How to Create and Maintain a Budget

by Loyd Stegent on Oct 31, 2018

Whether you’re earning a six-figure salary or just out of college, creating and maintaining a budget is a must. Having a budget that you actually use can help keep spending under control, bolster your savings account, adequately plan for retirement, and keep debt at a manageable level. 

Creating the budget is actually the easy part. But how do you create a budget that you’ll actually use? One of the keys is your mindset. Stop looking at a budget as a negative and look at it as the way to reach your financial goals.  

Time to Break That Shopping Habit!

by Loyd Stegent on Aug 31, 2018

It seems like we’ve been conditioned to shop since birth.  While an occasional splurge is nothing to get worked up about, we’ve become incredibly wasteful in the process.  Landfills from coast to coast are full of our discarded belongings such as furniture, equipment, appliances, and electronic items like computers and cellphones.  We no longer repair an item, we simply replace it. Some of our spending habits can certainly be tied to the incessant marketing and advertising that target consumers on a daily basis.

The Easiest Investment System Ever

by Loyd Stegent on Mar 12, 2018

The stock market has had a bumpy ride the first few months of 2018. If the ups and downs have left you feeling uneasy, you are not alone. It is a natural reaction to feel confident when the market is up and ready to run for the hills when it is down. However, more times than not, our emotions can betray us when it comes to investing, leading us to sell low and buying high; the exact opposite of what an investor has been taught to do. The good news is you can use these conflicting feelings to work for you by flipping the script and acting in the opposite manor that you are inclined to.

Financial Planning for Newlyweds

by Loyd Stegent on Jan 31, 2018

Congratulations Newlyweds! Your fresh union symbolizes a new beginning facing the world. But before the glow of wedded bliss wears, it’s crucial to talk about finances. Let’s be straight, financial talks should be had well before the ring, but did you know that “68 percent of engaged couples surveyed held a negative attitude about discussing money with their fiancé.1

That’s a staggering percentage of couples who are afraid to have ‘the talk’. Below are a few tips and areas to consider if you’re in a serious relationship, newly engaged or if you’ve tied the knot!

Retirement Savings and Tax Changes

by Loyd Stegent on Jan 12, 2018

According to a Wall Street Journal Article by Brian Hershberg:

Benjamin H. Harris, a visiting associate professor at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, explains that of all the uncertainties faced by retirement savers, taxes are perhaps the most underappreciated and difficult to plan for.

The problem, he writes, is that no one can predict the future tax code with certainty. But there’s a potential solution emerging that leverages pretax savings vehicles like traditional IRAs and after-tax accounts like Roth IRAs:

Advisers at Leading Discount Brokers Win Bonuses to Push Higher-Priced Products

by Loyd Stegent on Jan 10, 2018

According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, investors who seek advice from discount brokerage firms might assume the counsel they get is impartial, given how these firms have rejected the old Wall Street model of working on commissions.

In fact, advisers at some of the biggest discount brokerage firms make more money if they steer clients toward more-expensive products, according to disclosures from the firms and people who used to work at them. That means customers could end up with investment products and services that are costlier than they need.