Tag Archives: Triton Wealth Management

TRITON WEALTH MANAGEMENT DONATES TO RELAY FOR LIFE

TWM-Group American_Cancer_Society_Relay_For_LifeTRITON WEALTH MANAGEMENT DONATES TO RELAY FOR LIFE

Employee team fundraising efforts exceed $5,000 dollar goal

Triton Wealth Management, a comprehensive financial planning and investment management firm headquartered on Kent Island, announced a donation of over $5,200 dollars to the American Cancer Society Relay for Life.

The company-hosted “Team Triton” promoted the Relay for Life of Queen Anne’s County event, inviting friends, family-members, clients (and the community at large) to support and join in their efforts in fundraising and participating in the relay events held Saturday May 3rd at the Matapeake Elementary and Middle School Complex in Stevensville. Team Triton camped out from noon-midnight and took turns walking around the school’s track to help the American Cancer Society in the world’s largest fight against cancer. Matching donations dollar-for-dollar, Triton Wealth Management exceeded their $5,000 dollar fundraising goal.

Relay for Life events celebrate cancer survivors, remembers those who have been lost to the disease, and inspire participants to fight back in the fundraising and awareness efforts that support cancer research and programs.

ABOUT TRITON WEALTH MANAGEMENT: Triton Wealth Management is a fee-only financial planning, investment management and tax planning and preparation firm located at 16 South Piney Road, Suite 204 Chester, Md 21619, with satellite offices in Easton, Annapolis and Gaithersburg.  For more information call: (866) 880-7500, or visit www.tritonwm.com

Consider adding a Certified Financial Planner to your Team

Consider adding a Certified Financial Planner to your Team

How do you know if you could benefit from the services of a financial planner? You may not have the expertise, the time or the desire to actively plan and manage certain financial aspects of your life. You may want help getting started. You may benefit from an objective, third-party perspective on what are often emotional, difficult decisions. And in today’s hectic world, it can be beneficial to have a financial planning expert help to make sure you stay focused and follow through with your financial plans.

Often a specific event or need will trigger the desire for professional financial planning guidance. These might include:

• Making sure your money will last during retirement

• Changing jobs and you are considering rolling over a retirement plan

• Handling the inheritance of a large sum of money or other unexpected financial windfall

• Preparing for a marriage or divorce

• Planning for the birth or adoption of a child

• Facing a financial crisis such as a serious illness, layoff or natural disaster

• Caring for aging parents or a special needs child

• Coping financially with the death of a spouse or close family member

• Funding education

• Buying, selling or passing on a family business

If you have the time and knowledge — and your financial situation is not too complicated — you may be able to do a lot of it on your own. However, there are some situations where you may find you need a financial planner, such as:

• You have little or no experience with finances

• You don’t have the inclination to do it

• You want an objective, outside perspective

• You have a complex financial situation; or —

• And this is usually the biggest obstacle for “do-it-yourselfers” — You don’t have the time

Procrastination is the greatest enemy of financial independence, and using a financial planner will keep you on track. There are some other advantages to using a planner. Some aspects of financial planning may be too complex for some people, such as calculating how long your retirement capital will last or maximizing tax strategies. Look for an independent financial planner who does not sell any products, but one who will work with other professionals, such as stockbrokers, accountants, and insurance agents, to coordinate their efforts with your overall financial needs.

If it’s time to get serious about your financial future, please contact us for a no-cost consultation.

Wayne Zussman, MBA, CFP, CDFA

Triton Wealth Management

116 S. Piney Rd.; Suite 204

Chester, MD 21619

410-202-2110

Wayne@TritonWM.com

 

 

Get To Know Wayne Zussman and Triton Wealth Management

WBZ Photo (400 x 384)Triton Wealth Management offers Financial Planning, Investment Management and Tax Preparation and Planning for its clients.

As a resident of Queen Anne’s County, Wayne Zussman noticed there were no independent fee-only financial planners on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. He believed his unbiased approach was much needed locally and started Triton Wealth Management, located in Chester’s Red Apple Corner Plaza.

Triton Wealth Management is different from other investment firms in that most others do not involve themselves in their clients’ taxes. Wayne believes that taxes are an integral part of any financial planning or investment strategy since they account for approximately one-third of most people’s income. Wayne says he never understood how other advisors worked with clients and never addressed issues related to their tax situation.

Triton offers its services to anyone who desires to improve his or her financial well-being. The company specializes in assisting clients who realize retirement is not far off and those going through a life-changing event such as divorce or loss of a spouse.

Triton Wealth Management currently employs seven people and maintains offices in Annapolis, Gaithersburg and Easton. Members of the team hold the following designations: Certified Financial Planner (CFP), Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Senior Advisor (CSA) and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA). With those designations come many required hours of continuing education each year to better assist clients.

Employee’s of Triton Wealth Management are true to their profession and have obtained the education, training and certifications necessary to be able to sit across from a prospective client and know they can help. They provide a different approach than the big firms, banks or insurance companies in that as advisors they are 100% independent; they do not sell any products. The employees are compensated only for the advice they provide and not by commissions on sales. Wayne believes that this allows them to be totally unbiased in the recommendations they make, and clients appreciate that Triton employees’ goals are totally aligned with theirs.

In order to better serve the community, Triton also conducts classes through Chesapeake Community College. Their next course is entitled “Gaining Financial Control of Your Divorce” and will be held on December 5th at both the Stevensville and Centreville branches of the QAC public libraries.

Triton’s community involvement goes beyond financial planning. Wayne is the treasurer of Talisman Therapeutic Riding in Grasonville. His associate Karen Baer is on the board of Crossroads Community, Inc. and the Chesapeake Women’s Network. They also are members of the Queen Anne’s and Talbot Chambers of Commerce. Triton has held financial literacy camps for teenagers with all proceeds going to CBEC. Triton Wealth Management supports the Waterfowl Festival in Easton each year. Personally, Wayne is involved with Maryland Special Olympics and the local chapter of Boy Scouts of America.

Wayne has lived in Grasonville in the Prospect Bay community for over eight years with his wife and two sons, aged 16 and 14. He is a graduate of the State University of New York with an Accounting Degree and earned an MBA in Finance from Pace University and the College of Financial Planning. He enjoys spending time outdoors with his boys. His hobbies include photography, golf and racquetball.

Call Wayne and his team at Triton Wealth Management at 1-866-880-7500, and learn how they can assist you with all your financial needs. For more information go to www.TritonWM.com

 

Why Work with a Fee-Only Financial Planner?

Frequent financial reviews are an important part in managing one’s financial plan. On-going life changes require continual analyses of one’s financial situation. However, managing your personal situation can be a daunting task. It demands time, industry knowledge and the ability to remove emotion from decision making. Hiring a financial planner may be the best way to assist you in reaching your financial goals.

When searching for a financial planner it is important to consider the persons experience, education, professional dedication, designations and compensation structure. Some financial planners earn commissions by selling specific products, while others work on a fee-only structure and are paid on an hourly or advisory basis.

There are many different types of advisors to choose from, so how do you know the differences between them? Is there really a difference between the different types of firms and do they provide the same advice and services?

Fee-only financial planners are compensated on an hourly rate or on a percentage of the assets managed. Fee-only financial planners provide advice and, unlike advisors at brokerage firms, do not sell financial products, such as annuities, life insurance, and mutual funds.

How do I identify who is a brokerage firm advisor and who is a fee-only financial planner?

Will the advisor sign a Fiduciary Oath stating that your best interest is placed ahead of their own and that their advice must reflect the same? Not signing a Fiduciary Oath should be a red flag.

Ask the advisor if they are affiliated / licensed with a “broker dealer” or if they are independent. Brokerage advisors are sometimes required to sell proprietary products, which may have higher commissions.

If you feel that the financial planner you are speaking with is more concerned with your investments or cross-selling than the overall picture of your financial situation, consider obtaining a second opinion.

Understanding there is a difference between the types of financial planners will help you understand the recommendations that you are presented with.

The top 5 reasons why working with a fee-only financial planner is in your best interest:
1. Fee-only financial planners are able to consider what options are in the client’s best interest.
When commissions are not involved, financial planners are best able to analyze the client’s current situation and assist with life planning that focuses on the client’s needs and wishes.

2. A fee-only financial planner considers every financial asset and the concern of the client.
When commissions are involved, an advisor may choose to emphasize those products which will add to the advisor’s income, such as insurance and/or investment opportunities. But a fee-only financial planner will take the time to consider other aspects, such as retirement, estate planning, or employee benefits.

3. Fee-only financial planners are legally obligated to place the client’s best interests ahead of their own when providing advice.
The majority of fee-only financial advisors are under legal obligation to consider their clients’ best interests first. Many of these advisors are registered under professional boards of standards that emphasize a client-based strategy for financial planning.

4. Fee-only financial planners tend to have professional designations.
As a way to stand out from the competition, and also to provide better services for their clients, fee-only advisors will often seek professional designations. A Certified Financial Planner®, for example, is required to obtain 30 hours of continuing education every two years that must include ethics training.

5. Financial review performed by a fee-only financial planner can be provided on an as-needed basis.
For an investor who needs advice for one financial planning issue, such as retirement funding or has a few simple financial questions, fee-only financial planners are capable of analyzing these questions on an individualized basis without conflict of interest or the need to make a sale.

Working with a fee-only financial planner offers some of the best advice at the best value. It enables advisors to offer counsel without conflict of interest, while enabling the investor to properly analyze and prepare for the future.

When making financial planning decisions, seeking out a Certified Financial Planner® who works as a fee-only advisor will eliminate the risk of conflicts of interest.

Wayne B. Zussman, MBA, CFP®
Triton Wealth Management, LLC
116 South Piney Avenue, Suite 204, Chester, MD 21619
www.TritonWM.com

5 Costly Life Insurance Mistakes

By Dieter Scherer

Life insurance is used during many aspects of the financial planning process, but it’s easy to overlook several considerations that could cost your family big when the time comes to collect. I’ve rounded up five of the most costly life insurance mistakes that people make.

Mistake 1: The insured’s estate is named as beneficiary (unless intentionally planned due to specific needs)

This will cause the death benefits to be taxed as part of the insured’s estate and may tie up much needed money in probate, a lengthy and expensive process.

Mistake 2: Failure to name at least two contingent beneficiaries

In the case of the simultaneous death of you and your spouse (the most common primary beneficiary), the lack of any contingent beneficiaries would cause the proceeds of life insurance to be included in your estate or the estate of your spouse.

Mistake 3: Failure to regularly review your policies

Circumstances change and what could have been an adequate amount of insurance in the past has now left you vulnerable and inadequately protected. Many individuals also fail to review the beneficiaries of their life insurance after a big life change, such as a divorce, which could cause an ex-spouse to get the proceeds!

Mistake 4: Insurance is payable to children, grandchildren, immature, or handicapped individuals as the beneficiaries.

Much of the time children (even adult ones) do not have the discipline to correctly handle a large sum of money. If you wish to gift a large amount of life insurance to a child, a life insurance trust may be a better way to go.
Mistake 5: The insurance is owned by the insured

Again this will cause the proceeds from life insurance to be included in the estate of the insured. If the estate is above the exclusion amount of $5MM then all of the insurance proceeds will be taxable. If the insurance is owned by the insured and is transferred to someone else within three years before the insured’s death, it will still be included in the insured’s estate.

Wayne Zussman is a Certified Financial Planner™ and President of Triton Wealth Management, a fee-only financial planning and investment firm. Triton has offices in Annapolis, Kent Island and Gaithersburg, MD. Wayne can be reached at 410-202-2110 or wayne@tritonwm.com

 

Is a Home Equity Line of Credit Right For Me?

By Dieter Scherer
First of all, it’s important to know exactly what a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) is.
A HELOC is a type of home loan that works similar to a credit card. Instead of receiving all of the money up front as you would with a conventional mortgage, you apply for a line of credit that allows you to borrow up to the limit the bank approves. A HELOC offers flexible payments, which vary based upon the amount you borrowed and how much principal you want to pay down each month.

Benefits:
Lower Interest Rates – Because a HELOC is secured by your home, it offers a lower interest rate than a credit card and generally less than auto loans and other personal loans.
Flexible Repayment – Most HELOC’s allow flexibility with your payments. Options range from conversion of the loan to a fixed rate home loan to interest only payments.
Tax Deductible – Unlike credit cards and other personal loans, if you take a HELOC out on your personal residence, the interest on it is usually tax deductible.
High Credit Limits – Depending upon the value of your home, HELOCs can give you access to tens of thousands of dollars in home equity.

Dangers:
Variable Interest Rates – Unlike a conventional home loan, most HELOCs do not have a fixed rate option. Instead, the rate on HELOCs vary based upon the current prime interest rate. As a result, if the interest rate increases you would have higher payments, which could cause problems if you are have cash flow issues.
Foreclosure – The interest rates on HELOCs are lower because the loan you are given is secured by your home. Therefore, if you cannot pay back the balance of your HELOC, you risk the bank repossessing your home, just like with a normal mortgage.
Frozen Credit – Lenders have the right to cut an unused credit line. During the recent financial crisis, when property values were declining, many lenders exercised this right, leaving many homeowners without a financial safety blanket. Many people used their HELOC as their sole emergency fund and did not have access to this credit when they needed it most.

So, is a HELOC right for you?
Any financial decision should always be taken with your full financial situation in mind. It’s important to understand the risks associated with a HELOC when you are considering what type of loan to pursue. If you have a need for credit and have enough cash flow to pay both the payment for your current mortgage and the HELOC, a HELOC might be right for you.

Wayne Zussman is a Certified Financial Planner™ and President of Triton Wealth Management, a fee-only financial planning and investment firm. Triton has offices in Annapolis, Kent Island and Gaithersburg, MD. Wayne can be reached at 410-202-2110 or wayne@tritonwm.com

Retirement Planning Mistakes: 4 Errors Most Early Retirees Make

By Dieter Scherer

Mistake #1: Not planning for health insurance costs before Medicare kicks in.
How are going to pay for health insurance before Medicare kicks in? You generally can’t apply for Medicare benefits before age 65. Most people get health insurance through their employer and porting your health insurance through COBRA is expensive and only available for up to 18 months after you terminate employment. So make sure you have a plan in place to take this into account.

Mistake #2: Failure to plan for how much will you need each year.
People generally need more during retirement than the often stated 70% income replacement ratio offered up by many as the gold standard. In practice, I usually see most people spending close to 100% of their pre-retirement income. Most people grossly underestimate the amount of money will need each year, especially when they retire early and are much more active with travel and other activities.

Mistake #3: Not owning equities in your portfolio.
Simply put, not owning equities in your portfolio will set you up for failure during retirement, especially when you retire early. With interest rates close to zero right now, CDs and bonds will not give you the returns you need to have your portfolio survive all the way through retirement.

Mistake #4: Applying for Social Security at the wrong time.
Most people apply for Social Security as soon as they are eligible. If you retire early it might make sense to take Social Security so that you have a larger income each month, but the fact is you need to consider a whole lot of other factors before you apply. These include how long you are expected to live, whether your spouse is eligible for benefits, how much your spouse and you can expect to receive each month and your other sources of retirement income.

To answer these questions I’ve made a free video course available over at FreeSocialSecurityCourse.com. The free course goes through the future of Social Security, the rules of Social Security, and how to maximize Social Security benefits.

Wayne Zussman is a Certified Financial Planner™ and President of Triton Wealth Management, a fee-only financial planning and investment firm. Triton has offices in Annapolis, Kent Island and Gaithersburg, MD. Wayne can be reached at 410-202-2110 or wayne@tritonwm.com

 

Is a Home Equity Line of Credit Right For Me?

By Dieter Scherer

First of all, it’s important to know exactly what a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) is.

A HELOC is a type of home loan that works similar to a credit card. Instead of receiving all of the money up front as you would with a conventional mortgage, you apply for a line of credit that allows you to borrow up to the limit the bank approves. A HELOC offers flexible payments, which vary based upon the amount you borrowed and how much principal you want to pay down each month.

Benefits:
Lower Interest Rates – Because a HELOC is secured by your home, it offers a lower interest rate than a credit card and generally less than auto loans and other personal loans.
Flexible Repayment – Most HELOC’s allow flexibility with your payments. Options range from conversion of the loan to a fixed rate home loan to interest only payments.
Tax Deductible – Unlike credit cards and other personal loans, if you take a HELOC out on your personal residence, the interest on it is usually tax deductible.
High Credit Limits – Depending upon the value of your home, HELOCs can give you access to tens of thousands of dollars in home equity.

Dangers:
Variable Interest Rates – Unlike a conventional home loan, most HELOCs do not have a fixed rate option. Instead, the rate on HELOCs vary based upon the current prime interest rate. As a result, if the interest rate increases you would have higher payments, which could cause problems if you are have cash flow issues.
Foreclosure – The interest rates on HELOCs are lower because the loan you are given is secured by your home. Therefore, if you cannot pay back the balance of your HELOC, you risk the bank repossessing your home, just like with a normal mortgage.
Frozen Credit – Lenders have the right to cut an unused credit line. During the recent financial crisis, when property values were declining, many lenders exercised this right, leaving many homeowners without a financial safety blanket. Many people used their HELOC as their sole emergency fund and did not have access to this credit when they needed it most.

So, is a HELOC right for you?
Any financial decision should always be taken with your full financial situation in mind. It’s important to understand the risks associated with a HELOC when you are considering what type of loan to pursue. If you have a need for credit and have enough cash flow to pay both the payment for your current mortgage and the HELOC, a HELOC might be right for you.

Wayne Zussman is a Certified Financial Planner™ and President of Triton Wealth Management, a fee-only financial planning and investment firm. Triton has offices in Annapolis, Kent Island and Gaithersburg, MD. Wayne can be reached at 410-202-2110 or wayne@tritonwm.com

 

Dieter Scherer of Triton Wealth Management Passes Certified Financial PlannerTM Exam

Dieter Scherer of Triton Wealth Management has successfully passed the Certified Financial PlannerTM (CFP®) exam. The CFP® exam is a rigorous 2 day exam that is one of the four requirements of CFP® certification. In order to sit for the exam candidates must pass a series of six financial planning courses covering the six major areas of financial planning: insurance planning, general principles, retirement planning, investment planning, estate planning, and tax planning. Candidates must endure ten hours of testing that covers each of the areas of financial planning, which contributes to its relatively low pass rate of 60%.

Scherer commented on the subject, “The CFP® Board expects the highest level of competency from its Certificants. The sheer amount of information can be daunting, but with enough study you can master it. I studied about 250 to 300 hours to prepare for this exam. It was an all-consuming endeavor which I am happy to have successfully completed. “

Scherer continues to seek the highest standards of education and ethics in working with his clients and his progress toward the CFP® Certification represents this commitment.

For additional information, contact Dieter Scherer at 301-330-7500, email dieter@tritonwm.com, or visit the Triton Wealth Management website at www.TritonWM.com

Triton Wealth Management, LLC is an Independent, Fee-Only Financial Planning and Investment Management Firm with offices located in Gaithersburg, Annapolis, and Chester, MD.