Mid-Year Financial Checklist
Take Time This Summer to Review Your Financial Picture
Last Updated: July 1, 2020
Early in the battle against coronavirus this spring, as layoffs mounted and the private sector retrenched, governments at large went into full-time “Relief Mode.” At the national level, Congress and the Federal Reserve launched multi-trillion-dollar relief packages and stimulus measures, and executive branch agencies were implementing many of these new federal directives and initiatives.
Given the impact these initiatives have had on our economy, the markets, and society at large over the past several months, and as we look forward to the second half of the year, we thought it would be helpful to provide you with a checklist to consider regarding your financial well-being.
Revisiting overall investment objectives. Despite an impressive market rally since late March, macro signposts point to recessionary conditions. Has the economic tumult triggered by COVID-19 affected your life in ways that might at least call for a consultation with us on your overall investment objectives and long-term asset allocation targets? Can we assist with broader financial planning updates and scenario analysis?
Refinancing. Interest rates have again been cut essentially to zero. Given the impact on interest rates broadly in the economy, are you a candidate to refinance a mortgage or other fixed rate obligation?
Tax payments. Federal tax payments normally due in April and June are now due July 15. If you took advantage of these extensions, are you prepared to make payments this month?
Optional IRA distributions. If you are of the age where you would normally be required to take an annual IRA distribution, be aware that distribution is optional for 2020. Check with us and your tax professional for specific guidance, but all else equal, it might be an opportunity to leave additional assets in place with potential to earn tax-sheltered returns, and avoid paying income tax on what would otherwise be a taxable distribution.
Organizing financial documents. Does the extra time at home create an opportunity to gather, update and organize your key financial documents? This could include reviewing your long-term planning, wills, charitable or personal gifting, and the location of your key accounts and contacts. With an eye to having you and your loved ones up to speed on your household and family financial affairs, this could be an excellent time to hold a family meeting.
Payment deferrals. Do you own a small business or have a student in your family with a federally guaranteed student loan? Relief legislation this spring allowed for payment deferrals on student loan interest as well as the employer portion of payroll taxes. Check with your CPA or tax professional to see if these provisions are relevant for you.
Putting your well-being first. Are you taking good care of yourself? During uncertain or stressful times, it’s more important than ever to make the time for healthy pursuits, both intellectual and physical.
As you think through this checklist, know that we at SBH are here for you, to discuss any aspects of your financial plan. Whether by phone or email or even a Zoom videoconference call, we look forward to staying in touch.
This information has been prepared solely for informational purposes and is not intended to provide and should not be relied upon for accounting, legal, tax, or investment advice. The factual statements herein have been taken from sources we believe to be reliable, but such statements are made without any representation as to accuracy or completeness. Opinions expressed are current opinions as of 6/30/20. These materials are subject to change, completion, or amendment from time to time without notice, and Segall Bryant & Hamill is not under any obligation to keep you advised of such changes. This document and its contents are proprietary to Segall Bryant & Hamill, and no part of this document or its subject matter should be reproduced, disseminated, or disclosed without the written consent of Segall Bryant & Hamill L.L.C. Any unauthorized use is prohibited.