Despite market volatility, 2015 was a good year for many investors.
As a result, you may find that the start of a new year is a good time to get together with your financial advisor to review your investments and make any necessary changes.
Here are five questions to ask your advisor to help you start 2016 off right:
1. How can I make capital gains long term? The tax rate on long-term capital gains is lower than the tax rate on short-term capital gains, so your advisor may suggest you wait until you’ve held certain appreciated investments for a year before selling them.
2. Should I own more stocks? Stocks have more appreciation potential than bonds, but there are a variety of risks associated with investing in them; your advisor, who knows your situation, can help you decide if you can tolerate these risks before making an investment decision.
3. Should I contribute more to tax-deferred accounts? If you’re not yet retired, tax-deferred savings accounts are a great way to keep your assets growing tax free, potentially compounding their value year after year. Ask your advisor how best to participate; for example,
by increasing your contributions to a companysponsored retirement plan, a SEP IRA, a traditional IRA, or a Roth IRA.
4. Would giving the gift of stock or mutual fund shares benefit me? If your portfolio has appreciated and you don’t need the money, your advisor can explain some options. For example, you may want to consider gifting appreciated assets to charitable organizations, your children, or your grandchildren.
5. Am I subject to the alternative minimum tax (AMT)? The AMT applies to all people who take relatively large deductions, including deductions for state and local taxes. Ask your advisor if you are subject to it, and if so, he or she can help you plan ahead during the year to minimize your exposure.
Yann Kostic is an investment advisor (RIA) and money manager with Atlantis Wealth Management who specializes in retirees (or soon to be), self-reliant women and expats in Mexico. Atlantis is working with an international custodian, so firm clients are allowed to hold multiple currencies in a single account including Canadian & US dollars as well as Mexican Pesos. Yann is splitting is time between Central Florida, Lake Chapala and Manzanillo. Comments, questions or to request his newsletter, “News you can use” contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org in Mexico, (376) 1061613 or in the US (321) 574-1521.