Life and Money

Career planning

The Role of Career Planning in Financial Planning

by Sophia Bera October 11, 2017

When I work with financial planning clients, I tend to ask a lot of questions that don’t seem to be directly related to money at all. Where do you want to live? Do you have any upcoming travel plans? Do you like your job? Here’s the thing: most decisions you make in your life are […]

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Retirement savings for the self-employed

Retirement Planning if You’re Self-Employed or a Small Business Owner

by Sophia Bera September 27, 2017

Many people refer to retirement savings plans as “401(k)s” even if they’re not, because so many financial advice articles out there focus heavily on 401(k)s. The reality is that there are a variety of ways to save for retirement, and the options you choose can depend on what kind of company you work for, or […]

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Benefits for the self-employed

How to Create Your Own Benefits Package When You’re Self-Employed

by Sophia Bera September 20, 2017

When you’re a full-time employee for a company, you might take for granted all the benefits you get in addition to your actual salary. It turns out that of your total compensation package, 30% goes toward benefits like health insurance, disability insurance, life insurance, 401(k) matches, paid vacation and sick leave, and more. But nearly […]

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Equifax breach

How Do I Protect Myself After the Equifax Breach?

by Sophia Bera September 13, 2017

After news of the Equifax security breach broke, many of my clients have asked me what they should do to protect their personal information. I wanted to share my recommendations with all of you. What Happened? Equifax is one of three major credit bureaus, which means they compile and use a lot of consumer data […]

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Ditch your car

How Ditching Your Car Could Save You Thousands

by Sophia Bera August 30, 2017

For those of us who grew up in the ‘burbs, the idea of living without a car seems as foreign as driving on the opposite side of the road. How will you haul home groceries? How will you get to work? For many Millennials, especially now that we’re buying suburban homes and having kids (or […]

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auto loan refinancing

When and How to Refinance an Auto Loan

by Sophia Bera August 23, 2017

Let’s say that about a year ago, you bought a car and opted to finance it instead of buying the car in cash. If you didn’t get the best deal on your loan at purchase, you might be able to refinance in order to take advantage of lower interest rates, lower monthly payments, or a […]

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car loan

Should I Buy a Car with Cash or Take Out a Loan?

by Sophia Bera August 16, 2017

Suppose you decide to buy a new car and, after considering whether to buy or lease it, you’ve decided to buy. Now comes your next big decision: should you pay cash for a car or finance it? Once again, there’s no one “right” answer. It truly depends on a few factors, like: The kind of […]

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Car buying vs. leasing

Should I Buy or Lease a Car?

by Sophia Bera August 9, 2017

Getting a car is one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll make, and it’s one that can affect your cash flow for years. Beyond the cost of the car, you’ll have to pay for maintenance, fuel, insurance, and parking. A car can cost you just over $700 per month on average, according to AAA (and […]

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Online financial tools

The Best Financial Tools, Apps, and Calculators I Recommend All the Time

by Sophia Bera June 28, 2017

Managing and automating your finances has never been easier. There are so many online and mobile tools available (most for free!) that setting yourself up for financial success involves little more than 30 minutes of set-up and a few minutes of monitoring a month. You’re more likely to meet your financial goals if those goals […]

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Online experts

My Favorite Online Experts

by Sophia Bera June 21, 2017

Helping a client with their financial plan involves a lot of conversations about numerical data. We chat about their current net worth, their debts, the amount they have in savings, and their financial goals like buying a home or retiring. My clients are in a phase of life that comes with a ton of change […]

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