Carnegie Investment Counsel Blog

Carnegie Investment Counsel

Carnegie Investment Counsel
Carnegie Investment Counsel is an Registered Investment Adviser (RIA) providing personalized financial guidance to help you preserve and grow your wealth, so you are freer to enjoy your life. As your fiduciary, we are obligated to place your investing success ahead of our returns.
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Recent Posts

Key Elements of an Estate Plan

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Feb 11, 2022 10:30:00 AM

Making decisions today that are designed to take effect upon our eventual demise is hardly at the top of anyone’s pleasure list. When it comes to ensuring the financial well-being of your family though, making thoughtful preparations regarding the final disposition of your assets should be a priority. The creation of an estate plan allows you to control how your assets are transferred to your heirs when you die or become mentally or physically incapacitated.

An estate plan will have far-reaching consequences regarding how your financial assets are distributed. A properly designed plan can also make directives about your medical care if you become too ill to make those decisions yourself.

In the absence of an estate plan, a probate court may be making the decisions about your money when you pass away, rather than following your wishes. The lack of a plan may leave your family with an undue hardship, particularly if you have not made it clear to them how you want your affairs to be managed.

Consider the essential components of a proper estate plan:

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Topics: Financial Planning, Wealth Management

Resolve to Prepare: Retirement Planning Conversation Checklist

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Feb 3, 2022 4:00:00 PM

Welcome to 2022! The start of the new year is a great time for a retirement planning conversation and to revisit the progress you’ve made so far. We recommend scheduling a meeting with your financial advisor, who can provide in-depth knowledge about what you’ve saved so far and what retirement strategies will work for you going forward.

Retirement planning looks different for everyone, but the basic rule of thumb is that you should plan for 70 to 90 percent of your pre-retirement income. Your financial advisor will walk you through that conversation so that you’re making good progress and staying on your desired retirement schedule. Below, we’ve created a checklist of topics to guide your retirement planning.

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Topics: Retirement Planning

Life Events: Reasons to Change Your Will

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Jan 27, 2022 2:00:00 PM

You’ve got many important documents you keep safe: your Social Security card, your birth certificate, your marriage certificate and, perhaps most important, your will. Though some of these documents can’t be changed, your will can be modified throughout your life so that your estate is handled according to your wishes after your passing. You want to make sure the right people inherit your assets, and those circumstances can change over time in relation to choices and relationships. Here’s a look at some reasons to change your will.

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Topics: Financial Planning, Retirement Planning

You Can’t Take It With You Part 3: Living Well With Wealth

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Jan 13, 2022 1:30:00 PM

Congratulations! You’ve made it to the finish line of your career, and now you’re ready to enjoy the rewards of your hard work and savvy financial planning. Nowadays, retirement looks a little different from previous generations: many retirees are now active and busy, completing their bucket lists and staying excited about tomorrow’s possibilities. You, too, can experience the enrichment of this new chapter.

Retirement looks different for everybody. It’s a great time to think of what goals you made for yourself when you were younger. What have you always wanted to do but never had the chance? Did you want to travel somewhere specific? Master a certain craft, give back to the community, or start a new hobby? Now may be the right time to say yes to all of those opportunities.

In our previous posts in this series, we discussed gifting money to family and charitable giving. In this post, we take a deep dive into enjoying your nest egg. Here are some categories.

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Topics: Financial Planning, Retirement Planning

Kids and Money: How to Teach Money Habits and Investing Concepts

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Dec 21, 2021 1:30:00 PM

You’ve spent a lifetime developing an investing style and compiling ideas about how to wisely manage your personal finances. Wouldn’t it be a great idea to pass along some of that wisdom to your family? Here are a few ideas on how to teach money habits to young people. 

Part of any practical education for your children and possibly your grandchildren should be how to effectively manage their finances.  

Don't assume your kids are too young to start this process. If you wait until they are college age, you will likely miss a golden opportunity to create an enduring set of guidelines for financial management.

Another assumption that you can readily discount is that these lessons will be taught in school. According to the Council for Economic Education, only 21 states require a course in personal finance for high school graduation.

You may be doing a great disservice to your children by failing to give them an explanation of how the primary aspects of personal finance work. Here are some suggestions:

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Topics: Financial Planning

Financial Planning for People With Disabilities: Understanding ABLE Accounts

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Dec 14, 2021 1:30:00 PM

ABLE Act accounts started with a parent. It was Stephen E. Beck, Jr., vice chairman of the National Down Syndrome Society and the Down Syndrome Association of Northern Virginia Board of Directors who proposed a plan to help his daughter, who has Down syndrome, save money. His plan is what became the basis for the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act.

In 2014, the ABLE Act was signed into law by President Obama and in June 2016, ABLE programs were launched in Ohio, Tennessee and Nebraska. In Ohio, for example, these accounts are called STABLE accounts.  

If you’re a parent raising a child with special needs, you know there are unique circumstances when it comes to managing your family’s finances. In a previous blog post, we outlined eight simple steps for parents to take to establish financial stability for their child. This blog takes a closer and more in-depth look at ABLE Act accounts and answers some frequently asked questions.

By definition, ABLE accounts are investment accounts for eligible individuals with disabilities that allow them to save and invest money while retaining eligibility for public benefits programs (like Medicaid, SSI for example). These accounts share similarities with regular bank accounts, but they function more like 529 college savings accounts.

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Topics: Financial Planning

A Day in the Life of a Retirement Services Principal: Meet Kim Gannis and Learn Just How Personalized Corporate Retirement Plans Can Be

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Dec 7, 2021 1:30:00 PM

Kim Gannis, AIF®, is a Principal at Carnegie and Director of Retirement Plan Services and works in Carnegie’s Pittsburgh office. She has been with the firm for six years. Kim earned her Bachelor of Science in mathematics from the University of Pittsburgh; she is also a designated Accredited Investment Fiduciary®. 

“With my degree, I thought I was going to be a teacher coming out of school,” Kim recalls. “I soon realized that I would rather poke my eyes out than be a teacher.” She landed at Mercer as an analyst, then continued with positions at PNC Bank and American Century Investments. Her desire to understand the real side of money led to her move to Carnegie. She has been doing financial work all her life and plans to continue for the rest of her career. 

Let’s take a look at a day in the life of a principal and director of retirement plan services.

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Topics: Relationship Management, Retirement Planning

5 Steps to Make the Greatest Impact as a Donor on Giving Tuesday

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Nov 3, 2021 9:25:57 AM

Giving Tuesday is a global day of giving with a goal to unleash the power of radical generosity. According to Giving Tuesday Inc, $2.47 billion was donated on December 1, 2020, by 34.8 million people, just in the United States alone. Many of our clients have been giving generously to their beloved charities for years. However, if you know someone looking to make a difference or newly in a position to be philanthropic, consider sharing this step-by-step article with them. There are many ways to get involved this Giving Tuesday - here are some ideas!

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Topics: Giving, Nonprofits

Timeless Investment Tips to Help Prepare for Good Times or Pandemics

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Oct 14, 2021 1:30:00 PM

In their most recent study about stress in America, the American Psychological Association found that 72 percent of people felt stressed about money. Finances can be a constant stressor for some, no matter what significant events influence it. Still, it’s no secret that the pandemic transformed the workforce rapidly and wreaked long-term havoc on the economy in 2020. Many people experienced food insecurity due to the unexpected impact of financial loss, and according to a survey published in November, 2020, about 63 percent of Americans had been living paycheck to paycheck since the start of the pandemic.

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Topics: Investing, Financial Planning, Investment Management

Practical Options for Sources of Retirement Income

Posted by Carnegie Investment Counsel on Oct 7, 2021 2:04:26 PM

We’ve always been told that the only certainty in our lives will be death and taxes. Fair enough. But many of us would like to see a greater degree of certainty when it comes to our retirement, specifically as it relates to retirement income.

However, although there are tools to help determine our income after our work life, it really is a “best guess” and is not guaranteed. Add to that, the amount of time one will need that income is also speculation.

But there are steps we can take to augment traditional income sources. First, let’s define those typical ways of paying for our retirement.

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Topics: Financial Planning, Economy, health insurance

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