Expert Financial Advice

Getting expert financial advice can be a dizzying experience that can send one's head spinning in all directions. Let's just go over and flip on the television and turn on one of the all financial channels. Talking heads argue twenty four hours a day over the viability of particular investments. The conflicting information can be maddening. The weekly business rags and daily newspaper also have so much information about how to handle one's investment money, it could take a full time job just to try and sort it all out. Friends and family can also lovingly but often incorrectly dispense guidance and advice on investment matters that might spell fiscal disaster if followed. When it comes to investing, especially investing, the signals are very much mixed and misleading.

Expert financial advice will help a person make sense of that murky water known as investing. An advisor will sit with a client and help sort out all the goals and desires his client has and will explore how much risk the client is able to handle financially and emotionally. From that perspective the advisor will then dispense counsel on the types of investments that might best meet the goals of the client. Expert financial advice in regards to investing will always convey the full picture of risk and reward and will not be impinged on by commission or profit considerations. Investment advice from a proven professional will be the result of that agent's up to the minute knowledge of changing market conditions and the forces that shape it. That niche knowledge allows the professional to give an investor as much information as needed to make what is hoped to be fruitful forays into those murky waters.

But expert financial advice is so much more than counsel about investing. The information dispensed by a proven money expert will also be about a plan for retirement. A person needs as much correct information as possible on traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, self directed IRAs and 401(k) and 403 plans. There are tax implications and contribution limits for all of these savings plans and making them work in concert with other investments and financial strategies is best accomplished with the counsel of a money expert. The apostle Paul expressed the win-win situation for all Christians when he wrote, "For me to live is Christ and to die is gain." (Philippians 1:21)

Expert financial advice will also include the soundest ways to get rid of debt. Pros in the money field will be able to counsel clients after the initial interview how best to attack borrowed money obligations that may be weighing the client down. In some cases, it may be to seek a home equity loan and in other cases it may be to refinance a mortgage with a cash out option. For some, the best counsel may be to seek the help of credit counseling. Few if any pros dispensing money counsel will ever recommend bankruptcy except under exceptional conditions.

Of course there is always the area of reducing taxes. Lots of people can have ideas regarding the lowering of tariff liabilities, but some may be illegal. The expert financial advice imparted by a real pro will help a client or consumer to take advantage of as many tax deductions as are legally possible. The counsel will include how to avoid capital gains liabilities as much as possible, self employment tax snags, tax issues for seniors and many other relevant issues for each individual situation. The advice dispensed will cut through a lot of the IRS smoke that so often clouds tax issues and make it easier for the client to find money not discovered before the counsel was given.

Estate planning would be the final area that a person could find very helpful from a money expert. The crafting of a will, trust, powers of attorney, property ownership and other issues might seem to be the sole interest of an attorney, but the expert financial advice from a seasoned money expert should be gleaned and properly administered in the making of that estate plan. Issues such as leaving all assets to one's spouse may not be the wisest money move, and the collaboration of attorney and financial guide can make for very wise counsel in making estate planning decisions. Issues such as creating a trust, which isn't just for the wealthy, can find much light shed on them through sound fiscal counsel as well as through an attorney.

There are many online sites that dispense expert financial advice from nationally known authors, media gurus and investment houses. For the most part, the well-known websites that sponsor this information can be trusted for giving out solid money counsel. But as with everything on the web, some caution must be taken and so look for the information that is dispensed on one site to be verified by another giving the same. Many people are willing to allow themselves to be financial advisors, when they may be more of financial planners. Planners usually work for a particular company and are eager to sell wealth building products created by that company and will give the planner a nice commission. Financial advisors, on the other hand, work on a fee basis, and work on behalf of the client and not a company so the client's full advantage is recognized. The fees paid to an advisor for financial insights will always be worth the cost years after the advice is heeded.

Money Management Tools

There are many money management tools available to help budget, allocate and invest one's income. They are software packages that are offered by various companies and can be purchased at most stores handling computer products. Others are actually free downloads that have many of the same features as the retail products. Web 2.0 has given new life to money management tools, offering things such as online banking, real time tracking of banking transactions, personal finance, investing, business tools, shared bills, real estate offerings and many other features. What personal bankers and investor advisors used to do can now be accomplished by the software tools on one's home computer.

Some money management tools have new slants on helping the average consumer handle the smallest of expenses. Some tools allow the user to keep track of tiny nickel and dime expenses. A mobile ability allows those expenses to be sent home online. This is a great reminder for those little tiny expenditures that don't get put into one's checkbook and then mess up the balance. Others make it easier for a consumer to change banks dealing with small details that might be forgotten when switching banks. Yet others are designed to help friends and families end the quarrels over who paid last and who owes whom. This is not a personal finance manger but rather a replacement of the old I Owe You notes.

Other free online tools enable family members keep track of family budgets online which will give each person a look at what which account's spending must be curbed. And some sites allow a community of people such as several close families and their friends trade debts such as dinner tabs and certain other expenses with each other to keep the slate as balanced as possible. Web 2.0 which is really a description of all the new social networking, video, user friendly and joy of use capabilities of the Internet have brought about these new concepts in money management tools. Even the software that has been available for years are adding new capabilities unthought-of a few years ago. So more accountability for finances is now within a mouse click away.

In the past, when someone's word was like gold, most financial discrepancies could be solved either with a frank discussion or simple paperwork. Now with all of us living in a financial "guilty till proven innocent" ruled world, as well as a world of identity theft, it becomes crucial for all consumers to keep exacting records of every dollar spent. With all of the free and low cost money management tools available, there is little excuse for anyone to say they really don't know what's going on with their money. Did you know that having known sin in one's life keeps God from hearing our prayers? "If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me." (Psalm 66:18)

In the world of investing, money management tools are becoming more and more sophisticated, allowing real time access to the stock market and the ability to instantly buy or sell paper investments. There are tools from websites that can help a consumer figure out how long it will take to make a million dollars with the ability to put in variables that mirror the consumer's own situation. Just simple household budget templates are offered for free from many budgeting websites and answers to almost any financial questions a person might have are myriad. Questions such as how much a hybrid car will save a person and the wholesale value of one's car are also answered on line. Websites that break down investing and credit issues into simple everyday language can help any consumer gain a good understanding of what may otherwise be intimidating subjects.

There are very helpful money management tools for recent college graduates available online and some banking websites. These websites offer such things as understanding what money management really is, structuring a budget, what to do with pay raises, limiting tax liabilities, understanding deductions and even help in filling out tax forms and many other topics. Some of the websites can help a recent grad understand how a FICO score is put together and how it can be raised and lowered. There are budget worksheets especially designed for those just starting out in the real adult world with specific line items perhaps not relevant for those who have already made many of life's big purchases. Even coaching on living a simple lifestyle to avoid credit problems can be found on money management websites.

Of course if one wishes, a financial company offering money management tools for a price are available either online or in most towns and cities. In this case, the "tools" they will offer will be in the form of offered financial products. Investing, saving, budgeting and monitoring month by month expenditures can be handled in a one stop visit. These agents will take all the mystery and work out of correctly handling one's money and in most cases it will be done with a solid result of increased wealth over time. But all of these software packages and websites and financial management firms cannot help someone who wants to be undisciplined in fiscal matters. Some people resent having to watch their spending, keep a budget and write down or enter expenditures. The truth is that that kind of discipline makes some people feel poor and trapped, but the reality is the most imprisoned are those who live a life paycheck to paycheck because of no plan for their dollars.

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