RE/MAX 440
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

How Financial Spring Cleaning Can Lead to a Richer Long-Term Outlook

April 2, 2015 12:45 am

One lesson the average American should have learned from the recent financial crisis and gradual recovery is that putting more money into savings is, in general, good, says veteran financial expert Jeff Gorton.

“When things are fine, most of us are prone to commit less of our money to savings; when the economy is down, however, we realize that having money is far more important than spending it on things we don’t need,” says Gorton, a veteran Certified Public Accountant and Certified Financial Planner™, and head of Gorton Financial Group, (www.gortonfinancialgroup.com).

The personal savings rate in July 2005 hit an all-time low at just 2 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But in May 2009, near the beginning of the recession, the average American’s savings rate hit a high of 8 percent.

“That rate dwindled as the economy recovered, which is unfortunate because you can do more with accumulated money, including benefit from investments yielding compound interest, which means that interest also earns interest in an investment,” says Gorton, who suggests practical ways to trim spending in the short term in order to get your financial house in order and accumulate more money in the long term.

Car buying says plenty about how a consumer views their money. For most Americans, the question is whether to buy new or used. The moment you drive a brand new car off the lot after the purchase, the car’s value drastically drops. Many of the benefits you may enjoy in buying a new car can be had with a certified pre-owned car: low miles, good-as-new functionality and, usually, that new-car smell. And, a given model will have a history, so you can avoid cars that have been recalled. Buying a certified pre-owned car will save you several thousands of dollars versus buying new.

Summer vacation is an important lifestyle enhancer for many couples, but consider replacing the $400-per-night hotel with a condo rented through a private owner, especially if your vacation will last for an extended period. A condo rental should cost you in the ballpark of $200 per night, which totals $2,800 savings for two weeks.

Your home is probably your most significant asset if you’re like most Americans. But with that grand house on the hill comes plenty of costs, many of which you may not need. As with a luxury car, rethinking the amount of luxury for a home can save you big on taxes, insurance and maintenance. The cost of maintaining a large home can be put toward lifestyle activities, such as travel and hobbies.

“Of course, these are all simply suggestions; money plays a major role in how we achieve happiness, and I’ve found through years of working with clients, a few tweaks here and there frequently yields greater satisfaction with their money,” Gorton says. “You don’t have to be on autopilot with your expenses.”

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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6 Window Safety Tips

April 2, 2015 12:45 am

More than 3,300 injuries occur each year as a direct result of window hazards at home, according to a recent Safe Kids Worldwide Report. If you’re a homeowner, it’s important to remain vigilant when it comes to protecting you and your loved ones, especially if you have children.

Stay safe from window-related incidents with these tips from leading door and window manufacturer Pella:

• Move furniture that children can climb on, like beds and sofas, away from windows.

• Talk with older children about window safety. Make sure they know to never lean against a window or screen.

• Never rely on window screens to protect loved ones from falls. Make sure to keep children and pets away from window screens.

• To let fresh air into the home, open windows in high places that children cannot reach, like those above a kitchen sink.

• Invest in cordless blinds and shades or between-the-glass options to eliminate hanging cords that can be a safety hazard for children.

• Make sure to keep windows closed and locked when children or pets are around, and keep an eye on children if they are playing near windows.

Source: Pella Corporation

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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