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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How big of an impact do mid-term elections have on investment returns? Historically mid-term election years have been poor performing investment years. The good news is that the year following a midterm election year, the S&P 500 has been higher every single time since 1950. Getting on the other side of elections should be good news for investment returns. The most important thing is staying the course. In times of doubt, review your financial plan to make sure it still fits.
We recognize resiliency is not easy. We are here to review your retirement plan, review it often, and make changes when necessary through our financial planning process. In this podcast episode, we discuss the importance of staying on your financial path so investments don't affect your big picture plan.
Saving for college is something that definitely matters to a lot of those that we work with (parents and grandparents) because continuing education is important, and because it’s not cheap! Student loan debt is all over the news. In the absence of saving, you’re stuck with loans. In this podcast episode, Ben is joined by our newest member of the Haas Financial Group team, Mike Hendrickson. They discuss the different ways you can think about saving for college, and perhaps more specifically, why the very popular 529 Plan may NOT be the right fit for you.
Most people aren't comfortable talking to others about money. But, Social Security is a universal financial topic that most feel okay with discussing with others because we all get to make an election decision by age 62. More than 50% of people choose to take Social Security early because they need the income in retirement. But what if your decision on when to elect Social Security isn't apparent? What could sway you one way or another to elect or not?
If money wasn’t an obstacle, would you change anything about your life? Then the most important follow up question: WHY? This podcast is not only for those living in the lottery world. If we truly believe that money is the tool that's going to help you live the life you want to live, then we need to think about what you value most. In our planning process we will ask questions to get you thinking about what you value. This may go outside your comfort zone, but our goal is to help you figure out how to align your money with your values, so you can live a fulfilled life.
Haas Financial Group is inspired by Brendan’s passion around “the human side of advising”. In this episode, Ben sits down with Brendan to discuss practical tips and insights to apply behavioral finance into our financial planning practice. Brendan's mission is to provide the training that every advisor needs but never received in courses, designations, and certifications. He embarked on this quest to try and make the information more digestible and applicable for advisors to help accelerate their path to being able to develop these softer skills to their clients. He discusses the importance of asking better questions to form deeply personal relationships with our clients. By developing these skills, the financial planning conversation shifts to what our clients value; deconstructing their thoughts and feelings around money.
Losing a spouse can be a very difficult and emotional time. There's so much to do and to work through emotionally, financially, and physically. In this episode, we help to decipher what needs to happen now, what can be done soon, and what financial things can be handled later. We provide a checklist of small steps to take to feel like you are making progress in this new chapter of your life, but also allowing time to figure out what you'd like to see happen in the future.
We're halfway through the year and it's time for us to share themes from those that focus on investments - LPL Financial, Blackrock, JP Morgan, Nuveen, etc. They don't agree on what the second half of the year looks like. There are common statements and themes, but a wide range of potential outcomes. In this podcast episode we discuss the general themes and the outlook for the second half of the year.
We want to focus on what we believe financial planning is and that's helping point people in the right direction, making sure they understand the difference between things they can control and things that they can only influence. When you focus on controlling the things you can, your likelihood of success goes up significantly. It's when you drift into focusing on things you can't control or you choose to react to things you can't control, that's when self-sabotage gets in the way. In this podcast episode, we discuss the things you can control and the things you can influence even during these uncertain times.
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.