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43 minutes | Oct 16, 2021
The Many Options of Beneficiary Selection
Mike takes a look into the world of beneficiaries and answers some common questions: What takes priority: what your Will says or how beneficiaries are named in the various contracts? Per stirpes: what is it and how does it keep your assets in your family? (for more information on per stirpes, read this Blog post. How can you make sure your in-laws get what you expect? What are some accounts that have beneficiaries? Is it possible to name a charity or other non-profit as beneficiary? Is that a good idea? For more reading on beneficiaries, check out Ron Blue’s book Splitting Heirs.
46 minutes | Oct 9, 2021
Financial Confidence: A Client Story
Mike is joined by his cousin Tim Van Dam and Tim’s wife, Martha, who also happen to be Ronald Blue Trust clients. Tim and Martha share a little bit of their backgrounds and how the Greenville office of Ronald Blue Trust has helped them on their financial journey.
44 minutes | Oct 2, 2021
IRA Strategies Part 1
This week, Mike discusses a listener question regarding taking money out of an IRA to pay off a mortgage: tax considerations longevity of being in the house; ROI consider your risk tolerance He then continues with some other IRA strategies and considerations: Other reasons to take money from IRA Use caution if someone wants you to use your IRA as collateral for a loan vs. using it to secure an unsecured loan Watch for the red flag of advisors telling you specific percentages of returns they can get How upcoming tax legislation could affect IRA rollovers and withdrawals
47 minutes | Sep 25, 2021
Are You Smarter Than a Scammer?
Fraudsters come in many varieties. We must be vigilant to protect our assets and potentially the assets of others. Mike is joined by Carl Francois, SVP and Bank Security Act and Fraud Officer for Southern First Bank, to discuss tricks we all need to be aware of. Scams can come from email, text, social media, and phone calls. Very common scam types recently have been the Romance Scam and Military Scam. Mike and Carl discuss how these scammers work and some things to look out for. Mike and Carl discuss ways of preventing getting caught in a scam including: Ignore and delete unsolicited social media messages, texts, and emails Share less on social media! Watch out for requests for gift cards, wires, a new PayPal or Venmo account, investing in cryptocurrency Watch for phone calls that mimic your phone number Don’t send passwords or other confidential information over email Look for unusual or misspelled email addresses The Federal Trade Commission has good resources about scams on their website. The FBI has also set up the Internet Crime Complaint Center (ic3.gov), where you can report internet crimes. You can also report the scams to your banker or another trusted individual or ask them about the communication before you take any action. Carl also recently wrote this article for Southern First Bank on the top 3 scams right now. Final words: Always be discerning!
40 minutes | Sep 18, 2021
Best of Talking Money: Social Security Mistakes
Highlights from show aired June 19, 2021 Eddie Holland, CFP®, CPA, CKA® joins Mike to discuss six common social security mistakes that the Wall Street Journal outlined in a recent article: Worrying about dying too young Waiting too long to claim Not working because of the earnings limit Not filing for widow’s or widower’s benefits Getting divorced and remarried (at the wrong time) Hitting tax torpedoes Are you at risk of making any of these mistakes? They also answer a caller question regarding certain employer pension plans, in this case the railroad, and claiming social security benefits.
46 minutes | Sep 11, 2021
Estate Planning; Life, Love, and Legacy
Mike discusses this recent article from the Ronald Blue Trust quarterly newsletter. He talks about the values his parents instilled in him and tells some stories of his growing up years as examples. He discusses the questions: How much should I leave to my children? Should I give inheritance money to my children while I am still alive? Should I set up restrictions on where the money goes or how quickly and frequently they get the money? Should I appoint one of my children to divvy out the money to their siblings? What is the worst thing that could happen if I don’t leave money to my children? What is my end goal in leaving money to my children? What about giving to charity? Do my spouse and I agree to the answers of all these questions? The foundation should be as found in Scripture, “Wisdom is good with an inheritance, an advantage to those who see the sun. For the protection of wisdom is like the protection of money, and the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the life of him who has it.” (Ecclesiastes 7:11-12, ESV)
33 minutes | Sep 4, 2021
Best of: How retirement literate are you?
Highlights from show aired May 15, 2021 Mike discusses a recent survey put out by the American College of Financial Services regarding retirement literacy. How aware are you of different scenarios of retirement? Are you really retirement literate? You can take the quiz here. (Hint: Mike gives several of the answers in this episode, so listen first and then go test your knowledge!) Mike also discusses the importance of working with a financial planning professional to help you weed through all of the information about retirement.
47 minutes | Aug 28, 2021
Live at the Miracle Hill Kids Ninja Challenge
Listen to several stories of how God has used Miracle Hill in the lives of several staff members. Sarah grew up in Greenville but never really knew what Miracle Hill was until she needed it. She benefited from both the Shepherd’s Gate shelter and Renewal program and now works full time for Miracle Hill. Katie shares her experiences starting with her internship and leading to full time employment with Miracle Hill. She also shares the ways the Ninja Challenge has helped Miracle Hill. Jacob works as the VP of Development for Miracle Hill. He shares how he has seen God work in many lives through his time there. Young shares his journey from Colorado and how God let him to the Overcomers program. He is now working for Miracle Hill and pursuing a degree at BJU. If you would like more information about how you can help Miracle Hill, click here.
45 minutes | Aug 21, 2021
The Confusing World of IRAs
Mike unpacks some of the confusing world of IRAs. A listener recently asked a question about transferring an IRA from a deceased family member to multiple family members. What are some of the tax considerations and implications for transferring an IRA? What is a step up in basis? Does an IRA get a step up in basis? Is there a required minimum distribution? When does this apply? How important is it to know your tax bracket and taxable income? How quickly do you need to start the process of transferring an inherited IRA? Should you transfer it all to stocks? How soon will you need the money? Does that factor into the decisions you make? How did the SECURE Act change IRA rules? Can you give an inherited IRA to a charity? How? What if I am in a qualified retirement plan? Is it a good idea to set up a trust for minor recipients?
21 minutes | Aug 14, 2021
Miracle Hill Ninja Warrior Challenge
Yolanda Campusano, Communications Officer for Miracle Hill Ministries, joins Mike to discuss their upcoming fundraising event: the Kids Ninja Challenge. She first shares her story of how she came to work for Miracle Hill, and then they explain a little bit about how involved the board members are in the ministry. They spend the rest of the time discussing the upcoming Kids’ Ninja Challenge: When: August 28, 8am-noon, kids run in waves every 15 minutes Where: Simpsonville YMCA Program Center 100 Adams Mill Road Simpsonville, SC US 29681 Who Can Participate: Children ages 4-12, but registration is almost full!! How much: $25 per participant What Else: Inflatables Food trucks (including ice cream and coffee!) Live music (and Live Talking Money!) Water games Face painting How can you help: Volunteer! There is a huge need for volunteers for set up, clean up, and during the event. Volunteer as a family! There is also a need for Home Depot or Lowes gift cards to help with the last minute details for obstacle construction More Details or to register or volunteer: miraclehill.org/ninja This event is a great way to teach your kids about homelessness. It is also a great way to fundraise for Miracle Hill as a way you and your family can help the homeless right here in our area! Miracle Hill has a list of regular, ongoing needs. There are always opportunities to volunteer or donate items.
21 minutes | Aug 14, 2021
Should Retirees Exit the Stock Market?
This week, Mike discusses whether or not a retiree should get out of the stock market. There are many concerns to think about, including: Do you have a pension plan? If you have an annuity, what issues should you consider? Could you possibly have a long-term care event before you pass? There are two different kinds of risk, and It is important to know what kind of risk you are talking about and how you handle both. Seen risk: volatility; being risk-averse or time to weather the next downturn (afraid of dying sooner) Unseen: inflation and the increasing cost of living (potential of living longer) Why is a diversified portfolio so important: like having investments in “time buckets”? People want to get to the point they don’t want to worry about money, but how much does that actually take? A lot has to do with how you view money and where you get your contentment. One of the biggest concerns seems to be health care: long term care events and how to pay for them. If you invest too conservatively, you might have to reduce your standard of living so that you don’t outlive your money.
45 minutes | Aug 7, 2021
Dealing with Inflation
Before diving in to inflation, Mike offers some advice on shopping for a financial advisor: questions to ask and resources to use to check the portfolio they are showing you Mike then answers questions regarding inflation, such as: How has inflation affected things like buying a car? How does inflation affect investments? Your lifestyle? Typically, people only look at the risk of volatility when considering a stock, but they forget that is a temporary risk. Another, more important consideration is the loss of purchasing power. How does inflation affect this? What is the importance of rebalancing your portfolio? He also discusses ways to deal with inflation: Reduce and pay off debt. Give appreciated assets instead of cash. Stay in stocks, but keep diversified as well. To read the latest Economic Review mentioned in this program, click here.
44 minutes | Jul 31, 2021
Current Events and The Market
Do you think more money will solve all your problems? Mike looks at an example from the life of Bill Gross, debunking this myth. What is going on with inflation and all the spending the government is doing? Was the recent plunge in the market just an extreme overreaction to the Delta variant? Mike looks at a recent article that analyzes the current state of the economy, considering: Crude Oil Prices Lumber Prices Real Estate Market Unemployment A listener asked a question about considering a Roth Conversion. Mike explained some of the tax considerations a person would want to think about prior to making that conversion. He also looks at a two-part blog by Gary Alexander entitled Seven Life Lessons for Building Wealth. Many of these items have been covered on past episodes of this show as well! Seek Lifelong Education Be a Contrarian Investor Invest in Yourself Learn from History to Be an Optimist Build Winning Partnerships Don’t Try to Time the Market
46 minutes | Jul 24, 2021
Best of Talking Money: Living Generously Today
Highlights from show aired April 10, 2021 Dan Glaze, National Relationship Manager at the National Christian Foundation, joins Mike to discuss the many benefits being generous with what God has given you. Is giving via your estate plan really sacrificial giving? What exactly is a donor advised fund? Are there giving and tax strategies you can implement when selling your business? Do financial discussions or issues stress you out? Want to get your children more involved in your giving? What are some ideas for communicating with your spouse about giving? Mike and Dan discuss all these areas and more!
46 minutes | Jul 17, 2021
Best of Talking Money: Questions to Ask the Annuity Salesman
Highlights from show aired March 27, 2021 There are many things to consider when looking at all the options for retirement. Many annuity salespeople make glittering promises, but are the products really all they say? Some questions you should ask before signing up: • What happens if you withdraw before you turn 59.5? Are there surrender charges? Taxes? • What is the step up in basis? • How did you find this annuity? Why did you pick it? • How many others have you researched? How do they compare? • What are the restrictions—especially if there is an upfront bonus? • What is the actual performance history (not back tested with current index) net of fees? Some other tips when looking at annuities: • Compare the annuity to the bond market, not just the stock market. • Ask for a detailed explanation of the return numbers and earnings numbers they are presenting. • Look up the insurance company at different regulators to make sure it is a strong company. • Remember to diversify: don’t put all your retirement funds in one annuity. • Consider staggering your contributions so that you have different maturity dates. If you have any other questions or need more clarification, please use the contact form below or call 1-800-588-7526. Also, check our annuities resources on our resources page!
44 minutes | Jul 10, 2021
Best of Talking Money: Interview with Ron Blue
Highlights from show aired March 20, 2021 Ron Blue, the founder of Ronald Blue Trust and author of several books on biblical financial management discusses his background as a CPA and what led him to start Ron Blue & Co, which eventually became Ronald Blue Trust. He also discusses some of the financial advice and wisdom he has gleaned over the years: Materialism isn’t only a first world problem. Asking, “how much is enough?” when setting up a financial plan. The benefits of being generous now. “If it’s true, it’s not new; if it’s new, it’s not true.” You can’t feel financial independence. Contentment is a choice. He and Mike finish by talking about some of the other organizations Ron has been influential in starting: Kingdom Advisors and the Ron Blue Institute. I Timothy 6:17-19 “Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy. Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they my take hold of that which is life indeed.”
47 minutes | Jul 3, 2021
Best of Talking Money: Financial Intimacy
Highlights from show aired February 27, 2021 John Dodd, a Senior Private Wealth Advisor in Ronald Blue Trust’s Nashville, TN office, joins Mike to discuss how someone’s philosophy of money affects their day to day financial decisions. They discuss some ideas such as: Money has gravity: the more you have, the more force it exerts on you. Money has power: it promises what it can’t deliver. Money makes us more of who we are: it reveals our hearts. They also discuss this Financial Intimacy Assessment: a document that Ronald Blue Trust advisors use as they help counsel couples through some of their financial questions and issues. This document covers areas such as: Describe how your parents handled money and what impact that had on you. What is a financial value you want to and don’t want to emulate? What are the primary money messages your children are learning from you and your spouse? If you had an extra $50,000 this year, what would you do with it? If you had one money “do-over” in life, what would it be?
46 minutes | Jun 26, 2021
The Ronald Blue Trust Difference
Mike is joined by Eddie Holland, Ronald Blue Trust advisor, and Hayden Ericks, Ronald Blue Trust intern, to discuss what makes Ronald Blue Trust so different. Some of what makes us different than most other financial planning firms: Our core philosophy is: “Helping Christians free up resources for the fulfilment of the Great Commission.” Our core focus is on financial planning, not on bringing in assets. We don’t earn commissions from products we sell because we don’t sell anything! Our fee-only structure helps make sure we are truly looking out for the best for our clients. We want to work with both spouses to make sure everyone is comfortable with the financial plan and give you both peace of mind financially if something were to happen to either one of you. We have a saying that we are “courageous to advise,” meaning we aren’t afraid to have difficult conversations and tell you what you need to hear, not what you want to hear. We want to feel like your personal CFO: asking you questions to fully understand your financial situation and goals so we can help you achieve those goals. Becoming a client involves a couple of steps: 1. Initial phone conversation: What is the client looking for? Tax Planning Charitable Giving Strategy Investment Strategy Preparing for Retirement 2. In person meeting or virtual meeting: Asking and answering questions of each other to find out if we are a good fit for each other. Making sure we go fully in depth, even answering questions you may not know you had. Really getting to know financial goals and financial situation. 3. The client hiring us to fully create and implement the plan. We try to capture the essence of a person’s financial picture, create their plan, lay out that plan, and then implement that plan. We also work to change and adjust the plan as things change. We see the plan as a living, breathing document and review it often. A financial plan may include: Social Security Strategies Income Tax Optimization Insurance Planning Roth Conversion Planning A withdrawal strategy Medicare considerations Pension lump sum calculations Estate Planning
44 minutes | Jun 19, 2021
Social Security Mistakes
Eddie Holland, CFP®, CPA, CKA® joins Mike to discuss six common social security mistakes that the Wall Street Journal outlined in a recent article: Worrying about dying too young Waiting too long to claim Not working because of the earnings limit Not filing for widow’s or widower’s benefits Getting divorced and remarried (at the wrong time) Hitting tax torpedoes Are you at risk of making any of these mistakes? They also answer a caller question regarding certain employer pension plans, in this case the railroad, and claiming social security benefits.
46 minutes | Jun 12, 2021
Beneficiaries, Part 2
Mike continues his discussion of setting up beneficiaries on your various accounts. Remember that beneficiary designations will take priority over anything named in your will. Don’t unknowingly disinherit your grandkids: a helpful tool for this is using per stirpes language. Is there a danger to naming only one child as the beneficiary and trusting them to distribute to the other heirs according to your desires? How can you make sure your IRA assets get paid out over time instead of one lump sum? Life Events such as birth of a new child, death of a loved one, divorce, marriage should act as triggers for you to double check your beneficiaries. What is the difference between Tenants in Common and Joint Tenants With Right of Survivorship (JWROS) on a real estate deed? When was the last time you double checked your deed to see how it is titled? What about having JWROS on a bank account or a brokerage account? Is it a good idea to have a joint account with an elderly parent and their child who helps them with day to day responsibilities? What about your child’s spouse (your in-laws) and your grandchildren? Have you drafted your documents to make sure they get the assets as you intend? What about 2nd marriages and kids from previous marriages? There are times when a trust would be the most appropriate. Have you considered that route? What about minor children? There are certain people you shouldn’t name as beneficiaries: who are they? Did you know you can name your church or favorite charity as a beneficiary? There are special considerations for this, too.
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