No mortgage , auto or credit card debts and saving more each day is our motto. Do not take out unnecessary college loans when there is community college and degrees with higher return on investments.
- Live small always. Diversify investments all over the place. When you retire, or are laid off, be ready to relocate anywhere that makes fiscal sense – inside or outside the US.
- Do not buy a car when there are buses and you live near your school or job.
- Try paying out yourself first, add more deductions in your tax withholdings (see last section about claiming more tax withholding allowances) and save monthly and not wait for a tax refund.
- Do not buy a house you cannot afford, save in long-term savings such as Index Universal life Policy, accumulation and distribution tax-free.
- Four ways we are taxed: income, capital gains, estate taxes and sales tax
- Four ways we can save: save early at young age even at $100 per month in an indexed annuity or index universal life policy and follow the lists listed in this post (see 1-4).
- Buy only what you need and not what you want, decent car and cell (service plan of $40 per month), decent house and have only two children.
- Find experiences that gives you more pleasure without spending thousands on vacation hot spots.
- Take care of your health each day so you won’t spend more when you age and your body is slowly giving up.
- Marry a man or woman who have the same savings values as you are, living small and wisely saving away for retirement.
If you are not terrified of inflation, wait until you see what that does to your retirement. This money printing from Washington overspending may not destroy you today, but if you expect to retire in the future, you should wake up to this. Of course, if you plan to work until the year of your death, then you can disregard this.
If you have substantial income besides Social Security in retirement, not only will you pay tax on it, you’ll pay tax on more of your Social Security. Your Medicare premiums will be higher and your property taxes may well be higher, since you’ll be disqualified from the tax abatements offered to seniors by many local governments. Republicans aren’t satisfied with these disincentives, and want to means-test Medicare, which is just another way of saying they intend to tax your retirement savings even more. In fact, every government program for seniors that has a means test is, in effect, a tax on savings.
Live small always. Diversify investments all over the place. When you retire, or are laid off, be ready to relocate anywhere that makes fiscal sense – inside or outside the US.
When did the recession first hit? A little over 6 years ago? We earn a little more money these days, because we went into debt for college. We haven’t defaulted on those loans, and don’t plan to….but they changed the rules creating all kinds of financial woes. We’ve moved, too, with the new line of work, but due to the housing market crash, we have a house that we can neither rent nor sell – so we pay both rent and mortgage every month. That effectively means we live on less money now than we did 7 years ago when we earned less and saved more. We took a risk, things didn’t quite work out the way we’d hoped. So, we can pay for day to day living, we can keep up with our debt OR we can save for retirement…. but we can only manage one and a half of those three.
Many Americans are on course to struggle financially in retirement even though the overall amount of money being set aside for retirement is growing. As of mid-2013, Americans had more than $20 trillion in retirement assets through 401(k)-type plans, traditional defined benefit pensions, IRAs, and annuities, according to a report released earlier this month by the Investment Companies Institute, which represents mutual funds, and the American Benefits Council, and the American Council of Life Insurers.
But that money, while growing, is not distributed equally, many argue. Most of the money is being saved by higher income Americans, while many working class and low-wage workers are struggling to even earn regular full-time hours at work.
The NIRS report said that among households headed by blacks and hispanics between the ages of 55 and 64, the average retirement savings account balance was $30,000. Among whites on the verge of retirement, it was $120,000. Meanwhile, investment and human resource firms typically recommend that retirees have assets worth anywhere from eighth to 11 times their annual wages in order to adequately prepare for old age.
“One of the big issues here is a gap in access,” Oakley said. “We have what is essentially a voluntary retirement system and what we know is when we look at minority households, their access to retirement plans on the job is much less than that for whites.”
Disregarding Your Withholding Can Be Taxing
Calculating a level of withholding that is “just right” can sometimes take as much time as preparing a tax return. As a result, some people are inclined the skip the math. For those who want to keep things as simple as possible, the easiest course of action is for taxpayers to claim either Single or Married with one withholding allowance on Form W-4 (pdf). This usually results in a refund for most people. However, there are situations in which claiming one withholding allowance is not sufficient to cover tax liabilities. This seems to be the case in which a person has significant investment income or higher taxes due to the Alternative Minimum Tax. So even people who want to keep things simple and count on a refund should review their withholding at least periodically.
Calculating Withholding More Accurately
The more accurate way to adjust your withholding is to create a projected tax return for this year. You can do this by using the same tax forms you used last year, but substitute the current tax rates. For example, you could calculate your income and deductions based on what you expect for 2013, and use the 2013 tax rates to find out what your projected tax will be. You can also use the worksheet found in Form 1040-ES (pdf), which has formulas for calculating taxes for the current tax year.
After figuring out the tax liability, I then use the withholding calculator found on the IRS Web site to see what the suggested withholding allowances might be. You can also do the math by hand by using the worksheets provided with Form W-4.
What’s a Withholding Allowance?
Withholding allowances do not solely pertain to dependents or to the personal exemption amount, though withholding allowances are related. A withholding allowance is a way for your payroll department to use the look-up tables provided by the IRS to figure out how much tax to withhold from each paycheck. Roughly, a withholding allowance represents your total tax deductions divided by the personal exemption amount. This results in a ratio, and this ratio is how many withholding allowances you should claim. For further explanation please refer to the example below:
Example: Mary is a single parent, qualifies as head of household, and has one dependent. Let’s further assume that her deductions will consist of the standard deduction and two personal exemptions (one for herself and one for her child. The math for her withholding allowances would look like this (all figures below are for the 2013 tax year):
- Standard deduction: 8,950
- Personal exemptions: 2 x 3,900 = 7,800
- Total tax deductions: 8,950 + 7,800 = 16,750
- Deductions divided by personal exemption amount: 16,750 / 3,900 = 4.295
In this example, Mary would claim Single and four withholding allowances on her W-4 Form. (It’s advisable to round down the ratio to avoid having too little tax withheld from your paycheck.) In other words, Mary would check the Single box on line 3 of the Form W-4 and would write “4” on line 5 of the Form W-4 where it asks for “Total number of allowances you are claiming.”
This is a simplified method for finding withholding allowances. For a longer method, see the document, How to Fill out Form W-4.
Seeing How Your New Withholding Allowances Will Impact Your Future Pay Checks
Now that you have figured out your withholding allowances, you can use this figure to see what the tax impact is on your next paycheck will be. You just take the newly calculated withholding allowances and plug them into a payroll calculator. Be sure to have your recent paystub handy so you can use your actual income amounts.
Call Connie Dello Buono , 408-854-1883, (in 50 US states) to save $350 per month towards your long-term retirement savings growing up to $13.5% at an index universal life policy with access to funds during health threats at no added cost. CA Life Lic 0G60621. 1708 Hallmark Lane, San Jose, CA 95124 email@example.com . No age limits. No limits to yearly contribution like an IRA does. No market risk like the 401k. No taxes during accumulation, distribution and withdrawal.
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There are many recommendations for the best places for baby boomers to retire, including the healthiest places, sunniest places, best places overseas, the most affordable places and the best places that you probably can’t afford.
But people are funny. Sometimes they just don’t do what the pundits tell them to do. So where are baby boomers actually starting to retire? Here’s what the facts say about where boomers are headed over the next 10 or 15 years:
Boomers will stay where they already live. Even though boomers are more mobile than their parents, according to a survey by the housing company Del Webb, fewer than half of today’s 50-somethings intend to move at all during retirement. For one thing, according to a Careerbuilder.com survey, over 60 percent of workers over age 60 say they are postponing retirement, because of the economy, the disappearance of pensions and the threats to Social Security. As empty nesters they are likely to downsize, but in familiar surroundings, largely in the suburbs where they settled decades ago. According Sandra Rosenbloom of the Urban Institute, who studies retirement trends, the propensity to move drops dramatically as people get older. Roughly one out of three people in their 20s move in any given year, but as people age into their 50s and beyond, the ratio drops to one in 20. “Boomers are staying put more than anyone thought,” Rosenbloom says. “People of that generation tend to own their own homes and stay there.”
They will move to be near their children and grandchildren. When boomers do decide to move, Rosenbloom notes, they do so largely for prosaic reasons, such as being closer to children or, more importantly, grandchildren. Since the children of boomers are now beginning to get married and have children of their own, they, too, tend to live in the suburbs. Of course, a few well-heeled retirees may purchase a pad in the city or buy a fanciful cottage in the country, but most of those who move will relocate to another suburb, just like the ones they lived in before.
They will relocate to areas with a lower cost of living. Still, many boomers dream of relocating in retirement, leaving behind traffic, cold weather and high taxes. A quarter of a century ago, the most important consideration in choosing where to relocate in retirement was climate. Today, the primary drivers are the cost of living and access to affordable healthcare. Many boomers see selling a house in California or the Northeast as a way to make up for less than adequate IRAs. And the evidence supports the notion that many boomers are indeed moving away from high cost of living blue states like Massachusetts, New York, Illinois and California, and relocating to lower cost red states like Texas and the Carolinas. Recent surveys show the Carolinas have surpassed Florida as the top retirement destination. Texas, Arizona, Georgia and Colorado follow close behind.
They will choose less congested areas. An analysis of recent migration patterns among baby boomers shows that, like their parents, they are leaving the big cities of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco and heading for smaller cities with less congestion, less noise and a slower pace. Yet many boomers do not view retirement as a permanent vacation. Instead, they are turning to nontraditional and less expensive retirement spots for a second chance, or even a second career. They are especially attracted to college towns that offer opportunities for culture as well as work, which many boomers expect to continue on their own terms as consultants, freelancers or small businesspeople. Some current college town hot spots include Newark, Del.; Lancaster, Pa.; Raleigh/Durham, N.C.; Athens, Ga.; Gainesville, Fla.; Austin, Texas; Las Crucas, N.M.; Fort Collins, Colo.; Ashand, Ore. and Bellingham, Wash.
They will move into senior living facilities. The boomers are ready to pursue their own interests. They don’t want to spend time and money on home maintenance. They no longer want a backyard. There is a re-emerging trend toward condos and smaller, low-maintenance homes, including developments that offer special services for older people, such as golf and other recreational activities, social clubs, book clubs, knitting clubs and various educational activities. And while the majority of boomers will continue to live in mixed neighborhoods, among old friends and amidst familiar surroundings, a significant group will gladly retire to independent living facilities that offer services such as meals, housecleaning and convenient access to nearby medical facilities.
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What do Seventh-Day Adventists in California, the residents of Sardinia, Italy and the inhabitants of the islands of Okinawa, Japan have in common? They enjoy the longest, healthiest lives on the planet. Dan Buettner assembled a team of researchers to seek out these “hotspots of human health and vitality,” which he calls Blue Zones, and to figure out what they do that helps them live so long.
Buettner, a world-renowned explorer and a writer for National Geographic, travels the world seeking out new Blue Zones (he’s found five, to date) and speaking at seminars and on TV, sharing the habits that lead to long life. He is the founder of Quest Network, and has set three world records for endurance cycling.
“Dan Buettner takes us on a journey to explore the secrets of longevity and in so doing introduces us to a world of joy in aging … at 91, this is very good news!”
Connie’s comments: Hundreds of years ago, not only are men and women dependent on their garden, kitchen, hands and massage oil and potion in the areas of healing and health but also live in a community supporting each other where love and harmony abide.
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