Your Financial Future

Do you have several investments and/or bank accounts spread amongst various institutions? It is very difficult to know how well equipped you are for your financial future when you do not have all accounts in one centralized location. We will work with you to create a comprehensive financial plan that will answer the following questions:

  • At what age will you be able to retire comfortably?
  • If you are already retired, how much are you able to spend monthly?
  • What rate of return is necessary to achieve your spending goals?
  • How much or how little risk do you need to take within your investments in order to reach your financial goals?
  • Are you on target to reach your retirement goals?

Once your plan is in place, you will have access to our interactive planning software. The software will allow you to run various scenarios that will illustrate the impact certain decisions make on your overall plan, such as working one year longer or spending $500 more per month in retirement, etc. We will revisit this plan at least one time per year to ensure accuracy and up-to-date information.

Office desk



Your Investments

At Summit View, we truly believe in risk management, appropriate cost levels, and aligning your risk level with your needed return. We help you to incorporate your style of investing into your financial plan. Some things to consider:

  • How would you describe yourself as an investor — cautious, confident, or spontaneous?
  • Is your overall objective income, growth, or a blend of the two?
  • Are you more comfortable with a balanced investment, just keeping up with taxes and inflation or do you want to beat the S&P 500 index?
  • What is most important to the overall goals of your portfolio?

Whether you’re 25 or 75, it is appropriate to incorporate a risk mitigation strategy. In order to serve you best, we typically delegate our investment management to third party money managers who are subject matter experts. The only thing they do all day, every day, is analyze the markets and make appropriate changes to your portfolio on your behalf. Depending on your wishes, we will meet annually, bi-annually, or quarterly to review your investment strategy and make adjustments as needed.

Investment planning



Your Retirement Strategies

Going into retirement can be a scary thing to consider. Life as you’ve known it for the past 40+ years could be caught in the wind and your new normal, most likely, will be having monthly expenses that exceed your monthly Social Security check. If you’re one of the lucky few who still has a great pension benefit, then your monthly income may cover your expenses, but how will you fund those well-deserved vacations or a “snowbird” home in Florida? Here are some things you may be thinking about:

  • When should you take Social Security?
  • If you have a pension, should you take a single-life payout that pays more now, or take a spousal benefit so your spouse will continue to receive pension income when you’re gone?
  • If delaying Social Security benefits until age 70, what money will you live off of until then?

By following and utilizing your financial plan, we are able help you choose your optimal Social Security and Pension strategies. Once you are close to or in retirement, we will sit down with you and your CPA to discuss how much income will be needed over the next year and where to pull an income stream in the most tax-efficient fashion.

Retirement life



Your Social Security Optimization

When it comes to choosing when you take your Social Security benefit, there are a myriad of options. Once selected, your decision is irrevocable after 12 months. Here are some questions to consider before starting your Social Security benefit:

  • What is longevity like in your family?
  • Are you eligible for a spousal benefit?
  • Does my claiming decision affect my spouse?
  • What other sources of income will you have in retirement?
  • What are the benefits of delaying your Social Security to age 70?

Over 60% of Americans take their Social Security benefits at age 62, however, if you expect to live past age 82, you could be missing out on substantial benefits due to the decision you made 20 years prior. When you retire and when you take Social Security are often thought of as a single decision, but in reality they are two separate decisions and should be treated accordingly. This is just one of many complex, critical decisions that you will have to make when preparing for retirement. We take the time to walk you through the comprehensive thought process that accompanies these vital decisions. Once it is time to apply for Social Security benefits, we would be happy to walk you through the online filing process in lieu of a visit to the Social Security Office.

United States Capitol



Maximizing Your Estate

No two families have the exact same goals when it comes to passing on wealth to loved ones. We will guide you through questions such as:

  • How important is it to you to leave money to loved ones?
  • If it is important, how much should be left and to whom?
  • What is the most tax-efficient way to pass on your wealth?
  • What can you do now to ensure that your estate planning goals are met?

Talking about parting from this world is never an easy conversation to have, that’s why we take the time to walk you through the tough questions that you need to ask yourself. This will allow you to have peace of mind knowing that all of your financial affairs are in order and are set up to be efficiently passed on to your next generation.

Family group photo



Protecting Yourself with Insurance

Insurance is a very broad topic that includes: Life Insurance, Long Term Care Insurance, Medicare Coverage, and Medicare supplementals. All of these topics tend to raise several questions such as:

  • Is life insurance necessary to your goals?
  • Should you continue paying the premium on an old insurance policy if your kids are now adult and you’ve minimized or eliminated debt?
  • Is long term care insurance a consideration?
  • Does it make more sense to pay high premiums for long term care or to self-fund a stay in a long term care facility if need be?
  • When is it necessary to sign up for Medicare?
  • What specifically does Medicare cover? Exclude?
  • What is the “doughnut hole”?
  • What kind of supplemental Medicare coverage makes sense?

These are all great questions that we will work through with you.

Let’s start with Life Insurance… We come across many life insurance policies that were issued 20+ years ago. Since then, costs of life insurance and interest rates have fallen significantly. We will take the time to review your life insurance for you to ensure that you are paying the appropriate amount in premiums for the benefits that your policy offers. Quite often, we are either able to find more cost effective options that are available to you with more fruitful benefits or we find that you may not need the coverage anymore at all.

Now let’s tackle Long Term Care coverage. Long Term Care has always been known for how expensive it is. There were several stipulations associated with being able to tap into your Long Term Care benefit, but in the past several years, the industry has been revamping Long Term Care options. Now there are several great hybrid options available that will pay your beneficiaries a death benefit if you never end up utilizing the Long Term Care policy. We will review your goals and family history with you to ultimately decide if Long Term Care coverage is a necessity for you.

Finally, the big one — Medicare. Selecting Medicare coverage isn’t exactly a walk in the park. That is why we enlist a team of experts who understand Medicare options to guide you through the process of signing up for Medicare, choosing a Medicare supplement, and everything related to health insurance.

Financial planning



Your Tax Mitigation

At Summit View, we have yet to meet someone who enjoys giving money to Uncle Sam. Luckily, we take the time to work with you and your CPA to ensure you are only sending the bare minimums to the Capitol. Some common questions we review with our clients include:

  • Are you eligible to contribute to an IRA or Roth IRA?
  • Are you maxing out your contributions to your employer sponsored plan?
  • Have you considered making charitable contributions?
  • Have you considered Roth IRA conversions?
  • Do you practice tax-loss harvesting?

The average Joe or Jan isn’t typically well-versed in the above conversations. If you currently work with a CPA, we would be happy to sit down with you and your accountant to make sure you are taking advantage of any available tax benefits. If you do not currently work with a CPA– no need to worry, we have a fantastic team of experienced CPAs who are familiar with tax-reduction strategies.

Tax planning



Education Planning

Like Retirement Planning, which has to commence long before you enter into retirement, Education Planning (for yourself or your children) needs to occur well before mature learners or young scholars are poised to embrace higher education. Luckily, there are a number of government-encouraged educational planning tools that are available to individuals and families. 

Why Education Planning Is Important

It’s not just about understanding America’s higher-education landscape. It’s how individuals and families use that information, to navigate that landscape, that ultimately matters. Without a clear plan in place, chances are that a generation of eager learners will either not know which educational opportunities to pursue; or they’ll lack the financial resources to pursue an educational path that leads them to the career of their choice.

Without prudent educational planning, individuals and families are often left scrambling to manage and fund the higher-educational aspirations of their own or that of their families. Our experts have helped countless young men and women and their families make socially and financially-informed decisions about their education plans. 

Education planning

What We Can Do For You

We’ll help you take the guess-work out of planning for future educational needs – whether it’s for yourself or for a family member (child, ward, grandchild). We do this by creating a forward-looking financial plan of estimated education costs and expenditure. Our team will help you put tax-advantaged strategies in place that are in accordance with a myriad of Federal and State laws.  

There are a number of Educational Savings Accounts (ESAs) and Educational Savings Plans (ESPs) available to Americans. And while some ESPs allow you to set up an unlimited number of accounts, not all expenditure incurred is “qualified” under every plan – the rules might differ. Our Educational Planning experts will help you make sense of some of those ESAs, including:

  • 529 Plans: Also called “qualified tuition plans”, these are state or educational institution-sponsored tax-advantaged savings vehicles meant to encourage individuals and families to save for the future education costs of a beneficiary (child, grandchild)

  • Prepaid Tuition Plans and Educational Savings Plans:  These are two variants of 529 Plans that we’ll help you understand. While Prepaid Plans allow you to purchase credits or units towards future educational costs, Educational Savings Plans are like an investment savings account, but where funds are designated solely for future educational expenses.
    Both variants of the 529 Plan have specific guidelines and rules that are sometimes difficult to understand and follow. Our experts will help you make sense of it all when deciding which of these are right for you and your family   

  • Coverdell Education Savings Accounts (Coverdell ESA):  These are educational savings that can be built over time using a custodial or trust structure. The sole purpose of such an account is for paying approved educational expenses on behalf of a designated beneficiary to the account 

  • Navigating the ESA landscape: We’ll help you decide which of these ESAs are ideal for your needs. For instance, some contributions might not be deductible, while other ESA accounts are income-tested – you are only able to set them up based on income thresholds

*529 College Savings Plans

Investors should consider the investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses associated with municipal fund securities before investing.  This information is found in the issuer's official statement and should be read carefully before investing.

Investors should also consider whether the investor's or beneficiary's home state offers any state tax or other benefits available only from that state's 529 Plan.  Any state-based benefit should be one of many appropriately weighted factors in making an investment decision.  The investor should consult their financial or tax advisor before investing in any state's 529 Plan.



Plan Assessments

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Women calculate and analyze business and plan their investment finances