Entries by Liane

Protect your credit and minimize the risk of ID theft

All three credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, TransUnion) have sensitive information on us. Their customers are the banks, credit card companies, mortgage lenders, auto lenders, cell phone companies, insurance companies, etc who inquire about our credit-worthiness. So, even though we don’t have any interaction with them, they still have sensitive information about our financial picture (social […]

Health and Education Updates

It’s Veterans Day, and before I touch on the financial topics, I must send my thanks to all those who have risked their lives to protect our world – not just my fellow armed forces veterans, but police and firefighters as well. And to my father (and all you Army veterans out there), you have […]

Year-End Tax Planning

As the end of the year approaches, it is a good time to think of planning moves that will help lower your tax bill for this year and possibly the next. Factors that compound the challenge include turbulence in the stock market, overall economic uncertainty, and Congress’s failure to act on a number of important […]

Social Security Optimization to become less optimal

If the current budget legislation is passed into law later this week, big changes will occur in the world of Social Security optimization. The impact of this legislation: No more restricted applications and no more file-and-suspend strategies. (Survivor benefits can still be optimized and voluntary suspensions will still be available). In English: If you are […]

An Inside View of Financial Planning Fees

I’ve worked in the financial services industry since 1997.  I worked for two brokerage firms and an independent investment advisory firm before opening Clarus in 2005.  Over these many years, I’ve met hundreds of advisors and seen nearly as many pricing models.  It’s no wonder there is confusion as to what financial advisory services cost, […]

2015 Social Security Increase – Another Reason to Delay Benefits?

Monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits will increase 1.7 percent in 2015, the Social Security Administration announced last week. This historically small adjustment for the third straight year translates to about an extra $20 per month for the average recipient. If you’re thinking of delaying benefits, you’ll like these statistics:  Social Security […]

Clients with PIMCO or Vanguard products, here’s a quick update:

PIMCO – Expect choppy waters in the near-term as investors shift to other bond funds in the wake of the departure of PIMCO co-founder Bill Gross.  If you don’t want to stick with PIMCO during this turbulence, contact me quickly so that I can recommend appropriate changes to your portfolio. Vanguard – Great news on […]

Robo-Advisors & The Investment Manager Search

At Clarus, we offer specific investment advice for those who want professional guidance and are at ease with implementing rebalancing instructions.  However, we recognize that some people reach a point where they are more comfortable delegating than implementing the investment changes each year.  When that time comes, a thoughtful, deliberate review of investment managers, including […]

Long Term Care Policy to Provide Less for More

A client recently purchased LTC insurance after two years of thinking it over.  Whew, I thought, just in time!  Genworth’s newest policy becomes available next week, complete with 30% higher premiums and the following reduction in benefits: Maximum Daily Benefit amount changed from $400 to $300 Maximum Monthly Benefit amount changed from $12,000 to $9,000 […]