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Tax Planning

7 Questions to Ask Yourself Now for 2019 Tax Prep

August is a jewel of a month in Vermont. While most would argue there isn’t a bad summer month to experience here, August is particularly sweet. It’s also “vacation month,” and there’s no place better to enjoy the lazy days of summer than by Lake Champlain. Another great thing about August? It’s the perfect time to start prepping your taxes.

Quantum Leap Capital

Pushing the River

Recently, a close friend told me she felt like she was trying to push the river. It was the first and only time I can recall anyone using the term, and it has stuck with me since. It comes to mind when…

Personal Finance

Three Reasons You Should Leave That Money in The Bank Doing Nothing

When I tell clients they need to increase their reserves, I often hear things like “Well, how much do I need to keep there doing nothing?” or “I’d rather pay off my mortgage/student loan/car loan than leave all that money there doing nothing.”

Financial Outlook

Is Your Money Diversified Enough to Avoid Crisis?

I met with a prospective client recently who had an account full of actively managed mutual funds. When I pointed out what they were paying in fees, some of which were buried in the statements and difficult…

Financial Outlook

What Goes Down

There are two major economic trends that have been unfolding for almost forty years now, and both are nearing a turning point. Interest rates and tax rates have been declining since the early 1980s and both must go up at some point. I’ve been telling our clients that tax and interest rates are going to go up for so long now I sound like a nut job. But sooner or later, every prognosticator is right.

Financial Outlook

Work Smarter, Not Harder

I met with a personal trainer this morning who told me I need to work smarter, not harder. I’d been doing hour-long weight lifting and aerobic workouts five days a week, which poses greater injury risk and, potentially, long-term heart damage. He told me I could achieve a higher fitness level, reduce injuries, and just be healthier by working out less, and modifying other detracting behaviors.

Quantum Leap Capital

Autumn of Life

Autumn is a time for us to reflect back on the days of summer, and for the kids to go back to school. This is a post about both.

Financial Outlook

The Tax Reform Pipe Dream

Congress is preparing to debate the budget deal that includes the tax reform proposed by the current administration, so I thought I’d chime in with my opinion of where this might go. In a nutshell, nowhere.

Financial Outlook

Gratitude and Empathy

Empathy is an important characteristic for a financial advisor, and as I talk to people about their financial concerns, I find myself worrying for them about those things too. Like when a business owner I work with told me if things don’t pick up in a few months they’ll have to close their doors, or when a client loses their job in a “resource action.”

Personal Finance

Beware the Hooks

When my kids were little we watched a lot of SpongeBob SquarePants—so much so that my now 18-year-old still calls up references to it in everyday conversation. SpongeBob aficionados will get this reference.

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