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Review Category : For The Pros

Does Your Business Need A Buy-Sell Agreement?

One of the questions I will ask a business owner in my interview process is “Do you have a business will?”  By this line of questioning, I am simply asking what happens to the business if you die.   Some businesses have one or multiple partners and others businesses are owned by a single individual.   Far too often, most owners after they have built a successful business don’t take the time to flesh through the details of what will happen with the business in the event of death, disability, retirement, etc. One of the most important discussions for any owner is how to install a buy-sell agreement.    The buy-sell agreement is typically between partners or co-owners, although it could work with an outside third party if there aren’t other owners in the business. Think about this almost as a premarital agreement between two parties about the value of the business and what will get paid out to the other owners family ...

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What’s My Business Worth?

People start a business for all kinds of different reasons.  Some people start a business because they are fulfilling a lifelong passion to create a new product or service.   Others see a new business as a getaway from the grit and grind of corporate America to become their own boss.   There is also a group of people that look at a business as an engine to create cash flow, create a family legacy, and build substantial wealth.   Whatever reason tickles your fancy to start a business, at some juncture if the business has some success most owners ponder the question about what is the value of their business if they were to sell it to another individual.  Here are some smart money moves guidelines in thinking about how to value your business. Like any piece of real estate including your home, the valuation of a business in my opinion is part objective and part subjective.  At the end of the ...

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Is It The Right ‘TIME’ To Rent A Watch

Subscription programs.  Subscription programs.  It seems as if subscription programs are the new craze when it comes to getting consumers involved with having access to luxury items.  Since most Americans don’t have the real financial health to be making expensive discretionary purchases such as an exclusive second home in Paris, a 100 foot yacht, or a brand new Ferrari, subscription based programs have created access to sample some of most luxurious things in life with the stroke of a credit card order.   One recent evolution of this for businessmen is to be able to rent luxury watches. Typically, watches such as Rolex, Panerai, and Cartier may have been out of reach for many men.   Or perhaps you just couldn’t stomach the idea of forking out $10,000 or $15,000 for a watch that will be the only one you’ll wear for the next twenty years.   Wouldn’t it be nice to actually get some variety to the watches that you wear for ...

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I Took A College Course In My Car

Living in Atlanta almost my whole life, I have seen the traffic get worse each year.  After the 1996 Olympics, the city just seemed to get really big and really spread out.  The amount of time Atlanta drivers have to spend in their cars is on the rise.  The metro Atlanta average commute is 28.7 minutes, with some areas over 40 mins.  A study by Harvard Health Watch found that the average American spends 37,935 hours driving a car in their lifetime. Cranking Radar Love by Golden Earring on the stereo can be fun on occasion, but I thought I should take advantage of this wasted car time.  Why not feed my brain on the way to my next appointment or commute.  There are a number of online programs that you can pay for, or you can chose to get some free podcasts from Open Education Database: http://oedb.org/ilibrarian/skip-the-tuition-100-free-podcasts-from-the-best-colleges-in-the-world/ What do you do during your wasted car time? Written by: Van Pappas ...

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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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Don’t Attempt To Time The Market

As 2014 enters into its final month for all major indices, this should be a good time of the year to reflect on the most important major lesson about investing. The lesson is to be certain that you have the appropriate time frame to take the risk associated with investing in a particular asset class. Time and time again, most average investors get caught up in trying to figure out the best time to exit the markets or enter the markets. This is challenging enough for the experts who are engulfed in this data every hour of every working day let alone going at it as an individual investor. Check out these predictions from January 2014 from over 30 of the major chief investment strategists from various leading firms http://cnnmon.ie/1CvoVBd. On average, the peer group had the S&P 500 growing 6% and the year to date return of the S & P is almost double that number. They also had ...

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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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Think Wisely About Your Trustee

It’s never fun to think about gloom and doom. However, if you have been successful in building up an asset base or you carry a lot of life insurance, you may be considering setting up a trust fund for your children if something happens to you. There are many potholes that a family can stumble into when establishing a trust, but here are three mistakes parents often make. First, parents don’t often think through who they want as the trustee of trust for their kids. As complicated as it is to select a custodian, parents should consider whether they want a single trustee or a co-trustee to have some check and balance system for the trust. It is crucial to make sure you’ll have the right people in charge of the funds when you are no longer in the picture. Second, parents need to be clear about the goals of the trust. Specifically, most parents don’t think through when and ...

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Will The Robo-Advisor Be Short Circuited?

At a recent conference attended by some of the best and the brightest in the industry, I was amazed at the disparity in views and concerns regarding the rise of the Robo-Visor.  Relax…. Although the technology exists, I can’t imagine getting on a pilotless transatlantic flight just as I can’t imagine the majority of consumers handling all of their investments online. That said, Robo like the discount brokerage firms that “threatened” the financial advisors 20 years ago, is here to stay.  More than anything, this is a clear barometer that investing has become more commoditized.  For the Investment professionals who proclaim themselves as money managers you will certainly have the most exposure for losing clients.  For the financial planning professional I see this as an opportunity as more and more clients desire what I call the 3 C’s.  In today’s fast-paced environment we have learned clients seek far more than just investment advice.  They desire a Collaborator, a Connector, and ...

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5 Ways For Women To Build Confidence

So I know what you are about to say.  What does a 44 year old guy know about women building confidence.  I’m not about to tell you that I know the secret of women, but I thought I would attempt to list some things women can do to build confidence.  After reading  from the book The Confidence Code by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman, I picked up these 5 ways woman can build confidence: You don’t have to make things perfect, so stop tinkering You have to keep moving forward and tinkering takes time.  Even if you are wrong, failing fast can reduce the time going down blind alleys. Leave your comfort zone Try something you thought you’d never be good at.  The old saying  “What doesn’t kill you will make you stronger” is so true. Take credit for your successes Don’t just brush off a compliment, accept it.  Use it to give your next step confidence. Give rid of ...

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