Make Political Donations Part of Your Financial Plan

Do you make giving to politic47152wn6unnf73bal campaigns part of your overall financial plan? Government plays a critical role in our daily lives. The scope of that role can include monitoring the quality of the air that we breathe, maintaining the strength of the military that protects us or funding the care provided by Medicare and Medicaid. Government also strikes partnerships with the business community to help meet our collective needs.

What do You Want Government to Do?

For many Americans, the critical role of government and their relationship with business is a great association. They believe it’s a link that should continue into the future and evolve to meet the countless needs of our democracy. Others however think that role should be reduced as much as possible.

Whatever a voter’s belief in the role of government, it is a system that needs financial support. Support that is needed at the local, state and federal level.

Plan Political Donations like other Life Goals

Like planning for college, retirement or starting a business, political giving can fit in the financial planning of American voters. The giving can be done on a periodic basis or on an occasional basis. Regardless of how it’s done though putting together a plan with a financial advisor can go a long way in enhancing not only the lives of the giver but the efforts of the candidate they support.

Contributors can look for causes they care about. A strong business focus, caring for the homeless, reducing taxes or insuring that everyone is covered by medical insurance. Whatever the cause, supporting candidates that believe in those causes can add a lot to the overall satisfaction of the donor along with our democracy.

Choose How Much to Donate and When

Once donors have chosen the campaigns to contribute to they can decide on what the dollar amount will be on a regular or periodic basis. That amount of course should work within the overall financial budget. If not financial problems could develop down the line.

Again, this support can start at the school board level or it can go as far as a national campaign. The important part is to keep in mind that elected officials also respond to those who donate to their campaign. By giving on a consistent basis voters can let their voices be heard.

Political donors throughout the country care about a number of issues that affect our society in either a small or big way. The best way to have their voice heard is not only contacting their politicians but also giving to their campaigns. When it comes to having an overall financial plan to do that, once necessary bills are paid, giving to political campaigns can help enhance the life of not only the giver but the politician that is receiving the donation.

For more on TaxAssurances, check out our reviews, photos and links on Yelp.

Do a Quarterly Financial Review

470480e1gdwufwtHave you met with a professional and done a financial review lately? Every quarter I like to meet with my clients and go over any changes that have occurred in their lives. In many cases, the meetings give me the opportunity to find out what adjustments need to be made in their financial lives.

Life Happens

If there’s been a promotion, we may be able to increase the amount that is set aside for a rainy day or retirement. If there’s been a marriage or new birth, we need to make sure that family members have the right protection. If clients are no longer happy with their job, we need to map out a plan to find a new job or start a new business. Whatever the changes are, there’s a very good chance that my client’s financial life has been affected. I need to know that so we can tweak our prior plan.

Benefits of a Review

One of the major benefits that results from this quarterly review is that it helps my client feel comfortable letting me know what new things are going on in their lives. How? Some people may feel that they’re interrupting advisors. Scheduling a quarterly review sends a clear message that the changing circumstances are important. It also keeps the lines of communication open for events that happen between meetings.

One of the other benefits resulting from the meetings is referrals. Meaning, I get referrals for my business and my clients help those close to them. How? My clients have family, friends, associates and co-workers that need financial advice. Keeping the lines of communication open lets them know that they have a go to person in their financial life. Why not help others have that same peace of mind?

So if you’re working with an advisor, try to meet with them on a quarterly basis to go over what changes have occurred in your life and see how that can impact your financial life. Remember, the meeting may last a few minutes or hours but the impact can last a lifetime.

For more on TaxAssurances, check out our reviews, photos and links on Google Reviews.

Teaching Children the Value of Hard Work

21499q0bflrr39zHard work and doing a good job are valued at every level of society. Whether the work is done by a teacher’s assistant that makes $17,000 a year or the leader of a multibillion dollar data storage company, hard work is recognized as playing an important role in everyday life.

Wealth Requires Hard Work

Many people make the mistake of thinking that if someone starts off with a silver spoon in their mouth they’re going to be on easy street and won’t have to work hard. Granted it’s not the same as starting off as the single child to a lazy parent. However, the great equalizer over time is a dedication to hard work.

This is demonstrated in the fact that roughly 80% of millionaires are first generation wealthy. By contrast, lottery winners in many cases no longer have the money they won after 5 or 10 years. Why? They believed they no longer had to work to keep up with the new expenses created by their wealth.

Hard Work with Chores

The hard work ethic is something that parents in all income brackets can give to their children when they’re young. That process can start when parents give chores to their children to do around the house. Not only do the chores show young people how to work hard, but they also show them how to be accountable and responsible. That responsibility means that they are answerable not only for themselves but other family members as well. They are depended on and that carries a valuable lesson throughout their lives.

Hard Work after School

As they get older, the lessons of hard work can be learned in the work children do outside of their normal school work. So whether it’s a part time job after school or a school club they are part of, the parent by allowing their child to participate supplements their school education.

And obviously when they graduate from either high school or college they are tasked with the responsibility of working. No matter where they go it’s a valuable lesson they carry forward with them into the future.

So if you’re a parent wondering how you can instill a work ethic in your child, you can always start by letting them take on that responsibility in the home. Dishes, moping dusting, mowing the lawn are all great ways to get them on the road to learning the value of a hard day’s work. Again, dedication to hard work can be the great equalizer in making sure that young people are good contributors to society.

For more on TaxAssurances, check out our reviews, photos and links on Google Reviews.

Alleviate Audit Anxiety

IRS4Internal Revenue Service tax audits can be complicated and time-consuming, but the right tax preparation can make them less stressful. Taxpayers facing an audit should remember these five things:

1. Seek Professional Help

Upon receiving an IRS audit notification, taxpayers should meet with their tax professional to discuss what the audit notification means, what is being requested and what records are needed.
2. Seek Representation

Correspondence audits are handled via mail, field audits have auditors visit a home or business in question, and office audits require taxpayers to report to an IRS office. Depending on the type of audit and individual situation, taxpayers may represent themselves or seek assistance from a certified public accountant, lawyer or enrolled agent. Enrolled agents are federally authorized tax practitioners empowered to represent taxpayers before the IRS.

3. Organize

Ideally, taxpayers should keep complete, organized financial records for the past seven years. Gather all receipts, checks and other records relevant to the audit. Be thorough; having the records the IRS requests readily available will help the audit go more smoothly.

4. Be Concise

Taxpayers should only give the auditor copies of documents the IRS specifically requests and answer all questions honestly. Do not volunteer information that is not requested.

5. Appeal

If taxpayers disagree with auditors’ findings, they can file an appeal with the IRS. Appeal options include meeting with the auditor’s supervisor, or filing an administrative appeal to the U.S. Tax Court, U.S. Claims Court or the local U.S. District Court.
Of course, the best audit is the one that doesn’t happen. To lessen the likelihood of being audited, taxpayers should report all income and only claim credits and deductions they are entitled.

For more on TaxAssurances, check out our reviews, photos and links on Google Reviews.

Journey of a Business Startup

 

44111yt0crry63o
Starting a business is a rewarding and challenging experience. It allows you to be very creative in the way you operate your business and the way you deliver value to your clients. Starting a business also allows you to take control of your life and determine how you will make your living. It does come with challenges, however.

Locating a Space for the Business

In starting my business I came across a number of hurdles I had to overcome. For starters, I had to search for the right location. Embarking on that process meant that I had to look at more than 100 locations in a number of cities to find the right place. I was looking for the area that had the right visibility, rent costs and potential customer income; all very hard criteria to match up. Yet it was work that had to be done as the cornerstone for building the business.

What is the Business Brand Identity?

Another challenge I had to overcome was brand name recognition. Now starting off I was working with a franchise company that had a number of brands under its direction. In starting out I had every intention of working with one of those brands. I did everything in the process up until actually sending the franchise fee to enter into the franchise as a franchisee.

Then one day the parent company decided to just simply discontinue the franchise I was considering. That was never in my business plans. Frankly I had never really thought about it and never even heard about something like that happening in the franchise world. Clearly I needed to do more research in that area.

So I had a decision to make: do something else or create my own brand name. That’s when I had a good conversation with a dear friend of mine. She had never believed in the overall franchise model in the first place, so she immediately said, “Go and do it with your own brand name.” That’s what I did.

Financing Challenges of a Business Startup

Still another hurdle was financing. After the mortgage meltdown, credit received from any bank is tough to get under the best of circumstances. For a startup business it’s just not going to happen. The banks have no cash flow history to go by so they are very hesitant to lend. They may make expectations if there is collateral to get if the business should go under. But those opportunities are few and far between. They want good credit, good cash flow and good collateral. Again, three things that a startup by its very nature doesn’t have.

So out came the credit cards, retirement savings and backup from family members. That’s when the feasibility of a marketing plan comes into stark focus. An owner will examine it a million times to see if there are any holes in it and look to plug them the best way they think. But it’ll never be 100% until the doors open.

These are just some of the challenges that a business startup will confront. Through these examples, you can see that starting a business is a series of challenging experiences which the owner or owners will need to overcome. Some of those obstacles will be obvious and anticipated, while others will be completely unforeseen. The best that a business owner can do is plan for both.

For more on TaxAssurances, check out our reviews, photos and links on Google Reviews.