June 24, 2016

Bloomberg Article Gets Asset Allocation Exactly Wrong

Bloomberg Article Gets Asset Allocation Exactly Wrong

Investors should not have to deal with financial reporters that misunderstand the field they write about.

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Understanding the Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax

Understanding the Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax

The fact that we have an 80% “generous grandparent” tax is ridiculous.

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Investing in a Donor Advised Fund

Gift on table

There are several strategies for using a donor advised fund which will help determine your asset allocation.

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Language Matters: Robo-Advisor vs. Robo-Investing

Language Matters: Robo-Advisor vs. Robo-Investing

Robo-advisors do not provide personalized investment advice nor are their recommendations free from conflicts of interest.

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Language Matters: Fee-Based vs. Fee-And-Commission Based

Language Matters: Fee-Only vs. Fee-And-Commission Based

The term “fee-based” was created specifically to confuse consumers.

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Digital Estate Plan: Facebook Legacy Contact

Facebook Legacy Contact

Facebook added the “Legacy Contact” feature that allows you to grant a Facebook Friend access to your Facebook page after you have passed away.

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Where to Find the Hidden Fees of Commission-Based Firms

Where to Find the Hidden Fees of Commission-Based Firms

Very few consumers actually read the SEC filings for the firms they have engaged.

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Can I Contribute to Both a SEP and a 401(k)?

Can I Contribute to Both a SEP and a 401k?

SEP plans offer a powerful way to provide for your own retirement in the same way that 401ks do.

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What Are The Problems With Illiquid Alternative Investments?

What Are The Problems With Illiquid Alternative Investments?

If you happen to hold alternative investments and can find a fair price for them, we recommend that you liquidate them.

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Investing 101: Things to Think About Before You Invest

lightbulb sunrise

With a little preparation, you can save and invest over your lifetime to meet your financial goals and dreams.

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One Powerful Method To Achieve Higher Investment Returns

One Powerful Method To Achieve Higher Investment Returns

Long-term investing does not require making quick emotional responses.

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You Want An Advisor Who Keeps You From “The Big Mistake”

You Want An Advisor Who Keeps You From "The Big Mistake"

Real financial advisors stand between you and the Big Mistake of buying high and selling low.

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Free Advanced Medical Directives from the Virginia State Bar

medicaldirectivescreenshot_t

The Virginia State Bar has even made a few variations of a simplified Advanced Directive free to the public on their website.

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Write Down Your Investment Plan

Write Down Your Investment Plan

To protect yourself from behavioral errors, write down your investment plan.

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Mailbag: The Practical Limits of 1031 Exchanges

Mailbag: The Practical Limits of 1031 Exchanges

Using a 1031 exchange to turn investment property into residential property is possible, but it takes careful planning from the outset.

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Radio: Budgeting Benefits

moody hills

Having a budget as a boundary for your spending gives you the freedom to work within that boundary, and keeps you on track to save for your goals.

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What To Do With That First Paycheck

plant in the rain

You probably know that you should spend less than you earn, but that is only part of the equation.

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How to Pay Off Student Loans While Building Wealth

How to Pay Off Student Loans While Building Wealth

While your student loans may be a daunting sum, it is still possible to build wealth even while paying off student debt.

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Ten Principles for Teaching Children about Money

Ten Principles for Teaching Children about Money

Here are ten principles for teaching children about money.

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Family Budgeting

Family Budgeting

If a budget isn’t a team effort, one member of the family will hold the purse strings and everyone else will be resentful.

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What is a Roth Conversion?

What is a Roth Conversion?

If you don’t have retirement savings in Roth IRAs, it’s time you considered their benefits. Assets in traditional IRAs can be rolled into Roth IRAs without a withdrawal penalty.

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Inflation Illustrated

stamp pile

We tracked the price of a first class stamp over the last 130 years, noting the changes, to show the steady erosion in buying power during that time.

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Fund Analyzer Shows Value Of Lower Fees

Fund Analyzer Shows Value Of Lower Fees

Continually curating a list of low cost funds is valuable for long term investors.

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Government Requires 2.5 Hours of Daily Work

Government Requires 2.5 Hours of Daily Work

Without the burden of federal, state, and local taxes, you could leave your job at 2:27pm every day and earn the same salary.

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Radio Interview: The Burden of Government Taxation

Radio Interview: The Burden of Government Taxation

David John Marotta was recently interviewed on radio 1070 WINA’s Schilling Show, discussing taxation and the burden of government.

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Gifts, Taxes, and IRS Form 709

Gifts, Taxes, and IRS Form 709

Most people are unaware that giving a gift can be a taxable event because they themselves have not yet experienced the tax.

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Investing Strategies for an Irrational Brain

Investing Strategies for an Irrational Brain

Recency bias is perhaps the most difficult natural bias to overcome.

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A Year of Financially Healthy Habits

Perpetual Calendar

It is the season of spring cleaning, so here’s a calendar of ways to clean up your finances one step at a time.

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Mailbag: How Is Capital Gains Tax Calculated?

Mailbag: How Is Capital Gains Tax Calculated?

The IRS does not do a good job of helping people understand capital gains taxes. They provide a worksheet to help you calculate it, but it has so many steps that it’s nearly impossible to figure out what’s going on.

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Dimensional On: Staying in the Market

Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

“It is always a difficult experience for investors to stay in markets.”

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Financial Planning Beyond Your Wedding Day

hearthands

In addition to registering for a blender and picking floral arrangements, make sure that your marriage has the financial accounts and monetary habits necessary to meet your shared financial goals.

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How To Instill Good Financial Habits In Your Children

How To Instill Good Financial Habits In Your Children

Give your children experience spending their own money.

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Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

“Historically there has been a wide variety of returns from US and International stocks, and when one does poorly often another does well.”

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The Complete Guide to Creating an Investment Plan

The Science of the Rebalancing Bonus

This is a summary of the six steps required to create a well-crafted investment plan.

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Can I Contribute to my Roth IRA?

Can I Contribute to my Roth IRA?

There are some cases that are not as straightforward and if you fall into these categories, you might not know whether or not you are allowed to contribute to a Roth IRA.

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Fund Your 401(k) If You Believe In Free Markets

Fund Your 401(k) If You Believe In Free Markets

I recently read a foolish article entitled “Call for a National Savings Plan” that assumed we haven’t tried a national savings plan already.

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Reasons to Keep a Local Bank Account

Reasons to Keep a Local Bank Account

Investment brokers like Schwab offer many services local banks offer but there are a few reasons why you might want to resist consolidating all of your accounts to a broker.

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Can’t All Advisors Make Trades On My Behalf?

Can't All Advisors Make Trades On My Behalf?

Only give someone who is required to honor your best interest the ability to trade in your account without talking to you.

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Ted Cruz’s Tax Plan

Ted Cruz's Tax Plan

More than many other candidates, Ted Cruz’s tax plan aims to fundamentally change our tax system.

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Radio: Three Investing Mistakes

three geese

David John Marotta was interviewed on radio 1070 WINA’s Schilling Show discussing three big investing mistakes.

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How to Send Schwab Notifications to Two Emails

How To Get Schwab Trade Confirmations Sent To Two Different Emails

A little extra work can ensure that both spouses receive important email notifications from their custodian.

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Mailbag: Why Doesn’t Everyone Want High-Yield Bonds?

Mailbag: Why Doesn't Everyone Want High-Yield Bonds?

We don’t recommend high yield bonds because they do nothing good for your overall portfolio.

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Millionaire Lifestyle: Drink Sodas at Home, Not Out

Millionaire Lifestyle: Drink Sodas at Home, Not Out

Changing where you drink soda is a small step, but enough small steps can make a huge difference in your savings.

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Start Early on Retirement Planning

Start Early on Retirement Planning

Retirement planning should begin the moment you receive your first paycheck.

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Radio: Market Returns for 2015

2015 Asset Class Returns

David John Marotta was interviewed on the Schilling Show discussing how the markets performed last year and lists 4 mistakes to avoid.

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Four Things You Can Do with Your Roth Before April 15

beach sprint

If you have not yet funded your Roth account for 2015, it is not too late!

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Why Gold Has Utterly Failed as a “Safe Haven”

Why Gold Has Utterly Failed as a "Safe Haven"

Gold sounds like it should provide a safe haven of your purchasing power much more than it has actually done so.

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Investing Mistake: Forgetting About Inflation

Investing Mistake: Forgetting About Inflation

Taking inflation into account changes nearly everything about financial planning.

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What Counts as Wages for the Social Security Earnings Test?

What Counts as Wages for the Social Security Earnings Test?

Contrary to the normal way of things, this time what Uncle Sam gives with the IRS, he takes away with the SSA.

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A Case Study In Volatility

A Case Study In Volatility

While volatility can make a fund more attractive on the way up, it can also make a fund less attractive on the way down.

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