As the CEO of www.taxconnections.com, I had been searching for a top expert in Financial Planning. Once I read Ed Mahaffy’s book titled “How To Select A Financial Advisor: The Least You Should Know”, interviewed him, reviewed his video library, I knew we had the right person for this special financial planning series.
On Fridays, TaxConnections presents questions often asked of a Financial Planner. Although the majority of Ed Mahaffy’s clients have in excess of 1M in assets, Ed has made himself available to answer financial planning questions for our readers.
Dear Ed: Financial Planning Questions
Question: How can I determine my investment expenses?
Answer: Ask your financial advisor to identify, in writing, the total investment expenses incurred by your account last year and what portion – expressed in dollars as well as percentage – his firm received. Have him compare expenses to Vanguard index funds.
You have just received a windfall, and you do not know what to do. Or maybe you have a list of things you want to do and are ready to spend that money starting tomorrow.
Hold on, not quite yet. First, let’s define instant wealth. Instant wealth is receiving a large sum of money, larger than what you are accustomed to. That amount can range from $5,000 to millions; it’s a relative amount. What isn’t relative is that more often than not, when we are lucky enough to receive instant wealth, we often have no idea how to handle it.
There are too many stories about lottery winners who get it all, then just as quickly lose everything plus more, falling from rich to well below the poverty line.
Money is tied to your dreams and goals, but how to make it all work out in the end? Well, once you have your goals, you make a plan. The plan is all about small steps and incremental, achievable goals. Your dream, for example, could be to have $1,000,000 in the bank by age 40. Let’s break that down:
First of all, what is a million? What does a million even look like? A million dollars is $1,000 times 1,000 – not difficult to do in your lifetime.
So how do you reach your first $1,000,000? Again, start small and start early. You can go to http://www.bankrate.com/calculators/savings/save-million-calculator.aspx, and calculate how to reach your saving goals there are many more online calculators to help you with this goal.