speculating vs. investing

Are you “speculating” or are you “investing”?

Speculating = buying cryptos, weed stocks, owning a few tech stocks in a Robinhood account, etc

Investing = buying and holding a properly diversified portfolio

Be an investor, not a speculator!

Hoarding

Hoarding your cash in anticipation of a market selloff is a losing strategy.

Legendary investor Peter Lynch astutely points out that “more people have lost money waiting for corrections and anticipating corrections than in the actual corrections.”

Prioritize having time in the market, not timing the market!

Embracing Incompetence

The most successful attorneys I work with embrace their incompetence.

You can’t be great at everything. None of us are.

Are you an expert in personal finance? If not, what will you do about it?

One approach is to stick your head in the sand and never talk about it. Do mediocre work, but pretend you don’t.

Another approach is to talk about it with zeal. Work to find resources you can use to avoid the things you do poorly. Find a professional that will challenge you to get better. Find new and better ways to improve…

It’s hard to imagine that avoidance of the issue is going to make things better.

One-Size-Fits-All

We live in a one-size-fits-all world.

Many financial advisors try to be everything to everyone and pigeonhole clients into certain products.

It takes guts to be specific. To stand for something. To turn down mediocre work for clients that will settle for mediocre. It takes guts to have a point of view, a protocol, and a skill set. It takes guts to be different.

My success is directly correlated to the value I bring to others. Choosing to work with a niche enhances my value and makes me better.

Improving your credit score

Are you trying to improve your credit score?

It’s a complete myth that requesting a credit-limit increase on your credit card can only negatively affect your credit score.

In fact, doing so can even help your credit score; here’s how:

One of the key factors contributing to your credit score is the “utilization rate”, or the percentage of available credit you use on your credit cards.

The lower the rate, the more it boosts your credit score.

So, increasing your credit-limit actually helps lower your utilization rate, thereby improving your credit score!

Create your own luck

Luck is not something that happens. It is something you create.

Luck = the point where opportunity and preparation meet

What are you doing today to prepare yourself for opportunity?

Are you engaged in personal development?

Are you improving your financial situation (considering the hire of a trusted advisor to help)?

Are you thinking abundantly or locked into a scarcity mindset?

Make a shift and see what happens. Start making something happen and some luck will come your way.

Tips to lower your tax bill

Are you concerned about the enormous taxes you pay?

If so, here’s some tips:

Maximize tax-advantaged accounts: 401(k)s, HSAs, backdoor Roth contributions, etc.

Ever heard of “asset location”?

This is a tax savings strategy that positions tax inefficient investments (such as bonds) in tax sheltered accounts and tax efficient investments (such as stocks) in taxable accounts.

There’s many awesome – but little known – strategies to help reduce your tax bill!

Focus on your savings rate!

How early and much you save is far more important than your investment returns.

​Consider this example:

Attorney A: begins saving at age 25 and, on average, saves $20,000 a year into an investment account earning 5% annually until age 55.

Attorney B: begins saving at age 30 and, on average, saves $10,000 a year into an investment account earning 10% annually until age 55.

Which attorney has the higher account balance at age 55?

You may have guessed correctly that Attorney A does. 

In fact, their account balance is about $345,000 more even though they earned half the rate of return.
Bottom line – focus on your savings rate more than account performance!

Financial Insanity

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.”
 
Last week, I spoke to an attorney who was a perfect fit for my services: he was confused about how to efficiently pay off debt, budget appropriately, and accumulate wealth.
 
After a great discussion it was clear he was not making progress on his own.
 
We then discussed my fee structure and the conversation hit a total roadblock.
 
He couldn’t seem to wrap his head around the fact it will cost him far more to stay on his current path than to invest in my professional counsel.
 
Bottom line – we should all acknowledge that doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result is not a recipe for success.

Intentional spending

Money is an opportunity for happiness, but it is an opportunity that people routinely squander because the things they think will make them happy often don’t.

Here’s some advice for how to spend money more wisely:

  • Buy more experiences and fewer material goods
  • Purchase smaller, more frequent pleasures in lieu of grand, expensive ones
  • When comparison shopping, look for the features and attributes that would make you happy instead of focusing on the differences of the available options
  • When making big purchases, it’s best to consider how they will affect your current daily life, not their far-flung future potential
  • Use money to benefit others

Here’s the verdict – more money does not equate to more happiness, spending it intentionally does!

Terry Andersen, CFP®

terry-andersen-sidebar-image
I’m a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ who counsels Associate Attorneys nationwide about how to both pay off their student loans in the most cost-effective manner and build wealth faster than their peers.

Tactical Wealth