Byron Moore, CFP® and Mike Jones

Shreveport Times columns

When should I begin taking my Social Security?

By Byron Moore, posted August 21, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, August 20, 2017.
 

SSA money_dm.jpgQ:  When should I begin taking my Social Security?

A: If you’ll tell me how long you’re going to live, I can give you a perfect answer to that question.

For everyone else, we’re going to have to make an informed guess.

Budget tools?

By Byron Moore, posted August 14, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, August 13, 2017.
 

budget app_sm.jpgQ:  I know I should get on a budget. What’s the best app for that?

A: You say you know you should get on a budget.

But why do you say that?

After all, budgeting can be a pain. You already know that, or you’d already be on one. So why should anyone go to all the trouble of getting on a budget?

A budget is a spending plan. It may be simple enough to write on the back of an envelope. Or it may be so complicated that it fills up an electronic spreadsheet.

Pre-paying my mortgage – wise financial move?

By Byron Moore, posted August 7, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, August 6, 2017.
 

Mortgage and savings_sm.jpgQ:  Should I be pre-paying my mortgage?

A: Why would you want to do that?

That’s not a definite “no.” But I do not consider “mortgage acceleration” a one size fits all piece of financial advice everyone should follow.

Care giving for the elderly

By Byron Moore, posted July 31, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, July 30, 2017.
 

elder care_sm.jpgQ:  My husband and I are still relatively healthy, but we’ve told each other we don’t want to spend any of our days in a nursing home. It seems like it would be cheaper to just care for one another at home. Is that right? Which costs more – getting care at home or care in a nursing home?

A: That depends on whether you are counting just dollars, or whether time, energy and health are among the costs you are considering.

Check your assumptions at the altar

By Byron Moore, posted July 24, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, July 23, 2017.
 

Marriage and money_credit card_sm.jpgQ: I am getting married soon. As part of our pre-marriage counseling, my fiancé and I prepared a budget, talked about debt and things like that. What else do we need to be thinking about when it comes to being financially prepared for marriage?

A: Assumptions and expectations.

Imagine a couple on their honeymoon and they go out to a nice dinner. At the end of dinner, the husband pulls out some cash to pay the bill.

Embarrassed to ask for help

By Byron Moore, posted July 17, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, July 10, 2017.
 

Courage_sm.jpgQ: I am very embarrassed by my financial situation. I know I need help, but I’m just too humiliated to let anyone else see the mess I’ve made. Every time I pick up the phone to call someone I hang up. What do you suggest?

A: I love your honesty.

If you’ve never seen the 2011 film We Bought a Zoo, you’re in for a treat when you do. Matt Damon plays a young widowed father of two. In one scene, he is giving his young son advice on the utterly confusing and intimidating topic of females.

Estate procrastination

By Byron Moore, posted July 10, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, July 9, 2017.
 

Inheritors fighting_sm.jpgQ: I own land that I used to farm, as well as a business that I’m in with a couple of my children. Since my wife died, our family has been kind of fractured. Long story. I’m worried that when I make out a will, I’m going to make somebody mad and I don’t want to make anyone madder than they already are. What do you suggest?

A: I recently played my first round of golf. Ever.

I texted a friend whom I knew would be interested (actually, I figured he’d double over in laughter). He texted me back this sage advice, “Don’t despair if you are playing horribly. It’s always possible to play worse.”

Comparison: understanding what you could do vs. what you should do

By Byron Moore, posted July 3, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, July 2, 2017.
 

weighing balancing_sm.jpgQ: I have saved up enough money so that I think it’s time for me to invest some of it. I have some friends who make all their investing choices on their own. Others use financial advisors whom I assume they pay somehow. My do-it-yourself friends tell me that using an advisor is dumb because they cost too much. My other friends seem to not mind paying for the advice they get. Who’s right and how do I decide which is best?

A: We never get as far away from junior high as we think we do.

Real world financial fitness

By Byron Moore, posted June 26, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, June 25, 2017.
 

financial fitness_sm.jpgQ: What does it mean to be financially healthy in the real world? What would that look like for an average working person?

A: Remember when jogging was born?

OK, maybe not born, but at least made popular. In the late 1970s two things converged to explode the phenomenon of human beings trudging up and down neighborhood streets in search for the fountain of youth.

How do I develop discipline when I’ve never had it before?

By Byron Moore, posted June 19, 2017
Originally published in the News Star and the Shreveport Times on Sunday, June 18, 2017.
 

Discipline Freedom_sm.jpgQ: How does a person develop discipline when they have never had it before? This applies to many areas of my life, but money is a big one. I’ve just never been disciplined enough to make much progress financially. To be honest I wish I could just wave a magic wand and have it done for me.

A: There are no short cuts or magic tricks that will make you instantly disciplined.

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