Money on the mind
Indeed, I woke up this morning with money on my mind. Not in an I love money kind of way, but in a curious, what can I learn more about money way. My curiosity served me well because I was able to take away several nuggets from the financial investment meeting I attended this morning. I especially wanted to share this with my people: women!
Pay before you play
• Always invest at least 15% of your net income.
• Do this monthly before anything else.
• If employed, match what your employer offers.
• Max out your Roth because it is a tax-free shelter over the growth period.
• Use brokerage options for aggressive savings and play later money!
Social Security = Backup Plan
Who knows. Social Security benefits may look different by the time you are eligible to receive any. Starting with a good long-term financial plan will help us not to be beholden to those scarce dollars. But in the meantime, you need to know what you are owed. Women who have made less than their husbands should especially review their earnings.
A smart rule is to check your social security benefits annually. Contact SSA.gov and confirm that your income for the previous year is accurate. Unfortunately, there are thieves who have stolen people’s social security via identity fraud. But it only takes a few minutes for you to make sure you are not a victim. And if you are, you will have time to catch the error early.
Find a Financial Advisor
All financial advisors are not made equal. Make sure you interview them like you would a date. If they are not a good fit for you, meaning if they cannot relate to your circumstances and offer feedback pertinent to your individual needs, then ditch them (politely). Say thank you, but no thank you, and continue to interview process until you find someone who is willing to work and grow with you.
I am currently in a relationship with a financial counselor who has obviously outgrown me. They never return calls anymore, at least not without requesting that I set a date several calendar months out and pay a fee. Mind you, my counselor gets paid from the money they invest for me each month, and I don’t recall talking to them in the last three years. Obviously, our relationship has been lopsided and has come to an end. Thank God, I believe I have found a replacement.
Start early! Do not wait to take care of your plan for wealth. And if you have children, get them involved too. Did you know your child can start a Roth as long as they have a job? They do not have to wait until they are 18. Again, discuss all the options for your family with a certified financial planner who has your best interests in mind (not just your money).
A lot of fear-marketing is going around. Ads for gold encourage us to buy it now because of our topsy-turvy inflationary market. Many people who were once gaining high dividends in the stock market saw losses and bailed. However, we are not gambling our retirement or future plans away. We should be in this for the long term. The markets will recover.
Some say we are in a recovery phase now. And it is possible to buy short and make long paper during a down economy. So do not take all your cash and buy gold (which has never outpaced inflation) or bitcoins unless you are exceptionally savvy in these areas. Steer clear. Allow the market to correct itself and talk to a professional about your options.
Those are my takeaways, which I hope are helpful. You see, I had the fortune to graduate from one of the best business schools in the state with a degree in finance, real estate, and insurance, so I have a good knowledge base about money and can usually scope out a hoax. Or maybe that is the Holy Spirit. Most definitely, it is the Holy Spirit! Lol! Still, we are in this world to listen and continually learn, then take the necessary steps to create the present we want to live in and the future we long to see. I am grateful to the Strategic Community Alliance, Inc. for providing this morning’s workshop and for Amy Posch, who drilled down on the opportunities available to make us financially free!
God wants us to be good stewards of what He has provided. May we use our blessings well and generate generational wealth. Really,