GSS Insight - Wealth & Finance Articles
Confidence in comfortable retirement at all-time low
Saving for retirement continues to take a back seat as many Americans still struggling through the economic crisis jockey to make ends meet and hold on to their jobs. A fourth of respondents in a new study are "not comfortable at all" that they will have enough to retire comfortably.
Roth or traditional IRA: Which is best for you?
Both Roth and traditional IRAs have pros and cons. Which is best for you? A lot depends on your income level now, as well as what it will be after you retire. Perhaps a mix of the two would be best for you. The decision takes thought and planning.
Divorce: Financial survival skills
If you are contemplating divorce, decisions you make now can financially impact your life – as well as the lives of your family members – for some time into the future. That's why it is so important to obtain the advice of financial professionals before proceeding.
Most retirees wish they'd planned better
You might want to take the advice of some recent retirees who wish they'd planned better before taking the big step. The No. 1 thing retirees wish they had done before retiring is created a budget so they would have had a realistic idea of what their expenses would be.
The pros and cons of laddering investments
Laddering investments is a method of staggering the maturity dates of investments. There are several potential advantages and a few disadvantages of doing this. Because of changes in tax policy, evaluate the tax consequences before adding laddering to your portfolio.
Low interest rates favor charitable lead trusts
For those who are charitably inclined, the current low interest rate environment tends to favor charitable lead trusts over their better-known cousins, charitable remainder trusts. How does a charitable lead trust work?
Plan to mitigate impact of new Medicare tax
If you expect your income to exceed the threshold amount for 2013 - $200,000 for single taxpayers and $250,000 for married taxpayers filing jointly - it is a good idea to meet with your tax advisor early in the year to plan ways to mitigate the effects of the new 3.8 percent Medicare tax.
Nagging estate tax questions answered ... for now
Uncertainty about estate taxes has been settled – at least for now – by Fiscal Cliff legislation signed into law in January. Now that the nation has more clarity about estate tax issues, think about scheduling an appointment to talk with your CPA about ways to protect your estate.
Questions to ask before opening your own business
Have you always dreamed of being a business owner? Before jumping in, especially in this economy, it's important to ask yourself some important questions to safeguard your investment.
Protect elderly parents' finances from scams
As parents age, money issues become increasingly important and often more sensitive. Controlling your own money is a tangible sign of independence. Parents may hesitate to give up that control to children. Yet, you need to discuss finances with elderly parents.
Is the Consumer Price Index for real?
People who take budgeting and retirement planning seriously are concerned about inflation. The most widely reported measurement is the Consumer Price Index. But some critics say the CPI doesn't correspond to reality.
Know the facts before jumping into a reverse mortgage
Most people understand the basic premise behind a reverse mortgage and its possible benefits to cash-strapped retirees trying to remain in their home. But it's essential to be sure that you understand fees and other considerations before signing on the dotted line.
Include money management in child's education
Parents have two major responsibilities regarding their children – to care for them and to teach them. When it comes to issues about money, deciding when each responsibility applies can be tough. Parents want to provide for children’s needs and teach them to handle money. Here's some guidance.