When it comes to your retirement finances, there’s a lot to think about and plan for, whether you’re retiring soon, or are several years from retirement. SageVest Wealth Management creates personalized, dynamic retirement plans for each of our clients, supporting their lifestyle, both now and in the future. Without the guidance of an experienced financial advisor, it can be difficult to know where to start, what to focus on, and how to sort fact from fiction when it comes to retirement myths.
Alimony, also known as spousal support or maintenance, is typically paid by the higher earning spouse following divorce. While some states still award lifetime alimony, it’s barred in others, so today, most alimony is rehabilitative and durational: paid for a set amount of time following divorce, or until the recipient remarries.
Recent tax reform changes have shaken up the divorce planning arena. The previous tax status for alimony (in place since 1942) is soon to reverse. If you’re wondering how new tax laws impact your existing or upcoming divorce settlement, we have a number of answers for you. Read More
Hopefully you’ve had many years of teaching your kids about money before college. If you haven’t, it’s crunch time to instill some teen financial basics. Even if your teen is financially ready and capable, now’s a great time to review budgeting, spending, and saving. SageVest Kids’ six-month plan will help guide these final months of teaching your kids about money before college. Read More
The decision to rent or buy a home has always been a significant financial consideration. However, whether to rent or buy is a particularly hot topic right now, given a booming real estate market, new mortgage interest deduction limits and a rising mortgage interest rate environment.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a Millennial thinking of buying your first home, a professional relocating for work, or a retiree downsizing to a condo or apartment: The own-or-rent decision is a complex one, influenced by a host of factors. We offer tips and insights about renting versus buying. Read More
You’ve probably heard some retirement myths, or read them online. While quick-fix retirement myths can be tempting, it’s important to evaluate their accuracy relative to your personal finances. Furthermore, many retirement myths are decades old, when lifestyles and retirement were far different than today.
Whether you’re a Millennial just starting out, an individual at the height of your career, or you’ve already retired, it’s vital to make the most of your retirement savings. This begins with establishing a personalized retirement plan – and reconsidering the validity of the following retirement myths. Read More
Getting together on the same page about money is a key element of relationship success, but it’s especially important for relationships formed later in life, whether you’re simply looking for friendship or searching for a new soul mate. At this stage in life, you’re likely to be more personally and financially established, possibly with a family, your own home, or even a business. Blending a new partner into your life and into your finances requires thoughtfulness, open communication, and careful planning. Read More
For many individuals, one of the most rewarding and challenging journeys in life involves being a parent. Beyond the daily essentials like love, good food, toys, and more that your child will need to learn and grow, there are also a host of financial considerations for you to plan for. These include decisions about childcare costs, healthcare coverage, and estate planning options.
Do you have trouble envisioning your retirement? Are you realistic about both your current budget and future retirement expenses? Do you even know where to start when it comes to saving for retirement? These are all classic traits that can impede your retirement success.
The good news is that you can change your approach to retirement. Jennifer Myers was recently quoted in US News and World Report and we offer five quick questions about saving for retirement, and the benefits of working with a financial advisor to achieve your retirement objectives. Read More
There are many reasons why you might be considering looking for a new job. Maybe you’re seeking more responsibility – or less. Perhaps your job is no longer rewarding – monetarily or otherwise. You might be relocating, changing careers entirely, or have had the unfortunate experience of losing a job. Whatever the reason, there are many financial factors to consider before you make a career move. Planning ahead can help ease the transition into your new job, and help secure your finances for your immediate and longer term future. Read More
2017 marks 10 years since Jennifer Myers first founded SageVest Wealth Management as an independent, fee-only financial planner in the Washington, DC area. Throughout the last decade, our firm has remained committed to delivering excellence in investment and financial planning services to individuals, families, and business owners throughout Virginia, Maryland, and the wider DC Metropolitan region.
We’re always honored to receive recognition for the exceptional level and breadth of knowledge, experience, and service that we render for our clients. Read More
There’s a lot to consider if you’re thinking about moving into a retirement community. While they offer an abundance of resources that you can’t replicate at home, retirement communities typically don’t come cheap. One of your top priorities should be deciding whether you can afford a retirement community lifestyle.
It’s important to review both your current and future finances carefully, to properly evaluate the costs of retirement community living, relative to the benefits you might gain. Read More
November is National Adoption Awareness Month. If you’re pursuing adoption, perhaps your journey is due to fertility issues, being single or part of a same-sex couple, or simply a fundamental desire to provide a loving home to a child in need. Whatever the reason, adoption is a joyful, life-changing experience for both parent and child.
It also requires careful consideration: practically, financially, and emotionally. I can attest to this as a proud adoptive single mother of two, and President of SageVest Wealth Management.
When I first explored adoption, there seemed little clear guidance about this important life event. While everyone’s adoptive experience is unique, I’m happy to share my own insights with other prospective parents. Read More
At SageVest Wealth Management, we offer a highly personalized approach to wealth management, one where our focus is always on you. We get to know you and your family, and as a fee-only fiduciary, always place your best interests first. Furthermore, as a woman-owned investment management firm, we’re particularly attuned to the complexities of financial planning for women, families, and multiple generations.
We’re delighted that our dedication to exceptional personalized planning and investment advice has again been formally recognized. Read More
The allure of becoming your own boss, calling the shots, and growing your potential earnings as a business owner or consultant is a common dream. Starting and running your own business is a bold step that can equate to greatness in your financial and professional future – but it’s not without risks. There’s a lot to consider before taking the plunge. While every industry is different, there are several key elements to achieving success as a business owner or consultant. Read More
Long-term care refers to specialized, ongoing services and support that help you live as independently as possible on a daily basis. With healthier lifestyles and longer lifespans, you’re likely to need some level of long-term care during your retirement years. However, long-term care may also be necessary at other times of life, following injury or illness.
A long-term care insurance policy can help cover the costs associated with long-term care. Increasing premiums and changing requirements – including upcoming changes that are of particular importance to women – mean that now might be the best time to incorporate a long-tem care policy into your wealth planning. Read More
There are many housing choices available to today’s independent retiree. These include universal design adaptations and in-home services to help you stay in your own home, downsizing to a smaller place, or entering a retirement community.
Retirement communities vary widely in terms of cost and what they offer. Some are designed communities, offering independent living for those aged 50+. Others are organized campuses that accommodate every stage of your retirement care. How do you decide if you can afford a retirement community, and which one’s right for you? Read More
As our clients know, SageVest Wealth Management takes pride in connecting you with your wealth in impactful and meaningful ways. Our team of advisors provides personalized, comprehensive financial advisory and investment management services to individuals, families, and business owners across Northern Virginia, Maryland, and the Greater Washington, DC area.
It’s fitting, therefore, that Jennifer Myers was again recognized this year as a Top Financial Professional in the Northern Virginia area. Read More
The word ‘retirement’ often has the connotation of an immediate and complete transition out of the workforce and into an uninterrupted life of leisure. However, for many individuals, full-time retirement might seem too abrupt, particularly if your work represents a significant part of your identity and is fundamental to your financial well-being. If this rings true for you, you might consider transitioning into retirement. Working part-time as you approach retirement can help to reduce stress and free up personal resources, while offering professional and financial perks.
As with all major life, work and financial decisions, there are a number of important factors to evaluate. Our ‘top of the list’ questions to ask include the following recommendations. Read More
Jennifer Myers, CFP ® established SageVest Wealth Management in May 2007, to provide high quality, customized, and comprehensive investment management and financial planning services to individuals, families and business owners in the Washington, DC area and beyond.
A decade later, and with twenty years of experience, Jennifer’s the recipient of multiple top advisor awards, including Washingtonian Top Financial Advisor, and SageVest is celebrating our tenth anniversary! This seems an ideal time to thank our clients, and to offer a quick reminder of our services, our fields of expertise, and the core principles that guide us in pursuit of your financial and life goals. Read More
Congratulations if your child, grandchild, or other family member is about to graduate from college! Attaining a degree is an accomplishment worthy of celebration. It’s also a time for your grad to transition into independence, learning financial and life responsibilities to achieve future success.
If you’re searching for a meaningful graduation gift to encourage lifelong wealth, SageVest advisors offer ten of our favorite financial gifts for college graduates. Read More
The notion of retirement is both alluring and complex. It’s the period in your life when you want to enjoy yourself, in good health, with the resources available to fulfill a variety of life ambitions.
Today, your retirement may extend over several decades, offering incredible opportunities to enjoy, partake, and experience a host of life adventures. However, longer retirement periods also require greater resources, and planning ahead is essential. Here are twelve tips for enjoying a successful and rewarding retirement. Read More
The cost of healthcare is a common concern for most Americans. For retirees, it’s often their number one financial priority. A combination of quickly rising health insurance costs and the potential for increased medical needs as you age can make planning for healthcare in retirement complex, unpredictable, and therefore, worrisome.
However, there are actions you can take to mitigate your risks, minimize your healthcare costs, and help you enjoy a happy and healthy retirement. Read More
For decades, home sizes have been increasing. The average American home today is about 1,000 square feet bigger than it was in the 1970s. Now, however, a competing trend is emerging. Led by the ‘Tiny House’ movement, there’s a shift towards enjoying a more minimalist lifestyle and downsizing to more sustainable living spaces.
There are a host of reasons why you might be considering downsizing your home. It may be in preparation for aging, to reduce living expenses, to simplify your lifestyle, for eco-friendly principles, or more. Whatever the reason, downsizing involves serious consideration. There are a lot of decisions to make as you embark on your downsizing journey. Read More
Papers, mementos, clothes, and more: there are many reasons why we amass an abundance of things that can end up making our homes look and feel messy. Keeping clutter under control enhances your home’s attractiveness, function, and value, and numerous studies prove that it can improve your overall outlook on life.
Your desire to declutter may be a response to a life event, like inheriting belongings from a family member, deciding to downsize your home, the end of a relationship, or the start of a new one. Regardless of the impetus, there’s a process to calming your clutter. Read More
If you’re like most Americans, a 401(k) or similar retirement plan represents the bulk of your long-term savings. Every year, the IRS places limits on the annual contributions you can complete to these and other qualified retirement plans. Too often, people mistakenly think that if they’re contributing these maximum annual amounts, they’re saving as much as they need. While these limits might be acceptable for some individuals, they may not be adequate for everyone. The reality is that the amount you need to save for retirement hinges upon the following five key factors. Read More
For many of us, our home is our largest asset. It also represents one of the biggest decisions to be made in retirement. Choosing whether to stay in your home or to move is a common consideration, as you enter retirement or at a later date. There are a multitude of things to contemplate, including location, family and friends, memories, climate, home maintenance, finances, and your health, just to name a few.
If you, a family member or a friend are deliberating on this topic, we offer some insights into the most important aspects of this decision, to help you evaluate your housing options, now and longer-term. Read More
An important aspect of financial planning is not only balancing your expenses on a day-to-day basis, but also planning ahead for larger anticipated expenses. A wedding is a joyous celebration. Yet the big day can also come with a big price tag; the average American wedding in 2015 cost more than $30,000.
Whether you’re paying for your own wedding, or you’re a parent or grandparent footing the bill or sharing the costs, it’s important to set a realistic budget for the event and plan accordingly. Here are some subtle ways to save on costs, while still achieving a perfect day. Read More
Entering retirement debt-free is psychologically and financially liberating. Yet for many individuals, enjoying lower expenses during retirement can turn out to be nothing more than a myth, in large part due to your mortgage.
Your mortgage payment is typically your largest monthly obligation. Today, people seldom stay in the same house long enough to pay off a 30-year mortgage. Even if they do, many people restart the payment clock by refinancing or by taking out a home equity loan. Here are seven tips to consider if you’re contemplating your mortgage as you enter retirement. Read More
You can honor your loved one through careful stewardship of the inheritance. There are multiple factors to consider when deciding how best to invest your windfall. Take your time to make reasoned and logical decisions that support your long-term life goals, including retirement. Jennifer Myers recently discussed how personal investment tolerance and the size and nature of the inheritance can impact these important decisions, in US News & World Report’s article: ‘How To Invest An Inheritance For A Comfortable Retirement‘.
When a couple divorces, the fall-out can affect your finances too. Retirement funds in particular can prove complex in how they’re divided during the divorce settlement and restructured for the future. Professional financial advice can help preserve your share if you’re the retirement fund owner, or ensure equitable distribution if you’re the other party. Michael Fuhr recently highlighted the importance of retirement fund tax rates during divorce negotiations in US News & World Report’s Investment article: ‘12 Steps To Protect Your Money In Divorce‘.
As you head into your thirties, you’re probably glad to put some of the uncertainties of the previous decade behind you. You may have finished studying by now and be working to strengthen your financial independence with a steady income or even a business of your own.
Even with this increasing stability, though, it’s important to avoid budgetary temptations. SageVest advisor Michael Fuhr was recently quoted in US News And World Report’s ‘Top Budget Busters for 30-Somethings’, discussing how to evaluate a home purchase while remaining focused on your overall wealth objectives.
Retirement is an exciting time, full of choices to make and plans for the future. If you’re entitled to a pension, you’re fortunate. You also have more financial decisions to navigate. It’s time to decide if you should take your pension as a monthly payment, as a lump sum rollover, to elect survivor benefits, and more. These are irrevocable decisions, so it’s important to make the right one for you and your loved ones. While everyone’s retirement circumstances and objectives are unique, there are some common considerations that can help you to evaluate what’s the best option for you. Read More
The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, signed into law on November 2nd, effectively eliminated the Restricted Application and the File-and-Suspend strategies. Those already utilizing these options will be grandfathered in; some will have a short six-month window in which to act; and, others need to be aware of how future benefits will be more limited. The media has focused on how the termination of these unintended, but popular, strategies will impact married couples. The truth is that the changes will impact single individuals as well. If your retirement plan included anticipated Social Security benefits, please take the time to Read More
Living together without the union of marriage is increasingly common, among both younger and older couples. For many, living blissfully without the complications of marriage, tax penalties and more is ideal. It certainly reduces life complexities in many ways. However, as with just about everything in life, there are pros and cons to consider.
Before you and your loved one decide to take the plunge and move in together, it’s important to discuss the financial fundamentals of cohabiting. Jennifer Myers was recently quoted in an article from US News and World Report, addressing some of the money issues that non-married couples should consider: ‘Financial Mistakes Couples Make When They Move In Together‘.
Without doubt, the most common question we’re asked is “How much do I need to retire?” While there’s no universal answer, there is a universal objective to be financially comfortable. Retirement dreams are different for everyone, and change as life constantly evolves. That said, the amount you need today can offer you an insight into what you’ll need to replicate tomorrow. If you or your loved ones haven’t already explored retirement planning, we offer a quick and easy chart as an initial gauge of your preparedness. Read More
Losing a loved one is a difficult experience. Yet, during this time, you must complete a variety of tasks and make important financial decisions. You may need to make final arrangements, notify various businesses and government agencies, settle the individual’s estate, and provide for your own financial security.
The following checklist is offered as a guide. Note: Some of the following tasks may have to be completed by the estate’s executor. Read More
Across the nation, parents are bidding a tearful goodbye as their excited teenagers head to college for the first time … or bidding on that home fitness center on eBay, as they turn their son or daughter’s room into an in-home gym before the car’s even left the driveway.
We can’t help with the emotional aspects, or with putting the workout equipment together. But when it comes to nurturing financial skills and wisdom, SageVest and SageVest Kids are valuable resources for you and your family. Following are a number of points we recommend discussing with your teenager, or in collaboration with one of our advisors, with a goal of launching your young adult on the road to life success as well as the road to college. Read More
As the cost of a college education continues to climb, many grandparents are stepping in to help. This trend is expected to accelerate as baby boomers, many of whom went to college, become grandparents and start gifting what’s predicted to be trillions of dollars over the coming decades.
Helping to pay for a grandchild’s college education can bring great personal satisfaction and is a smart way for grandparents to pass on wealth without having to pay gift and estate taxes. So what are some ways to accomplish this goal? Read More
Many students take a job in the summer after school lets out. If it’s your first job it gives you a chance to learn about the working world. That includes taxes we pay to support the place where we live, our state and our nation. Here are eight things that students who take a summer job should know about taxes.
This information regarding tax tips for students who take a summer job was recently released by the IRS. Please feel free to pass it on to anyone who may benefit from this useful advice. Please visit www.IRS.gov for more about tax rules for students, or click on the links below. Read More
So can finding the documents you need.
The SageVest LifeList is designed to help you organize the important paperwork and information associated with key aspects of your life. It serves as a reference list of where each document or piece of information can be found.
Every October, the College Board releases its Trends in College Pricing report, highlighting college cost increases for the current academic year, and trends in the world of higher education. While costs can vary significantly depending on the region and individual college, the College Board publishes average cost figures, based on its survey of nearly 4,000 colleges across the country.
In addition, Social Security and Medicare figures are announced for calendar year 2014. Read More
The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) have announced that same-sex couples who are legally married in jurisdictions that recognize same-sex marriage will be treated as married for all federal tax purposes. Guidance has been provided in the form of a Revenue Ruling (Rev. Rul. 2013-17) and associated Frequently Asked Questions. The Treasury Department and IRS guidance was issued in response to the recent Supreme Court case striking down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996 (DOMA), which defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman. Read More
The 5-4 decisions bolster the federal benefits available to same-sex married couples and clear the way for same-sex marriages in California.
We discuss the implications of these rulings.
Long-term care refers to the ongoing services and support needed by people who have chronic health conditions or disabilities. Understandably, many people put off planning for long-term care. But although it’s hard to face the fact that health problems may someday result in a loss of independence, if you begin planning now, you’ll have more options open to you in the future.
Here we consider the answers to five frequently-asked questions about long-term care insurance. Read More
Many parents pay for college with a combination of savings and financial aid. Financial aid is money distributed primarily by the Federal government and colleges in the form of student loans, grants, scholarships, and work-study jobs. Loans and work-study must be repaid (through monetary or work obligations), while grants and scholarships do not. A student can receive both Federal and college aid. By learning the basics, you’ll be able to understand how the financial aid process works, properly fill out aid applications, and compare the aid awards your child receives. Read More
But that diploma doesn’t come cheap!
Start saving as early as possible. Ideally, you’ll want to choose a college savings vehicle that offers the best combination of tax advantages, financial aid benefits, and flexibility, while meeting your overall investment needs. Read More
The first baby boomers became eligible for Social Security in 2008 (at age 62) and for Medicare just last year. Costs of these programs currently represent approximately 8.7% of GDP and 56% of IRS tax receipts. By 2033, those figures are projected to climb to 12.5% of GDP and 81% of current tax receipts.
The following Barron’s reprint discusses a number of considerations, including how long-term impacts could affect your future benefits. Read More
Are you ready to retire? The question is actually more complicated than it first appears, because it demands consideration on two levels. First, there’s the emotional component: Are you ready to enter a new phase of life? Do you have a plan for what you would like to accomplish or do in retirement? Have you thought through both the good and bad aspects of transitioning into retirement? Second, there’s the financial component: Can you afford to retire? Will your finances support the retirement lifestyle that you want? Do you have a retirement income plan in place? Read More