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October 2009 Newsletter

Lori's professional photo 2008 

We've all heard the old adage, the more things change the more they stay the same.  That really rings true when I look at the advice of our contributing authors this month.  Both talk about getting back to basics with things like budgeting, and saving for home purchases, retirement, and emergencies.  A lot of back to basics ideas are being discussed and implemented as business strategies too.  Even though we adopt new technologies, and new ways of networking (social media), it is still important to stick to core principles like having a solid brand and reputation, marketing to a target market, and being known as an expert or a resource in your niche.   

 

I'd love to hear your ideas and stories of what works for you in your business.  Do you have some "sure-fire" "tried and true" methods you stick with year in and year out?  Or have you put a new shine on an old idea like relationship building?  I'm sure we could all use a reminder of some effective back to basics business tips.  Feel free to share your ideas.     

 

Wishing you all the best,

Lori

 

Lori T. Williams, Esq.

Your Legal Resource, PLLC

248-594-4470

www.bestlegalresource.com

 

"We Connect the Right Client

With the Right Professional " (SM)

 

 

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What Is Your Legal Resource?

A business owned and operated by Attorney Lori T. Williams, which serves as a resource for individuals and small businesses in need of legal advice or representation.  We connect the right client with the right professional in all areas of law throughout Metro Detroit.

 

We also provide consulting services

to solo and small firm attorneys, independent financial advisors, and CPA's on how to generate more business through effective branding/marketing, networking and creating strategic partnerships.   

 

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Contact Attorney Lori Williams For A

 

 FREE LEGAL OR BUSINESS CHECK-UP

            

    Visit www.bestlegalresource.com

 

   Or Call 248-594-4470
 
    For a FREE consultation by phone (up to 30 minutes) with Attorney Lori Williams

 

Includes a referral to an attorney specialist qualified to assist you with your personal or business legal matters. 

 

 

                              

In This Issue

Article 1: Buying a Home in the New Economy

Article 2: Saving for Retirement in the New Economy

 

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Testimonials 

 

"Lori and her company provide a unique service in the community. So often, people have a problem but do not know where to look. There are 35,000 attorneys alone in Michigan! Lori takes the task to heart and is superb at matching up the right people. You can count on her for enthusiasm, diligence and competence!"

Kenneth Gross , Attorney , Thav Gross Steinway & Bennett PC 

 



"Lori, It was truly a pleasure meeting with you. Your advice is invaluable."

Janet Pasco, Business Consultant, Inroads to Success, LLC

 

 

"I contacted Lori Williams for a referral of a business attorney and that same day she connected me with an attorney who not only knew the legality of starting a new business, but also knew a marketing firm that would assist my husband and I in taking our new business to the next level. She has also helped my patients in need of family law and estate planning attorneys.  Thank you, Lori, for always providing us the right referral at the right time!" With gratitude, Dr. Sarah Brotsky CEO of Gratitude Seashells, LLC" 

 

 

 

"Lori is always the first person I consider when I need to recommend client's to an attorney or other professional. She is thoughtful, sincere and very well connected. I have known Lori for some time and she is hardworking and dependable. She has excellent business sense and is always willing to go the "extra mile" for people."

Ellen Mahoney , Loss Mitigation Consultant , Loss Mitigation Consulting Services of Michigan, LLC 



 

 

Buying a home in the New Economy

By:  Drew Sygit  

                  CMPS, CMC, CRMS, CMLO, CALO, MBA, NAMB/MMBA Instructor
       
     It wasn't that long ago when it was common for home buyers to strive for the most expensive house they could afford.  Buyers were told, "don't worry about that large monthly payment, you'll grow into it as your income goes up." 
 
     On top of that questionable advice, home buyers were coerced into mortgage products that offered artificially low payments for the short-term.  Buyers were told, "don't worry about the future payment increase, you're home will be worth more then and you'll

be able to refinance to a lower payment again."
 
     You don't hear either of those pieces of advice in our new economic reality of high unemployment, rampant foreclosures and falling housing prices.  For the majority of home buyers, it's back to basics: buy what you can comfortably afford, and make sure you have some reserves to fall back on in an emergency.
 
     How should a home buyer determine what to spend on a home? 

It all starts with the monthly budget, not the price of the home.  The budget should determine how much of a monthly housing payment the buyer can afford.  If no monthly budget is written down, then someone else will be dictating the home buyer's budget.  As we've seen before, this can lead to financial trouble for the homeowner.

 

     An often overlooked component of a home buyer's budget is money set aside for savings.  Not only should money be saved for emergencies, but also for retirement.  Not budgeting for these important future events, will lead to living paycheck-to-paycheck

and may be courting financial disaster.
 
    Once a housing payment is properly budgeted for, reputable mortgage and real estate professionals can assist a home buyer in finding
a home that fits their monthly budget. Better to buy a home you can afford and enjoy, than to fret over foreclosure if the mortgage is too big or you encounter a job loss or other

unexpected financial emergency.  

             

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Drew Sygit photoDrew Sygit is the Midwest's most certified mortgage expert with over 15 years of experience in the Detroit metropolitan area.  He's written numerous articles for the mortgage industry and presented for several financial organizations.  Besides helping clients purchase and refinance homes, Drew also assists distressed homeowners trying to keep their homes.


 

 

                                   

Saving for Retirement in the New Economy 

                                      By:  Brian Franke, MBA 

 

     While it is important to budget for your housing needs and other living expenses today, it is also important to set aside income now for savings and retirement.  Sometimes people struggle with planning for their future, when there's so much to think about today. 

 

     Do you plan on working your whole life, or would you like to retire to a special destination someday?  Each person's view of retirement is different.  That is one of the things that makes us unique.  In order to retire and have enough money to last through 25 years of not collecting a paycheck, it is time to start thinking seriously about a financial plan. 
 
     One thing you can do right now if you are a wage earner, is take advantage of your employer 401(k) plan and save at least the free money that the employer is giving you each year.  This could be $0.50 for each dollar of your contributions up to 4%.  
 
    Secondly, invest in a Roth IRA if you qualify.  This will allow tax free withdrawals when you plan to use it.  If you are single and have an adjusted gross income of $105,000 or more, or if you are married and filing your taxes jointly with an AGI of $166,000 or higher, you are not eligible to contribute to a Roth IRA.  If this is the case, then you can contribute to a Traditional IRA.  It has the same tax deferred earnings potential as a Roth IRA, but the growth portion is taxed once you take it out.  The maximum contribution for a Roth IRA or Traditional IRA is $5,000/year (or $6,000 if you are over the age of 50).
 
     The easiest way to save as part of your budget is to start up an automatic deduction to your IRA.  This way you can "set it and forget it."  

 

     No matter what stage of life you are in, it is advisable to review your current financial situation and goals with an advisor to make sure you are maximizing your options.   It's hard to reach a goal without a target and a plan for getting there. 

       
    ___________________________________________________________________________ 

Brian Franke PhotoBrian Franke is a Vice President of Wealth Management at The Advanced Strategies Group in Novi.  His practice is focused on fee-based financial planning and investment management.  Brian has been a speaker at a number of seminars including the University of Michigan Business School, JVS, and in the automotive supply base.  For more information, contact Brian as follows:
 
The Advanced Strategies Group, Inc. 
39500 High Pointe Blvd, Suite 150
Novi, MI  48375  (248) 468-0513
[email protected]

 

Securities offered through First Heartland Capital, Inc.  Member FINRA/SIPC.  Advisory Services offered through First Heartland Consultants, Inc.  The Advanced Strategies Group, Inc. is not affiliated with First Heartland Capital, Inc.  Investment related emails should be directed to [email protected].