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So far Mike McCann has created 58 blog entries.

Vacation Goals and Financial Planning

Mike McCannWhat story do you want to tell about your next vacation? What could make your next trip amazing? How do vacation goals and financial planning intersect? The answers could lie in this year’s travel trends. In 2022, people planned getaways that weren’t so much focused on where they went, but rather on what they experienced.

2022 Travel Trends

  • Friendcations: After missed milestones and months (or years) of Zooming since 2020, friends are reuniting for the first time in a while and they’re traveling in bigger groups to do it. That’s one reason why bookings for party spots that are great for big groups – like Vegas, the Caribbean, and Ibiza – exploded in 2022, according to a CNBC report.
  • Pet Travel: Forbes recently reported more people are taking their pets with them on leisure and business travel. And more hotels and airlines are becoming pet-friendly, finding ways not only to accommodate pets but to also treat them as guests. One unique aspect to this trend is how some folks are integrating into other trends – like taking workcations or bringing pets on extreme adventures.
  • Extreme Adventures: Many folks, after feeling cooped up and bored, were ready to adopt a thrilling new adventure or physical challenge as their dream vacations. Safaris, deep sea dives, and extreme hiking were among the favorites, according to Conde Nast Traveler. Some even signed up for sophisticated “space camps” for a truly out-of-this-world vacation experience.

vacation goals and financial planningTravel trends come and go, but the benefits of getting away can last a lifetime.

It’s a chance to unplug, destress, recharge, and create memories. Vacations have even been shown to provide physical health benefits, too, like lower blood pressure and lower risks of heart disease, according to . Simply put, vacations are good for us. They are an important piece of the financial planning process and of creating a truly rich life.

Are you ready to get away? Your advisor can help you achieve your vacation goals. That’s the value of #lifewithPerspective.

By |2022-11-20T14:37:39-07:00November 8th, 2022|Financial Planning|

Health Trends and Long-Term Planning Needs

McCann-WEBLife expectancy and health trends are constantly evolving. Recent data from the Alzheimer’s Association validate why financial planning is more important than ever. Keep reading to learn how health trends and long-term planning needs go hand in hand.

Deaths from Alzheimer’s more than doubled between 2000 and 2019, while those from heart disease decreased. Alzheimer’s kills more people than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. Progression is slow and can be uncertain. People age 65 and older survive an average of four to eight years after a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, though some live as long as 20 years.

Preparing for long-term care is an important part of your financial planning process. After diagnosis of a serious illness, your options become more limited.

Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia take a devastating toll – not just on those with the disease, but on entire families. Research shows that millions of care contributors make enormous personal financial sacrifices every day, including cutting back on important necessities for themselves and their families.

About 80 percent of the help provided to older adults in the United States comes from family, friends, or other unpaid caregivers. About 25 percent of dementia caregivers are “sandwich generation” caregivers, meaning they care for both an aging parent and at least one child.

Many people have misconceptions about what expenses Medicare and Medicaid cover, leaving them unprepared to handle the tremendous costs associated with the disease. An Alzheimer’s Association survey found 13 percent sold personal belongings, such as a car, to help pay for costs related to dementia. Nearly half tapped into savings or retirement funds, and 11 percent cut back on spending for their children’s education.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

There are a variety planning options that can help preserve your income and investments, while ensuring you and your loved ones will not have to sacrifice quality care or basic life necessities in the event of a long-term illness. Your advisor can help you explore and understand those options, and develop a plan that fits your needs.

Women Celebrating BirthdayLiving with Alzheimer’s

♦ An estimated 6.5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s; two-thirds are women.

♦ African-Americans are about two times more likely to have Alzheimer’s than Whites; Hispanics are one and one-half times more likely.

♦ People living with Alzheimer’s or other dementias have more skilled nursing facility stays, more home health care visits, and twice as many hospital stays per year as other older people.

Source: Alzheimer’s Association
By |2022-06-06T15:36:31-07:00May 9th, 2022|Financial Planning, Health Care, Insurance|

Shifting Priorities and Changing Plans

Shifting priorities and changing plansPivot. Fans of the television show Friends may always get a chuckle from that word. For many, however, it now represents a strategy for dealing with life in a post-Covid world. Shifting priorities and changing plans have been dubbed the “new normal” and it can be pretty stressful.

Yet, change doesn’t have to be random and scary. With the right preparation and planning, unexpected change can be manageable and intentional shifts in direction can be exciting.

The Covid lockdown became a time of self-reflection, evaluating priorities, and taking stock in careers. Some people found themselves out of work, while others gained a new sense of pride in their jobs when they were deemed “essential” for the first time.

Many of us adapted to working from home. We attended online meetings with kids clambering on the sidelines, conducted business while the dog barked at the Amazon delivery person, or focused on tasks with a quiet home as the backdrop. Some learned to enjoy it, others found it maddening. The idea of work-life balance took on new meaning.

Roughly 20 months into this radical shake-up of our lives, many people are seeing new opportunity, a chance to pivot with purpose – to reboot our lives, go back to school, start a family, change careers, retire early. The highest pay or the fastest path to promotion may be lower on the list of priorities. Flexibility, family-friendly policies and mental health care benefits are in higher demand.

If you’re experiencing a major life change or shift in priorities, talk with your financial planner. Any adjustment in your short-term and long-term personal plans and goals will impact your short-term and long-term financial situation. Areas to consider include:

  • Changes to current income and expenses;
  • Adjustments to savings and investments;
  • Emergency-fund needs;
  • Retirement and education account funding; and
  • Compatibility of your risk tolerance with your overall goals and needs.

A pivot in life, whether voluntary or forced, can be an opportunity. Make the most of it. We’re here to help.

By |2021-12-02T13:49:36-07:00December 20th, 2021|Current Affairs, Financial Planning|

Begin a Money Conversation

McCann-WEBTeaching children about money management will help set them on the right path to financial independence and success. Of course, it’s not as easy as it sounds to begin a money conversation. As a parent, I understand how challenging it can be to impart ideas and wisdom on your own kids. Let’s face it, most young people are inclined to take advice from anyone but their parents. Factor in that many people don’t feel qualified to teach financial topics, and the task becomes even more daunting.

The good news is there are many resources and people to assist in you.

As a long-time and active volunteer for Scouts BSA, one of my regular roles has been as a Personal Management Merit Badge counselor. This badge addresses elements like creating a budget, knowing the difference between saving and investing, and exploring and evaluating careers. The curriculum was developed by Brent Neiser, CFP® and Eagle Scout. It’s a challenging merit badge that takes several months to complete.

I’ve learned a couple of interesting things by teaching the course. First, young people are often eager to talk about money if you approach it in a way that is relatable. Second, they tend to pick up on key concepts more quickly than you might expect.

Here are a few tips to begin a money conversation with a child or young adult in your life.

  • Start with the basics. That means introducing the importance of living within your means. Earning a weekly or monthly allowance for completing chores is a great start. When a child manages an allowance, he or she begins to understand how to balance wants with cash flow.
  • Make budgeting real and personal, not theoretical. Help your child create a budget. Older children can use a simple spread sheet to track spending, saving, investing and charitable giving. Young ones can use labeled envelopes or jars for each category.
  • Show that money can grow over time. Use this simple chart to show how a person who invests $5,000 a year starting at age 25 can end up with nearly $825,000 by age 65, while one who waits until age 50 to invest $5,000 a year would have just $128,000. Then show them a picture of what they could buy with the $697,000 difference. (e.g, a new Tesla Roadster costs about $200,000; they could buy several.)

Our advisors often facilitate family discussions about money. It’s one of our Core Client Services. That’s the value of Perspective.

By |2021-07-15T10:32:04-07:00July 26th, 2021|Financial Planning|

Psychology of Money

McCann-WEBOne of the most important lessons I’ve learned in my career is that financial outcomes are governed by behavior, not knowledge. It has to do with the psychology of money. Our financial success is most influenced by our emotions and feelings, rather than the facts and formulas.

Isn’t that the case with so much in life?

Our emotions are uniquely our own, given our diverse backgrounds, ages, and experiences. So, it’s important to be aware of our emotions and their impact on the decisions we make. At the same time, it’s unrealistic to think we can shut them out of our decision-making process.

Even reasonable people can react poorly to financial circumstances. In The Psychology of Money, the author highlights this reality and explores proactive steps anyone can take to work in tandem with their emotions. Here are two interesting examples.

You’ll Change

I’ve seen this in myself and my clients countless times. Your goals will change. Your work plans will change. Your kids’ plans will change. Thus, it’s important to avoid the extreme ends of planning; don’t make narrow plans that take you down only one path. When life changes happen, be ready to change your plan. Just because you made a decision that worked well under prior circumstances doesn’t mean you must stick with that decision forever.

Getting Wealthy vs. Staying Wealthy

This is a fun one to observe. As people move from wealth accumulation toward financial independence and retirement, their attitudes about money often change in surprising ways. It’s like any other life change – graduating school, getting married, having kids, becoming a homeowner, starting a new job. It’s never quite what you thought it would be. Often, it’s better than what you imagined, yet there are always new fears you didn’t anticipate. You begin to view risk through an entirely different lens. Focusing on stability and dependable income often becomes more important than hitting the great opportunities.

As a financial planning professional, I see it as my role to help each client develop strategies that will enable them to succeed through their unique psychology. Not despite it.

 

For Further Reading – The Psychology of Money

psychology of money

*A portion of proceeds from your purchase at Bookshop.org helps support independent authors and bookstores.
By |2021-01-12T14:54:53-07:00February 1st, 2021|Books, Financial Planning|