Financial Strategies 3Q 2018

Market Update Third Quarter 2018

September started with some volatility, but it ended on a positive note for most U.S. markets, capping off a strong third quarter. Read More

Should You Use A Reverse Mortgage To Pay For Long-Term Care?

When it comes to considering long-term healthcare costs in retirement, few retirees include these costs as part of their budget.  One way to cover these costs is to use a reverse mortgage. Read more

Cash is Dead - Credit Cards Reign!

If you only use cash, credit cards or checks, you may be missing out on free money in the form of rewards from credit card companies. Read More

Think You Don’t Qualify for Financial Aid, Think Again!

Each year thousands of students leave money on the table by not applying for financial aid, thinking they don't qualify.  However simply taking 30 minutes to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (known as FAFSA), could help them save thousands of dollars towards the increasing cost of college. Read more

Should Retirees Pay Off Their Mortgage?

Why paying off your mortgage before retirement may not always be the best solution. Read more

Social Security Benefit Increase

We are pleased to share some good news with you from the Social Security Administration. Effective January 1, 2019, social security recipients will receive a 2.8% increase in their monthly benefit. This figure is the largest social security cost-of-living adjustment since 2012 and nearly a full percentage point more than last year’s 2% increase. Read a helpful fact sheet

Year-end Gifting

Are you planning on making gifts to family or charitable donations from your investments by year-end? If so, please let us know as soon as possible, so that we can help you make these gifts in a timely fashion. The annual limit for non-charitable gifts is $15,000.

Required Minimum Distributions due by 12/31

If you are over age 70 ½ this year, you must withdraw the required minimum distribution from your IRAs and qualified retirement plans by 12/31, in order to satisfy IRS rules. (If you turned 70 ½ in 2018, you may be able to wait until April 1, 2019, but please discuss this with us before year end). AFM tracks and coordinates RMDs for all accounts held with our firm. However, if you have old 401(k) accounts, employer plans, or “orphaned” IRAs that hold small balances, these need to be considered as well. Please let us know if we can help with any outside accounts and RMDs, and please get in touch with the account custodians sooner rather than later, to avoid the year-end rush.

Reminder: Medicare Part D Open Enrollment 10/15 – 12/7

Medicare Part D plans routinely change their coverage and pricing each year, so it is important to take a fresh look now at your existing coverage, and the options available to you for next year. Before changing plans, be sure to confirm that your drugs are covered, and that your pharmacy of choice works with the new plan. The best tool for shopping Medicare plans is the Medicare Plan Finder, on the official Medicare website.

AFM News & Notes

  • We are excited to introduce our two newest team members, Chaunté Stallworth and Caroline Hupman
  • AFM became the first independent financial advisory firm to reach $1 million in total giving to the Foundation for Financial Planning
  • Alex Armstrong attended the The Excellence in Diversity & Inclusion Awards presented by InvestmentNews
  • AFM spent an afternoon helping sort food for The Capital Area Food Bank​
  • Read More

Holiday Toy and Clothing Drive

In our efforts to spread holiday cheer, AFM is partnering with St. Andrews United Methodist Church to host a Toy Drive for children in need in Somerset county located on the Lower Eastern Shore in Maryland. We are looking to help around 10-15 families, which are usually are single mothers with children. We are asking folks to contribute new toys, hats, gloves & scarves for children ranging from ages 5-16 years old. If you are interested in contributing, please contact Joan Collins via email or by calling our office. Donations will be accepted until December 7, 2018. Thanks to all of those that can contribute.