• Cash flow

    How To Boost Your Credit Score

    “Bad Credit? No Credit? No problem, your job is your credit!” scream shady used-car salesmen. Unfortunately, that’s not true. Bad credit is a problem. It makes your life more expensive in the form of higher interest rates on loans. Bad credit can make it harder for you to rent an apartment and can even keep you from getting your dream job. Your credit score is a widely misunderstood measure of your cash flow health and financial habits. It’s possible to have a great credit score and terrible overall financial health and vice versa. Credit scores range from 300 to 850, the higher your score is, the better. The way your…

  • Uncategorized

    More Money, More Problems aka Lifestyle Creep

    Let's face it, you're a fun person. You like to do fun things. Fun things cost money. Do you think you will want to do fun things when you're 65? Probably, right? (YES.) Do you ever feel like even though you are earning more money you still struggle to save? You may be dealing with lifestyle creep. Find out what it is and why it matters in the video below!  

  • Budgeting,  Cash flow

    How to KonMari Your Spending

    I love Marie Kondo's book "The Life Changing Method of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing." I'll be honest, my home is still a little cluttered but I do periodically go through and try to pare down my belongings. I just went through my old work clothes this week. Wow. There were a lot of items I felt I "needed" to hold on to "just in case" that in reality, I never wear anyways! Did you know that you can use the same KonMari method to "declutter" your spending? We all spend money on things, food, and experiences that really don't bring us lasting joy. In fact,…

  • Employee Benefits

    CarMax 2019 Open Enrollment

    “It’s the most wonderful time of the year!” No, not Christmas – Open Enrollment! For CarMax employees it’s time to make some big financial decisions. In an attempt to make the selection process easier (and help you make better financial decisions) I’ve created a summary of what you need to know and think about as you navigate CarMax Open Enrollment 2019. For the record, I assume you have at least reviewed the CarMax 2019 Open Enrollment booklet. Let’s dive in. 1. CarMax Group Health Insurance Options First, use the ALEX tool CarMax provides you to get an initial view of what is being offered and what might work best for…

  • Planning

    4 Simple Estate Planning Ideas Parents Need to Consider

    Have you put off creating an estate plan because it seems depressing? Or perhaps you don’t agree with your parenting partner over who should get custody of the kids should something happen to you? Mariah Daniel, Estate Planning Attorney with the Daniel Law Office, has some motivation for you, “Think about how your kids would feel knowing you did nothing, or knowing that you did your best.” Don’t let perfectionism prevent you from taking action. If you don’t have a guardianship plan for your children, the state does. And you may not like it. The good news is it’s really easy to get this taken care of, and you will…

  • Kids and Money

    Stocks and Bonds for Kids

    Parents want the best for their kids. You want to teach them how to be successful and a large part of their success involves financial literacy. You know by now that I am a huge fan of talking about money. Talk to your partner. Talk to your kids. Talk to your parents. This article I wrote for Richmond Family Magazine is a primer on stocks and bonds. It's useful for parents and kids. Let me know what you think. What money topics do you want me to tackle in a kid-friendly way? How did the conversation go at your house?  

  • Cash flow,  Kids and Money,  Taxes

    How Will The Tax Cuts & Jobs Act Affect Families?

    Wondering how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (TCJA) will affect your taxes next year? The tax law will affect families in a myriad of ways. While there were a variety of changes made that affect everyone, this post will focus on the ones that are most impactful to families with kids. Keep in mind that many of these provisions are set to expire in 2025, but this will at least give you something think about as you move through 2018. Tax Rates Were Reduced Tax rates were reduced for all brackets except for the lowest bracket, which remains at 10% of taxable income. There was some shifting…

  • College,  Kids and Money,  Savings,  Taxes

    Using Your VA529 Plan to Pay for Private K-12 Education

    Are you paying for private school for a kid in grades K-12? It's a little painful, isn't it? Well, now there's a way to reduce the sting (a little bit). With the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 parents can use their VA 529 plan to pay for K-12 private school tuition. Each state is different but the Virginia 529 College Savings Plan has adopted their policies to allow Virginia residents to take advantage of this new strategy. Virginia residents can use the VA 529 plan to get a little extra tax deduction on your VA state income taxes (plus some tax-free growth for the super…

  • Investing,  Planning,  Retirement,  Savings

    Building Long-Term Financial Freedom for Solopreneurs

    As a solopreneur you want to build long-term financial freedom, but there are so many options it's hard to know where to start. Solopreneurs have a lot of choices when it comes to their long-term financial freedom savings (formerly known as "retirement"). Small business owners can use IRAs, SIMPLE IRAs, SEP IRAs, and Solo-401(k)s (among other options) for their own savings.In this post I wrote for AthleteBiz I go over three of the most common account types and when you should consider choosing them. I also share some critical questions to ask before you set up a 401(k) plan with a custodian. The cheapest 401(k) plan provider is not always…

  • Investing

    What is ESG Investing?

    Are you concerned about the environment or human rights? Do you want companies to be good corporate citizens? Then ESG investing might be a good fit for you. ESG stands for Environmental Social Governance and it refers to investments that screen their stocks and bonds with ESG issues in mind. 86% of Millennials are interested in Sustainable Investing according to a recent poll by Morgan Stanley. However, it’s not just young people; 87% of women of all ages are interested in sustainable investing as well as 67% of men according to that same study. Yet, while there may be a lot of interest in sustainable investing, investor’s knowledge about the subject…