-8688. To get off junk-mail and telemarketing lists, go to www.thedma.org/consumers/privacy.html.

 

More than 5,700 IRS scam victims have lost a reported $31 million as of March 2016. By arming yourself with knowledge about how the IRS operates, you can protect your hard-earned money and reputation. Call us today to learn the facts!

 

If you are holding individual stocks in a retirement account as well as in a regular non-retirement account, it is important to be aware of having the correct stock in the right account.

For example, stocks paying high dividends should go into your retirement account, since those dividends would otherwise be taxed right away at the regular income tax rate. If they were in your regular account, they would lose the benefit of tax-free growth.

Also, aggressive growth stocks should largely be left in the regular account for two reasons. One, they usually don’t pay big dividends and two, stocks sold in the regular account are taxed at the capital-gains rate while those sold in a retirement account are taxed at the higher income tax rate.

Always remember that in no matter what account you hold your equity investments they should be well diversified so as not to expose yourself to too a high a risk.

As always these tips are general in nature, and are intended to give you some ideas and guidelines as to things you should be aware of.

Please don’t take any actions without consulting us, or other appropriate professionals!

People in retirement often wonder what to do when you need money to live on, or to make a major purchase or go on vacation; or before retirement, for buying a house or to pay for college, or whatever.

Some people say that you should look at taking money out of a tax deferred vehicle for things like this while others say you should take tax deferred money out last. We’ve heard advisors say things like “you’ll be in a lower tax bracket in retirement, so you should keep socking away money into tax deferred accounts. Others say the exact opposite, and you shouldn’t put money into tax deferred accounts.

What’s the right answer?

 FIGURE IT OUT BY CRUNCHING THE NUMBERS!

We just had a client come in to see us who moved here from out of state, and had been told to accumulate money in certain accounts because she would be in a “lower bracket” in retirement. Well, because she hadn’t done the math, she found out that by doing what she did, she pushed herself into a HIGHER bracket in retirement, and cost herself a bundle in needless taxes!

Another client was told NOT to accumulate money in tax deferred accounts because he’d end up paying the same or more in taxes when he took the money out. When he came in to see us, we had the unpleasant task of telling him he had overpaid his taxes for years and years based on his advisor’s advice given without the benefit of CRUNCHING THE NUMBERS!

So, the tip is to never go by rules of thumb or people’s guesses when it comes to making big decisions with your money! You have to plan in a careful and thoughtful manner, and be sure to CRUNCH THE NUMBERS!

As always, these tips are general in nature, and are intended to give you some ideas and guidelines as to things you should be aware of. Please don’t take any actions without consulting us, or other appropriate professionals!

Income Solver Brochurehttps://www.facebook.com/AssetPlanning/photos/pb.162916080404800.-2207520000.1472811701./1317850064911390/?type=3&theater

 

 

People in retirement often wonder what to do when you need money to live on, or to make a major purchase or go on vacation; or before retirement, for buying a house or to pay for college, or whatever.

Some people say that you should look at taking money out of a tax deferred vehicle for things like this while others say you should take tax deferred money out last. We’ve heard advisors say things like “you’ll be in a lower tax bracket in retirement, so you should keep socking away money into tax deferred accounts. Others say the exact opposite, and you shouldn’t put money into tax deferred accounts.

The right answer?  FIGURE IT OUT BY CRUNCHING THE NUMBERS!

We just had a client come in to see us who moved here from out of state, and had been told to accumulate money in certain accounts because she would be in a “lower bracket” in retirement. Well, because she hadn’t done the math, she found out that by doing what she did, she pushed herself into a HIGHER bracket in retirement, and cost herself a bundle in needless taxes!

Another client was told NOT to accumulate money in tax deferred accounts because he’d end up paying the same or more in taxes when he took the money out. When he came in to see us, we had the unpleasant task of telling him he had overpaid his taxes for years and years based on his advisor’s advice given without the benefit of CRUNCHING THE NUMBERS!

So, the tip for this month is to never go by rules of thumb or people’s guesses when it comes to making big decisions with your money! You have to plan in a careful and thoughtful manner, and be sure to CRUNCH THE NUMBERS!

As always, these tips are general in nature, and are intended to give you some ideas and guidelines as to things you should be aware of. Please don’t take any actions without consulting us, or other appropriate professionals!