Federal Loan rates for College going up

The federal student loan rates change each year on July 1st. For any student considering taking Federal Direct Student Loans for the coming academic year, your rates are about to go up to 4.45% for any new disbursements after July 1st  (Current rate is 3.81%) These rates encompass various loans from the Fed Direct unsubsidized loans (interest accrues … [Read more...]

Vital lessons for our kids about money

"Kids who have the freedom to manage their own money seem to have better money behaviors and are more truthful with their parents about how their money was spent." Being a parent is tough in many senses. Things that our kids learn early are often the things that influence them the most. When to be tough, when to be soft. When to help and when to let … [Read more...]

What Sully and Golf clubs could teach us about finances?

As a financial advisor I often use the analogy of a golfer when we talk about what financial products we should use. According to the USGA, a golfer is allowed to have 14 clubs in his bag. There are the standard 12 clubs in many golf bags. If the golfer starts with a number of clubs in his bag less than 14, he can add to the number of clubs until he reaches … [Read more...]

Trust in Relationships

Mike Adams from "Living My Purpose" who runs one of the Strengths Assessments that we do for our clients sent this out and I thought it might be appropriate to share. Mike can be contacted at mike@livingmypurpose.com Whether it be for my clients at College Planning America, our families at home, our co-workers or friends, it could be really important to think … [Read more...]

6 Things to Think About When Creating a Will

This piece was written for legalzoom by Michelle Fabie Esq - a freelance writer and I found it had pretty valuable information in a simple format. No matter your age or economic status, creating a will is the single best estate planning action you can take right now. Why? Because having a valid last will and testament helps assure that your wishes regarding … [Read more...]

Impala behind the wall – why we avoid that

Growing up in Africa, I have been fortunate to have experienced being on safari many times. One of the most common and beautiful animals in Southern Africa is the Impala. Impala’s would be described in America as a type of gazelle that could reach about 3 feet tall and weigh anything from 88 – 168 pounds. In full flight, the impala is just a magnificent … [Read more...]

Really – That’s all I get for COLA?

The government has just released their numbers for Cost of Living Adjustments for 2017. “Monthly Social Security and SSI benefits for more than 65 million Americans will increase 0.3 percent in 2017” https://www.ssa.gov/news/cola/ There are a number of threats or possible “Holes in the bucket” for retirement that we take into account as we plan for both … [Read more...]

Giraffe, Finances and the Circle of Life

For many years I have taken teams of people to South Africa to do work among those less fortunate than most of us. This last month I was reminded once again that we often think we are going to faraway places to give of ourselves and our resources, but we end up receiving life altering insights and gifts as we connect with those in need and recognize our common … [Read more...]

Valuable Money lessons from a Raccoon

My mother and my grandmother were both amazing gardeners and were extremely knowledgeable about plants and horticulture. [My Mom still is] I just love to get home in the evening and walk around the garden or water the plants. It’s a time of peace for me. Well …….. most times! Having grown up in Africa, my frame of reference was dealing with Lions and … [Read more...]

4 Questions that every Financial Advisor should be able to answer

I have asked people many times what their experience has been with Financial Advisors. Do you know what to ask your advisor and what he should be doing for you? Probably the best thing that should come out of a relationship with an advisor is a PLAN. If you know where you are headed then you will have a sense of what you need to do to get there …it will give … [Read more...]