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More than Money Newsletter - August 2018

More than Money with Gene Dickison

 

August 2018

Dear Friends,

“Remember 9/11”

 

Please join us on Tuesday, September 11th as our entire More than Money family remembers 9/11.  This will be the 10th year we will devote the day to not just remember a heart wrenching tragedy, but to create something positive in its memory.

If you are able, please join us at the More than Money World Headquarters (in the Holy Lands between Bethlehem and Nazareth).  From 5 AM through 10 AM we will hold WAEB AM 790’s Bobby Gunther Walsh show as he broadcasts live from our offices.  Gunther and Dan Holzman will bring their morning show to us and to you. 

We’ll have lots of hot coffee and yummy treats.  Our entire More than Money team will be here to welcome you.  There will be gifts and so much more.

At 8:40 AM we will be joined by an honor guard of military veterans who will present our flag, play Taps, and offer a 21 gun salute to our fallen heroes.

Throughout our event we will be raising funds for the Keystone Wounded Warriors.  Keystone provides tremendous assistance to returning vets and their families.  We need your help to once again raise tens of thousands of dollars to help our American vets.  They have made tremendous sacrifices for us – we have the honor to assist them. 

Please join us in our office.  Or call us (610-746-7007) with your pledge.  Or email your pledge (Connie@AskMtM.com). 

Thank you.

 

 “Real Life Questions – Real World Answers”

 

“My wife and I are both 28 with good, but not great jobs.  We haven’t started a family yet and are wondering if we shouldn’t be doing ‘something’ on the side now to help our financial future later – maybe even help us get wealthy?”

 

Yes!

There are four actions that immediately come to my mind that you should explore:

  • Slam your 401(k) – put so much in that it becomes a bit painful
  • Start a business – something you’ll enjoy while making money
  • Rental real estate – not easy, but potentially very rewarding
  • Education/training for a great job – get qualified for something better

Each of these very different approaches will appeal to a certain type of person.  Take the time to explore what type you both are and select one (to start) and put your energy and talents to work.

 

“We’re looking for a financial advisor.  My husband listens to your show while driving for work on Saturday mornings.  My friend has suggested her financial advisor, but sounded a little ‘underwhelmed’.  Are there some reasonable questions we can ask advisors we’re interviewing to help us pick the right one for us?”

 

Excellent question!  Too many people ‘find’ their advisor by accident or even by default.  You are on the exact right track when you see this process as an interview.  Here is a sampling of some of the questions you might start with in your interviews:

  • What is your typical client profile?

Is it someone like you?

Are they ‘all things to all people’ – that’s a bad answer

  • How are you paid?  What would that mean to us each year?

Are they advisors or salesmen?

Be sure do get a clear answer no ‘smoke and mirrors’

  • How often would we meet?

‘As needed’ is a terrible answer

Minimum of four times a year is good

  • Do you own the same products you’ll recommend to me?

‘Yes’ is a bad answer – Does your doctor take the same medications as you?

‘It depends’ on your needs – is a great answer

  • What happens to my account if something happens to you?

‘We have a succession plan’ is a very good answer

‘I’m a one-man operation’ is a very poor answer

  • Are you a fiduciary?

Yes is the only answer that’s acceptable

Some salesmen say yes when they know the answer is no – listen carefully

  • How did you handle 2008?

‘We rode it out like everyone else’ – bad answer

We worked with each client to respond in the best way for them (bonus points if they give you examples of how they responded)

  • Are you licensed to provide investment advice?

‘I am a Registered Investment Advisor’ – good answer

‘Sure” – not such a good answer (think smoke)

  • May I bring my attorney, accountant, son, daughter, or friend?

‘Of course’ – is the only acceptable answer

No (for any reason) is a huge red flag – do not keep the appointment

 

“I’m twenty-four (24) with a great job and solid prospects (Penn State grad!).  I’ve recently become able to put money into a 401(k).  The company matches half of what I put in up to six percent (6%) of my pay.  Can you give me some guidelines to take best advantage of this plan?  By the way, I have a whole group of friends that listen every week to your show.  Thanks for the great info.”

 

Thanks for the kind words.  I have three daughters all around your age.  It’s great to know I may have something of value to offer the next generation.

My advice comes in three pieces.  First, put in enough of your pay that you’re at least a little uncomfortable.  Don’t just look at the 6% they match.  Look at how much you can squeeze yourself.  More dollars going in today means tons more dollars coming out in retirement.

Second, increase your contribution with every pay raise.  You don’t (and shouldn’t) have to put every dollar of your raises in, but you should (must?) put a big chunk toward your 401(k) plan.  More dollars now – many more dollars later.

Last – try to avoid too much diversification.  Keep as near to 100% of your money in assets that grow (stocks, real estate, etc.) as your plan allows.  You’ve got plenty of time to ride the inevitable ups and downs.  Your long term results with this approach should give you a significantly greater shot of higher returns.  No guarantees.  Just the opposite.  Tons of volatility.  But over many years – a real opportunity.

Thanks again, good luck, and keep us posted on your results.

 

More than Money Radio

 

Have Breakfast with Gene every Saturday Morning at 8:06 as

More than Money with Gene Dickison airs on AM790 WAEB.

Two Full Hours – 8:06 through 10:00 AM.

 

Words are Powerful Tools for American Freedom

 

My mother always laid claim to “Pennsylvania Dutch’ as her heritage.  In her senior years exploring ancestry became both a national fad and much easier with newly available technology.  All of mom’s kids were more than a bit amused when it was ‘discovered’ that she was nearly pure-blooded Dutch – not Pennsylvania Dutch (German) – her family was from Holland.

That ‘knowledge’ wouldn’t stop mom from sharing the many Pennsylvania Dutch sayings she had accumulated over her lifetime – and the lifetime of her father as well (who was born in 1866!).  One of her most often uttered quotes was, “Too soon old – too late schmart!’ It was usually directed at someone who – though old enough to know better – did something more than a little foolish.

For better or for worse, as I enter the final third (perhaps – I may just stick around and surprise a lot of people) of my life I see more and more wisdom in mom’s aphorisms.  The lesson I wished I had learned much earlier in my journey was one of gratitude.

I am, quite possibly, the most blessed person you know.  If I started to list the many ways God has gifted (largely undeserved) blessings on me you would be reading this letter until next Thursday!  And I’ve always been vaguely appreciative.  It wasn’t until I entered the second third of my life that I started to be deeply and sincerely grateful for all my uncountable blessings. 

So I share with you one of the most powerful phrases ever known to mankind:

 

“Thank you.”

 

Use it often.  Use it out loud.  Use it silently.  Use it in prayer.  Use it with your parents and your kids.  Friends.  Co-workers.  When you see a rainbow.  When you see your grandchild.  When you enter your church.  When something makes you laugh.  When you pet a puppy.  When your cat yawns – so darn cute!  When you wake up and you’re still ‘on the right side of the grass’.  The reasons are – literally – endless.

As I write this, I thank God for you.  All of you in ways that I’ve seen and not seen have been blessings in my life.  It gives me great joy to know this and be grateful.  So I guess for me anyway not too late ‘schmart’.

 

Please allow us to serve you and those you love.

Thank you,

Gene

 

P.S.  Thank you.

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