Posts by Paul Scott

The Importance of Having a Budget

In last month’s blog I wrote about the importance of getting your financial house in order, beginning with forming a foundation with some key protections against the unexpected. Among the cornerstones for this foundation is emergency savings – with the recommendation that you have at least 3-12 months’ income set aside in case of an unexpected financial crisis. I drew inspiration for that blog post from my book, The Five Crossroads: How The Choices We Make Affect Our Retirement Journey. This month I want to continue with another theme from my book, beginning with The Crossroads. Each Crossroad, as the
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Establish an Emergency Fund – Commit to Being Prepared for When ‘Life’ Happens

Like most journeys of a thousand miles, getting to a joyful, successful and prosperous retirement begins with one step. So if you had the chance to better prepare for retirement and important life-changing financial decisions now would you take that first step? Most of us probably would, right? “No matter your situation now, there is a way to reach a better position for the future.” This is what the character, simply named “The Guide,” writes in the letter John & Sue Smith receive in the prologue of my book, The Five Crossroads. Preparing for the so-called thousand-mile journey ahead and
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Culinary Corner: Sweet Potato Casserole

Ingredients (Filling) 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for buttering the baking dish 3 cups mashed sweet potatoes (3-4 large potatoes; about 1 3/4 pounds) 1/2 cup milk 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 2 large eggs Ingredients (Topping) 1/2 cup all-purpose flour 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 3/4 cup chopped pecans Directions For the filling: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and butter a 2-quart baking dish. Whisk together the butter, mashed sweet potatoes, milk, brown sugar, vanilla, salt and
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Medicare Open Enrollment Begins October 15 and Runs Through December 7

FYI: Medicare Plan F is going away! Beginning in 2020, newly eligible Medicare beneficiaries will no longer be allowed to enroll in Medigap Plan F because of a new Federal Law that prohibits plans from covering the Medicare Part B deductible. If you’re confused about Medicare, you’re not alone! We are holding a complimentary Medicare Facts & Snacks where we’ll be discussing what Plan F going away means for you, the pros and cons of alternate plans as well as other Medicare information you need to know. Choose from one of our three dates: Tuesday, October 22 @ 1pm Wednesday, October 23 @ 6pm
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A Good Financial Plan Can Help Sync Up With What’s Truly Important To You

Competing priorities, burnout, confusion and overwhelm in our lives can sometimes get in the way of what’s important to us and what we want to achieve in retirement. Have you taken some time recently to consider what you value in retirement? Is it your family, leaving a legacy, or finding your purpose? Maybe it’s leading a mission-driven business or living and sharing your life in abundance? Whatever you value in retirement and, indeed, in life, are what’s most important to you. These values drive our actions. They’re what motivate us and also act as an after-the-fact evaluation of our actions.
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Culinary Corner: Stuffed Jack-O-Lantern Bell Peppers

A stuffed bell pepper reciep with a festive twist for Halloween. Ingredients: 6 bell peppers, any color 1 pound ground beef 1 egg 4 slices whole wheat bread, cubed 1 small onion, chopped 1 small tomato, diced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1/2 cup chili sauce 1/4 cup prepared yellow mustard 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease an 8×8 inch baking dish. Lightly mix together the ground beef, egg, bread cubes, onion, tomato, garlic, chili sauce, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Wash
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Resist Tapping Into Your 401(k), Employer-Sponsored Plan If You Can

‘Leakage’ can erode assets and negatively impact your retirement wealth If you find it difficult to save or pay for big financial emergencies when they arise, tapping into a pot of money can be tempting – even if it’s your 401(k)-style employer-sponsored plan. But if you’re able to resist, rewards do come from the power of compounding. The problem, though, is that a small percentage of Americans take early withdrawals and withdrawals after age 59½ from their 401(k)s each year or cash out of their plan when they switch jobs. A large percentage – typically about 20% of plan participants
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September is Life Insurance Awareness Month

Risk Management Is About More Than Your Investments A lot of financial services professionals talk about “risk” when it comes to your stock market investments. But risk can encompass more than your investment risk tolerance. The broader definition of financial risk is the possibility of loss from any unexpected life event. For instance, what will happen to your family’s income if one spouse passes away, becomes disabled or unable to work, or needs long-term care? What happens to your kids’ education fund, or your retirement? Risk management in this case means shifting risk of financial loss from adverse events to
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Culinary Corner: Apple Butter Spice Cake

Topping Ingredients: 1 cup brown sugar 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1/2 cup chopped pecans     Cake Ingredients: 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup butter, room temperature 1 cup white sugar 3/4 cup apple butter 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/2 cup whole bran cereal or wheat germ 1 cup sour cream 2 eggs, room temperature Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9×13-inch pan. Prepare the topping by mixing together the brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and chopped pecans. Sift together
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7 Things You Should Know About Medicare Before You Retire

FYI: Medicare Plan F is going away! Beginning in 2020, newly eligible Medicare beneficiaries will no longer be allowed to enroll in Medigap Plan F because of a new Federal Law that prohibits plans from covering the Medicare Part B deductible. If you’re confused about Medicare, you’re not alone! We are holding a complimentary Medicare Facts & Snacks where we’ll be discussing what Plan F going away means for you, the pros and cons of alternate plans as well as other Medicare information you need to know. Choose from one of our three dates: Tuesday, October 22 @ 1pm Wednesday, October 23 @ 6pm
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