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Hi, this is my blog in which I will be sharing "my voice" on topics of interest.  I am confident you will get value from it.  I also appreciate your comments and feedback.

Rafi Rodriguez

 

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

With the New Year approaching, take time to make a list of your financial resolutions. Financial resolutions can be especially difficult to stick with because, like eating and exercising, our spending, saving and investing habits tend...

 

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

3 Major Retirement Hazards to Avoid Retirement can mean the beginning of a new life. Here are a few common dangers to avoid. Retirement planning is a tricky process, one that requires careful planning and patience. But even if you have...

 

Monday, June 12, 2017

Alzheimer’s is one of our nation’s costliest diseases. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, total health care, long-term care and hospice payments related to Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias will...

 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

The TSP program offers several annuity options as retirement income. Single Life Annuity: an annuity that provides monthly payments only to you as long as you live. You may elect a Level Payments option or Increasing Payments option....

 

Monday, November 7, 2016

Sustainable and Responsible Investing Increasingly, investors seek to align their personal beliefs with their financial actions. Not so long ago, the phrase “socially responsible investing” might have brought to mind...

 

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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

For military and Civil Service personnel, Here are salient bullet points on TSP Withdrawal Options: Partial Withdrawal--use TSP-77 form – One-Time Only Amounts >$1000 Full Withdrawal--use TSP-70 Form – Single Payment...

 

Monday, July 25, 2016

Stick to the Plan Having a long-term financial plan gives your logic a leg up over your emotions during times of market volatility. When stock markets are highly volatile, the roller coaster ride can test even the most stoic of...

 

Monday, July 18, 2016

Basics of Passive & Aggressive Investment Management Does passive investment management merit its “couch-potato” nickname or is it not getting the respect it deserves? Passive investment management may be the Rodney...

 

Monday, July 11, 2016

Basics of Dollar Cost Averaging Dollar-cost averaging is a popular method of investing for the long term. If you’ve been burned before by buying high and selling low, you may want to consider putting your investments on cruise...

 

Monday, June 27, 2016

Preparing for Widowhood Women who avoid preparing for life as a widow only add to the pain of losing a spouse. Life ends with only one possible conclusion: death. And while no one wants to spend any more time than necessary thinking...

 

Monday, June 20, 2016

Financial Tables for One Whether fresh out of college or after a marriage, women will some day go it alone in taking care of their financial needs. With the combination of later marriage, divorce, widowhood and longevity, almost 90...

 

Monday, June 13, 2016

Feast or Famine: Finances for Surviving Spouses Faced with the loss of a spouse’s income or large payments from insurance or retirement plans, surviving spouses may need help avoiding the extremes of lavish spending or fearful...

 

Monday, June 6, 2016

Anti-Scam Tips for Surviving Spouses In the grief, confusion and stress of losing a spouse, survivors make the perfect target for scam artists. Newspaper obituaries provide a service in notifying a large number of people in a short...

 

Monday, May 30, 2016

The Costs of Being a Caregiver Becoming the caregiver for a sick or disabled loved one can be stressful physically, emotionally, mentally – and financially. Sixteen percent of the U.S. civilian population were eldercare providers...

 

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Protect Your Income With Disability Coverage You’ve insured your home and personal property, your vehicles and your life, but are you overlooking your most substantial asset – your ability to earn income? Disability...

 

Monday, May 23, 2016

Help Your Family Plan Your Care Avoid misunderstandings by planning now for the day you can no longer care for yourself. Becoming increasingly dependent on others for the normal activities of daily life can be a harsh reality. It can...

 

Monday, May 16, 2016

Long-Term Care Insurance Offers More Choices As healthcare costs increase, long-term care insurance companies offer more options. A 2014 study by Genworth and the American Association for Long Term Care Insurance found that the...

 

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Impact of Health Care on Retirement Will health issues force you to retire earlier or spend your nest egg quicker than you planned? Nearly half of Americans retire sooner than they expected, many of them because of health issues or...

 

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Withdrawing savings from an IRA is one option to pay for college tuition. But is it a good idea? If you’re like many Americans, you face a variety of challenges every day. Most parents and some grandparents find themselves...

 

Sunday, April 17, 2016

College costs can be more than a little painful, but with the proper financial planning, you could be whistling your child’s college fight song all the way to the bank. Federal and state financial aid for college students may be...

 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

529 prepaid college tuition plans offer an easy way to save for an education. Section 529 of the tax code established two types of higher education investment plans that receive preferential tax treatment. The 529 college savings plan...

 

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

529s have become one of the most popular college savings options. Here are some basics. Looking to save for college? Take a number – the number 529 to be exact. College Savings Accounts, or 529s as they’re nicknamed (after...

 

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Stick to the Plan Having a long-term financial plan gives your logic a leg up over your emotions during times of market volatility. When stock markets are highly volatile, the roller coaster ride can test even the most stoic of...

 

Friday, April 1, 2016

Basics of Dollar Cost Averaging Dollar-cost averaging is a popular method of investing for the long term. If you’ve been burned before by buying high and selling low, you may want to consider putting your investments on cruise control...

 

Thursday, March 31, 2016

It’s important to stay calm when the markets aren’t. Market volatility, especially dramatic sell-offs, are unsettling to most of us. Here are a few reassuring facts to help you keep a positive perspective and some precautions that may...

 

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Calculating The Kiddie Tax Originally applicable to children under age 14 (hence the name), today’s “kiddie tax” governs the calculation of taxes on investment income for dependent children. The law is intended to prevent parents from...

 

Monday, March 28, 2016

Impact of Health Care on Retirement Will health issues force you to retire earlier or spend your nest egg quicker than you planned? Nearly half of Americans retire sooner than they expected, many of them because of health issues or...

 

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Alternative Minimum Tax Created to ensure the wealthy paid at least some taxes, the AMT is hitting some tax payers well below that belt. It’s the IRS sucker punch: make too much money and have too many deductions, and you get ejected...

 

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Thanks to all who attended our recent NextPhase™ Retirement Income Seminar.

 

Friday, March 18, 2016

Matchmaker: Maximizing Your Employer 401(k) Contributions How a 401(k) plan, (which may be employer-matched), could help you fall in love with the thought of a comfortable retirement. There can be a lot of confusing numbers floating...

 

Friday, March 11, 2016

The Wobbly Stool The “three legged stool” has long been the approach to retirement planning. But many Americans don’t even have a stool, and for some who do, the stool is becoming a bit shaky. The “three-legged stool” is considered the...

 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Helping Your Parents Through Their Retirement In 1900, life expectancy at birth in the U.S. was 47 years. Now that number is closer to 86, and many of today’s children could live to see 100. But with an increase in longevity comes a...

 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Budgeting For Your Retirement Retirement planning requires determining your retirement expenses, and that starts well before you retire. Start your budget planning process at least five years before you plan to retire to help you...

 

Monday, February 15, 2016

A New Mindset for Income Distribution A distribution plan focuses less on accumulating wealth and more on making it last through retirement. In terms of your finances, your preretirement earning years focus on accumulation and growth...

 

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Your Life’s Work--Leaving a legacy A person’s legacy cannot be measured by one solitary event in his or her life. Rather, legacies, like lives themselves, must be measured as a whole. If you’ve ever taken a step back and examined your...

 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Income Distribution With improvements in healthcare, diet and exercise habits, Americans are generally living longer lives and enjoying more active and vibrant retirements. Early retirement has also become more common, thus resulting...

 

Friday, February 5, 2016

401(k) Distribution Dilemmas How you will take your 401(k) distributions when you retire can be an important consideration in executing your post-retirement plan. We all look forward to the day when we can finally kick back, relax and...

 

Thursday, February 4, 2016

3 Major Retirement Hazards to Avoid Retirement can mean the beginning of a new life. Here are a few common dangers to avoid. Retirement planning is a tricky process, one that requires careful planning and patience. But even if you have...

 

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Divorce and Insurance Because we often forget about insurance until we need it, life, health, homeowners and disability coverage issues can get overlooked during a divorce settlement. In working through your divorce, don’t forget your...

 

Friday, January 22, 2016

Dividing Assets In A Divorce In a divorce settlement, you don’t get do-overs. Doing your homework and enlisting the help of trusted professionals can prevent costly mistakes. Few times of crisis require immediate, clear-headed...

 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Financial Confidence for Facing Divorce The emotional upheaval of a divorce is no time to be learning money basics and selecting professional advisors. Preparing now isn’t cynical – it’s smart. In the late 16th century, when death...

 

Friday, January 15, 2016

Dancing with Debt After age 30, you are expected to really begin thinking about not only your own future but the future of your children as well. Appropriately named, Generation X-ers are at the crossroads of life and often have to...

 

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Strategies for Volatile Markets It’s important to stay calm when the markets aren’t. Market volatility, especially dramatic sell-offs, are unsettling to most of us. Here are a few reassuring facts to help you keep a positive...

 

Friday, January 8, 2016

Here are five reasons why you should have a financial plan: 1. A Roadmap: A financial plan provides a roadmap to guide you go from where you are to where you are going for the reasons that are important to you. The plan should have...

 

Thursday, January 7, 2016

As we embark into 2016, the New Year provides us with renewed enthusiasm, energy and hope for the future. The New Year provides us with the opportunity to review our current goals and embark on new ones. In my experience, there are...

 

Thursday, January 7, 2016

With all the market turmoil during the past few years, most investors are scrutinizing their investments and associated costs like never before. More importantly, they’re feeling increasingly uncertain about being on track to reach...

 

Monday, November 16, 2015

If you’re like me, getting older has brought with it the quicker passage of time and a handful of new aches and pains. But what hurts more than the occasional morning stiffness is witnessing cherished friends or family members fall...

 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

As the fastest growing minority in the U.S., Hispanics will likely face a Long Term Care challenge in their families. According to a recent AARP article: “Challenges of Long Term Care” (November 2013, Vol. 54, No 9), 18 million people...