All Posts By

Geoff Hall

Beacon Flash – Tax Strategies Prior to 12.31.2017

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

President Trump is expected to sign the new tax reform legislation into law later this week. With that in mind, here are a few important strategies that may be worth considering before the end of this year. Under the new tax bill there will be a $10,000 cap on the amount of state income and property taxes you can deduct in 2018.  Therefore it may make sense to pay part or all your 2018 property taxes and any projected 2017 state income tax balance (i.e. your Q4 2017 estimated state taxes) prior to 12.31.2017.  This could be the case even

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“Free” Money!

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The Holiday Season is here and when it comes deciding what gifts we’d like to give our friends and family most of us are somewhere on the spectrum between vaguely conceptualizing that it may be about time to start shopping and picking up a few of those last-minute items. I won’t divulge where I am on that spectrum, but if you’re like me, your giving list will probably include a few gift cards or maybe even some cash. I used to feel a little guilty giving gift cards but lately I’ve been reconsidering them as a potentially thoughtful gift. When

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7 Year-End $ Moves Worth Considering

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Maybe, just maybe, in this brief period between Thanksgiving and Christmas, you’ve got a few moments to think about and act on your finances. It’s a great opportunity to do so, as you still have a little bit of time to get some important things done for 2017, and you can also start being proactive for 2018 (which is much easier to do right now than in March of 2018, which may be the next time you stop to think of it). With that in mind, here’s a quick list of seven things you might consider doing before 2017 draws to

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How’s Your Portfolio Doing?

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I’m not a huge sports fan, although sometimes I wish I were.  If asked how I thought the Carolina Panthers defensive line was looking this year my honest answer would be that I have no idea.  But if I were asked that same question in a place where I felt like I really wanted to fit in, I might awkwardly blurt out something like, “I’d say strong…to…quite strong.” That’s probably similar to what many people would say when asked about how their portfolio was doing.  Much like Ben Stiller in this clip from the 90’s comedy Meet the Parents. A few

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How to Protect Your Credit: 8 Steps

By | The Friday Brief | No Comments

The recent data breach at Equifax seems to have brought to the forefront our new reality. A reality where hacks, data breaches and stolen Social Security numbers are going to be commonplace at least until we come up with a better system for personal identification and financial transactions. If this is true, then it’s important for all of us, whether we were potentially affected by the recent breach or not, to make personal credit monitoring a long-term habit. Unfortunately, there’s no silver bullet that can make us impervious to the activities of financial fraudsters but there are certainly things we

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Your Declaration of Independence

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  Some 241 years ago the United States of America became a sovereign nation simply by declaring it, knowing all too well that the prospect of actually winning it against the will of the most powerful nation in the world was smaller than scant. The men who signed that declaration knew quite well that they would be hanged for treason if the Continental Army and Navy failed to defend their new country’s declaration of independent sovereignty. Unmitigated audacity against all odds – that’s what July 4th represents in this country. What if we were to honor our bold forefathers and

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Financial Wisdom

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This week I’ve been cleaning out my desk as I prepare for our move to our new offices on Glenwood Avenue. While organizing, I discovered that I have a paper copy of every single tax return I’ve filed since 1994. The financial nerd in me has thoroughly enjoyed reviewing copies of my old Schedule D tax forms. Schedule D is the form where you report all your capital gains, err losses, to the IRS. Having copies of mine has given me the gift of being able to reflect on almost all the investment decisions I’ve made over the years –

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Buying Happiness, Part 2: Money Is Time!

By | The Friday Brief | 2 Comments

In the 1985 comedy film Brewster’s Millions Monty Brewster (Richard Prior) discovers that his deceased great uncle, Rupert Horn, has left him his entire fortune but with several conditions. Brewster can either take $1 million up front, or spend $30 million within 30 days to inherit $300 million. But, if he chooses the latter, after 30 days, he may not own any assets that are not already his, and he must get value for the services of anyone he hires. He may donate only 5% to charity and lose 5% by gambling, and he may not waste the money by

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Enjoy Financial Freedom Before You Are Financially Independent

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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.

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