It’s something most Americans don’t think about until it hits the headlines, such as last year when major retailer, Target, revealed that its data base of shopper credit and debit card numbers had been breached. Yet, nearly 15 percent of the population - more than 34 million adults - has reported some form of identity theft, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center.
In many respects, people can be their own worst enemies in their quest for financial security. When you consider that our lives are nothing more than a culmination of the decisions we make each day, if we tend to make more bad decisions than good decisions, or worse, if we can’t make decisions at all, it’s should be no surprise when financial security remains elusive.
My job as an advisor when I am building a portfolio is to balance risk and volatility with reward so the client can "sleep at night". Recently while reviewing a clients existing portfolio he had with another advisor I had to ask myself how the advisor slept at night?
Who doesn’t like options? We love them when buying a car, and we expect them when ordering lunch off a fast-food menu. When buying life insurance, however, too many options can not only increase confusion, it can often lead to making the wrong choice, or worse, no choice at all.
Would having someone living with you make you feel safer? Could you use some help with chores or errands? Would some rental income help with the bills?
Are you having difficulty with living expenses? Are you willing to help someone with household chores or errands for reduced or free rent?
In my opinion, it is impossible to predict future stock market returns. Investment models can produce hypothetical returns but they can’t account for future events. So, in my opinion, investors who manage their investments based on market performance or what they perceive as opportunities for better returns have very little control over the outcome.
It should not take the filing of a tax return or a death in the family to finally create order out of paper chaos so you are not forced to scramble in those critical circumstances. The chances of making costly errors are too great not to take some very simple, albeit essential, measures to get and stay organized all year long.
The saving versus paying off debt is an age-old quandary that has plagued people since the advent of consumer debt. Pose this question to a group of financial planners and the responses will be split, roughly down the middle. While there might be as many advocates for savings as there would be for paying down debt, the broad consensus will likely be that it really depends on the situation.