Perspectives on Life

Planning Strategies

Discover financial planning strategies that will guide you through all stages of your life – from starting out, to building a family, to retirement.

Latest Stories

Using Life Insurance to Fund College

By Nicholas Hoeschel | August 15, 2017

Saving for college is an excellent strategy, but parents often don’t realize that there are some ways to save that are better than others. There are times when having too much savings can reduce your child’s chances of qualifying for financial aid for college. In addition to the death benefit protection it provides, life insurance can be useful in helping to fund college.

Planning Your Journey Up and Down the “Retirement Mountain”

By David LaBricciosa | July 25, 2017

I wrote recently in The Hill about how retirement is like climbing a mountain. The peak of the mountain is your retirement date, and the ascent is the struggle to earn and save along the way. Of course, getting to the top of the mountain is only half the journey. Once you reach the top, you still have to work yourself safely down.

Why It’s Important to Understand What Your Business is Worth

By Roy Lenzo III | July 5, 2017

Without having a solid understanding of the value of your business, you may be setting yourself up for trouble. This can put you in a difficult position when it comes time to sell the business, borrow money, pass it on to your heirs, or even make everyday decisions about how to grow.

Don’t Forget to Include Your Pet in Your Estate Plan

By Margaret Muldoon | June 13, 2017

While it’s silly to leave $12 million to your dog, it’s not a bad idea to consider the care of your pets in your estate planning. Pets are considered property under the law, but for most pet owners they are treasured members of the family. But unless you specifically provide for the care of your pet, it will pass along with the rest of your property as outlined your Will or according to intestacy laws (if you don’t have a Will). That might not be the best person to care for your pet. There are three ways you can provide for a pet in the event of your incapacity or death.

Life Insurance Remains a Strong Source of Stability in an Uncertain Tax Environment

By Eva Victor | May 30, 2017

Just as estate planning has changed in recent years, so has the use of life insurance in estate planning. Life insurance can effectively serve multiple purposes and objectives in an estate plan, and has more uses beyond simply providing a death benefit to pay estate taxes.

Make Life Insurance Your Business Partner

By Margaret Muldoon | May 2, 2017

Business owners know firsthand that building their business and staying successful requires significant time and resources. Yet many small business owners are not aware of critical business planning areas that put the future of their businesses at risk if left unaddressed. Life insurance can be an excellent partner in many aspects of business planning.

Spring Cleaning – Declutter Your Financial Life

By Carolyn Humphrey | April 18, 2017

The start of spring marks not only a good time for cleaning your house and garden, but is also an opportune time to clean up your finances and get things in better order. Done right, it should make your life easier throughout the rest of the year. Your financial life will be less cluttered, and you will be able to work more efficiently.

Why Buy Life Insurance After Age 65?

By Raymond Caucci | February 1, 2017

While life insurance is sometimes seen as something only young people need – when someone has a young family, a mortgage, and an income to protect – people over age 65 are increasingly looking to buy life insurance. Here’s why that makes sense.

Financial Planning for Long-Term Care

By Kevin Gianfortune | November 29, 2016

Make no mistake about it: Long-term care can be enormously expensive, so much so that it can throw the most carefully crafted retirement or estate plan out of whack. The average cost of care here in the Philadelphia area is around $7,000 to $9,000 a month for skilled nursing care, and the costs are much the same throughout the country. Elder care is also fraught with potential traps.

Estate Planning for Blended Families

By Margaret Muldoon | October 18, 2016

I wrote a while ago about the changing composition of the American family, using characters and family relations in the TV network series Modern Family to illustrate how complex a family can be for estate planning. Today I’d like to follow up and talk more in-depth about the estate planning challenges of blended families.