The Three Important Money Lessons Your Children Don’t Learn in School

The Three Important Money Lessons Your Children Don’t Learn in School

In just a few weeks, children will return to school. History, reading, math, and other subjects will fill their days. However, very few lessons are taught related to financial matters. Therefore, it is up to parents to ensure their children learn these lessons at home.

Is It Too Early to Begin Teaching Your Child About Money?

Wise money management and financial planning skills can be learned very early. When a child learns how to manage money effectively early in life, he or she has a better chance of making good financial decisions as an adult. As parents, we should not assume that our children learn wise money management in school. We should teach by example, but we should also take proactive steps to ensure that our children have the financial skills necessary to succeed as adults.

Three Financial Lessons Every Child Should Learn

There are many financial lessons that you can teach your child. Three...

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Five Tips to Make Tax Time Easier for You Next Year

tax planning Jul 11, 2019

Five Tips to Make Tax Time Easier for You Next Year

It is only July, so why should you be thinking about filing your taxes? You have at least nine more months before you need to worry about that. However, if you find that April is always a terribly anxious and frustrating month for you, maybe you should consider working on your taxes now instead of waiting until next year. By taking a few easy steps this year, you can make next year much easier and much less painful. You may also save some money by discovering a few extra tax deductions that might be forgotten if you wait until next year to begin working on your taxes.

Five Tips to Make Filing Your Tax Returns Easier

  1. Choose an Accounting Software and Use It

This tip is a two-part tip. First, choose an accounting software that meets your needs. Research the various options to determine which accounting software has the features that will benefit you the most. Companies that you may want to look at include Zoho Books, FreshBooks,...

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How Does Bitcoin and Other Cryptocurrency Affect Tax Planning?

How Does Bitcoin and Other Cryptocurrency Affect Tax Planning?

Bitcoin is a form of cryptocurrency, also referred to as altcoins or digital currency. Cryptocurrency was first introduced in 2009 when bitcoin was created. Bitcoin continues to be synonymous with digital currency, even though other forms of digital currency now exist, including Litecoin, Ripple, and Ethereum.

More and more individuals are investing in cryptocurrency and using it for online payments. However, one issue that has arisen in the past decade is the treatment of digital currency for tax purposes.

Is Bitcoin Property?

It can be difficult to view bitcoin and other forms of digital currency as an asset because it is not tangible. Digital currency does not require bank accounts or financial institutions to transfer or back the currency. All cryptocurrency transactions are recorded on a blockchain. Blockchain is a digital public record. Owners use an encryption key to access, transfer, and spend their bitcoin and...

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Merging Finances with a Life Partner

Merging Finances with a Life Partner

Many brides consider June the best month to plan a wedding for many reasons. June is named for the Roman goddess of marriage, Juno, so many cultures believed being married in June would bring happiness and prosperity. June was also a popular month because the birth of children conceived during the summer would not interfere with harvest.

Regardless of when a couple decides to get married, planning a wedding can be easier than merging their finances. For a couple, merging finances can be challenging and difficult. Money matters are a common cause of stress and arguments in a relationship. If you and your partner are considering merging your finances, there are three things you need to remember:

  • You are not required to merge your finances completely;
  • There is no “right” way to merge finances; and,
  • Communication is the key to successfully tackling financial matters.

You Can Choose Whether or Not to Merge Your Finances

No rule requires...

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Bringing Up the Topic of Estate Planning with Your Parents

Bringing Up the Topic of Estate Planning with Your Parents

Mother’s Day has just passed and Father’s Day is right around the corner. As our parents age, there are certain topics that we need to address with them that could be a bit uncomfortable for everyone. In many cases, parents do not wish to discuss health and financial issues with their children. However, it is important to discuss these topics with our parents to protect their well-being and their future.

Our Michigan estate planning attorneys understand these topics may be difficult because they require us to focus on the mortality of our parents. Our parents may not want to address these issues because it forces them to admit they may need assistance from their children during their senior years. Below are tips for bringing up the topic of estate planning with your parents and a list of documents you may want to discuss with our estate planning attorneys.

Five Tips for Discussing Estate Planning with Your...

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Four Signs You May Not Need Life Insurance

Four Signs You May Not Need Life Insurance

Life insurance coverage can be expensive. The cost of life insurance is one of the common reasons why many individuals do not purchase a policy. Believing that they have plenty of time to take care of the matter is another common reason why some individuals do not invest in life insurance.

However, there are some situations in which a person may not need life insurance or may only need a small amount of life insurance. Below are four reasons why you may not need to worry about life insurance.

  1. You and your family have substantial assets.

Individuals and families who have substantial assets may not need life insurance policies. However, even though you may not need life insurance, life insurance may be worth the investment in some cases. For example, you could fund a Life Insurance Trust or multiple Life Insurance Trusts for your favorite charities. If you have maxed out other charitable contributions and you still need a way to reduce...

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Give College Graduates the Gift of Financial Planning Skills

Give College Graduates the Gift of Financial Planning Skills

Cash is a common graduation gift, especially for college graduates. Some college graduates count on the cash they receive as graduation gifts to pay off debts or pay for moving expenses as they transition into permanent housing. Unfortunately, some college grads may use their graduation cash unwisely during the excitement of graduating from college. Only after using the cash to pay for expensive celebration trips, new vehicles, extravagant furniture, or deposits for rental homes they cannot afford does the college graduate realize the graduation cash could have been used more wisely.

However, there are other financial gifts that you can give a college graduate that might help the graduate on his or her way to building a strong financial foundation for the future. Some of the financial gifts that could benefit a college graduate more than cash.

Five Financial Gifts for College Graduates

  1. Paying Off Student Loans

During...

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Delay Social Security But Not Your Retirement With Smart Budgeting Right Now

Delay Social Security But Not Your Retirement With Smart Budgeting Right Now

When a financial advisor tells you that you should delay applying for your Social Security benefits until at least age 67 (preferably age 70), you probably assume that the financial advisor is telling you that you need to delay your retirement. However, this is not the case. You can retire without applying for your Social Security benefits if you invest in your retirement through careful budgeting while you are working.

You Can Stop Working But Hold Off on Social Security Income

When you delay applying for Social Security, your monthly benefits increase. Therefore, the longer you delay, the more money you can receive each month once you do apply for Social Security. However, that does not mean you must keep working until you reach 70 years of age.

You can retire at any age without Social Security income by accumulating sufficient funds in your 401k, trusts, IRAs, annuities, and other retirement accounts to...

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Five Questions You Need to Answer If You Intend to Retire Early

Five Questions You Need to Answer If You Intend to Retire Early

The thought of early retirement is appealing to most individuals. However, turning that thought into reality may be difficult, but it is possible. If you want to retire early, you need to develop a financial plan that increases retirement savings while you are still working. A Michigan financial planner can assist you in answering five key questions that you need to consider if you want to turn a dream of early retirement into a reality.

  1. Do you have sufficient income now to increase retirement savings?

Depending on your age, income, expenses, and target retirement age, you may or may not have sufficient income to increase retirement savings enough to prepare for early retirement. A careful analysis of your current financial situation is required to determine if you can reduce your current income to increase retirement savings. If you reduce your income to the point that you create a financial crisis in which you...

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Including Retirement Accounts in Your Estate Plan

Including Retirement Accounts in Your Estate Plan

Most individuals do not think about transferring retirement accounts through their estate because they are more focused on using those funds during retirement. However, retirement accounts are unique assets that are often handled differently from other assets in an estate. Working closely with a skilled estate planning and retirement professional can ensure that you create a secure financial future for yourself while maximizing the benefit your beneficiaries can receive from inherited retirement accounts.

Estate Planning and Your Retirement Accounts

Retirement accounts may hold significant value upon your death. Therefore, these accounts should be considered when you are developing an estate plan. Even though many retirement accounts pass to heirs outside of the probate process, your heirs could incur federal and state taxes that may reduce the value of these assets considerably. Because Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are...

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