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John F. O'Hara

John F. O'Hara
731 W Skippack Pike  Blue Bell  PA 19422
Phone:  610-277-4060
Office:  215-643-3200
Cell:  267-481-1786
Fax:  267-354-6973

My Blog

5 Ways to Renew Your Commitment to a Better Financial Future

January 11, 2016 2:36 am

Most of us would concede our financial plans need improvement. In fact, according to a recent Northwestern Mutual study, just one-quarter of participants in the study felt secure in their ability to achieve their financial goals.

"Like any other partnership, creating a fulfilling financial life requires attention, consistency and communication," says Rebekah Barsch, vice president of planning and sales for Northwestern Mutual.

Barsch advises revitalizing your strategy by:

Making a Quarterly Date with Your Financial Plan – Only one-quarter of study participants who’ve created a financial plan review it on a quarterly basis. This is a missed opportunity, Barsch says, to reconnect with your financial resources and objectives and adjust to changing needs and market developments.

Talking It Out – Candid conversations with loved ones about financial priorities are essential to remaining committed to your retirement and lifestyle goals. Moreover, depending on your challenges and objectives, you may want to consider getting guidance from a professional.

Planning a 30-Year Vacation – If packing for two weeks away can be challenging, imagine preparing for a 30-year vacation. That’s essentially what retirement could be for many Americans as life expectancy increases.

Your "luggage,” or financial strategy, says Barsch, has to accommodate routine expenses like food and shelter, healthcare costs, lifestyle needs and perhaps even a legacy for your loved ones or a philanthropic organization. In a time of ebbing social safety nets and rising costs, proactive financial planning is key to shaping the retirement experience you've worked hard to enjoy.

Shedding the Debt Weight – Your financial happiness may be hamstrung by debt baggage. Revisit your budget and create a strategy to commit to a smaller number of credit cards and lighten your loan load as much as you can.

Remember: LTC Is the Same as TLC – The U.S. government estimates 70 percent of adults 65 or older will require some form of long-term care, or "LTC.” And the financial implications of caregiving can be quite sobering, explains Barsch, potentially accounting for a quarter of a caregiver's monthly budget. Tapping into savings or retirement funds and/or reducing discretionary spending are common ways of managing the financial demands of caregiving.

Barsch says this approach, however, could actually create more stress because it may impact lifestyle and future financial security. Proactively exploring options for long-term care planning can mitigate the pressure around care decisions for you and your loved ones.

Source: Northwestern Mutual

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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Ask the Plumber: How to Conduct a DIY Leak Test

January 11, 2016 2:36 am

Did you know more than one trillion gallons of water leak from homes across America each year?*

“People are often shocked at the volumes of water wasted through household leaks,” says Paul Abrams, ROTOGreen expert with Roto-Rooter. “A dripping faucet is easy to ignore and fix whenever you get around to it, but numerous small leaks can add up and have a very noticeable impact on the water usage and water bill.”

The average household can save up to 10,000 gallons of water each year simply by fixing leaks—one of the biggest culprits of which is toilets, which can leak up to 200 gallons per day. To detect for leaks in the toilet(s) in your home, Abrams recommends the following DIY tricks:

• Put a few drops of food coloring in the tank and wait 15 minutes. If colored water appears in the bowl, you have a leak. Repairing this type of leak is best left to a professional plumber.

• Sprinkle a pinch of flour or talcum powder on top of the water in your toilet tank. Watch it carefully. If it drifts toward the tank’s overflow tube, then you have an overflow leak. Overflow leaks can easily be repaired by replacing the float valve.

*U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Source: Roto-Rooter

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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