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Category : Wealth Management

Working From Home with Kids: 7 Tips to Make it Work

This unprecedented time has brought forth a slew of challenges, one of which has been glaring for many: working from home with kids is hard.

 

And with summer here and many summer activities cancelled, how do you balance your work life and home life? Here are 7 tips from Metroplex Wealth – your source for retirement planning near Dallas – on how to maximize this time:

 

Allow Flexibility

Your schedule may look different during this time. Many it’s not a traditional 9-5. Pay attention to when you have scheduled meetings and work around those times. Maybe your schedule is 2-hour blocks throughout the day. Give yourself flexibility to get some work done, then take the dog or kids out for a walk.

 

Create a Designated Workspace

 

For some working from home – full time or part time – is normal. For many, this experience has been new. Find a place in your home that can be a designated workspace, away from the noise where you can focus on the work at hand. Avoid setting up shop in the dining room or in a high traffic area of the home where distractions are plentiful.

 

Take Advantage of “Off Peak” Hours

 

Do you an early riser or a night owl? Take advantage of these “off peak” times when your family may be sleeping to get some extra work done. It’s amazing how productive you can be in the early hours of the day on a full night of sleep!

 

Set Daily Priorities

 

Prioritize your tasks in terms of things that must happen today – and things that can wait. Tackle the “must dos” first, then as you work down the list, you can begin working toward accomplishing more. Assuring the tasks that must get done are completed will relieve stress and give a sense of accomplishment.

 

Give Kids Additional Responsibility

 

Kids can do more than we often give them credit for. Teach them how to do common household chores, make their own breakfast, or get their own snacks. Delegating these common interruptions will give them a sense of accomplishment – and give you more time to get work done.

 

Dress Up your Workspace

 

It’s true that if we enjoy our workspace, we’re more productive and more likely to spend our time there. Do what you can to make your new workspace feel inviting and productive. Add greenery by moving a common houseplant to your desk from another area of the home. Buy a few simple organization bins or shelves to keep your supplies organized. As we work on retirement planning near Dallas from our home offices, we find that these little touches can go a long way to better productivity.

 

Give Yourself Grace

 

Working from home with kids isn’t easy. Some days are going to go well – others might involve your child in front a screen all day while you’re hope for a little quiet time to get your work done. Give yourself grace, knowing this season will pass and your kids will likely remember this time with fond memories of their time at home.

 

If you’re evaluating your retirement plans during this time and want to know how this current pandemic might be affecting your long-term financial goals, Metroplex Wealth would love to talk with you. Our team specializes in retirement planning near Dallas and can help with all of your financial planning needs.

5 Misconceptions About Life Insurance

Most new clients have some sort of preconceived ideas about life insurance. And whether or not they already have life insurance, chances are they are underinsured.

 

At Metroplex Wealth, we’re here to set the record straight. We work with clients daily to optimize their retirement planning near me in Southlake, Texas. Through our years of experience, here are 5 common misconceptions about life insurance that we often encounter:

 

  1. You Can’t Purchase Life Insurance with Health Issues.

Sure, having a preexisting condition like diabetes or high blood pressure may raise your rates, but typically, term life insurance can still be had – even if you do have pre-existing health issues. A firm for retirement planning near me can get quotes from several different companies, ensuring you receive the best rates and the best package to meet your financial needs.

 

  1. I Already Have Life Insurance. I’m Good.

Already owning life insurance is a great place to start! But our next question is, when was the last time you assessed your life insurance needs? Often, our life changes – we add more children, we buy a new house, we become empty nesters – but we forget to reevaluate our life insurance strategy and whether or not we have the appropriate coverage for the next stage of life. It’s also important to note that life insurance that is offered from work, while valuable, is rarely enough to provide the coverage you need.

 

  1. The Premiums are Too High.

At Metroplex Wealth, we think you would be surprised to learn the cost of various insurance premiums. Many clients actually overestimate the premiums on coverage! Even the premiums on a $2 million dollar policy are very affordable when you look at the big picture and securing the financial freedom of your loved ones.

 

  1. Singles Don’t Need Life Insurance.

Each and every client, single or not, needs to evaluate their life insurance needs. Even if you are single, there may be sound reasons for life insurance. Do you have children? Do you own your own business? Are there aging parents relying on you? The last thing you would want to do is leave someone else with a financial burden upon your death.

 

  1. Putting Money in Savings is Better than Life Insurance.

Proper retirement planning is based on a healthy balance between saving and insurance, with life insurance being a key component in many strategies. Often clients have the best intentions of saving, but those intentions often fall short, leaving glaring gaps in their financial security.

 

At Metroplex Wealth in Southlake, Texas, we look at all aspects of retirement planning near me. If you are in need of life insurance, or are unsure if your coverage aligns with your financial goals, let’s talk about it. Give us a call today to set up a consultation.

5 Probate Mistakes to Avoid

 

Going through the probate process can be stressful.

 

The goal at Metroplex Wealth is to ease the burden by helping you create a comprehensive estate plan that will make the process run as smooth as possible. We see many cases enter probate, and there are some common probate mistakes that are important to avoid:

 

Delaying The Process

No one expects you to report the death and begin the probate process the day someone passes, but it is important to report the death in a timely manner. We often see people who wait months before beginning the process, incurring additional taxes, fees, and penalties in the process.

 

Failing to Protect & Maintain Assets

After a death, all assets must be identified, protected, and properly maintained by the estate. It is imperative to locate them as soon as possible, as to avoid any theft. Furthermore, properties that are owned by the estate must be maintained during the probate process. This means lawn services, keeping utilities running, and other common property maintenance.

 

Incomplete Records

An estate plan is designed to help the probate process run as smoothly as possible. One mistake we often see is that estate plans are out-of-date and do not list all assets, debts, or other information necessary to settle the estate. Be sure that your estate plan is updated regularly! If you are already in the probate process and an estate plan isn’t available, begin an inventory of all assets and debts so that the estate can be settled quickly. Where to start on finding all debts? Obtain a copy of the credit report, begin collecting mail, and talk with the deceased person’s financial advisors or family.

 

Not Notifying All Creditors

In that vein, after an administrator or executor has determined all debts, it’s extremely important to notify all creditors of the death. If not, additional costs may need to be paid out of your own pocket vs. the estate.

 

Trying to Do It All Alone

Probate is a complicated and stressful process, and the wise counsel of highly trained lawyers and advisors who specialize in probate near Dallas is vitally important. Sure, you could probably do it alone, but it could cost you more in the long run with additional headaches and mistakes that hit the bottom line. Not to mention, well-trained specialists know how to save you the most money when going through the probate near Dallas process.

 

At Metroplex Wealth, we work closely with the Redding Law firm, offering the convenience of having all of your estate planning and probate near Dallas needs met under one roof. Whether you are just beginning the probate process for a loved one or are wanting to make sure your estate plan is current, give us a call today.

Does Your Estate Plan Include these 5 Elements?

Estate planning can be a difficult, yet essential, part of your financial planning process. Estate planning alleviates the burden of guesswork for others in the events that you are deceased or no longer able to communicate yourself. At Metroplex Wealth, we specialize in estate planning in Southlake, Texas, and we visit with clients on a daily basis about the ins and outs of the estate planning process.

 

Whether you already have an estate plan in place – or are looking to update yours – be sure to include these 5 essential elements:

 

  1. Last Will & Testament

This is a big one and one that most people think about when they think about an estate plan. When you pass, your belongings go into probate, should you not have a Last Will & Testament in place. A will gives your family and loved ones security in knowing they are carrying out your wishes and also protects your assets from further taxation and fees.

2. Living Will

In medical situations, a Living Will & Healthcare Power of Attorney (which we’ll talk about in a second) are vital. Unlike a Last Will & Testament, a Living Will applies when you are still alive. This will is to be used if you are incapacitated, outlining what someone is to do if you need life support.

3. Healthcare Power of Attorney

In conjunction with a Living Will, a Healthcare Power of Attorney simply gives another individual the right to speak on your behalf, should you be unable to make your own healthcare decisions.

4. Financial Power of Attorney

When you are drawing up your will and doing estate planning in Southlake, it’s important to also consider who you would like to handle your financial business should you become unable to do that yourself. This person is called a Financial Power of Attorney, and without he or she, it is extremely difficult for someone else to make financial decisions on your behalf should you become incapacitated.

5. Trust

This is not essential for everyone creating an estate plan, but it is something worth discussing with your wealth manager and estate planning attorney.  A trust is a vehicle that can be setup to determine when and how your assets are allocated. This can be while you are living or after you have passed away. The goal is to manage funds and assets to be used in a certain way or at specific milestones in life. An estate planner can walk you through whether or not a trust makes sense for your estate plan.

 

Whether you need a new estate plan or are looking to revise an existing one, give us a call at Metroplex Wealth. We specialize in estate planning in Southlake, Texas and would love to discuss your needs and how we can best serve you.

5 Questions to Ask when Selecting an Estate Planning Firm

When it comes to estate plans, one size definitely does not fit all.

 

If you’re looking for estate planning near Dallas, we realize that your options are plentiful. Where do you start? While it can be overwhelming to select a firm for estate planning, Metroplex Wealth in Southlake, Texas offers the following questions to ask each firm before making a decision:

 

  1. Do You Do A Lot of Business with Clients in My Situation?

As we said earlier, there is no “one size fits all” solution for estate planning. Each client we work with at Metroplex Wealth has their own personal assets and situation that must be taken into account. Is your family blended? Is there a disabled child in your family? Are you a business owner? All of these things and more matter for tailoring a plan to you.

 

  1. Am I Comfortable with This Person?

An estate planner can have all the credentials in the world, but if you don’t feel comfortable with them, then they are the wrong fit for you. You will be sharing a lot of very personal information with this person, so be sure it’s someone you feel you can trust and have a strong rapport with.

 

  1. How Much of Your Firm is Dedicated to Estate Planning?

Asking this question gives you a good sense for how in-depth their knowledge and expertise of estate planning near Dallas is. As rules and regulations can change often, look for a firm that spends a great deal of their resources on estate planning  to ensure the best plan possible.

 

  1. What Is Your Protocol for Working with my Other Financial Advisors?

Estate planning doesn’t happen in a black hole. It happens with collaboration from wealth managers, attorneys, accountants, and more, and it’s important that your estate planner has a history of working well with these counterparts. At Metroplex Wealth, this is one of the things we specialize in! In fact, we have the unique advantage of having all of this under one roof! We share an office with Redding Law firm, ensuring that collaboration between estate plans, financial planning, retirement planning, and other wealth management is constantly happening. And if you want to talk to one of us about your wealth management approach, we’re all just one phone call away.

 

  1. What is your Fee Structure?

Fees and structures vary by estate planning firm, but it’s important to get an idea of cost before making a selection. Look for transparency and open dialogue so you know what to expect up front. Just be wary of making a decision solely based on cost, as lowest cost doesn’t always equal best value.

 

Metroplex Wealth is a wealth management firm in Southlake, Texas that specializes in estate planning near Dallas. Call us today for a consultation on how we can serve you.

What You Need to Know about Asset Protection

At Metroplex Wealth, we find that new clients have many misconceptions about what asset protection is – and what it isn’t. It’s a complicated topic but Metroplex Wealth – a leader in asset protection in Southlake – is here to shed some light on the subject:

 

What Asset Protection is Not

Let’s start with what asset protection is not. Asset protection is not a form of fraudulent finances. It’s not hiding from your taxes or litigation. It’s not funny accounting. Asset protection is a perfectly legal way of working within the laws to create situations where your money is protected should you face future litigation or other liabilities. Another primary goal of asset protection in Southlake is to give our clients ways in which they can deter litigation or other claims before they every begin.

 

When is Asset Protection Ineffective?

Some form of asset protection is a must for all of our clients, but it is completely ineffective if you are already facing pending litigation, being audited, or there is any hint of an issue on the horizon. These issues could include bankruptcy, lawsuits, inquiries into your taxes, etc. At this point, asset protection strategies cannot help as they can be seen to obstruct justice.

 

Areas of Asset Protection

By now you may be wondering, “so how can asset protection strategies help me?” Asset protection in Southlake effects everyone. In fact, you could even think about your basic liability insurances on your properties, vehicles, etc. as a form of asset protection. Other areas we often recommend for clients include:

 

  • Trusts: Protect assets you’d like to leave to your heirs through a formal trust
  • 401(k) Plans: 401(k) and 403(b) plans offer protection of your assets from pending creditors.
  • Gifting: One way to protect your money is to go ahead and gift it to charities of your choice or the heirs you would eventually leave it to anyway.
  • Family Limited Partnerships: These FLPs provide a safety net for your assets through a partnership.

 

Metroplex Wealth: The Best of Financial Planning and Legal Expertise

When looking at firms who offer asset protection in Southlake, it’s important to consider all the services offered. Metroplex Wealth has the district advantage of sharing our office with the legal office of Redding Law Firm. Having an attorney here at our wealth management office offers you the distinct advantage of having everything you need in one place. No need to send paper trails back and forth between your financial advisor and lawyer; we can handle everything in-house. Need to talk with someone personally about your situation? Our boutique financial planning office guarantees a personal, hands-on approach to each client.

Ready to learn more about asset protection and how it can benefit you? Give us a call today at Metroplex Wealth in Southlake, Texas.

What Can I Expect During the Probate Process?

Losing a loved one is never easy.

 

At Metroplex Wealth, our goal is to aid our clients in navigating this difficult time. Whether it’s your estate or that of a loved one that has passed, we have the distinct advantage of marrying the world of estate planning and probate near me to offer everything you or your loved ones need to settle an estate all in one place.

 

What is Probate?

Probate is simply a process in which the assets of the deceased are managed and allocated accordingly. The cost and duration of this process varies depending on if there is a Will in place, if there are real estate holdings, location of the real estate holdings, size of the estate, complexity of the estate, etc. Common fees that show up during the probate process of settling the estate include court fees, accounting fees, attorney fees, and executors fees – to name a few.

 

What Can I Expect During the Probate Process?

Metroplex Wealth, in partnership with the boutique law firm of Redding Law office, is here to assist in all of you and your loved ones probate near me needs. While each probate is different, here are a few common steps you can expect during the probate process:

 

  1. Petition is Filed with the Probate Court

The first step in the probate process is to open a petition for probate of the estate with the proper courts. At this time, the Will (if there is one), death certificate, and petition are all submitted.

  1. Notice of Probate Given to Beneficiaries

Shortly after, all named beneficiaries are given notice of probate of the estate, and a hearing follows. The purpose of the hearing is to provide an opportunity for anyone to provide additional information (maybe someone has a more recent version of a Will in their possession) or to dispute the Will.

  1. Court Appoints Executor or Administrator of the Estate

The person selected as the Executor or Administrator of the estate oversees the process of settling the estate.

  1. Assets are Located and Cataloged

The first task for the Executor is to locate and take all assets into possession. This process can be timely, given that there might be assets even a spouse or named heir does not know about. Once the assets are located, an inventory of assets is to be created.

  1. Pay the Estate’s Creditors

All debts and final bills are paid out of the estate by the Executor/Administrator.

  1. Prepare & File Final Estate Taxes

All estate taxes are filed and paid by the Executor/Administrator.

  1. Assets are Allocated to Beneficiaries

Once all debts have been paid, the Executor/Administrator distributes the remaining assets accordingly.

 

If you have questions about probate near me in Southlake, Texas or want to begin estate planning today, call our office at Metroplex Wealth. We specialize in estate planning, asset protection, and probate and would love to help you navigate these complicated subjects with ease.

3 Reasons Why You Should Choose Metroplex Wealth for your Estate Planning Needs

Each of our days here are numbered, and for most of us, it’s very important to make sure your estate is in order so that family and loved ones are not burdened with excess financial costs and lengthy court proceedings to get the assets we want entrusted to them.

 

Metroplex Wealth specializes in estate planning near me in Southlake, Texas, offering you the peace of mind and financial guidance you need to get your affairs in order.

 

What is Estate Planning?

Estate planning is simply getting your financial affairs in order and creating a plan for who will get what from your estate upon your death, to what extent you want each person to receive benefits, and when benefits should be received. It’s also an important tool for maximizing the estate that is passed to your heirs through proper tax planning. It’s never too early to begin the process.

 

Why Choose Metroplex Wealth for Estate Planning?

Metroplex helps many clients get their affairs in order with proper estate planning near me in Southlake. Here are 3 reasons to choose us for your estate planning needs:

 

  1. Partnership with Boutique Law Firm

In order to get all of your estate planning documents properly filed, a lawyer must be involved in the process. At Metroplex Wealth, we actually share an office with a boutique law firm, Redding Law office, so we are easily able to consult them on any and every question or issue you may have. When you come in to sign documents, everything is in one place. It’s a partnership that reduces headaches and makes your life easier – giving you peace of mind in the estate planning process.

 

  1. Tailored Approach

In fact, at many large firms you aren’t able to speak with your lawyer or financial planner easily. But with us, it’s easy to call and ask us – or your lawyer – a quick question. No question is too small. We tailor our business to your needs and it’s that personalized, “small town” feel keeps many of our clients coming back with all of their wealth management needs for years to come.

 

  1. Free Annual Estate Planning Reviews

Laws change. Needs change. We get that. At Metroplex Wealth, we offer an annual estate planning review – free of charge – to make sure your documents still reflect your current needs. If you already have an estate plan, we are more than happy to review that plan for free and recommend any changes to maximize wealth. You don’t even need to schedule these reviews; we will call you to get the ball rolling and schedule your annual review free of charge.

 

If you are looking for estate planning near me in Southlake, Texas and the greater DFW area, call us today at Metroplex Wealth. We would love to review your current financial situation and see how we can help.

Are You Making these 5 Asset Protection Mistakes?

In a world of litigation and high tax rates, it is incredibly important to make sure your assets are properly protected. Metroplex Wealth offers asset protection near Dallas, Texas, with a staff that is well versed in how to best protect your money.

 

That being said, we have seen many asset protection mistakes over the years, and here are 5 of the top mistakes we see often. Are you making these asset protection mistakes?

 

  1. Clients Who are Underinsured.

Let’s start with insurance. Sure, insurance can’t protect all of your assets, but it certainly helps. We see many clients who think they have enough insurance, when in fact there are underinsured. In the case of a lawsuit, a large umbrella liability policy is critical. Depending on your career and assets, work with an estate planning attorney to determine the proper amount of umbrella insurance for you.

 

  1. Believing Assets in Living Trusts are 100% Protected.

Trusts certainly offer asset protection near Dallas, but they do not offer 100% protection in the case of living trusts. Living trusts give the grantor the opportunity to move money in and out at various times, so in the event that creditors come after you and your money and you are still living, a court may determine that you need to use money in the living trust to pay off a creditor. That being said, trusts are excellent vehicles for asset protection, but it’s important to visit with an estate planning attorney about if you are opening yourself up to risk with the trusts and living trusts you have.

 

  1. Improperly Titling Assets.

When protecting your assets, it’s important to know what assets are titled under your name and to formulate a game plan for titling in a way that best protects you and your money. Do you have adult children who cars or other assets that have your name on them? If they run into issues, then you can be liable. What about your spouse’s creditors for property you share together? Talk with a firm like Metroplex Wealth that specializes in asset protection near Dallas on what is best for you.

 

  1. Exposing Yourself to Risk Through IRAs

IRAs are a great vehicle for long-term retirement savings, but unlike 401K plans that are governed by federal law, the rules about IRAs are governed by state law. Take a look at your state laws on IRAs – both Roth and Traditional – and see if you are unnecessarily exposing yourself to risk.

 

  1. Not Designating Assets to Heirs

Providing for and leaving assets to your heirs can get complicated, particularly if there are multiple spouses involved and many players in the mix. Depending on your specific situation, trusts can be a great asset protection vehicle but there are other methods of protection that can be utilized as well.

 

Concerned there might be some gaps in your asset protection strategy? Call us today at Metroplex Wealth for excellent asset protection near Dallas, Texas.

5 Asset Protection Strategies that Really Work

An important aspect of wealth management is asset protection. In a world where lawsuits happen everyday – over the most flippant of reasons – you must ensure that your wealth is secure and well insulated from creditors and lawsuits. This is where asset protection near me comes into play.

 

Our team at Metroplex Wealth specializes in protecting your assets for future generations.  We don’t do it by lying or hiding your wealth; we use the law to our advantage to create a specialized solution that works for you and keeps your money safe. Here are 5 asset protection strategies we recommend that really work:

 

Have a Plan Now

Here’s the thing: when you realize you need an asset protection strategy, it might be too late. Moving money around near the date of litigation can be misconstrued as a fraudulent transfer and may get you in more legal trouble. Instead, plan now and assume that litigation could happen to you. Take the proper steps now to protect your assets.

 

Use Retirement Plans to Your Advantage

Retirement plans are a great place to diversity wealth and protect it from creditors and litigation. 401K plans and 403B plans are exempt from creditors until assets are distributed, making them a great form of asset protection near me. IRAs are also somewhat shielded from creditor liabilities, but don’t hold the same restrictions as other retirement accounts.

 

Gift the Money to Family or Charities

Here’s an easy one: give it away. If you anticipate giving your assets to your children eventually anyway, you may consider diversitying your estate plan and providing asset protection through gifting today. Your favorite charity could also benefit from your generosity.

 

Know Your Insurances

Insurance is very important, but it’s not the end-all-be-all when it comes to asset protection near me. Know the policies you have, what they cover, and what they don’t. Consider an umbrella policy to cover you for unexpected liabilities. Using insurance in conjunction with other estate planning technques can be a great way to protect your assets.

 

Keep Your Personal and Business Finances Separate

There needs to be a clear delination between personal assets and business expenses or you risk a creditor going after both! There are different vessels where you can protect money on both sides: trusts, LLCs, FLPs, etc. Talk with your estate planning attorney about what avenues best fit your needs for asset protection in Southlake.

 

If you are looking for someone to step in and help you protect your assets, then give us a call at Metroplex Wealth in Southlake, Texas. Our team specializes in asset protection, and we do not believe in “one size fits all” solutions. We tailor our approach to each client, creating a plan that’s best for you and your money. Call us today to set up a consultation.