All Posts By

Geoff Hall

Kids and Money

By | The Friday Brief | One Comment

You probably aren’t surprised to hear that I’d like to raise my kids to be generous, kind, patient, thrifty and modest–in all areas, including their wealth. I hope they’ll be capable of making smart financial decisions and have a healthy relationship with money. It’s not surprising because we’d all love for our children to exhibit those characteristics. What is surprising is how few of us are actually having intentional conversations with our kids about money. We all have the best intentions but life gets busy and the kids get crazy. We find ourselves reacting to money questions with short, pat

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Equifax and Capital One: How to Protect Yourself

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

Last week, the consumer credit reporting agency, Equifax, settled with the US Federal Trade Commission over its 2017 data breach that affected over 147 million Americans. The settlement of up to $700 million includes as much as $425 million for individual settlements. On Monday, Capital One announced that a hacker had gained access to the personal information of over 100 million people. Among the personal data exposed were names, addresses, dates of birth, credit scores, transaction data, Social Security numbers and bank account numbers. It would appear that we are living during a time where hacks, data breaches and stolen

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Enjoy Financial Freedom Before You Are Financially Independent

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

One of the major goals we often help clients plan for is financial independence. Imagine the freedom of knowing you do not have to work. You would be free to start the company you have always dreamed of, serve an organization you are passionate about regardless of pay or take an extended trip with your family or friends. Maybe you would worry less about money and the minutia of your daily finances. What if I told you that it is possible to experience some of that same freedom before you are financially independent? Or if you already are financially independent,

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How Would You Rate Your Financial Well-Being?

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

What if I asked you to rate your financial well-being on a scale of 1 to 10 — 1 being poor and 10 being excellent. How would you answer? Perhaps it would be helpful if we made an effort to first define financial well-being. There’s a good chance that we all have a slightly different definition, but I think it’s safe to assume that most people’s would include some of the following components. Freedom from worry.The ability to spend as much time as I’d like with family and friends.Knowing that I am on track to accomplish the things that are

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Consider Your Savings Account

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

I started banking with my current bank almost 30 years ago. I chose NCNB because they had a branch a short walk from my dorm room. As a college freshman, proximity and the fact that they were willing to give me a credit card was about all that mattered. NCNB has a new name and has evolved to become one of the biggest banks in the country. My wife, Crystal, and I stay with them for several reasons. Their online banking offering is easy and intuitive, we have the ability to deposits checks on our phones and there’s always an

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Now is the Time

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

People often ask us what we do with our client portfolios during a market downturn.  (For the record, we invest our own money the exact same way.) Evidence shows that making investment decisions during periods of high market volatility is the wrong thing to do and usually leads to poor results.  So our short answer is “hopefully nothing.”  But before you go off and do nothing, it’s important to note that that answer is predicated on the assumption that you’ve done the leg work ahead of time to ensure that your portfolio is invested properly. In other words, that it’s

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2018 Year End Money Moves

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

As the holidays and new year approach with alarming rapidity–but before you get swept up in parties and family gatherings completely–it’s a great time to take a look at your finances. 2018 still has some important planning opportunities, and getting ahead of 2019 could pay huge dividends, too. With that in mind, here’s a quick list of seven things you might consider doing before 2018 draws to a close. 1. Revisit your 401(k) contributions: The IRS recently announced an increase to the annual contribution limit for 401(k), 403(b) and 457 plans. The current annual limit, effective through the end of 2018, is

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Quarterly Statements and Market Volatility

By | The Friday Brief | 2 Comments

Lofty expectations for corporate earnings have combined with rising interest rates and increased global trade tensions to bring volatility back to the stock market after a long hiatus.  It would appear that daily, multiple percentage point swings in stock prices may be the norm, at least for a while. While it’s perfectly normal, expected and even healthy for the market to behave this way, it’s never comfortable to watch your nest egg gyrate with the daily fluctuations in the market.  The financial media doesn’t help with their attention-grabbing headlines.  So what should you do if the current level of stock

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Navigating the Challenges that come with Aging

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

It’s safe to assume that, short of an untimely end, we will all continue to age. And yet, as financial planners, our experience has shown us that most address the topic of aging in one of two ways: either by having a vague conversation about downsizing at some point and leaving it at that, or by waiting until a crisis occurs and then being forced into action. With aging an inevitability for all of us, doesn’t it make sense to spend more time planning for what we hope our lives will look like in our 70’s, 80’s and 90’s and

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The Piano Man

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

Good financial planning is the process of making smart financial decisions over and over again. With time, these smart decisions compound on each other and give you the freedom to do more of the things that are important you. Just for fun, here is a quick list of some of the financial decisions we’ve recently made in my family… • Updated our will and estate plan. • Bought a used car instead of a new one. • Added more term life insurance after our daughter Rhodes was born. • Switched to a new tool for budgeting. • Increased our contribution

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