Retirement Withdrawal Strategy:  Which Accounts First?  

Your withdrawal strategy in retirement shouldn’t just focus on maximizing your income. It should maximize the amount of income that ends up in your pocket. This can be tricky when considering many people have a combination of pre-tax, Roth, and after-tax accounts.  Do you withdraw everything from the Roth accounts first, and have no taxable income? Or, does it make sense to withdraw money from … Continue reading Retirement Withdrawal Strategy:  Which Accounts First?  

Michigan Snowbird: Should You Make Florida Your Primary Residence?

I’m writing this is the midst of another “polar vortex”. The car read negative twelve as I made my way through the icy wonder that is Michigan in February. The conversation with my parents at their Florida home didn’t help much either. I’m sorry that you can’t use the pool for a few days because it has been getting a little chilly at night. It … Continue reading Michigan Snowbird: Should You Make Florida Your Primary Residence?

What College Expenses Can Be Paid From The MESP?

A client called the other day with an odd question. She asked, “Can I use my MESP to buy my son a car, so that he can drive to school each day?” I get questions about using the Michigan Education Savings Plan (MESP) almost daily, but that was a new one. Still, I can see her point. You have to get to school somehow, and … Continue reading What College Expenses Can Be Paid From The MESP?

6 Ways to Lower Your Michigan State Taxes in Retirement

New Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer promised that she would eliminate the Michigan retiree pension tax on the campaign trail. This would be fantastic for Michigan retirees.  However, we all know that many promises on the campaign trail don’t always equate to more money in our pockets. For a recap on Michigan state taxes in retirement, read my post here. There are ways to reduce, or … Continue reading 6 Ways to Lower Your Michigan State Taxes in Retirement

5 Things You Should Never Do When The Stock Market Goes Down

“As soon as the stock market has another dip, I will be ready to get more aggressive”. I hear this from almost every investor during the good times when the market is heading higher. Then, we get the downfall and…crickets. Sure, everyone knows it is better to buy low and sell high. However, in theory this is a little more difficult. “What do you mean … Continue reading 5 Things You Should Never Do When The Stock Market Goes Down

Why You Should Never Listen to Stock Market Forecasts

Last year at Christmas, my aunt told me how she had made significant money on Bitcoin. On a boat ride her son’s friend told her about the cryptocurrency, and she bought some immediately. Now, she was up nearly 400% and this represented a big chunk of her retirement assets.  There at the family Christmas party, I begged her to sell it. Sell three quarters, sell … Continue reading Why You Should Never Listen to Stock Market Forecasts

Using BulletShares to Create an Easy Bond Ladder for Retirees

10 years ago if you wanted to create a bond ladder you needed a lot of money.  To buy many different bonds at differing maturities you had to have at least $500,000 or so, just to make sure you got proper diversification without extraordinary commissions and spreads. This was just the beginning though, as researching and picking individual bonds for a bond ladder is not … Continue reading Using BulletShares to Create an Easy Bond Ladder for Retirees