What's new in April

What's new in April

April 25, 2018

New service: TD Ameritrade CD and bond ladders

We have recently started offering an enhanced service for our clients whose money we manage at TD Ameritrade. As interest rates rise, CD rates are increasing and are becoming a more integral part of savings for goals including retirement and other short-term to mid-term goals. In addition, as interest rates rise, we are seeing the bond funds that we own in all of our portfolios go down slightly. This is because newer bonds are paying higher interest rates than older bonds that are in the bond funds.

Taken together, we decided to take advantage of the opportunities at TD Ameritrade to purchase individual bonds (because if held to maturity the values do not go down with interest rates) as well as CDs from a variety of different banks. Many of you know that we are big fans of the CDs at Capital One 360 and regularly report on what the new rates are. Now we can pick from among a variety of different US banks right in your TD Ameritrade IRA or brokerage account. This saves you time and effort to stay on top of CD rates, we are happy to do the work to manage your CD portfolio and of course your bond portfolio at TD.

Let us know if you would like more information about the opportunity to start buying CDs and bonds and also learn more about the benefits of CD ladders and bond ladders as you are creating income streams for retirement or even just for positive cash flow.


Charitable distributions from RMD

Under new tax rules, tax payers age 70 ½ and over can contribute to charities directly from their IRAs and reduce their taxes due to reduced income. This is much more advantageous than taking your Required Minimum Distribution (RMD), paying taxes on that RMD, and then writing a check to your charity that might not even be deductible if you aren't itemizing in the future due to the new, higher standard deduction. We will be happy to discuss how to maximize your charitable deductions this year.


Pet trusts

Estate planning is a crucial part of the financial life planning process and involves several important people who must be willing to step in and help when the time comes. This isn’t limited to your health and assets, however. Estate planning can include the use of a pet trust to ensure that our furry (or maybe not so furry) loved ones have the care they need and deserve if you are no longer there to provide it for them.

Steps for creating a pet trust in Maryland include contacting an estate planning attorney, then gathering as much information as you can about your pet(s)- age, species, breed, medical records, photos, microchip information, etc. Then much like a regular trust, a pet trust requires specific details on things such as how much money is to be put into the trust, how that money is to be used, who the trustee is, and who will be the caregiver for your pets. It is recommended and encouraged that the one handling the trust and the one caring for your pet are two different people to provide a “checks and balances” system. The amount of money you decide to put into the trust will have to do with the type of pet you have, how old they are, and what type of care they may need in the future. Making this decision and discussing this with people you trust can give you the peace of mind you need when it comes to your little loved ones.

If you’d like to discuss this further or would like guidance on where to find more information, don’t hesitate to contact us! We know pets are family, and we want to make sure they’re taken care of and loved the way they deserve to be.