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Taxes and Divorce

  If you are ending a marriage, you are likely feeling a lot of sadness, confusion, dissatisfaction, and unhappiness. In addition to all the emotions that arise in the face of separation and divorce, you may be wondering about how this will impact your taxes as you prepare to file. What happens when the IRS […]

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What Is a Supplemental Needs Trust?

  Planning by parents can make all the difference in the life of a child with a disability, as well as that of their siblings who may be left with the responsibility for caretaking, on top of their own careers and caring for their own families. Supplemental Needs Trusts Special needs trusts (also known as […]

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Is 2024 the Year to Refinance Your Mortgage?

Mortgage interest rates rose throughout most of 2023, soaring above an average of 7% for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage at one point. This meant that few homeowners refinanced their mortgage loans last year. After all, the main goal of a refinance usually is to end up with a new loan with a lower interest rate. […]

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Gift and Estate Tax Exemption Amounts Increase in 2024

The IRS officially announced the inflation adjustments for 2024 for the gift and estate tax exemptions. The estate and gift tax exemption represents the amount an individual can transfer during life or at death to beneficiaries without paying any estate or gift tax. The generation-skipping transfer tax exemption is the amount that can pass directly or indirectly to grandchildren or […]

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How Much Home Can You Realistically Afford?

If you are like many Americans, your home will be the most expensive thing you own. It will be a key part of your estate as you plan for the long term. So, you need to think strategically from the outset. To start with, if you want to know how much of a mortgage a […]

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Divorce and Finances

While divorce may end a marriage, it does not end obligations to one another. In many relationships, one spouse is more financially well-off than the other. In a divorce, this earning discrepancy means that the poorer partner is entitled to receive spousal support, or alimony, to help them establish a new, post-divorce life. Alimony may be […]

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Why Are There So Many Credit Scores?

Most lenders today rely on your FICO credit score to determine whether to approve your application for a mortgage and when assigning an interest rate to your loan. Generally, the higher your FICO score, the lower your interest rate. Most lenders consider a FICO score of 800 or more to be excellent. You can expect […]

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The Wisdom of Establishing Payable-on-Death Accounts

Payable-on-death accounts (POD) — sometimes referred to as transfer-on-death accounts (TOD) — are a type of account that, at the owner’s death, allows the money remaining to pass directly to the beneficiaries named by the account owner. They offer an easy way to keep money out of probate. Establishing payable-on-death accounts is easy. Just properly […]

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Protecting Assets of a Parent in Failing Health

When you’re contemplating your old age — or caring for someone who is elderly — you first have to focus on three key items: Taking care of oneself and one’s possessions. To whom do you wish to leave a particular possession? Ensure that you have a valid up-to-date will or trust documents, and a durable power […]

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a miniature house next to a mortage calculator paper surrounded by coins

Qualifying for a Mortgage With Retirement Income

It used to be difficult for retirees to borrow, buy, or refinance a mortgage because lenders insisted on seeing their current income – the kind you get from having a job. Thankfully, Freddie Mac has guidelines for lenders that helps them use retirement funds to qualify borrowers for a home loan. When your loan is guaranteed […]

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