Making the Most of Tax Time

This is not a favorite time of year for most of us, because wading through all the paperwork needed to prepare our taxes can be a headache. But if you have to gather up all the information anyway, you might as well use it as an opportunity to improve your financial situation. Here are some ideas: • Mortgage Interest Deduction – Look at the year-end summary report you received from your mortgage company and see what you still owe on your house and your current interest rate. The national average for a 30 year fixed… [read more]
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The Only Question that Matters for Investors

(from Dan Solin’s Huffington Post blog, 3/15/2011 – click here for the original post) The financial media is whipped into a frenzy. There is so much uncertainty. Here’s a summary of recent developments:
  • Bill Gross eliminated U.S. government debt from the Pimco’s Total Return Fund.
  • Nouriel Roubini (“Dr. Doom”) predicts $100 billion in municipal bond defaults over five years.
  • Ireland, Greece, Portugal and Spain remain in tenuous financial condition.
  • The devastating earthquake in Japan has broad economic ramifications.
  • Unrest in Libya and in the rest of the Middle East threatens oil prices.
What does it… [read more]
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Don’t Confuse the Urgent with the Important

Carl does a great job in the blog below of reminding us of why those things with low urgency, but a high degree of importance on our to-do list deserve our time and attention before it’s too late. (from Carl Richard’s New York Times’ Bucks blog, 3/21/2011 – click here for the original post.  Carl  is a certified financial planner in Park City, Utah. His sketches are archived on the Bucks blog and on his personal Web site, BehaviorGap.com.)   
Last weekend marked the beginning of spring, and even though there’s still snow on … [read more]
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Resolutions – Part II

In January, we blogged the “10 important investment resolutions for 2011” as listed by Brad Steinman, Director of the Canadian arm of Dimensional Fund Advisors. Brad’s goal was to warn investors away from “ill-advised practices that are detrimental to their wealth” and hopes that “a set of New Year’s Investment resolutions, along with an advisor capable of helping investors adhere to them, will lead to a more prosperous future.” As we mentioned in that post, we’ll visit these resolutions periodically throughout the year and provide some commentary on each. Resolution #3: I will not… [read more]
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The Current Market Aftershock

David Booth, Chairman & Co-CEO of Dimensional Fund Advisors, released a timely video this month about shocks and aftershocks in the market.  He walks viewers through a timeline of US stock market performance in several periods since World War II.  The conclusion is that prevailing market sentiment is often wrong and investors should continue to focus on keeping to their disciplined plan to achieve their long term goals.  Click “Watch Now” below to view. The Asset Advisory Group http://www.taaginc.com/ These videos contain the opinions of the participants but not necessarily Dimensional Fund Advisors or DFA [read more]
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Taking Advantage of a Decline in Your Home’s Value

Most (if not all) of us have seen our home values fall in the past few years. While Cincinnati did not experience the dramatic decrease seen in many areas of the country, we were not immune from the pain. Hopefully these tips will help reduce the sting.
  • Have your house appraised. Every three years Ohio counties will allow you to file a request with their Board of Revision to have the value of your home reassessed. In Hamilton County, you must complete a Complaint Against the Value of Real Property form and submit it with
[read more]
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Why DFA?

For those of you who’ve been clients of The Asset Advisory Group since our beginning in 1988, you know we have always followed an investment philosophy of diversification and rebalancing, but the investments we’ve used to implement your plan have changed over time. As an independent company, we can work with anyone, but we believe the best investment solution for meeting your financial goals is Dimensional Fund Advisors, or DFA. DFA has been very successful, but quiet, since its funds became available to approved registered investment advisory firms in the early 90’s. As of… [read more]
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