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RFM Financial Solutions, LLC

All posts in General Finance


Be sure to support Team RFM in the Dance United Competition.  Paul and Carol will compete with other local participants on November 6 at the CMU Events Center.  Going to be a fantastic event, don’t miss it!!  There is also a friendly competition transpiring with the teams for most money raised for United Way, so if you feel so inclined, click the picture to donate on behalf of Paul & Carol.

Contemplating whether to contribute to a Roth IRA or a defined contribution (DC) plan (such as a 401k)? Words of advice: Follow the money! If your company offers you a match for your DC plan contribution, you should keep investing in the account up to the maximum percentage that it will match. This is free money, and you won’t find a better deal any place else.

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Deciding what to do with your 401(k) balance when you leave a job does not have to be difficult. It is something that almost everyone will have to do at some point. The best approach is to look at the various options, understand the differences, and figure out how your decision will impact your ability to save for retirement. In general, here are the options available: 1. Keep your savings in your previous employer’s 401(k) plan (typically allowed if you have a balance of $5,000 or more); 2. Transfer your savings to your new employer’s 401(k) plan; 3. Transfer your savings to a Rollover IRA; 4. Take a cash distribution.

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Written by: Jeremy Shafer

The Boomer generation will transfer an estimated $40 trillion in assets over the next 50 years (ThinkAdvisor).  Without proper planning, the transition will be difficult to administer and tax-inefficient.  Here are five conversations.

Discuss what planning documents they have in place

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Written by: Jeremy Shafer

First, the numbers.

In total over 4,000,000 people, a majority of them financially illiterate, merged their financial lives in marriage.  Future studies will tell us how this turns out.  Common sense tells us there’s work to do.  Here are five considerations for marriage and money. Read more

Written by: Jeremy Shafer

Young kids tend to grow into adult kids with time.  Regardless of their age, to us they will always be kids.  They will fight for their independence yet crave our approval.  And few areas in life are more difficult to navigate with adult kids than money.  I’m speaking from theory and anecdote – we’re still sailing the 5-and-under seas.  All the same, here are five tips for dealing with money and adult kids. Read more

d-iAs an investor, you may ask if an allocation to dividend stocks in your retirement portfolio will help keep up with inflation. Examining stock returns during periods of high inflation may answer this question. Dividend-paying stocks may offer benefits such as stability through income return and inflation protection. While stock prices tend to be volatile, dividends may serve as a stable component of total return and may provide better inflation protection compared with bonds. Between 1974 and 1980 (high inflation period), the average rate of inflation was 9.3%, much higher than the historical rate of 3%. During this time, bonds yielded 7.9% from income, but prices declined by 2.7%, resulting in a total return of 5.6%—way short of inflation. On the contrary, stocks returned a total of 10%: 5.0% from dividend income and 4.8% from price return, outpacing inflation for this time period.

Written by: Jeremy Shafer

Have you ever had a “good” conversation about money with your family?  How about a “bad” one?  If you can answer yes to either question, you’re one step ahead of most Americans.  Money is a difficult subject for many families, perhaps like politics or religion, and so it is pushed aside in favor of lighter fare.  We turn to weather, sports, gossip, etc. to fill the conversational void. 

Discussions about money are not easy or comfortable to initiate.  There are varying views on saving, spending, investing, and debt management within every family.  Financial priorities may be ordered differently.  God forbid loan or business deal between family members went sour.  These are real obstacles, but you don’t have to let them derail you.

In the following series, we will address the upside of money conversations with family.  Here’s a snapshot:

  •      5 Ways to Teach Money Skills to Young Children
  •      5 Ways to Help Adult Children Take Responsibility for Money
  •      5 Solutions for Marriage and Money
  •      5 Critical Discussions to Have with Parents

In this series I hope to encourage you to change the money conversation in your family.

Stay tuned…

If you had a dollar for every time you heard the phrase “Start investing early,” you could retire with a million. If you actually acted on that phrase, you are probably retiring with more. Now is the time to encourage your children and grandchildren to start saving as soon as they get their first job. Let’s assume that your teenage child or grandchild is employed for five years from age 16 to age 21. During this time, he or she saves $276 per month ($3,315 per year) and invests the money in a Roth IRA (paying taxes, of course, but at a low tax bracket). This may be a serious sacrifice for a teenager, so any contribution from you would be of great help. Assuming the money returns the historical equivalent of a diversified 60% stock/40% bond portfolio, your child can retire at 65 with $1 million tax-free, without having to invest another dollar after age 21.retirement