7 Key Financial Tips On How To Help Pay Off Your Mortgage Faster

Posted by Steve McMeechan on Aug 24, 2017 12:01:07 PM

 In too many developed countries, people are drowning in debt. Separate from student loans, credit cards and lines of credit, mortgages are among the largest loans for most consumers. In a number of countries mortgage debt reached its highest recorded levels, and continues to increase year after year.

Debt is often unavoidable, particularly when it comes to buying somewhere to live. However it makes sense to have a goal to eliminate debt, and to take the necessary steps to help make that goal become a reality. No one wants to enter their twilight years with a large mortgage.

In order to put yourself on the path to paying off your mortgage faster and staying out of debt in the future, consider the following suggestions.

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What I Wish Someone Had Told Me Before I Took Out My First Loan

Posted by Sarah Porter on Jul 17, 2017 7:01:00 AM


The first money that I ever borrowed was for a mortgage on my first home. As loans go, this was a relatively responsibly move to make; and the home certainly turned out to be an excellent investment. Mine was a good experience overall, and one from which I learned a lot. It wasn’t until long after I purchased the house (and took out the loan) that I realized just how blind I had been going through the process for the first time. What follows are a few lessons I learned, that I wish someone had first explained to me:


  1. The process is not quick. I had no idea what a long and involved process it is to apply for and close on a loan. I had a lot of help from family and a banker that we knew to help manage the situation, but it was still quite an ordeal. I’ve met a lot of people who seem to think that the loan process requires an afternoon of paperwork and a few days of waiting, but they couldn’t be more wrong. For neither my first loan, nor any loan since, has this been the case. If you want to borrow money, whether from a bank or a private lender, expect them to take their time and do their due diligence. They’re going to operate on their schedule, not yours.


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Topics: loan, mortgage

NAAIM Investor Shark Tank San Diego 2017

Posted by Carl Sera on Jul 7, 2017 10:04:29 AM

A couple months ago, I was selected as a finalist to present our Inverse Volatility Approach to the Investor Shark Tank at the National Association of Active Investment Managers National Conference out in San Diego. While I did not win, the experience was one I will always remember because it gave me the opportunity to present in front of a large audience, which I had never done before. 

I'm still waiting on the video from the Shark Tank and the feedback from the panel and audience, but I was sent a copy of an interview that I did with Charley Wright from Strategic Investor Radio out of Southern California a few hours before presenting.

Charley writes:

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Topics: Volatility (finance)

The Long Journey of Assigning a Structured Settlement Payment Stream - A Structured Tale

Posted by Kathy Manson on Jun 28, 2017 9:39:27 AM

On occasion, we run across articles about acquiring structured settlement payments from third party factoring companies. The tale follows much of the same path: Kathy Winter, sometime in the past settled a personal injury lawsuit but instead of taking the money all upfront Kathy elected to accept payments over time from an annuity company. These arrangements are commonly referred to as structured settlements. The structured settlements are generally paid by well-known and credit worthy annuity issuers.

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Topics: structured settlement, income stream

How To Successfully Plan For The Future In A Conscious Way

Posted by Jackie Waters on Jan 17, 2017 10:51:55 AM

No one can live entirely in the present, so in some ways, we’re all planning for the future, even if we aren’t making conscious decisions about how to save money or create a retirement plan. But those things are imperative once we reach a certain age or start a family, no matter how scary they may seem, and it’s important to know what risks are involved, what the best strategies are, and how to go about plotting out a safe future not just for yourself, but for your family as well.

With some planning and preparation, you can work out a plan that will give you peace of mind and won’t leave you feeling overwhelmed or unsure. Here are the best ways to do that.

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Topics: retirement

E Trade Adaptive Portfolio Review - A Millennial Tale

Posted by Carlos Sera on Aug 23, 2016 12:34:35 PM

"How Investment Advisors Hurt Millennials and How Millennials Hurt Themselves"

As the father of four Millennials, I am angry at the blatant disregard Investment Advisors show towards Millennials.  The most egregious disregard is the recent advent of automated investing as a way of catering to the investment wants, not needs, of Millennials.  It is clever marketing but it is bad for the Millennial and bad for this country.  Anytime, you cater to a want and not a need you should probably be selling a luxury good.  But in this case you are selling a necessity.  Saving money for retirement is a necessity and when companies cater to a person’s wants instead of their needs they are only serving themselves. 

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Topics: Stocks and Bonds, millennials

An Idiotic Tale - The Idiot Son - 50% Stocks 50% Bonds

Posted by Carlos Sera on Aug 16, 2016 1:26:23 PM

This is one of my favorite tales because it involves my father, his friends and investments. In this tale I am the idiot son. I left Legg Mason in 1990 and started my own advisory firm. I no longer wanted to dish out conflicted advice as a commission compensated advisor and had to focus my energies on succeeding as a fee-driven advisor. For those that are unfamiliar with the 1990’s, they were a very good period for stock market returns.

I started managing my father’s money professionally in 1987 and have continued to this day. However, I was under the umbrella of a large firm until 1990. This gave my father a sense of security. He was apprehensive when I told him my plans for starting my own firm and though he didn’t say it our show it, I assumed that he also had some hesitancy about me managing his money on my own. He was 64 years old, he was going to place his trust in a 32 year old and the bulk of his money was going to some discount broker named Charles Schwab. I know he had to feel that way because many of my clients at Legg Mason were reluctant to transfer their portfolio and entrust me with their money under these new circumstances

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Financial Calculators - More Harm Than Good? A Draining Tale

Posted by Carlos Sera on Jun 20, 2016 10:46:33 AM

I was recently at lunch with one of my long-time clients and her recent college graduate grandson.  We of course were talking about money and no money conversation is complete without a discussion about rates of return.  The grandson brought up the topic of financial calculators and that he had been playing around with them.  He wanted to know if they were something of value. 

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Topics: Volatility (finance), Volatile Tales, volatility drain, financial calculator

Which Political Party is Better for the Stock Market? Democrats or Republicans?

Posted by Carl Sera on Apr 8, 2016 10:50:32 AM

Presidential Analysis

The November Presidential election will be one of firsts.  Should Hillary Clinton win she would become our first female President.  If Bernie Sanders were to win, he would be our first Socialist President.  If Donald Trump were to win, we would have our first Billionaire President and if Ted Cruz were to win, we would have our first President with Cuban heritage.  This leaves John Kasich as the only candidate that would not be one of firsts. 

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Topics: Stock market, politics

Are Target Dated Funds the Best Option?

Posted by Carlos Sera on Feb 26, 2016 12:14:29 PM

To determine if defaulting employees into Target Dated Funds or Glide Path Funds is a good thing, one must first examine the alternatives. An examination of the history of asset allocations by employees before Target Dated Funds were the default option tells us that it is.

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Topics: Articles, retirement