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Life Insurance Myth

By Trilogy Financial
October 16, 2023
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“I won’t be here to spend the life insurance benefit.”

Sure, one of the most popular reasons for buying life insurance is ensuring your family’s financial security after your homegoing. But the truth is, life insurance has many living benefits, too. Some term life insurance policies allow you to access a portion of your death benefit if you are ever diagnosed with a terminal, critical or chronic illness, which you can use however you wish.

Power of cash value

And permanent life insurance has the ability to accumulate cash value. You can use that money for whatever you like, such as for an emergency, a down payment on a house, or college—no questions asked! Or you can let the cash value continue to grow, which could supplement your retirement income.* The choice is yours.

Learn more about life insurance’s living benefits. Contact an Trilogy Advisor today.

Download this comprehensive blog as a concise one-page here: Life Insurance Myth

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By
Mike Loo, MBA
July 12, 2018

There may be plenty of factors outside of your control that impact your financial situation, such as the markets, the economy as a whole, or an unexpected illness. But those circumstances may not play as critical of a role in your financial life as you might think. The real dangers to your financial future are the lies you tell yourself when it comes to financial planning. Here are some ways you could be undermining your financial success and some ideas on how to change course.

Lie #1: I Don't Need Help. I Know What I'm Doing

Let’s say you read a plethora of financial planning books, stay up-to-date on the markets, and know all about budgeting software. That may put you ahead of a lot of other people, but there are certain aspects of financial planning that often go ignored even by the most knowledgeable people. Let’s look at a couple of hypothetical examples.

How Often Do You Review?

How often do you refresh your goals, adjust your plan, and determine how and when to make changes? A financial planner does more than just monitor your portfolio. They act as your coach, motivating and guiding you when things get tough. They bring an objective perspective to the table and develop a customized strategy based on your financial priorities. The end result is increased confidence in your financial strategies and decision-making. You don’t want to suffer a financial setback just because you were too busy or too forgetful to keep up with your financial plan.

In Case of Emergency

What if the unthinkable were to happen and you couldn’t make financial decisions? Will your family be able to handle the details and figure out your financial plan? An advisor can offer a holistic overview of your net worth and determine what elements need to be in place to protect your family and your wealth. These are often things you may not be aware of, such as life insurance or a living trust.

Market Research

Investing is tricky business on a good day. Can you manage the emotions, anxiety, and possible second-guessing of your investment choices if you were living on a fixed income and the market were to face a correction? An advisor has tools to evaluate cash flow to help you determine the probability of your money lasting through your retirement years. They can also keep you accountable and committed to your long-term strategy in the midst of market ups and downs.

Lie #2: I Can Always Get Help When I Need It

If you were going on vacation, would you rather have everything packed ahead of time and enjoy your restful break? Or would you prefer to be disorganized and arrive without essential items, forced to then spend your time off running around shopping for things you forgot? When it comes to money, it’s the same idea. When you really need the help, you may have lost your most valuable resource – time. Instead of thoughtfully researching your options and making decisions with a clear head, waiting until you need help will result in a frantic scramble to just get things done.

Whatever it is you experience in life, having a financial planner on your team will help you stay on top of your money and prepare in advance for future milestones and events.

Lie #3: I Don't Need An Advisor, I Have Financial Technology

Financial planning has evolved. Years ago, it was about who had the most up to date information on a company to buy a stock, and the planning industry was mostly concerned with buying and selling stocks and bonds rather than portfolio management. Today, financial planning is more about what’s missing in your overall strategy, what have you not thought of, and what could you be doing that you’re not. On top of that, the financial planning process helps you emotionally connect with your goals so you can get on the right track. Technology, at the present time, can’t do that.

Technology has many good points, but several drawbacks as well. For example, you can find more information than you’ll ever need, but you’ll also come across plenty of misinformation which could lead you astray. It’s not uncommon for someone to research something on the Internet and find just as many pros as there are cons. If you want to save for your child’s college education, you’ll find articles touting the value of using a 529, a Roth IRA, or a Roth 401(k). How do you figure out which one is truly right for you? The abundance of information has created so much noise that in many cases, people don’t do anything at all.

While technology should be used in financial planning, it should not replace the role of an advisor. The importance of what advisors do from a human aspect is help clients sift through the noise and misinformation and encourage them to move forward in taking action.

A Change In Perspective?

Have you ever believed one of these lies? It’s easy to do, but the consequences are real. Don’t take a gamble with your money. Join forces with a financial advisor who can help you make the most of what you have, where you are, and get you positioned for a bright financial future. Call my office at (949) 221-8105 x 2128, or email me at michael.loo@lpl.com for a no-strings-attached meeting to discuss your situation.

By
Windus Fernandez Brinkkord, AIF®, CEPA
March 6, 2019

The world of finance is tricky to navigate. With so many options available for your investments, it can seem complicated and daunting when trying to plan for your financial future.

The three buckets principle is a way of simplifying the complex and is suitable for people with substantial savings as well as people who are just starting out. Whether you’re well established in your career or fresh out of college, setting up your three buckets should be a priority.

How does it work?

The three buckets are:

  • Bucket 1: Emergency Funds
  • Bucket 2: The Goal Bucket
  • Bucket 3: Retirement Bucket

Bucket 1 – Emergency funds

Expect the unexpected and make sure you’ve planned financially for it.

Unanticipated costs can be devastating financially. Getting laid off work, writing your car off or escalating medical costs, for example, can set you on the financial back foot for many years.

Bucket number 1 creates a buffer of cash that is only to be used for such emergencies. By having this bucket available, it means that should the need arise you won't be dipping into other savings or going into debt to cover the cost.

How much to save in your emergency fund bucket

Aim to have 3-6 months’ worth of living expenses here. Add up all your monthly costs, such as mortgage, bills, transport costs, and groceries, and that will give you the total to aim for.

Bucket 2 – The goal bucket

This bucket is for your short to mid-term financial goals. Savings for your kid's college, a down payment on a house, or even saving for a vacation can go in this bucket.

How much to save in your goal bucket

This is effectively disposable income so anything left over after you’ve attended to your monthly outgoings and buckets 1 and 3 can be added to bucket number 2.

If you've managed to fill bucket 1 already, you can use that cash to start filling bucket 2.

Bucket 3 – Retirement bucket

It's never too early to start saving for retirement, so you should aim to have this bucket set up as soon as you possibly can, ideally, as soon as you enter the workforce.

How much to save in your retirement bucket?

Aim to save 15-20% of your gross income for retirement. If your company offers a 401(k) plan, deposit part of your bucket 3 money there. If you don't have access to a 401(k) plan, consider a Roth or traditional IRA to maximize your investment.

Bucket 3 is made for investing as you want to maximize your returns for your golden years.

These three buckets will help you successfully save for your future. It's a good idea to attend to buckets 1 and 3 first. Once you have them filling nicely, you can look to start filling bucket number 2.

This simple strategy is easy to follow yet priceless for effective financial planning. If you haven’t got yours set up yet, make it a priority to do so.

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.

Contributions to a traditional IRA may be tax deductible in the contribution year, with current income tax due at withdrawal. Withdrawals prior to age 59 ½ may result in a 10% IRS penalty tax in addition to current income tax.

The Roth IRA offers tax deferral on any earnings in the account. Withdrawals from the account may be tax free, as long as they are considered qualified. Limitations and restrictions may apply. Withdrawals prior to age 59 ½ or prior to the account being opened for 5 years, whichever is later, may result in a 10% IRS penalty tax. Future tax laws can change at any time and may impact the benefits of Roth IRAs. Their tax treatment may change.

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