Wealth Building 101 (Frequently Asked Questions)

 Learn about common wealth building questions that many have asked over a number of years…

 

Wealth building is a lofty goal and you should be commended for seeking new and possibly more rewarding ways of building wealth.

 

In this discussion TheWealthIncreaser.com will present to you a number of questions that have been asked by clients, visitors and others on a number of sites created by the publisher of this site that TheWealthIncreaser.com feel is important for your financial advancement.

 

Be sure to hone in and focus on the questions that are significant to you at this time as you may find a more effective way to meet your goals and advance forward more efficiently.

 

Common Questions

 

Q: What is umbrella insurance and why should I get that type of coverage?

 

A:  An umbrella insurance policy provides additional liability protection for you in addition to the coverage that you would have on your home and auto liability coverage.

 

It is an affordable option to provide additional protection against liability claims that may come your way during your lifetime that could force you to have to sell your assets, downsize, move to another community, lose your liquid assets and further cause undue headaches that could have been avoided–for in many cases “several hundred dollars” per year.

 

Q: How much life insurance should I get at this time?

 

A:  The amount of life insurance that is needed for you (and others) will vary depending on your age, family size, family structure and your future goals.

 

There are a number of ways to determine the coverage that you may need and they include:

 

  • 10x earnings ($50,000 in annual income multiplied by 10 means I need $500,000 in insurance coverage)

 

  • replacement cost (to pay off my car, house and the student loan that my spouse has been paying on for the last 15 years I need $350,000 in coverage)

 

  • need analysis (to pay off my mortgage and my 5 year old daughters future tuition and provide my wife and my daughter $100,000 cash for a 10 year period I need $1,430,000 in insurance coverage) and

 

  • Several other ways as well

 

Q: Am I able to take money out of my 401k for a down payment on a home?

 

A:  You are able to borrow against your 401k and possibly save in the short term, however there are risks.

 

You risk your retirement income being reduced, and there are potential tax consequences of borrowing against your 401k.  In addition many who borrow against their 401k never manage to pay the loan back.

 

However, legally you are allowed to borrow against your 401k, the question then becomes is it wise to do so—or should I do so at this time—or are there better options that I can take?

 

Q: After I retire and move to a new state can I lower my taxes?

 

A:  In many cases that is possible as many states have no or low tax rates and if you retired and moved to a new state you would in most cases be taxed at the rate in the state that you reside.

 

However, depending on the state that you moved from—taxes could still be owed and payable to that state.

 

Be sure to investigate further prior to your move on what will apply tax wise in your particular case.

 

Q: What is a healthy debt load for a family of four?

 

A:  The question is pretty much open ended and the answer will depend on your current income.  In general a debt load of 40% or less would be ideal.  However, in some cases compensating factors (a better school district, a more reliable car due to longer commute in your area, environmental factors, relative moving in, other additional income etc.) may lead to you exceeding the debt load of 40%.

 

Keep in mind the 40% debt load includes your housing and other debt.

 

If you make $120,000 annually or $10,000 per month your maximum or ideal monthly debt load would be $4,000 which in some localities would be possible.

 

A housing payment of $2,500 per month with a car payment of $500 per month along with other debt of $1,000 per month where you have roughly $6,000 to utilize in other ways (various monthly expenses, utilities, food, clothing, entertainment, retirement, vacations, investments, education planning etc.) will put you and your family in position for success in many areas and localities.

 

If you make “$60,000 annually”  or $5,000 per month you would be looking at a monthly housing payment of $1,250, a car payment of $250 and other debt of $500 and you would be in great position for lifelong success.

 

If you make “$240,000 annually” or $20,000 per month you would be looking at a monthly housing payment of $5,000, a car payment of $1,000 and other debt of $2,000 and you would be in great position for lifelong success.

 

In high cost cities such as New York and San Francisco you would more than likely have to exceed that 40% ratio—depending on your income.

 

The point is you want to have a debt load that is comfortable for you and allows you to live the lifestyle that you desire and save for your goals in a highly effective manner.

 

As to your family size—college planning, and the cost of raising children must be factored in as well–as that could further reduce your monthly discretionary income.

 

Note: The above numbers are illustrative in nature.  Any combination of housing and debt that is under 40% may be appropriate and the ratios must be interpreted from the money management perspective of the individual and/or  family.  Also, monthly debt as used in this discussion is debt that will exceed 12 months to pay off.

 

Q: How do I know the amount to save for college for my 5 year old daughter?

 

A:  The amount that you will need will depend on the college, in state or out of state tuition rates and the future value of the amount that you will need.

 

You can then use a number of approaches to reach or exceed that number.  If you fall short you may need to use your current income, take out student loans in your name or your child’s name, or borrow in some other manner.

 

The sooner you get started and the more discretionary income that you have available the more realistic the number that you need to reach can be reached.  In addition it is important that you and your child have an understanding of the pay scale in the current economy related to the major (degree) that they plan on pursuing.

 

You can go to Payscale.com to learn about salary info for selected majors that your child is or will consider in their future…

 

Q: I know I need a will to avoid probate, but how do I know if I need a trust?

 

A:  In many cases a trust is an effective tool for shielding income from taxation and providing a safety net for your heirs.

 

You most definitely need a will, however the decision on whether you need a trust can be a difficult one because it is based on a number of factors–including privacy as a “will”–will be made public (again no pun intended) and a trust will not.

 

Be sure to visit the estate planning page on this site along with All About Estate Planning on Realty 1 Strategic Advisors website to learn more.

 

Q: What is the amount of income that I should save to have retirement income until I reach age 95?

 

A:  Your retirement number will vary depending on your current age, your current  income, your ability to save and your future goals.

 

 You want to save enough to live at your pre-retirement level and take the vacations that you desire at a minimum.

 

In addition you may have other goals such as helping your kids and grandkid’s pursue their dreams as well.

 

This will all play into the “retirement number” that you need to achieve to make the goals that you desire materialize.

 

Conclusion

 

In the current economy you are presented with many choices and answers to your financial questions and this discussion hopefully pointed you in the right direction as far as building wealth more efficiently in the current economy—or any economy.

 

Fortunately for you and other visitors, there are hundreds upon hundreds of personal finance sites on the web and it is your responsibility to find one (or several) that you are comfortable with and can help you build wealth effectively and efficiently in the times that we now live in.

 

Your devotion to improving your finances at this time will provide you the opportunity to achieve more throughout your lifetime.

 

Hopefully you took advantage of this page on the front end (prior to making financial mistakes)–however, even if you did not—you can correct your mistakes and build the type of future that serves your best interest.

 

TheWealthIncreaser.com believes that success lies ahead for you and your family from this day forward…

 

Also return to this site as additional Q’s and A’s will be added on a continuous basis.

 

Are you an agent of change or will you become the victim of changes that occur?

 

Be sure to answer the pressing questions (financial or otherwise) that you may have inside of your mind and heart in an intelligent, consistent and proactive manner to protect your and your family’s future interests.

 

In addition you can become an agent of change by building wealth in a more intelligent, consistent and proactive manner and not fall victim to the actions of others whether it be a scam artist, governmental policy or any other individual or entity!

 

It is the desire of TheWealthIncreaser.com that these and other FAQ’s that follow will help you achieve more throughout your lifetime…

 

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GO TO THE FOLLOWING LINKS TO LEARN ABOUT MORE FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS THAT VISITORS HAVE ASKED:

 

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