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With the upcoming election next month, you may be wondering how the outcome will affect your financial life. It’s a very normal thing to ponder — we are constantly inundated by news saying things like “the stock market will crash if this candidate wins” or “buy these 3 stocks if this candidate wins”.

This type of uncertainty can be unnerving, and you may find yourself wanting to make some major changes in your life. However, making any changes based upon an election can be detrimental to your finances.

The purpose of this blog is to outline some of the investment history of elections, discuss how to approach investing new cash now and also talk through how some changes may be coming from a tax planning perspective if Biden wins. …

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Have you ever dreamed of controlling your schedule? Do you feel chained by the 9–5 corporate structure? Are you considering making the leap to work for yourself?

I have led numerous clients through life planning exercises to help them articulate what their ideal life would look like if money wasn’t an obstacle. There has been one constant theme that every one of them seeks. The ability to control their time. This is something that I call Time wealth.

Time wealth is the ability to spend your precious time in a way that is most aligned with your values. Do you want to exercise in the middle of the day? Do you want to stop working when the kids are home from school? Do you want to work and live abroad for a few months? …

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Congrats on the exciting transition! I’m sure you’ve read baby books or listened to podcasts about becoming a parent. You may be appreciating your final full-night sleeps before the baby comes, or you may be smack in the middle of raising a newborn.

There are many exciting transitions during this stage of life — but what about your finances?

Having your first child triggers many important decisions in your financial life. Your somewhat simple financial life suddenly becomes more complex. You now have a child who is completely financially dependent on you.

You may feel overwhelmed and after a few failed google searches of “what to do financially when you’re a new parent”, you’ve given up. …

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There is never a dull moment in the world of student loans. Many of you are hopefully enjoying a student loan payment-free summer thanks to the CARES Act which suspended federal student loan payments until September 30 th, 2020.

You may not be thinking about student loans until the payment suspension is lifted, but there are 3 major ways your student loans could be affected in for the remainder of the year that you want to be ready for.

Each of these are unrelated, yet are extremely important for you to know as you continue on the journey of successfully managing your student loan debt. …

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What if I told you that your next bucket list trip (in hopefully a post-COVID world!) could be paid for with pre-tax dollars in a tax-free, penalty-free and totally legal way?

Okay, now I have your attention 😊. I’ll show you how by the end of this blog, but first, I need to paint the picture.

A Health Savings Account (HSA) is one of the most underutilized accounts in personal finance. Some people don’t contribute to it and others do, but spend it each year.

If managed correctly, an HSA is a really powerful investment account that can be used to reduce your tax bill now and provide you with the flexibility to use the account throughout your life (and not only post-age 59.5 …

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You’ve probably heard the statistic thrown around that nearly 50% of marriages end in divorce. What is one of the leading causes? Money.

We live in a society where talking about money is considered taboo. You never tell someone how much money you make, how much you spend or how much money you have. Which means… we don’t know how to talk about it!

Yet, money represents your hard work, values and most deeply held beliefs. …

You Know You Want to Get Someplace Financially, but Maybe the Path Isn’t Clear Yet

Using a fun metaphor to gain clarity on a complicated topic

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Are you uncertain about how to embark on your financial journey?

I don’t blame you.

Personal finance is complex. It’s not something we were taught in school, and you’ve likely learned about it on your own.

On top of this, money raises a tangled web of emotions that we have also been trained not to talk about.

No wonder money causes anxiety!

Most people don’t know where to start with their financial decisions, which results in inaction. Therefore, I wanted to present a metaphor to turn your complicated financial journey into a very simple, easy to understand story.

My hope is that this metaphor helps you understand the framework for your financial journey, so you are ready to start taking action in your financial life. …

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For any parent, college funding is top of mind. With college tuitions rising like crazy (some are over $75,000 now…😳), it puts greater pressure on you to save for college while your kids are young. It’s not easy for most folks to just dish out $75,000/year from their annual cash flow when those college tuition bills come due.

Once you are ready to start saving for college, how should you do it? The most common options are either a 529 plan or a taxable account.

Pros and cons of a 529 plan

A 529 plan is the most common way to save for college. This account is specifically earmarked to pay for qualified educational expenses. The list of qualified educational expenses is long, but the most relevant are tuition and fees (including $10,000/year for K-12), room and board and college supplies (unfortunately, Bud Light doesn’t make the list…). …

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As part of the CARES Act, all federal student loan payments are automatically suspended until September 30th. During this time period, no interest is accruing between March 13 th, 2020 and September 30 th, 2020.

This covers the following loans:

  • Direct federal loans
  • FFEL federal loans
  • Federal Perkins loans

This is a significant relief to student loan borrowers — it’s basically the equivalent of an interest-free loan from the government so you can re-prioritize your cash flow right now.

If you are pursuing either tax-free public service loan forgiveness or taxable loan forgiveness, you will still receive credit towards your loan forgiveness clock, with one small caveat. If you are pursuing PSLF, then you still need to be classified as working “full-time” by your employer. …

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The concept of financial freedom continues to gain popularity — either through the FIRE movement or people abandoning the work-until-you’re-65 mentality. However, it can be unnerving during times like this.

The market has fallen sharply, our economy is heading for (if not already in) a recession and your income may be unstable right now.

We haven’t experienced a recession since 2008/2009 and it’s never easy. Even though the cause varies, recessions are actually a very normal part of an economic cycle.

Because of this, you may be thinking financial freedom is not realistic anymore, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. This is actually a fantastic time period for you to reevaluate how financial freedom would actually work for you. …


Jake Northrup, CFP®, CFA, CSLP®

Founder and Financial Planner at Experience Your Wealth, LLC. I love writing about the FIRE movement, student loans and travel!

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