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So You’re Thinking About an ADU

| February 10, 2024 | 0 Comments

With San Diego’s aggressive promotion of Auxiliary Dwelling Units (ADUs), the topic of owning rental properties has come up a lot recently. Besides the need for additional housing here (and just about every other major metropolitan area in the country), there are some key advantages to owning rental properties, namely: That said, owning and renting […]

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How to Get Money Out of Your 401(K) Plan

| January 6, 2024 | 0 Comments

If you are like most working Americans today, you probably have been contributing to a company retirement plan (like a 401(k), 403(b) or SEP IRA, or other plan) for a few years. One question that comes up regularly is: “How (and when) can I get my money out of my retirement plan?” Most often, that […]

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Update on California Homeowners Insurance

| December 6, 2023 | 0 Comments

According to CalFire, roughly 1.6 million acres have burned over the past five years in California. As a result of mounting losses from the increasing wildfire risk, many property insurers have either stopped renewing policies or are limiting their new policies to lower risk areas. Even homeowners in areas rated moderate fire risk have found […]

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Using A Donor Advised Fund for Your Charitable Gifting

| November 6, 2023 | 0 Comments

A change in the tax code in 2017 made Donor Advised Funds a lot more attractive to the merely affluent Americans, not just the wealthiest. A Donor Advised Fund basically functions like a charitable foundation for the not yet uber-rich. The reason this vehicle became more attractive is that the limits imposed on itemized deductions […]

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Sharing Passwords Among Family Members

| October 4, 2023 | 0 Comments

When my father passed away a few years ago, my brother and I began to take a more active role in helping my mother. This included everything from helping her manage her cable and WiFi to banking to going with her to doctor appointments. At some point, every single one of these activities requires a […]

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Getting the Most Out of Retirement

| July 5, 2023 | 0 Comments

By Rick Brooks Did you know that the fastest growing demographic group in the United States is people over the age of 85? As health care improves, people are living longer. Most people today can expect to spend about one quarter to one third of their lives in retirement. Which begs the question: are you […]

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The Debt Ceiling Debate

| June 5, 2023 | 0 Comments

There are a LOT of things I would rather be discussing right now, but because Washington is what it is, the raising of the national debt limit is back on the front pages as the hot topic du jour. If this sounds familiar, it’s because it is. So, here’s a little background on why we […]

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Continuing Care Communities

| April 30, 2023 | 0 Comments

Continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) are communities designed for seniors that offer a range of services, from independent living to assisted living, nursing care and even memory care. These communities are becoming increasingly popular as seniors look for ways to maintain their independence and quality of life as they age. They are one option in […]

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Banking, Crisis and the FDIC Insurance Limits

| April 3, 2023 | 0 Comments

In my 25 plus years working in investment management, it’s fortunately rare that I have to discuss the FDIC and bank account insurance limits with clients. Unfortunately, that has become a pretty common topic the past few weeks. The failure of Silicon Valley Bank, Signature Bank and Silvergate Bank all in the same week brought […]

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The Ugly Math of Variable Annuities

| March 7, 2023 | 0 Comments

When a new client recently asked me to review a variable annuity they had purchased ten years ago, I knew I had my work cut out for me. Variable annuity contracts can be complex documents, loaded with confusing provisions, definitions, and terms. Often, the most complex parts are the most fundamental: the calculations used to […]

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