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Do I need a financial advisor?

This blog is meant purely for educational discussion of finance. It contains only general information about financial matters. It is not financial advice, should not be treated as such.

In my opinion, most do not need a financial advisor. The commissions will eat into your profits.

I have chosen not to hire one.

I happen to like reading/learning about finances since it was an obscure world to me. I did not know how it worked so I pretty much ignored it. (Do not do this)

Most fear the stock market, but what should really be feared is inflation. Leaving your money in the bank earning a 0.1% interest rate is not an option. .

I have kept it as simple as possible; below will take you through my thought process.


1- Get out of debt

-credit card

-transportation (car)

-student loan repayment

-stay out of debt - live within your means.

2- Contribute to a 401k/403b

-if your employer has a 401k/403b, consider contributing the minimum to get the match (Money your employer will give you). Remember, this is FREE money available for you.

-How much should I contribute? As much as you can.

-How should I allocate my money? Calculate your risk; 110-age = percentage in stocks (rest in bonds).

-Which funds should I choose? Look for an S&P 500 index fund like VFIAX and allocate the percentage of stocks. Then, look for "fixed income" or something like Bond index fund VBLTX to allocate the percentage of bonds. I will always gravitate to Vanguard since they are cheap and effective. They have proven to be equal or better than most fund managers.

-Maximum contribution in 2020 is $19,500.00.

-As you age change the allocations of stocks/bonds using the formula above.

3- Term life insurance

-Please, do your family a favor and get term life insurance. It is cheap and will cover your family in case the unthinkable happens.

4- IRA (Individual Retirement Account)

-This provides tax advantage

-Think about funding an IRA with the same thought process as above,

-In 2020 you could contribute up to $6,000 if you are <60 years old. If you are >60 years, you can contribute up to is $7,000.

5- College fund for kids aka- 529

-Please fund your kids college. You can start with as little money you can. Since the average kid will take 13 years to get into college, this will give enough time for the money to grow if you start early.

-Vanguard has great 529 options.

6- High income earners

-Umbrella insurance (a must)

-Disability insurance (a must)

-After tax brokerage account.


Overall I have tried to keep it very simple. The less hands in the pot, the more money for you.

Disclaimer - I do not get kickbacks from Vanguard.


Till next time.


JL


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