Happiness in Retirement Blog

Thoughts by The Del-Sette Management Team

The Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT)

When it comes to federal income tax, there are few subjects capable of causing as much confusion as the AMT. And while the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, passed in the first days of 2013, made permanent a number of temporary AMT provisions, it also changed some...

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Financial Planning Issues for Adoptive Parents

Adoptive parents need to be concerned with special financial planning issues that arise when a child is added to their family. These issues include paying adoption costs, understanding the income tax implications, and reviewing their insurance coverage. How much does...

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Wills: The Cornerstone of Your Estate Plan

If you care about what happens to your money, home, and other property after you die, you need to do some estate planning. There are many tools you can use to achieve your estate planning goals, but a will is probably the most vital. Even if you're young or your...

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New York State and Life Insurance Options

You know that you need life insurance. However, with the wide variety of insurance policies available, you may find choosing the right one difficult. It's really not as confusing as it seems, however, once you understand the basic types of life insurance policies in...

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Medicare and Medicaid: What’s the Difference?

It’s easy to confuse Medicare and Medicaid, particularly since they’re both government programs that pay for health care. But there are important differences between each program. Medicare is generally for older people, while Medicaid is for people with limited income and resources.

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“Leave no stone unturned.” – Euripedes

The Ancient Greek playwright, Euripedes, once told a tale about two opposing generals. The first general, who was rich, decided to bury his treasure before a great battle. Unfortunately for him, the second general was victorious and decided to take the treasure for...

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Sunday Rituals

I begin most of my mornings the same way; sneaking downstairs in the cool and quiet of the morning. My family is still sleeping and the dogs are still whispering their dreams through flared nostrils. I find a sullen comfort in my quiet morning rituals, but I...

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The Age 50 Milestone

Pickles isn’t ready to declare senior status either   “I wouldn’t join any club that would have me as a member” – Groucho Marx It’s official – I’m a senior; that is, if receiving an invitation to join AARP qualifies you as such. The invitation came on a Saturday...

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In the Heart or on a Chart

I’m a big believer in the power of simplicity. Take investing, for example. I could write about investing terminology like standard deviations, alphas and betas, but how long would it keep your interest?

When I have my car repaired, my mechanic fixes the problem, gives me the executive summary of what happened, and I pay the bill. As long as my car works like it should afterward, I don’t need, nor do I want, a lengthy, complicated explanation. In an exchange of value, he fixes what’s broke and I pay him to solve my problem. If I trust him, it’s that simple.

That’s why our performance reports are very brief and simple, but they convey what a person wants to know quickly. How am I doing, net of fees and expenses, not only for the last three months or year to date, but also since inception? Is my portfolio doing better than a “relevant” benchmark over time? What does the pie chart of my investments look like compared to its benchmark? Am I achieving my target rate of return?

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