AdviceIQ Articles

  • Beware Home Coinsurance

    Headlines scream about health insurance policies’ complications and traps, but other kinds of policies need your scrutiny, too.

    A friend, for example, asks me about his rental property. He just moved from a duplex that he entirely owned, though he only lived on one side. He purchases a home and finds a new tenant for where he’d been living – then reels when insurance on his duplex nearly doubles. After debate, he cuts the replacement cost that the insurance company put on the building to $250,000 from $500,000. And red flags fly in every direction in my brain.

  • Danger of Investing in Startups

    Investing in a startup means risk no matter how near and dear you hold the business – or the business owner. Some business plans aren’t worth the paper they are printed on; others may deserve your thorough review.

    Our clients regularly ask for our opinion on offers to invest in private companies, typically business startups seeking support from friends, family and other so-called angel investors. Once it was a nephew launching an aeronautics technology company. Another time, a real estate interest in a cemetery. The list goes on.

  • How to Prepare for Your Death

    Most folks don't make preparations before dying. Preparing means communicating with relatives and other loved ones – and it’s hard.

    First responders and combat soldiers train for life-threatening situations. They rehearse responses and how to communicate with team members. Generally, families don't do that. When a crisis strikes, loved ones wing it amidst stress and confusion.

    We know serious accidents and life-threatening illnesses can strike. Shouldn’t we communicate our wishes to our loved ones, our potential caregivers, before a crisis?  

  • The Case for ETFs

    Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) are increasingly popular. Aside from their generally low costs and liquidity – these baskets of securities trade on exchanges throughout the day – ETFs typically have the advantage of specialization: They allow you to target particular segments of investing.

  • Advisors: Not Only for the Rich

    It’s a widely held myth: Financial advisors are only for the rich. I keep hearing this blithe – and oh, so false – assertion repeated promiscuously, and often by people who should know better.

    The numbers tell a different story. Our table (see below) gives insight into the real-life world of advisors. Check out the advisor types highlighted in yellow. This shows a far different picture from the standard baloney that all advisors wear bespoke silk suits and cater exclusively to plutocrats.

     

  • Big Finance, Big Gender Gap

    From the small home to the halls of Congress and canyons of Wall Street, women face a daunting gap in financial ability and power.

  • How to Get Diversified

    How do you ensure proper asset diversification? As financial advisors, we face this question all the time.

    The first hurdle is to get clients to tell us about all their holdings. It is rare that we get to review the whole picture at one time. Most do not provide complete information or comprehensive records. It’s not because they do not want to, but because they often do not know or have not kept organized records.

  • September: Cruelest Month

    T.S. Eliot was wrong about April being the cruelest month. For investors, it’s September.

    It’s bad enough that September marks the end of summer, shorter days, cooler weather, the beginning of school and, for those of us who live in the Boston area, the almost annual Red Sox meltdown. It’s also the worst month, by far, for stock market performance.

  • Planning in Your 30s and 40s

    Your 30s and 40s are when you lay the groundwork for your retirement. As far-off as that may seem, you owe it to yourself and your loved ones to start preparing now.

    Many of the calls that I receive are from folks in their 50s or 60s who are either within sight of retirement or already retired. Many of these callers are pretty well-prepared for retirement and seek my help to fine-tune their situation, or to help them through this next phase of life.

  • Partners’ Financial Frustrations

    A specific financial trait in their partner often frustrates clients, I’ve found. Lately I’ve been saying something different to these clients, something I hope both useful and true.

    When you find yourself frustrated with something your partner does, you need to:

    1. Believe they could act differently, and

    2. Talk to them like an adult about what’s bothering you.

    Two points deceptively simple but challenging to implement in real life. Yet these pointers give you a chance for progress and change in either your personal or your business partnerships.

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