How Much are Your Family Jewels Worth?

interviewed Kathryn Kinev who is the owner of www.jewelcreations.com. Kathryn is a Goldsmith, Platinumsmith, Gemologist, Custom Designer, AND an appraiser. I’ve had clients inherit jewelry, including myself, and the value is some unknown number. I think some of the things I have came from my grandfather but now that both of my parents are gone, we have no way of knowing who owned it. Kathryn has so many years of experience she can look at the pieces and determine the date it was made within an approximate 10 year window. When she showed us an appraisal for just one ring, the appraisal included 4 sheets of paper to detail her research and findings. I was also impressed when she told the story about one of her award winning pieces that she designed. The 6 gems sat on her desk for 2 years as she would look at them and be with them. Then, in the middle of the night, the ...

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I Take The Blame

When I called one of my best clients to wish him a Happy Birthday, on his 81st birthday I might add, he started the conversation with “I planned to call you today or tomorrow. You’re getting blamed for something here.” I responded, “I am fully responsible! Now what did I do?” He proceeded to tell me that he and his wife have been planning something and every time one of them would question their plans, the other one would just say “Mark would tell us to do this.” And they’re probably right. I would tell them to do it. We then spent the next 25 minutes looking at Google maps of Kuaii and sharing stories about traveling to Kuaii. My clients just rented the house and booked the flights for 10 days on Kuaii with their 2 sons, their 2 daughers-in-law and their 14 year old granddaughter. How awesome!!! I’ll gladly take the blame for this. I say I’ll take ...

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5 Ways To Increase Your Family Cash Flow

One of the biggest financial planning concerns I hear every week is how to manage the family cash flow.  So many people see their incomes increasing, but it isn’t necessarily translating to the bottom line.  If you are struggling to make ends meet or just want to stretch your paychecks further, here are five ways to increase your family cash flow. Review Your Tax Return? While you might love getting a tax refund, this is essentially giving an interest free loan to the Government for a year or more.  While some people see this as a form of forced savings, one strategy you could consider is to adjust your withholdings to get more of those dollars back in your paycheck so you aren’t falling behind every month.  In addition, many taxpayers don’t spend the time to take advantage of every tax deduction legally available to them.  You should thoroughly review your tax return and what deductions are available to you ...

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Make Money By Renting Your Car Out?

One of the planning items that most people have when they go on vacation is whether or not to rent a car.  With the evolution of services such as Uber and Lyft, some people are skipping the rent a car altogether and trying to manage the cost of having a car service take you around the city you are traveling through for vacation. However, we love showing people how to make money and one of the up and coming ideas is to rent your car out to others while it is just sitting there in the driveway.   Some people leave the country for an extended period of time and won’t be using their car and others have a weekend car that does nothing but sit and collect dust during the week.   Being smart about making money is getting your assets to work for you instead of you working for your money. The first service you need to learn about is ...

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They’re Dead. Now What?

My oldest client passed away this week and it’s been over 5 months since my oldest aunt, my Second Mom, passed away. It’s a sad time, yet a reminder to spend time with those we love and care about. It’s also a time to take care of ourselves. The world just changed, dramatically, for their families and for me. I came into this business through a life insurance company and I remember handling my first death claim for a policy that didn’t have a current agent assigned to it. The son told me that his father had cancelled a couple of other life insurance policies within the prior 2 years and used the cash value to take the entire family on a trip. The memories of that trip meant so much more to him and his mother than them receiving a bigger death benefit that day. So, 1. Tell the people you love that you do love them. Spend time ...

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Don’t Be Fooled By Hillary’s Small Business Plan

I usually don’t read the USA today, but I happened to have a chance to read an article recently (http://usat.ly/2bVCjaz) about Hillary Clinton’s plan to be the President for small business owners.   I was intrigued by the article to see what real change might be coming and as an entrepreneur of many businesses I quickly realized that the proposal was something that only the Stay Puff Marshmallow business person would actually gain any benefit from currently.    Here are the points from the article and then I’ll share on each point my insights on what meaningful proposals could really truly help small business owners do better.  BTW, I haven’t really seen any proposal from Trump yet at all but I do know what I hear from local owners every week Hillary Proposed Problem: Citing licensing and other burdens, Clinton’s campaign says it takes longer to start a business in the U.S. than in countries such as Canada or Denmark.  I laughed ...

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Five Apps That Will Pay You To Shop

Shopping is usually an activity that makes you spend money.   In fact, with the ease of debit cards and credit cards today you can rack up big bills by simply turning your computer on to one of the major shopping websites.  So, I thought going into the summer it might be interesting to see what apps you could download that might actually pay YOU money to shop. Ibotta (www.ibotta.com) – Did you ever thing you could get paid to scan receipts from your phone?    Before you go shopping, you complete a few simple tasks and then you begin to unlock rewards.  With over 187 participating stores (and you can link loyalty accounts as well) it makes it very easy to make money with Ibotta.  Really, you end up just scanning bar codes and then taking pictures of your receipts. Swagbucks (www.swagbucks.com) – With over $132,470,000 of gift cards that have been awarded to users, Swagbucks is an app that will ...

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Where To Invest Under A Trump Presidency

Americans aren’t quite sure what to make of this three ring circus we are calling a Presidential election.   With the nomination fairly certain to be Donald Trump on the Republican side, there has been major discussion about what a Trump President might look like for the future of our economy.   Will he borrow more money?  Will he balance the budget?  Will he build a wall? Will he bring jobs back to America?   These are amongst the many issues that have been speculated about on the media outlets across the country.  Here are my smart money moves on where to invest under a Trump regime. Infrastructure- While I cannot give you specific stocks, mutual funds, or exchange traded funds (you’ll have to call me or e-mail me for that info;), I will divulge that this will be one of the best opportunities under a Trump presidency.   Consider this for a  moment. . . If you have a parent or grandparent that ...

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How The New Overtime Rules May Affect Your Business

The Department Of Labor is at it again, now changing the game for businesses as it pertains to overtime rules.   Since, that is what we really need . . . some more rules.  If it wasn’t challenging enough for small businesses dealing with making payroll and figuring out to maintain the costs of health insurance, now you’ll have to pay double attention to these new overtime rules which will become effective December 1st. Here’s a bet I’m willing to make on the record.  The cost for businesses across the country to manage and track all of these changes will far supersede the benefits that will actually be paid for people working overtime.  The administration believes by making these changes that many hard working Americans will earn overtime, but let me clue everyone in on four your smart money moves secrets. Right now, if you are a salaried worker who makes in between $23,660 and $47,476 and you have a reasonable ...

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