Monthly Archives: June 2015

Frank T. Patzke Named 2015 Five Star Wealth Manager

For the fourth consecutive year, our President Frank T. Patzke CFP® is named a Five Star Wealth Manager for his quality service to clients.Five Star Award for Wealth Managers - Frank Patzke

The 2015 Five Star Wealth Manager Award is given to an exclusive group of Chicago wealth managers who are evaluated against 10 objective criteria such as client retention rates, client assets administered, and a favorable regulatory and complaint history.

Wealth managers do not pay a fee to be considered or placed on the final list of 2015 Five Star Wealth Managers.

Frank Patzke specializes in advising retirees, the “suddenly single”, and female clientele. He holds the prestigious Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) distinction, and is a three-time Women’s Choice Award winner.

The 2015 Five Star Wealth Managers will be published in the November issue of Chicago Magazine.

Financial Planning by Decades: What to Expect in Your 50s

By the time you reach your 50s, you realize that retirement is growing ever closer. Here are some key financial decisions you may need to plan for right now.

Checklist for Financial Plans in Your 50s

Individuals who are just entering their 50s or are already well into it may feel like time is going faster than ever. Children may be grown and out of the house, and thoughts of retiring start to enter the picture.

Whether you plan to leave the workforce at 62, 65 or 70 will depend a great deal on the financial planning that you do in your 50s. So before you fund your child’s grad school tuition or buy a second home, let’s take a look at these key areas needing your attention now.

Social Security

Do you know the difference between the social security benefits you will receive at age 62 and at age 67? How about if you wait until age 70? You can boost your social security benefits the longer you wait, but if you have existing medical conditions or are unable to work then this may not be an option. Talk with a financial advisor for advice on when to start taking social security benefits.

Living Expenses

Do you have a total understanding of what your current living expenses are and how they will change as you enter retirement? In order to be able to maintain the kind of lifestyle you desire in retirement, you need to know how much it will cost. Once you know the amount of social security benefits you can receive, you can determine how much more money you need to “fill the gap” and pay your expenses. Keep in mind that, on average, we are living 20 years past age 65, the typical retirement age.

Play Catch Up

The government makes certain provisions for 50-somethings who want to make extra contributions to retirement accounts. Take advantage of these opportunities to put more funds into your 401(k) or individual retirement accounts while you are at your peak earning power. As we discussed above, you may need the extra cash to fund living expenses in retirement.

Long-term Care Insurance

When you are in good health in your 50s, you may not think twice about long-term care insurance. However, this may be the time to enroll, because once you hit the next decade you may not be able to afford the premiums (they get more expensive as we age) or be able to get coverage at all, if you develop a pre-existing condition. Read: Do women need long-term care insurance more than men?

By making these financial plans now instead of later, you can possibly save more money while you have the health of body and mind to do so. You never know what the future holds, so now may be a good time to really focus on what you are going to need financially to cover the expected – as well as the unexpected.

You don’t have to do this alone. Contact a financial advisor for unbiased guidance on mid-life saving and spending.


3 Tips for Saving for Your Child’s Wedding

Saving Money - Tips for Child’s Wedding

How can you effectively set aside money for a wedding?

As tradition goes, the parents of the bride pay for the cost of a wedding. While purists certainly remain true to this protocol, it is becoming more common for the families to share the costs. In some cases, the children contribute or even foot the bill entirely on their own.

However, if part of your plan is to save money for all or part of your child’s future wedding, then these three tips can surely help you make the most of your efforts.

Decide How Much You Want to Spend

The cost of a wedding depends on many factors: Where will it be? What day of the week? How many guests? While it is impossible to know these answers years ahead of time (especially because prices will go up in the future), you can think about a number that you are comfortable with now. Later, if you have extra cash, you can adjust the amount if you wish.

Know How Much Time You Have

Saving for your child’s wedding from the time he or she is a newborn is different than if you wait until they are in their teens. Obviously, one gives you more time to save than the other. You already decided how much you want to spend, so if you start early you can put aside a smaller amount each year. Otherwise, if you only have a few years, then it is time to buckle down.

Work with a Financial Advisor

Saving for a wedding is as much a part of your financial plan as saving for retirement, or at least it should be. When you work with a financial advisor, you can get an idea of how much money you need to put aside every year – and when that amount needs to go up or down as your circumstances change (such as if you lose or quit a job, you buy a new house, start a new business, or go back to school). The wedding savings will need to work alongside your other financial responsibilities, which might include a down payment for a home (or second home), emergency funds, and of course, retirement savings.

Guidant Wealth Advisors offers full-service financial advising services for individuals, couples, and families who want to develop a financial plan to try and accomplish all of their goals.