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Three Phases of Your Financial Life

When I first came upon this concept, I found it to be a very simple explanation of a very complex subject. I also found it to be extremely useful in choosing the correct Financial Professional to assist you in each individual phase of your financial life. If understood and followed, this concept can bring better understanding and a higher peace of mind to a subject that many find confusing at best, and absolutely frightening at worst: Retirement.

When these 3 Phases were first introduced to me, they were the Accumulation Phase, the Preservation Phase, and the Distribution Phase. I would like to rename one of the phases because I don’t think it accurately describes the phase, and confuses its meaning with the Distribution Phase. It doesn’t change the meaning of the phase, just the name. I am going to call the Preservation Stage the Deccumulation Stage. So now we have Accumulation, Deccumulation, and Distribution, or as I call it; the A.D.D. of Retirement.

The Accumulation Phase starts at the beginning of our working years. These are the years that we start saving for Retirement, whether it be through our employer’s 401k, a 403b, an IRA, or any other Retirement Plan. We are working, and contributing something most likely on a monthly basis. This has a few benefits. An obvious one being “Dollar Cost Averaging.” Dollar Cost Averaging is when the Market goes down, but since you are contributing on a regular basis, you contribute some money at that lower Market Price, so that when it goes back up, you participate in more gain, so the gains and losses, “Average out.” This concept works well during your working years because you have something on your side: Time. You have time to ride out any big losses, and since you are still contributing money during the down periods, when the market does return, you have made that money back and more.

As you get older and get closer and closer to retirement, there is now something that you don’t have on your side: Time. You are now reaching the Deccumulation Phase. This is the phase where you are transitioning to living off of your nest egg for the rest of your life. You’re retired or very close. You can’t afford to “ride out” large downturns in the market because time is no longer on your side. Also, during this time, you’re no longer working, so you aren’t putting money into your portfolio, you’re taking it out. Now we have “Reverse Dollar Cost Averaging” and it does NOT work well. It is the OPPOSITE of Dollar Cost Averaging. If you plan on taking 4% out of your portfolio each year, and the market goes down 30%, your income just went down 30%!! I don’t know about you, but I don’t know when it’s a good time to take a 30% pay cut! Not only that, but you took 4% out, so while the market went down 30%, your portfolio went down 34%. For it to get back to where it was before the drop, not only does it have to gain all that back, but you still need to take money out next year, too, and the average portfolio will have one heck of a time digging itself out of that hole. Because of all that, during this phase of your financial life, you will want to transition some of your nest egg to safer investments, preferably that offer protection of principle along with the benefit of a pension-like income stream. This may also be a good time to evaluate whether or not the Financial Professional that got you TO Retirement should be the same one to get you THROUGH Retirement. It has been my experience that the two will not be the same. There are simply different skill sets and expertise needed in this phase. During retirement, your Financial Professional’s job is to help you preserve what you’ve built, live off of what you’ve built for the rest of your life, make sure your income doesn’t go down with the Market, but allow for it to go up with inflation. Those are very different skills than what is needed during the Accumulation phase. Much like going to a Specialist, rather than a Family Doctor when the need arises. Different specializations for different needs.

Now on to the Distribution Phase. This is when you finally pass on, and whatever is left of your assets are “Distributed” amongst your beneficiaries. Once again, you’ll want to do this in the most tax advantaged way for your loved ones. Life Insurance is one of the best ways to do this, but there are many different kinds with many different benefits. Some offer cash value, some offer long term care benefits that you can access while still living, etc…You’ll want to sit down with a respected Life Insurance Professional to find out what kind of policy would be best for your individual situation.

Bottom line, taking an active part in your Retirement is critical to your success in Retirement. Knowing which professionals to use in Retirement is a key to that success. Staying with an Accumulation Specialist during the Deccumulation Phase could cost you thousands of dollars. Don’t simply stay with your family doctor when you truly need to see a Specialist.

Nate Miller consults multiple Advisors and Insurance Agents across the nation that will account for $125 million dollars in Indexed Annuity Production in 2013 as well as several tens of millions of dollars of Managed Money, too. He is exposed to the retirement strategies of some of the industry’s top minds day in and day out, helping them develop plans and strategies for their clients to receive the most income in retirement as possible. He resides in Lawrence, KS with his wife Melissa, and son Tennyson, and can be found online at http://www.millerretirementgroup.com.

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Tax Free Retirement

What a concept, right? As taxes continue to go higher and higher, we would all like a way to keep more of what we made during the time of our lives when it is absolutely important to account for every penny!

This is a little known strategy, and, while it works for everyone no matter what they earn, it probably has its sweet spot among younger, high income earners. That segment of the population simply can utilize this strategy to it’s fullest potential.

How? We’ll get to that in a bit. First I want to set up why this is such a powerful strategy, and why there are several books that have been written about this subject now.

Let me ask you a question. If you want to save money now that you can withdraw tax free in retirement, what is the overwhelming response going to be for the financial vehicle that you will use? If you said Roth IRA, you are correct! This is the only place that most people know of to generate tax free income in retirement? However, in 2013 you are limited to $5,500, ($6,500 if you’re 50 or older). What if you want to put in more? Or, what if you make too much money that you cannot contribute to a Roth IRA? What do you do now?

How many people thought that Life Insurance would be the answer? If you, like most people, didn’t guess Life Insurance, don’t worry. This strategy is not well known, but is gaining traction as more people realize it’s benefits. Now, we’re not talking about just utilizing Life Insurance as a Death Benefit. That kinda does you no good during your life! 🙂 Most people don’t know that there is a way that you can accumulate money inside of a Life Insurance product tax free, and then withdraw your investment plus earnings tax free as well! They also don’t realize that you can contribute far more than the annual premium amount, too! What does that look like in real life? I’m glad you asked! 😉

Let’s give an example. If your annual premium is $5,500, you may be able to contribute (I’m just going to use an arbitrary number here. Each policy will be different and have it’s own limit on what you can contribute before it all becomes taxable. Stay under that amount and it’s never taxable) up to $55,500 per year!! That is an extra $50,000 per year that you could contribute! (Infomercial Announcer Guy Voice): “But wait, there’s more!” Sorry, I couldn’t help myself. 🙂 If you don’t contribute that extra $50,000 per year, that amount adds to itself every year. Think rollover minutes, only here it’s rollover dollars! Doing the math, that means that if you only put in the premium amount of $5,500, after 2 years you could put in an extra $100,000!!

Where would this “rollover” feature become beneficial in the real world? Multiple places, but I’ll give you just a couple. 1. Self-employed individual who plans on selling his practice in the future. He puts in the $5,500 every year, rolling over his $50,000 for 20 years. His rollover amount is $1,000,000. He sells his business. He could put $1,000,000 into it and take income off of that tax free. 2. A high income earner who needs to put quite a bit more away in order to maintain the same standard of living and income that maxing out other retirement plans like 401ks, IRAs, and Roths simply won’t allow.

What specific product would do this? Well, Indexed Universal Life would be one, or as most people refer to it, IUL. Here’s how it works. You pay an annual premium amount. Part goes toward the Life Insurance Death Benefit, and part goes toward your Cash Value. The Cash Value is tied to a Stock Market Index, most likely the S&P 500. It is not directly invested in the market, but links it’s gain to the Index. This means that if the market goes down, you don’t lose anything, but if it goes up, you participate in the gain. How much of the gain depends on the policy. There are some policies that have a 13% Annual Cap. That means that if the S&P 500 goes down 15% you lose nothing, but if it goes up 15%, you get 13%. If it goes up 20%, you still get 13%. That is the trade-off for never losing money during the down years. That’s a pretty good trade-off in my opinion!

An added benefit is that if the market does go down that 15% that I mentioned, it doesn’t have to get back to it’s previous level before you start to earn again! This is the benefit of the Annual Reset design. Let’s say it goes down 26% in one year. (Those of you who lived through the 2008 downturn remember losses of 40%!!) Here’s the catch if you’re simply invested in the stock market: The market has to return to it’s previous high before you are back in the black. With the annual reset design of the IUL policy, you lost nothing when it went down, and that is your new baseline for the following year’s growth. If the market goes back up 15% the very next year, you get 13%, and if it goes up 11% the next year, you get 11%!!

Bottom line, if you happen to be fairly young, I would seriously consider this as a vehicle for your retirement. You can be assured that I am!!

Nate Miller consults multiple Advisors and Insurance Agents across the nation that will account for $125 million dollars in Indexed Annuity Production in 2013 as well as several tens of millions of dollars of Managed Money, too. He is exposed to the retirement strategies of some of the industry’s top minds day in and day out, helping them develop plans and strategies for their clients to receive the most income in retirement as possible. He resides in Lawrence, KS with his wife Melissa, son, Tennyson, and can be found online at http://www.millerretirementgroup.com.

Fair TaxACT: fair, or unfair?

So, the fair tax act. We all have tons of questions about it. How fair is it? What exactly does it entail? Can I please get an objective viewpoint? I don’t want to hear from a Republican or a Democrat on why their political party feels that it is either good or bad.

That’s exactly what I would like also. And if you would like further information, I suggest checking out http://www.fairtax.org for more information. I am often asked why should we even care about such a wonky and confusing topic as taxation? Only because the founding fathers knew that the way in which we are taxed has a direct correlation to how free we are as a nation and as individuals.

So what are the main proponents of the fair tax act? Well, the first, and a big one, is the fact that there would no longer be an income tax; federal or state. None. Zip. Zero. If you make $40,000 a year, you will bring home $40,000 a year. There will be nothing that comes out of your paycheck. If you make $20 an hour your paycheck reflects $20 an hour. Pretty good so far, right?

So some natural first questions would be, “Then how does the government make money? How does Social Security get funded? How does Medicare get funded?” All of those questions will be answered a little bit later. Please be patient. First, instead of the income tax, it would only be a tax only on our consumption. The only tax we would be paying would be Sales Tax. And you can imagine, a higher one than we currently pay since we won’t be paying any income tax. All of the funding for Social Security, for Medicare, or for anything else would come out of that tax. And a quick note for those who are already drawing Social Security or close to it, don’t worry, this won’t have an effect on your check. In fact, this may be a very good way to solve the shortfall in funding. Currently social security and medicare funding come only through tax on wages, which is a small pool, and those that avoid it, (think illegal aliens), don’t pay into it at all. Well, that won’t be a problem with the fair tax. There won’t be a way around it since you are paying tax every time you hit the cash register, meaning all those illegal aliens are now taxed. A win for the conservatives. 😉

How much is the sales tax that they are proposing? Great question. The answer: 23%. 23%! You’ve got to be kidding! I’m only in the 15% tax bracket right now you say? Isn’t that more money out of my pocket? That was my first thought too. Then I dug in a little deeper. Obviously first off, that 23% is only on things that you buy. So if you are a good saver, then you will naturally pay less in taxes. Also, most people do fall into the 15% tax bracket. They also have 7.65% taken out of their paychecks for Social Security and Medicare. There’s 22.65 right there! And we haven’t even factored in state tax or any other sales tax that you’re already paying anyway!

Plus, and here is the area where the naturally conservative side of me first had a little bit of a full body seizure, there’s a little thing called a Prebate. What the heck is a prebate? This is something that was proposed in order to help the lower income earners who already pay a low amount of taxes. Think about it. A 23% tax on necessities would be a big chunk out of the low income earners monthly budget, correct? So in order to combat that they have introduced the prebate. Now we all know what a rebate is. It’s a payment that comes after the fact. So a prebate is something that comes before. What does that mean?

Based on your household situation, you will receive a check from the government every single month for the purchase of necessities. For example a single mom with two kids will receive a higher check than a single mom with one kid. $374 as opposed to $297. Likewise, a married couple would receive a higher check than the single person. There are more people. This way everyone can consume at or above the poverty line without having to pay for necessities. A win for the more Liberal-minded out there.

Now you can see why I had a mini seizure when I first read this–You mean to tell me that now every single household will receive a check from the government? You can imagine my shock and amazement at the thought of this! This is where the more liberal side of the fair tax act comes into play. Remember, I mentioned this wouldn’t be a one-sided party blog. We’ve got wins for both sides here. But you ask, “So if everyone is receiving a check from the government won’t this mean that the government is spending more money than it is now?”

Great question. And the answer is no. If you add up all of the money the federal government loses out on from the standard deduction, personal exemption allowances, deductions and credits, the amount is about $1.25 trillion. If every single household participated in this Prebate, which is about 114 million households nationwide, it would only be paying somewhere around $543 billion annually. So it essence, this is saving another $707 billion a year! Once again, check out http://www.fairtax.org for more info on that.

One last thing. How does this affect our debt and deficit? Well last year the federal government brought in roughly $2.3 trillion in revenue, (taxes), and spent $3.6 trillion. Oops, that’s like earning $23,000 a year and spending $36,000. However if we know what America spends on the whole, and we do, roughly $15.65 trillion in 2012, up from $15 trillion in 2011, and you ask yourself what is 23% of $15.65 trillion? $3.5995 trillion!! If we can put just a little tightening on our federal budget, we can operate in a surplus!!!

In summary, I’m a fan. This new form of taxation would reward those who save, incentivise more people to save, punish those who are not good stewards of their money, close the loopholes for those avoiding tax, solve the shortfall in funding for entitlement programs, and give the government the ability to work in surplus rather than debt!

God bless,

Nate Miller

 

Nate Miller consults multiple Advisors and Insurance Agents across the nation that will account for $125 million dollars in Indexed Annuity Production in 2013 as well as several tens of millions of dollars of Managed Money, too. He is exposed to the retirement strategies of some of the industries top minds day in and day out. He resides in Lawrence, KS with his wife Melissa, corgi Frasier, and soon to be son or daughter, (they’re keeping it a surprise). He can also be found online at http://www.millerretirementgroup.com

When Should I Start Taking Social Security??

I have actually heard a few people say this is pretty easy question to figure out. The more I find out about all the different ways to file Social Security, though, the more I’m convinced that those who say that don’t really know that much about it!

For example, I know a lot of people that will say, “I don’t know how long it’ll be there, so I took it as soon as I turned 65!” I’ll bet they didn’t know that if they would have waited until they were 70, that their income would be on average 72% higher for the rest of their life? Think of it like this, if they’re receiving $1,000 at age 62, they would be getting $1,720 if they waited to 70! Not only that, but the majority of the time, and I understand I’m making a sweeping generality here, it’s the Husband who turns 62 first, who also had higher wages during his working life since his wife took time off to have children or raise children. All that means that he may have just unknowingly shortchanged his wife’s survivor benefit! How you ask?

Common sense may tell you that, among couples, the higher earner should claim benefits as early as possible and the lower earner should delay in order to receive a higher benefit. In reality, the exact opposite may be the better option because if the higher earner claims early and then dies first, that means the survivor benefit will be that much lower, too!! This could reduce the spousal benefit as well! What? How is that different?

Rather than going in depth on every possible way to file Social Security, (and there are PLENTY!!), I’ll direct you to http://www.ssa.gov where you can explore and read things that will make your head hurt. Also, I would direct you to go to http://www.ssa.gov/mystatement and set up your online account if you haven’t already. It will tell you what they expect, based on your earnings history and projected future earnings, what you will collect in Social Security at 62, or your Full Retirement Age, or if you waited until 70.

This information is vitally important to work in conjunction with your Retirement Income Plan. If you haven’t received a Retirement Income Plan yet, I recommend finding someone who specializes in that in your area.

A note of caution. That Retirement Income Specialist may not be the same Financial Professional that you’ve been using for the past many years during the height of your working life. They are an Accumulation Specialist, not a Retirement Specialist. They Specialize in helping you Accumulate your nest egg while you are working. A Retirement Specialist specializes in helping you live off of that nest egg for the rest of your life, regardless of whether the stock market takes a nose dive, does it in the most tax advantaged way possible, and allows for inflation! If you’ve read some of my previous posts, I don’t want to sound like a broken record on that point, but I wouldn’t want a heart surgeon working on my brain, or the other way around. It’s not their specialty. I’ve consulted far too many Advisors who have seen their clients hurt by an Accumulation Specialist trying to wear the same uniform as the Retirement Specialist. It’s not pretty.

After visiting the Social Security website, if you’re still awake, are a glutton for punishment, and are interested in how a good Retirement Income Plan can work with your specific Social Security situation,  I do have a special Social Security Report that I can send you called “What, When, Who, How, The Social Security Decisions. Simply email me at nmiller@leadingedgebiz.com and put in the subject line, “I Want Social Security Income Planning!”

Nate Miller consults multiple Advisors and Insurance Agents across the nation that will account for over $125 million dollars in Indexed Annuity Production in 2013 as well as several tens of millions of dollars of Managed Money, too. He is exposed to the retirement strategies of some of the industries top minds day in and day out. He resides in Lawrence, Ks with his wife Melissa, corgi Frasier, and soon to be son or daughter, (they’re keeping it a surprise.) he can also be found online at http://www.millerretirementgroup.com.

Where Dave Ramsey Went Wrong

Dave Ramsey has created quite a following nation wide. Budgeting, emergency fund, debt snowball, invest 15%, pay off your house early, carry zero debt, any life insurance but term is bad, and the stock market averages 10-11%! Do any of those baby steps sound familiar for anyone who has been through his Financial Peace University? It sounds all too familiar to me. In my quaint little town of Lawrence, Ks, home of the KU Jayhawks, I actually led Dave’s Financial Peace University through our church about 5 years ago.

While I absolutely agree that we all need to have a working budget for our households, a savings account for those unforeseen emergencies, and that we need to carry as little consumer debt as possible, that’s about where Dave and I’s agreement ends.

For those die hard Dave fans out there, lemmesplain. I, too, was a die hard Dave fan. WAS. I want to be very careful to get my point across without sounding anti-Dave because that’s certainly not my intent. If you have no budget, are drowning in debt, and have abysmal savings, by all means go buy his stuff! It will help you. I simply want to offer an additional perspective. You see, since leading Dave’s course, I have been fortunate to consult some of the top Financial Advisors, Annuity Agents, Retirement Specialists, Safe Money Guys, and Life Insurance Agents in the nation. Folks that have been on CNN Money, quoted or interviewed in the Wall Street Journal, and featured on MSN Money, just to name a few. In other words, the powerhouses in the industry. And what I have discovered, and what I would propose to you, is that Dave’s advice cannot be taken as blanket advice that is good for everyone’s financial situation, or financial phase of life.

For example, it is my belief, and a lot of the Advisors that I mentioned earlier, that if a 65 year old is retired, needs to live off their nest egg, and has all their money in these mysterious, mythical, 10% mutual funds that no one can find, that is one of the MOST DANGEROUS THINGS THEY CAN DO FINANCIALLY!!!!

What if the market has another 2008? What if it goes down just 20%? 30%? They have to live off of that money. They can’t afford to have all their money at risk. The professionals that I consult are not interested in getting 10% returns from risky investments. Their expertise lies in working with clients who are either close to retirement, or already in retirement, and they’re going to make sure that money provides income they cannot outlive, that doesn’t fluctuate at the whim of the stock market, is distributed in the most tax advantaged way, and provides for inflation. Oh, and if they so choose, can pass on to their heirs when they’re gone.

Now, would you agree that that takes an entirely different skill set than the Advisor whose job is simply to grow your money while you’re working? Then you may need to look around for someone who specializes in that area as you approach retirement.

I’ll give one quick story and then I’m done. This story outlines a very common scenario where Dave’s thinking would have cost a family a lot of money. This story challenges Dave’s teaching that all Life Insurance except Term is bad. This is a true story that came from one of my Advisors. Names have been changed, though.

Bob had two clients, Joe and Mary. They had been clients for a very long time. In a review meeting with Joe and Mary, Bob asked a very simple question. “Do you have any assets that you do not plan on using for income?” Mary’s answer was, “Yes. We have an $85,000 dollar Fixed Annuity that will go to our 2 boys when we pass.” Bob saw a huge opportunity to help this family! He knew that the $85k split two ways is $42,500, and after taxes the two sons would have around $30,000 a piece. Not bad. Maybe they could buy a car, contribute to their own retirement or the kids’ college fund, but Bob thought bigger. He then asked, “Would you like to leave them more money than that and do it tax free?” Well you don’t have to be a brain surgeon to guess their response.

Bob used the $85k to buy a paid-up 2nd to die life insurance policy that had an immediate TAX FREE death benefit of $500,000 ($250k a piece)!! That is an extra $440,000 of value ($500k-the $60k after tax that the Fixed Annuity would have provided) that Bob just added into those two families’ lives!! And he did it with a financial vehicle that Dave says is a scam. And why does Dave talk about most of these vehicles being a scam? A big reason is he says it’s because they’re so high commission! Let me ask you a question. How much do you think this Advisor made? Let’s remember that he just added $440,000 into the pockets of two families!! Did he make $100,000? $50,000? Not even close. I’m going to estimate because commissions vary depending on the company, but there are industry averages. He probably made somewhere in the ballpark of $6,000. Six thousand dollars to create $440,000 of value! Seems pretty fair to me.

I say all that just to say this. Maybe it’s time to meet with someone and get a 2nd opinion on your retirement portfolio, or maybe it’s time to take that retirement portfolio and develop a plan for it in retirement. I cannot count the times I have seen lots of assets, but no plan for those assets! Please get a plan.

Nate Miller consults multiple Advisors and Insurance Agents across the nation that will account for over $125 million dollars in Indexed Annuity Production in 2013 as well as several tens of millions of dollars of Managed Money, too. He is exposed to the retirement strategies of some of the industries top minds day in and day out. He resides in Lawrence, Ks with his wife Melissa, corgi Frasier, and soon to be son or daughter, (they’re keeping it a surprise.) he can also be found online at http://www.millerretirementgroup.com.

Retirement Withdrawal Rate 2.8%?? I thought it was 4%!!

I don’t know if you all have seen this article yet, but we’ve got a good one here!

You can read the whole article, but all you really need is the first two sentences!

“The magic withdrawal number in a low-interest-rate retirement? You’ll be surprised”–2.8% is the magic number, new study finds

If you’re planning for low interest rates to last, you might want to take a second look at your clients’ withdrawal rates in retirement.

It seems that a 2.8% withdrawal rate over a retirement period of 30 years, with a 40% allocation to stocks, is the recipe for a 90% success rate.

It also goes on to say that the old 4% assumption now only has a 48% chance of success!!

CLICK HERE for access to the full article.

This is scary stuff for retirees if their Financial Advisor is touting the same tired advice of buy and hold and still has all of your investments at risk! Oh, you’re not sure if all of your investments are at risk? I would suggest getting a 2nd opinion from a different Advisor who specializes in helping retirees generate Income in retirement that they can’t outlive no matter what the stock market does!!

Let’s think about this for a minute: 2.8% vs 4%. Good luck building a nest egg 42.8% higher than what you originally thought you needed! Instead of $1,000,000 needed with the 4% rule, try saving $1,428,571. Only another $428k!! How many more years of work would that take you to accumulate?

If you have assets, but no real concrete plan for what those assets are going to do for you in retirement, you had better get a plan.

For the past 3 years I have consulted a number of Advisors on the best ways to get 25%-50% more lifetime income for their clients than what the 4% withdrawal rule would require!*

It IS possible to keep the Golden Years Golden rather than Rusted!!

Retire well,

Nate

*Guarantees are backed by the financial strength and claims paying ability of the Insurer.

Moldy Tile and God’s Glory

So my wife just got a new bathroom! She was, in my opinion, way too excited for this remodel job. Maybe it’s just a guy thing and if it is please back me up on this, gentlemen, but all I saw were dollar signs! Let’s run down the list of what was needed: tile broken up and hauled out, (This was actually fun. Demolition usually is.), new tub, (this one was 34 years old,) bath surround, new drain, new hardware, new drywall, replacing of some 2×4’s, primer, paint, and a new shower curtain (because the old one just won’t go with the new color scheme!)

We also had to have the plumber come out a total of 4 different times for newly discovered leaks. Now, this was not his fault. Every leak he fixed stayed fixed. The problem was, that the fixing of one leak would uncover a new leak! Our plumbing problems should have been a lot worse based on all this new knowledge.

Somehow, though, it wasn’t. We should have had far more water damage, and the total cost of this job should have bothered me a lot: It ended up being about 3 times what I thought we were going to spend. But even with all of that taken into consideration, I wasn’t bothered by any of it. Why?

Three words: God is good. Lemmesplain. How is God good when you had massive plumbing issues, water damage, and the cost ends up being 3 times your original estimate?
The simple explanation is that we had the money. The longer explanation is the perfect timing of it.

You see, this is an issue that obviously did not manifest overnight. This had been going on for quite some time. As I mentioned, the damage should have been much worse, but wasn’t. Had this happened when we first moved into the house, this job would have had to have been paid by Uncle Visa. However, thanks to God opening my heart and mind to the right information to learn from, the right people to associate with, and the willingness to apply what was learned, I not only had more than enough in that rare thing called savings for this to not make a dent, but I also had just received a bonus that I had absolutely no idea was coming my way. How much was the bonus? Almost exactly the amount of the cost of the remodel! Now I didn’t even have to dip into savings. Some may just chalk that up to luck. I don’t believe in luck. I believe luck is the excuse that losers use for why they haven’t won and why others have.

God has a plan. A plan for all of us. And I worked hard for that check. That’s not luck. Maybe He held off the plumbing issues and kept the water damage to a minimum until precisely the right time because He knew I’d blog about it and give Him the credit and glory. Even if we didn’t have the money, we would’ve gotten through it. We’ve gotten through everything else. If you’re in a position right now that you don’t like, no matter what area of life, whether it be your finances, your marriage, job, whatever, it may just be worth it to entertain new information from new sources in order to solve those issues. Open your hearts and minds to the possibilities and truly enjoy your life!

God Bless,

Nate

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