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Review Category : At The Workplace

Five Financial Moves To Make When You Change Jobs

Whether you leave your employer or your employer leaves you, changing jobs can be one of those money triggering events when you begin to take stock of where you are financially.    Job changes often bring along new responsibilities and challenges, and experience tells us that analyzing and maximizing your new benefits package normally goes to the bottom of the barrel.    This makes a ton of sense as typically the first three to six months in a new position you are immersed with the learning curve of a new role at a new company.    Having a financial advisor by your side can be a valuable resource to make these important decisions.   Here are five financial moves to make when you change jobs. Get all of your 401(k)’s in one backyard– When you hop from job to job, you may have left your 401(k) at your former employer.    I often refer to these as orphan 401(k)’s because most participants don’t pay attention ...

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You Thief: How To Stop The Office Refrigerator Bandit

Has anyone ever stolen your day old turkey sandwich from the refrigerator or the bag of almonds that you had hiding out in the cabinets at work?  You know what I mean, the work of the sneaky office food thief who sends your blood pressure skyrocketing up to epic levels.  I have witnessed this happen at many different workplaces and I know I am not alone when I pray that the food gods send these people into a lifetime of stomach problems. I always wondered what kind of individual would steal someone else’s lunch. I must admit that I too have been tempted from time to time when there is a half of a coconut crème pie left over in the fridge, but I would NEVER take the food of a co-worker without either a) leaving money and a note or b) asking permission first. But who is the office refrigerator bandit?   Is it . . . . . A ...

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THE GOOD, THE BAD, and THE UGLY of working at a small business

Over six and half years ago, I left corporate America to start my own business.  I now own five different businesses and consider myself to be unemployable.   I worked for a Fortune 100 company with more than 50,000 employees worldwide and now handle building and executing visionary plans for the future of my industry.   If you are at the crossroads of still working for a large company or potentially making the move to work for a small business in your neck of the woods, here are some the of the good, the bad, and the ugly that may influence your future decision. THE GOOD You Can See A Direct Immediate Impact From Your Work– You can usually come up with a new idea, an implementation plan, and begin to see immediate results on customers and the organization from your hard work.  In larger organization, it can take a year (or more) just to get an idea through the red ...

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Be Careful About The Rules Around Saving For Healthcare

With so many changes happening with our tax code every year, it is really important that you sit down and review how this will affect your family finances. As 2015, approaches us, one tax issue that could affect your family center around the changes intertwined with Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA’s) and Health Savings Accounts (HSA’s). In many prior years, traditionally FSA’s were you use it or you lose it plans if the money is not spend by year-end. Since 2013, you were allowed to roll money over from the prior year and carry it forward into the current. However, going into 2015 there is a BIG twist that you should consider before the 2014 year is over. If you elect to carry forward the $500 in your FSA plan from 2014 into 2015, you will immediately become ineligible to participate in a Health Savings Account for 2015. This is true for the entire calendar year. So, if you opted to ...

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I’m Going To Sell My Tech Firm For Millions. Now What?

It’s no secret that Atlanta’s technology start-up scene is booming.  I’ve had several young and very successful tech leaders ask me what they should do when they sell their company for millions – thus, this posting. I have to preface this blog by clearly stating I have never sold a company for millions.  However, in seeking feedback from numerous sources and speaking to different entrepreneurs, I’ve come up with this simple list to help you manage your new fortune the right way: Set Up Your Team – CPA, Attorney, Financial Planner and Most Importantly, Good Family Around You We’ve all heard the stories of people going broke after they hit it big and win the lottery.  Take the time before you ink the deal to get these important relationships in place with people you trust, as they are crucial for your future success.  And, it may be easier to identify the trustworthy partners before rather than after. Keep Your Circle of Friends Small ...

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Your Year End Naughty and Nice List

As we rapidly approach year end, making a list for Santa shouldn’t be the only list that you make.  It is also the time of the season to be making some end of the year smart money moves.  Here are my quick five to do’s and NOT to do’s before the end of the year. To Do’s Use up your FSA- You can only carry over $500 to 2015, so make sure you use the other money or you will lose it. Donate to charity- Especially your non-cash charitable contributions. Make sure to get a receipt for tax purposes. Match gains and losses- Look through what positions to sell to match losses against gains. Not every position will be a winner. Max out 401(k)- If you have a pay period left and are way behind in contributions, you might do 100% of the last paycheck. Make a holiday shopping list- Unless you want a holiday financial hangover, making a good ...

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Four Financial Ideas On Your Work Anniversary

It’s another anniversary and a good time to reflect on where you are in your career both professionally and financially.   It couldn’t be a better time to also take stock of where your overall financial plan is currently, and whether or not you are on track to make work optional.  Here are four smart financial ideas to consider on this work anniversary. Rule of 1/3rds– Your work anniversary often signals a time where you could earn an additional pay raise.   Most individuals often don’t deploy the important rule of 1/3rds.   What this means is that at least 1/3rd of the raises (and bonuses) you get every year at work should be captured immediately with some form of forced savings.  This should be priority number one.   So, if you got a $10,000 pay raise, a 1/3rd is likely to go to taxes, a 1/3rd should go to some type of savings, and a 1/3rd should be spent on something you enjoy.   ...

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Three Financial Moves To Make When You Get Promoted

There are few things in life that deserve a glass of champagne more than a well-earned promotion.  After years of blood, sweat, and tears, your company has finally recognized your efforts and decided to move you into a more meaningful role within your company.  Sometimes, only title are associated with these promotions, but more often than not there will be financial rewards as well.   This is exactly your time to fall into the lifestyle inflation trap and make some really smart financial moves that will pay dividends down the road. The Pay Raise– Generally, a new promotion will also mean more responsibility which often equals more pay.  If your salary jumps by $10,000 or even $50,000 dollars this will mean a significant bump in your cash flow for your family.   What should you do with this money?  Is it best to add to your 401(k)?  Start paying down the mortgage?  Or time to purchase that new vacation home?   With pay ...

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Did You Just Get A Raise In November

It’s pretty amazing to me how many people truly still don’t understand our payroll tax system.  When you work as a W-2 for an employer, both you and your employer are going to pay certain payroll taxes.  The two main types of taxes are the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) tax and the Medicare tax.   Both you and your employer pay 6.2% into FICA up to $117,000 this year and Medicare is a perpetuity tax at 1.45%.  In 2014, when wages, compensation, etc. get above $200,000 for an individual and $250,000 for a married couple, you will incur an additional .9% Medicare tax this year.   When your w-2 gets above $200,000, your payroll provider should be deducting that amount from your paycheck now, but it is important you double check at work. Since there are many individuals who pay their full amount into social security and their income exceeds $117,000 in a particular calendar year, unfortunately your HR department won’t ...

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I Can’t Take Money Until 59 1/2

There is an ever-changing landscape of families and individuals who are working on making work-optional by the age of 50 or 55. This doesn’t mean that they won’t continue running some small business or choosing projects to work on that they really enjoy, but at this financial juncture in their lives they are wondering how they may be able to tap into their retirement savings accounts. The biggest misconception people have about retirement savings accounts is that they simply cannot touch the money before the age of 59 ½ or they will pay significant penalties to the IRS. You’ll want to check this IRS link out. (http://1.usa.gov/1rB1ufw) Essentially, IRA owners have an option called Substantial Equal Period Payments which would allow them to withdraw money from their IRA or qualified plan before the age of 59.5 without incurring the IRS 10% early withdrawal penalty. The IRS will require individuals to continue the SEPP program for a minimum of five years ...

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