Author: Benjamin Brandt

How to Vet Your Financial Advisor: Extreme Transparency Edition

Have you ever wondered who your financial advisor really is? Have you ever stared across their desk and thought, “What do they wear outside of this stuffy office? Where does this stranger live? And, what does he or she do for fun?” Chances are, you’ve wondered about your financial advisor’s motives at the very least. Are they truly working in your best interests – or, simply lining their own pockets at your expense? Is your advisor a fiduciary – someone who is legally obligated to give you solid advice? Or, are they a whole life insurance salesman in disguise...

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The Truth About Naked Investing

Not long ago, I visited with an older couple who had most of their retirement accounts saved in the banking equivalent of their bedroom mattress. The duo had been keeping the bulk of their money in cash since 2008, fearing market fluctuations would cause them to lose principal. Believe it not, they thought the 2008 stock market was as high as it could ever go. They knew their cash investments were earning next-to-nothing, and they even understood that inflation was slowly eating them alive. Still, they were paralyzed by the idea they might lose some money at first. Unfortunately,...

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Is Trusting Your Advisor Enough?

When my grandparents were just married and starting to build wealth, they put a lot of faith into a financial advisor. They met with their advisor monthly and leaned on him for the bulk of their financial and estate planning. Unfortunately, only one of my grandparents was paying much attention during their regular meetings. As my grandma tells it, she spent more time thinking about dinner or housework and critiquing the advisor’s interior design than listening to him talk or, heaven forbid, actually digging into their financial situation.  Investing was exciting and interesting for my Grandpa (He was weird...

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The Battle for Your Retirement

  My guest today is Micah Hauptman with the Consumer Federation of America. Micah is an advocate for the Fiduciary Rule, a rule that requires financial advisors to act in their client’s best interest when making recommendations on retirement savings. Check out my guest Op-Ed column in the Fargo Forum In this episode, Micah and I answer the questions: What is a fiduciary and why should I care? Why isn’t this common sense solution already in force? Who is standing on the way of this rule? How can North Dakota residents take action? Action items Residents of North Dakota can...

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4 “Must Ask” Questions Before Hiring a Financial Advisor

You’ve worked and saved your entire life, and you’re finally ready to retire. Unfortunately, your foray into investing and building wealth doesn’t end the second you hang up your hat.   For most people, the next step involves hooking up with a qualified financial advisor that will help you maximize your retirement funds – and preserve your cash for the long run. That’s right; even after you retire, you need to focus on preserving capital at the very least.   This is where your decision gets tough – and extremely “real.” You want to make sure the person you...

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Helpful Tips for Avoiding Career Burnout

If you’re feeling worn down, tired, or exhausted due to work-related stress, you’re not alone. In fact, there’s a term to describe how you’re feeling – career burnout.   The Mayo Clinic defines burnout as a special type of job-related stress – a state of physical, emotional or mental exhaustion combined with doubts about your competency at work.   While burnout can materialize in different ways, the symptoms tend to be similar no matter what you’re going through.   Do you have career burnout? Ask yourself how often you’ve experienced the following feelings regarding your work: Work-related cynicism or pessimism Lack of...

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4 Mistakes Business Owners Make When Selling Their Business

Our discussion today is with Peter Huminski, Peter is a financial advisor from Kernersville,  North Carolina with 17 years experience.  Peter has a unique financial advice background, as he has assisted over 50 business owners with the sale of their business.   4 Mistakes Business Owners Make When Selling Their Business In this episode we discuss the following mistakes business owners make when selling their businesses: Insufficient pre-sale preparation Overconfidence Unwillingness to leverage professionals Misrepresentation My favorite blog posts from Peter include: What Can The Death Star Teach You About Your Personal Finances Who is your Game of Thrones...

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Does the 4% Rule Still Hold Water?

An interview with Grant Bledsoe from AbovetheCanopy.us Grant is the founder of the Portland Fee-Only Financial Planning firm, Three Oaks Capital Management.  He is also the personality behind the popular personal finance blog AbovetheCanopy.us.   Today, Grant and I discuss the questions: What is the 4% rule? Why is this rule so popular? This rule is often the subject of criticism, why? Does this rule still hold water for the modern retiree?   At the end of our chat, Grant mentioned his upcoming FREE Social Security Webinar. Click here to reserve your spot! — — Links cited or mentioned...

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Tips for Retiring Abroad with Sarah Li Cain

Today’s episode is an interview with Sarah Li Cain from www.HighFivingDollars.com. Sarah is a financial blogger and travel expert, making her the perfect guest to discuss retiring abroad.   Listen along as Sarah and I discuss: Why are so many people choosing to retire overseas? How much can a retiree save living overseas? What foreign countries are viable for retirees that only speak English? How will a retiree receive healthcare in a foreign country? Is it possible to work overseas? Sarah and I conclude the episode with various travel tips including: “Look out for ‘The Hamburger Indicator’.”  You’ll have...

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The Myth of the ‘Pro-Leisure Circuit’ with Todd Tresidder

Will the pursuit of leisure in retirement leave us fulfilled, or searching for something more?   Our guest is Todd Tresidder from The Financial Mentor.    Todd has a diverse background that gives him a unique view on retirement topics.  Before retiring at age 35, Todd was a hedge fund manager.  Todd is also a hyper-accumulator of wealth, starting from a negative net worth in his 20s, he was able to build a nest-egg and sustain himself from it for over 20 years.     My favorite articles from Todd include: The 10 Commandments of Wealth Building The Great...

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