Home » Author Archives: Ike Trotter

Author Archives: Ike Trotter

IKE TROTTER: Protect yourself from identity theft

Whether they’re snatching your purse, diving into your dumpster, stealing your mail, or hacking into your computer, there are bad people out there. Who are they? Identity thieves. Identity thieves can empty your bank account, max out your credit cards, open accounts in your name, and purchase furniture, cars, and even homes on the basis of your credit history. If ...

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IKE TROTTER: lt’s time to get a handle on your budget

Do you often wonder about where your money goes each month? Does it seem like you’re never able to get ahead? If so, you may want to establish a budget to help you keep track of how you spend your money and help you reach your financial goals. Here’s a few first of the year ideas that might help you ...

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IKE TROTTER: Retirement age decision becomes more difficult

WHY DO SOME PEOPLE CHOOSE to claim Social Security retirement benefits at the earliest possible age of 62, rather than waiting until their full retirement age (66 to 67 for anyone born in 1943 or later) when doing so would reduce their monthly benefit by as much as 30 percent? Well, there actually are many reasons, according to new data from ...

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IKE TROTTER: Understanding the impact of incapacity

Incapacity is a relatively new medical and financial definition meaning you are unable to take care of yourself or your day-to-day affairs. Incapacity can result from serious physical injury, mental or physical illness, mental retardation, advancing age and alcohol or drug abuse. Even with today’s medical miracles, it’s a real possibility that you or your spouse could become incapable of ...

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IKE TROTTER: To Roth or not to Roth

Perhaps some of you struggled through World Literature like I did in school. Frankly, the problem wasn’t my teachers. A lot of it had to do with me and where my mind was at that stage of life. In particular, I remember trudging through Shakespeare’s Hamlet and reciting the well known pronouncement “To be or not to be, that is ...

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IKE TROTTER: Health care costs on Social Security

Social Security provides one of the most dependable sources of income for retirees and their families. In fact, for a majority of retirees today, Social Security accounts for at least half of their income (Source: Fast Facts & Figures About Social Security, 2013). What we are seeing, however, is more of that income being spent on health-related costs each year, ...

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IKE TROTTER — Personal financial statements can have value

Many times in the introductory stages of financial planning, it is necessary for advisers to know about the background of the individual or family for purposes of making suitable recommendations. In most instances, information provided from a tax return can be an invaluable tool for assessing the financial makeup of a person or family. However, when dealing with young graduates ...

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IKE TROTTER: There are primary changes in Social Security for 2014

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has recently announced that Social Security and SSI beneficiaries will receive a 1.5 percent cost-of-living (COLA) adjustment for 2014. According to the SSA’s announcement, after the COLA adjustment, the estimated average retirement benefit will rise from $1,275 in 2013 to $1,294 in 2014. Here are the other primary changes to Social Security in the year ...

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IKE TROTTER — Weighing in on reverse mortgages

More and more we see on TV or read in the paper about reverse mortgages and the opportunities available for homeowners to “unlock” the equity in their home. I thought it might be helpful to discuss this unique type of home equity loan and the resulting implications they offer to homeowners, particularly those who are retired and elderly. Created in ...

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IKE TROTTER — The importance to budgeting

What do most think of when establishing a budget? For most of us, it’s the “oftentimes” painful process of trying to live within one’s income — which is never an easy process. And while a case could be made that this financial process is more effective when introduced at the early part of the year, many of us continue to ...

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