Author Archives: Linda Rogers

Dear Linda, My father was recently diagnosed with a serious progressive illness. After the initial shock, my siblings and I feel this is a good time to make sure his finances are in order, particularly with regards to estate planning. What do you recommend? Dear Reader, Have your father meet with an estate planning attorney licensed in his state. This type of lawyer specializes in making sure a client’s wishes, with regards to one’s finances, are met in the eventRead More

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I had an encounter recently with an annuity salesperson – we’ll call him John. John introduced himself as a financial advisor. I said I was a fee-only financial planner, and I don’t charge commissions. He said he didn’t either. The following is a paraphrase of our conversation. I share it with you because it is a good example of questions you should be asking investment professionals before you consider working with them. In particular, question those who sell products. ThisRead More

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Feeling uneasy with the global economy right now? Remember: Portfolios that include international exposure have historically performed better (and with less risk) than those that don’t. The goal of diversification is to have broad exposure to different areas that are not perfectly correlated (such as the US and international markets). When one part of the portfolio goes down, it is offset by another part that behaves differently. Trying to time movement in the market is not a viable strategy. WeRead More

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Many believe the “gig economy” is here to stay and will continue to get bigger. I heard a futurist speak at a conference a couple years ago, and he predicted there will be a “match.com” for employers and workers. Work will become more project-based with workers not necessarily being employees of a company but functioning as independent contractors. With Microsoft’s recent purchase of LinkedIn, Microsoft may see LinkedIn as that matchmaking site. I will be asking our educational speaker nextRead More

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A health savings account (HSA) allows you to use tax-free money to pay for qualified medical expenses. The money you use to fund the account is not subject to federal income tax or state income tax in most states (California being one exception), and employer contributions are not taxable to the employee. In order to contribute to an HSA, you are required to be enrolled in a high deductible health plan (HDHP). You cannot contribute to an HSA if youRead More

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The New York Times Your Money column had a timely article on renting versus buying by Tara Siegel Bernard. She interviewed a couple who are renting, by choice, in southern California due to high home prices in the area. She also interviewed a few financial professionals in the article. In summary, they agreed on the following: 1) In the short-term, no one can predict what the real estate market will do on a consistent basis. Therefore, if you are planningRead More

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