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  • Writer's pictureDoug Lagerstrom

Organize Your Finances | The Early Bird...

Well it’s a New Year and time for new thoughts. Better still, maybe it’s a good time to revisit your current investments and make sure you are well positioned for 2015. Let’s call it spring cleaning in January.

Get organized: You are probably getting several different financial statements from many different companies. Add the insurance policies, confirmations of activity, tax returns, trust documents, deeds and you’ve got quite a bit to keep track of.

How do you do it?

I believe it makes sense to take advantage of technology. We offer our clients a secure method of storing their legal and financial documents through a personal website. Because no transactions are allowed and social security numbers are not stored, the likelihood of a hacker being interested in this is diminished.

Revisit your goals: finding investment returns in a zero interest rate environment is tricky to say the least. If you’re in the process of taking income from your portfolio, it is even tougher.

Do you opt for the security yet negligible return of CD’s?

Or do you venture into bonds where the income is higher, but the risk to principal can be significant if interest rates rise. Perhaps you decide to jump into stocks. Bear in mind, the market is up 170%+ as of this writing from 2009 and near all-time highs.

Coordinate your planning: Investment decisions should always be made in conjunction with tax and estate considerations. By looking at the big picture you can increase your chances of meeting your long term investment goals. The time to consider your tax situation is not in April, but in November of the year before.

While following these simple steps does not guarantee you will reach your long term goals, you certainly increase your chances. Getting organized, revisiting your goals and coordinating your planning is a recipe for success in the New Year.


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