Personally Invested In Your Future™

A Closer Look At Election Years

2020 is off to a roaring start, picking up right where 2019 left off. Many investors are eyeing the upcoming presidential election as an impending storm for the stock market. In the four-year presidential cycle, pre-election years have tended to be the strongest for stocks, as sitting presidents have taken measures to boost the economy and stock market higher to garner votes. It

Feb 18
Redefining Retirement: Take Our Free Assessment

As a wealth management firm, our objective is to not only help clients reach their goals, but also define those goals as well. For instance, if one of your goals is to retire at age 62, we could not help you actually achieve that goal unless we know what “retirement” means to you. Often that means redefining retirement. The Changing Nature of Retirement

Feb 12
Paying the Bills: Potential Sources of Retirement Income

Planning your retirement income is like putting together a puzzle with many different pieces. One of the first steps in the process is to identify all potential income sources and estimate how much you can expect each one to provide. Social Security According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), nearly 9 of 10 people aged 65 or older receive Social Security benefits. However,

Feb 11
What Mideast Escalation Means for Markets

The U.S. airstrike that killed the top Iranian military commander last week was a major escalation in Mideast tensions. In fact, it would be difficult to overstate the geopolitical significance of this action. Iran likely will retaliate, possibly with attacks on American military personnel overseas. We cannot dismiss the risk that the situation may escalate further into a broader conflict. However, from a

Jan 29
Key Estate Planning Documents You Need

There are five estate planning documents you may need, regardless of your age, health, or wealth: 1. Durable power of attorney 2. Advance medical directives 3. Will 4. Letter of instruction 5. Living trust The last document, a living trust, isn’t always necessary, but it’s included here because it’s a vital component of many estate plans. Durable power of attorney:  A durable power

Jan 28
How Charitable Giving Can Benefit Donors

Kelly and Bob regularly set aside a small portion of their budget for charitable donations. In addition to feeling good about supporting a number of worthy causes, they’ve been able to deduct the value of their charitable gifts from their Federal income tax return. Now, the couple thinks it is time to make a larger charitable contribution. Their intention is to donate some

Jan 23
Top 10 Key Provisions of the SECURE Act

Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act As Enacted on December 20, 2019 · Prepared for LPL by Davis & Harman LLP Top 10 Key Provisions 1. Open Multiple Employer Plans / Pooled Employer Plans – The SECURE Act allows unrelated small employers to band together in “open” 401(k) multiple-employer plans (MEPs; also referred to as pooled employer plans (PEPs)). This

Jan 22
5 Ways to Maximize the Value of Your Business

We know how much time, effort, and dedication it takes to create a successful business.  At the end of the day, you want to know how to maximize the value of your business in order to meet your personal financial goals.  It’s never too early to begin thinking about exit and the ways you can increase how much your business is worth. Here

Jan 15
A New Tool for Business Owners: The Buyout Barometer™

The best financial advice always originates from good questions. Conversely, missed opportunities and poor advice often stems from conversations that never happened because the right questions were never asked. We’ve developed a new tool for business owners called the Buyout Barometer™ that is intended to prompt the types of questions that are crucial to consider, but might otherwise get overlooked. The tool addresses

Jan 09
Employee Spotlight: Meet the Team Member (Danielle Berz)

This is the latest in a continuing series of posts where we feature a member of our team using a Q&A format so you can get to know them a little better – both personally and professionally.  This week we’ll be interviewing Danielle Berz, who joined Brown and Company in April 2013 as a Client Relationship Manager. She began her career in July

Jan 03
The SECURE Act Brings Big Changes to IRAs

To avert another government shutdown, Congress just agreed on a new spending bill. There’s been extensive news coverage of the spending bill, but a lesser known aspect of it is a piece of legislation called the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act. The SECURE Act is one of the most significant retirement reforms in years and brings big changes to

Dec 19
Selling Your Business? Consider an Installment Sale

We’ve talked about different ways to transition a business, but now we want to consider how you can structure the sale of a business.  An installment sale is a transaction in which you sell your business to another party and the purchase price is spread over two or more years.  To qualify for installment sales treatment, you must receive at least one payment

Dec 13
Developing an Asset Protection Plan

On average, a new lawsuit is filed every two seconds in the United States. But few of us seriously consider the possibility of a lawsuit or other legal action against us in our daily lives. The vast majority of lawsuit defendants never thought it would happen to them. Developing an asset protection plan is a critical way to minimize risks due to litigation.

Dec 04
Employee Spotlight: Meet the Team Member (Ryan Csrnko)

This is the latest in a continuing series of posts where we feature a member of our team using a Q&A format so you can get to know them a little better – both personally and professionally. This week we’ll be interviewing Ryan Csrnko, who joined Brown and Company in June of 2017 as a Client Relationship Manager. Ryan works with the team

Nov 25
Infrequently Asked Questions for Business Owners

As wealth advisors, one of the most valuable things we do for our clients is prompt questions that they are not already thinking about. We are all aware of the concept of FAQs or Frequently Asked Questions, but we would emphasize the importance of “Infrequently Asked Questions” as well. It’s often the things you don’t know to ask that can cause real problems

Nov 22
Top 10 Year-End Planning Ideas for 2019

As we approach the end of the year, it is always beneficial to establish and review financial goals to determine whether any additional actions should be taken. Any ideas we’ve included here take place subsequent to legislative changes that occurred two years ago with the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). It was largest change in the tax law in

Nov 14
Employee Spotlight: Meet the Team Member (Mary Radke)

This is the latest in a continuing series of posts where we feature a member of our team using a Q&A format so you can get to know them a little better – both personally and professionally. This week we’ll be interviewing Mary Radke, who joined Brown and Company in April of 2019 as a Staff Accountant. Mary is responsible for budgeting, cash

Nov 07
How Do You Plan for Goals That Are at Cross-Purposes?

Goal setting is at the heart of financial planning and, yet, frequently one of those goals has the potential to undermine another one. Consider a few common examples: I want to retire as soon as possible, and I want to pre-fund my children’s college education costs. I want to gift appreciated stock for tax purposes, and I need to grow my net worth to become financially

Nov 05