Review Category : Featured Articles

Can You Retire On 1 Million Dollars?

One million dollars used to be the gold standard when it came to figuring out how much money you would need to never have to work the rest of your life.   Now, we all know if you really put your mind to it that you could probably retire on a million dollars, but the real question is whether or not you could maintain the standard of living you have been accustomed to off of your current income.  With our society having become more of an outsourced society than a do it yourself society, here’s why 1 million dollars isn’t what it used to be. The Slient Killer – Inflation may be the number one item underestimated when it comes to overall retirement planning. Inflation is on the rise, and if it rears its ugly head at the 4% level you better seek shelter to figure out how to make your money last.  At a 4% inflation level, 1 million dollars ...

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Why Universal Basic Income Won’t Work

After I listened to this short clip on the Wall Street Journal’s website over the weekend, I felt compelled to write a short article around Universal Basic Income because I think it is a topic that you will see bandied about a lot more over the next five to ten years.  http://on.wsj.com/2tZbLPp Chris Hughes who is the cofounder of Facebook, is one of the driving forces behind this movement along with Bill Gates and other tech giants who are strong proponents of Universal Basic Income (UBI). In his interview you can watch from the link I shared, Mr. Hughes says, “I think that something fundamentally in the economy has changed to create these winner take all markets, where a small number of hardworking people do very well, and nine out of 10 others are  also hardworking don’t enjoy the same opportunities.”  Mr. Hughes, I am sure they taught this at Harvard as standard course requirement but it is something called ...

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Five Ways To Save Money On Spring Break

With Spring Break right around the corner, families across America are thinking about vacations to staycations wondering how to fit this into their family budget.  If you aren’t careful, Spring Break could cost you upwards of $5,000 or more depending on how far of a getaway you plan for your family.  There are a number of ways to save money along the way, and if you plan appropriately you can even save money on your trip. What’s In Your Wallet – We walk around all year with our Contanza size wallet full of cards we don’t use at all. Before you spend a nickel on Spring Break, see if you have a AAA card, an AARP card, a Student ID (if a student is with you), or some other discount card that can offer you savings at local venues, rent-a-cars, or restaurants.  In addition, double check what your credit card may offer from lower cost Uber rides to savings at ...

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How To Use LinkedIn To Make More Money

Most of our articles strictly talk about personal finance, but I thought it would be cool to teach you about how to use the Social Media platform LinkedIn to help you make more money either with your career or your business. Many business owners and individuals that I help at Hyperchat Social (Try Hyperchat Today) often ask about how to generate leads or get a pay raise at work. We know that lead generation is the end all be all problem for most business owners or individuals trying to grow their income.  What’s surprising is how many business owners don’t take advantage of free leads that may be right under your nose because you just didn’t realize how to get those leads. Since the beginning of 2017, LinkedIn decided to completely overhaul their platform and interface with LinkedIn users.  It shouldn’t come as a surprise to you that LinkedIn is feverishly trying to figure out how to create more recurring ...

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What’s Best? Buy, Lease, or Rent A Car

One of the day to day family financial decisions we have to make as adults is whether or not we should buy a car or lease a car.  Over the past twelve months, there have also been options popping up across America around the concept of joining a subscription service and renting a car.  Making the right decision for your family can potentially not only improve your budget, but it could also improve your lifestyle.  Here are my side by side on whether you should buy, lease, or rent a car. Buying A Car – There are lots of considerations when you buy a car, but traditionally I have only been a fan of buying used cars that are two to three years old and the large initial depreciation wears off.  You can cover yourself by buying a bumper to bumper 100,000 mile extended warranty if you have concerns about something major happening to the car, but I like the ...

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Why Investors Can’t Measure Their Own Risk Tolerance

When people start investing money, one of the exercises they engage in is determining their own risk tolerance.  Usually, this process is handled by filling out some sort of questionnaire that has multiple choice questions like the one below. ‘If you had $10,000 to invest, would you….’ Be willing to chance earning 30% growth knowing you could lose 30% Be willing to chance earning 10% growth knowing you could lose only 5% Be willing to lose nothing knowing you could earn no more than 5% We often whisk through these quizzes at a blazing pace because in a simulation exercise we know exactly who we are.  However, there are two types of behaviors that we have within our personality.  How we act in a natural state when we are relaxed and have no pressure.  Then, there is the adaptive state when we are under heavy pressure.  Unfortunately, these quizzes don’t really put us under any pressure so they don’t really ...

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The Best 2018 Tax Moves To Make Now

As the new tax law goes into effect, many people are starting to wonder how this will affect their overall paychecks.  You should see some bump in your paychecks when the new tax tables go into effect somewhere in Mid-February or early March, but there are a host of financial decisions that you need to start considering now in order to maximize your own tax situation. Adjust your withholdings – It’s ironic that most people give themselves a high five when they get a refund come tax time. Not only do you allow the Government the use of your money for a year, you also get taxed on your own state refund federally the following year.  Since we have new tax brackets and tax tables, you should really look at your withholdings here in the spring to maximize your cash flow here in 2018. Remember, if you are getting your taxes done, Turbo Tax and Tax Slayer are two low ...

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5 2018 Sticky Financial New Year’s Resolutions

It’s 2018, and that means that most of you have made at least one New Year’s resolution.  For most of you it will surround either diet or exercise, but for some of you getting your financial plan in order may rise to the top of the list. With the average American now surpassing more than $16,000 of household credit card debt, it may appear that feeling flush has left us spending out of control.  In your smart money moves fashion, here are my ideas for a sticky 2018 financial New Year’s resolution that can help you grow your bottom line. Get Your Financial House In Order Set Up An Online Account Aggregation System – At oXYGen Financial, we have been using a personal financial dashboard for almost 10 years in helping our clients get their financial house in order. You can learn more about this by going to oXYGen Financial, but there are also other systems online including Mint and ...

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What Itemized Deductions Will Look Like In 2018

To itemize or not to itemize, that is the question?  With all of the tax law changes recently passed by President Trump in the GOP tax bill, one of the considerations you’ll need to get your arms wrapped around quickly is whether you will want to itemize your deductions when you file your taxes in 2019 or you will simply use the standard deduction. For 2018, the standard deduction amounts will increase from $6,500 for individuals, $9,550 for heads of households (HOH), and $13,000 for married couples filing jointly, to $12,000 for individuals, $18,000 for HOH, and $24,000 for married couples filing jointly. Since the personal exemption is being completely eliminated, you’ll need to do the math about whether this was a good deal for you or not.  For those married couples filing jointly, if you have three or more children, I actually think you went backwards on the new tax plan if you were filing the standard deduction. For ...

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