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What's Up Magazine

Leading Business Professionals 2017 Q & A's

Jan 26, 2017 03:58PM ● By Cate Reynolds

Why choose revocable and irrevocable trusts?

If you’re concerned that your beneficiaries’ might need help managing their inheritance, a trust may be the appropriate tool for you. Two basic types of trusts are used in conjunction with life insurance: revocable trusts and irrevocable life insurance trusts (ILITs). With an ILIT, the insurance proceeds and other assets in the trust aren’t considered part of your taxable estate. However, you must give up all rights and control over the trust. You can’t act as the trustee or make any decisions about how assets are invested. If you have a sizable estate, you may be able to minimize the potential tax burden with an ILIT.

Lora Davis, Financial Advisor, 410-763-8543 – Wye Financial & Trust

What’s the biggest concern clients have when sitting down to discuss their retirement plan?

Ironically enough, the biggest concern is over the meeting itself. Many clients worry that they’ve put off planning for their retirement for too long, or that it’s been too long since they’ve last reviewed an existing retirement plan. I often need to reassure clients that there’s still time to plan a viable course of action – regardless of whether retirement is decades out or only a few months away. It’s just a matter of understanding their priorities; and that starts by taking the initial step to sit down and talk.

Kevin Flaherty, Financial Advisor – PNC Investments, LLC

What makes your firm unique?

Our most unique offering is a nationwide service where we are able to manage the 401k account of individuals of all ages at any company. We help clients develop a personalized saving and investing strategy for what is often their largest retirement asset – and it doesn’t hurt that it only costs a few hundred dollars a year. Our primary goal is to help investors make the most of the tools they are given at their workplace, helping to maximize their assets over time. We’ve tried to make financial planning very approachable in an industry that can sometimes be quite the opposite.
Securities offered through SII Investments, Inc. (SII), Member FINRA, SIPC. Advisory Services offered through Scarborough Capital Management (SCM), a Registered Investment Advisor, SII & SCM are separate companies.
Greg Ostrowski, CFP®, CRPC®, Managing Partner, Scarborough Capital Management

How can I prepare for the upcoming tax law changes that have been proposed by President-Elect Trump?

With tax reform considered a priority for President-Elect Trump, we know tax changes are coming. We are not sure exactly what those changes will be so it can be difficult to plan, yet tax planning now is a vital step. With the expectation of decreasing tax rates in the coming years, accelerating deductions into 2016 and postponing income to 2017 may be the right tax planning strategy for you. Meet with one of our tax experts and allow us to assist you in navigating the new tax environment of 2017 and beyond.

Thad Toal, CPA, Managing Partner – Toal, Griffith, and Ragula

Is the way retirees should invest to protect their portfolios changing?

Yes. Things are always evolving. Music has gone from vinyl to cassette to CDs to MP3 players to Digital Streaming. The telephone has gone from rotary to push-button to cordless to cell phone to smartphone. Investing has evolved as well from stocks to mutual funds to separately managed accounts to custom portfolio construction and diversification. The problem is many retirees portfolios look like vinyl or the rotary phone. Being diversified today means more than just stocks, bonds and cash. To protect your money in today’s global economy you need to be diversified by company, by product, by tax benefit, by asset class and with real assets vs. paper assets. This strategy is called Advance and Protect.

Brion Harris, Premier Planning Group
Contact us today to take a closer look at your current or upcoming distributions, to see if you are on the right track! or 443-837-2529

What general investment instruments (types of funds, stocks, bonds, etc.) and portfolio strategies do you think are trending up and why?

There have been four major trends over the last 10 years: the low cost passive exchange traded fund that is replacing the traditional mutual fund; the Target Dated Funds that are prevalent within retirement accounts, but they are high cost and we don’t recommend them; there is also a trend towards low-volatility investing due to the crash in ’08–’09, which is still on the minds of investors and thus the growth in this category; and the fourth, and most recent phenomena, has been automated investing platforms. This is popular now but in our opinion, the firm or firms that can combine technology with a human touch are most likely to succeed.

Carl and Carlos Sera, Sera Capital

What is a QuickBooks ProAdvisor and how can they help me?

Professionals certified by QuickBooks as ProAdvisors are trained in setting up, maintaining and troubleshooting QuickBooks files. At TGR, we have three ProAdvisors on staff who are ready to assist you with your QuickBooks needs. We can help you set-up a new file, train new and continued users, and assist with conversions from QuickBooks for desktop to QuickBooks Online. We have had great success assisting clients in designing custom reports specific to their business and their business needs. We welcome the opportunity to assist you with your QuickBooks questions.

Adrianne Day, CPA, Principal – Toal, Griffith, and Ragula

What exactly is a Retirement Distribution Specialist?

Most people spend 25 years of the working life accumulating assets in their IRA’s, 401(k)’s, 403(b)’s, 457’s, ROTHs and Brokerage Accounts. This represents a distinct period in your financial life when you’re trying to accumulate wealth. As you’re getting in or near retirement, the accumulation phase becomes less important and you tend to focus more on preserving what you’ve worked so hard to accumulate and developing a strategy for the most efficient distribution for the next 25 years of your life. This requires careful planning and unique knowledge to not fall victim to the multiple dangers of the distribution phase such as longevity, inflation, taxes, market volatility, health risks and sequence of returns.This is what a Distribution Specialist does.

Brion Harris, Premier Planning Group
Contact us today to take a closer look at your current or upcoming distributions, to see if you are on the right track! or 443-837-2529