Welcome to A/B Conversations:

We Will Help You CFP® Your Way Out Of It, a podcast where you get into the minds of a couple Certified Financial Planners™ on how we think about everyday financial planning questions and what should really matter most to you.

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In this podcast episode, Ben and Adam discuss ways we can help to work through your emotions while the market is down. We explore why it's important to keep perspective and weather the storm. Our goal is to help keep you focused on the things you can control, filter out the noise from the things you can’t and then be a partner on your journey, helping keep you on the right path no matter how many twists and turns it may take. If you have questions on something you are seeing or reading, send it to us to review!
Those that have accumulated wealth may want to limit their taxes and keep what they have, if not for themselves, but for their heirs. The stock and bond market has given us a lot of lemons to work with this year. If one of your goals is to limit your taxes over time, now may be the perfect time to do a Roth conversion with the market being down. Ben and Adam discuss Roth conversions and how or why they may fit into your long-term financial plan.
The estate settlement process can be long and overwhelming for those going through it. But when you have a checklist prepared with the details and what to expect, you may find it a bit easier than you first thought. If you've been named as executor, there are things you can prepare for prior to the estate settling process. This will help to properly execute on the deceased wishes in a timely manner. Listen to this podcast episode to feel confident with the process to properly settle an estate.
Markets are volatile. Investment losses can hurt, but they're going to happen if you're investing. In this podcast episode, we identify five common investor mistakes that set people back when they take short-term losses and compound the problem by feeling like they need to do something different. We feel that if you want long-term success, these are five things you should avoid doing, even when you get emotional.
The sandwich generation is defined as people who are still working, most likely in their 30's or 40's, that are responsible for bringing up their own children while caring for aging parents both physically and financially. They are feeling caught between two potentially difficult situations, all while trying to focus on their own retirement as part of that process. This podcast episode discusses the human side of what we do. There is not a spreadsheet or a financial planning program out there where you can plug these variables into the tool and it is going to tell you what to do in this situation. Everybody has their own personal outlook on how they want to approach these things and how do they want to prioritize them. It all comes down to tradeoffs, which is really what financial planning is. We want to help people think about what are the ways that they can say yes to their own needs and goals and not have to feel like it's making it impossible to say no to the people they care about and that you may feel like they rely on you. Ben and Adam discuss how they would walk someone in the sandwich generation through prioritizing their goals and developing their own plan. We talk about what tradeoffs might occur for clients to effectively manage these competing interests.
In this podcast episode, Adam and Ben talk about the different ways to give money to family beyond just writing a check. We discuss how our financial planning process helps determine if you can afford to gift now, the best way to go about it, and any tax laws that you should consider. If you wish to pass along your wealth to a loved one while living rather than leaving behind an inheritance or legacy, check out this episode!
While there isn't a silver bullet that can shield all your money from taxes, this podcast episode focuses on proactive and reactive strategies to help defer taxes if you have excess income. We focus specifically on tax liability while exploring different investment vehicles to help you allocate your assets appropriately, depending on your financial goals. And, we discuss factors that may drive your taxable income higher.
The key to any successful financial plan is making sure you use reasonable assumptions. An age gap between spouses can have an impact on irrevocable decisions such as when to retire, the best time to elect Social Security, pension decisions, and estate planning - just to name a few! In this podcast episode, Adam and Ben discuss how an age disparity in couples can impact your financial life and why it's important to make conservative assumptions if you are in this situation.
We are often asked the question "should I manage my own investments or is that something I should let a professional handle?" While there is no black and white answer, the first step is to decide whether or not you want to take on that responsibility. Next, develop a process to follow when making decisions around your investments. Your investment plan should be the guide to making these important decisions and help answer questions such as, "when is the right time to rebalance the portfolio? What should the process be when I need to withdraw money? "In this podcast episode, Adam and Ben talk about the pros and cons of managing your own investments and the checklist you should have if you choose to take on the responsibility.
This special podcast episode for A/B Conversations discusses the potential impact the Russian invasion of Ukraine may have on investments and financial planning. We're far from experts on the crisis and the outcome is still unknown at this point in time, but we do want to try to be experts on client communications and financial planning. We can draw some parallels by using historical data from prior wars and other conflicts to predict how the market will react. We look at investing through a long-term lens and we know the market is more forward looking than we tend to be as humans. Ben and Adam discuss historical trends and inputs that drive the market in short-term bursts.
Have you ever thought about retiring at the same time as your spouse? Part of our job is figuring out if retiring at the same time is financially possible, but it’s also making sure that both partners are ready to commit to the next phase of life. There’s a lot of things to consider other than the financials. Are you emotionally and mentally ready to make that transition to retirement? And, often times couples have not even seriously discussed retirement timelines with eachother. Our goal is to ask questions so we may understand our clients' unique situations as we move through our retirement planning process. Listen to Ben and Adam discuss the variables and potential trade offs that go into making this huge decision together.
In our financial planning process, we assess any products you may own, such as life insurance or annuities. Next, we provide education on the implications of being contracted to that product. Our goal is to review if there are better options available to you, ultimately to decide if you should be doing something different. If you are unable to move away from the product, we discuss ways in which it may fit into your financial plan to help align your financial life in a way that helps you reach your broader financial goals. Tune in to listen to Ben and Adam go through all the details of what to do with your old products!