Year: 2014

2 Simple Strategies for Financial Success in 2015

How happy are you with your financial success in 2014?  How would you like 2015 to be your best year ever, financially speaking?  Creating financial success does not have to be complicated.  If you implement my two simple strategies, you can put your 2015 success on auto-pilot. Reverse Budget Strategy.  Budget…such a distasteful six-letter word.  […]

Last Minute Tax Benefits for 2014

Better late than not at all.  Congress voted to extend certain tax breaks this past week that include a couple of key taxpayer benefits. They also included a couple of new tax benefits as well.  Here is a sampling: Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) direct transfers to charity.  When you turn age 70 ½, you must […]

IRA Annuity- A Good Choice?

Reader Question:  Please address the pros and cons of placing retirement funds in an annuity. The market has been volatile and there is talk of another drastic drop in the stock market. I’m looking for a sustainable investment. We would also like to pass on to children and grandchildren an inheritance if anything is left. […]

Dumping Your Timeshare

Reader Question:  My mother decided that she does not want to pay the $2500 maintenance fee on her resort timeshare. She told me she gets letters and phone calls and she does not care. She does not care if she forfeits the points because she never uses them. She told me she paid $1000 to […]

Government Taxes Gifts To Your Children?

As calendar year 2014 comes to a close I find some people think about making gifts to children or other family members before year-end.  Reasons for wanting to make these gifts vary widely including reducing future estate taxes; shifting income to a lower income tax bracket taxpayers; or the simple desire to transfer a particular […]

A Thanksgiving Message

With Thanksgiving Day just a few days away, it’s my observation that for most people’s lives become more frantic and hectic.  Whether its travel plans or planning the Thanksgiving Day meal, people have more to do and less time to do it.  As you go through the hustle and bustle of this season and as […]

Avoiding Taxes on Inherited Home

Reader Question:  When a couple’s home is inherited by their children, and the children then sell the home, does the home sale qualify for the tax exemption allowance on the profit without the children meeting the residency requirements (owned and lived in home as primary residence for two out of the previous five years) …assuming […]

The Holiday Savvy Shopper

Retailers are already gearing up for the holiday selling season and I predict it will be filled with bargains for the savvy shopper.  This season you’re going to have an opportunity to give great gifts without breaking your piggy bank if you follow these simple guidelines. Set a goal. Let’s start with your number one […]

Medicare Trap Triggered by Roth Conversion

I recently answered a sixty-six-year-old reader’s question about the tax impact of converting his IRA to a Roth IRA.  I pointed out that the dollars converted would be treated as ordinary income in the year of conversion and that he should make certain that he had money ‘outside’ his IRA to pay the taxes so […]

Second Marriages and Home Ownership

Reader Question:  My husband and I have separate Wills with designated beneficiaries since this is our second marriage. With regard to our home, which we own, if I should die first he would remain living there until he died, then the property would go to our respective beneficiaries to divide. Obviously this would prevent my investment in […]