Join Us March 12, 2018 at the Smart Money Conference in Troy

Join Us March 12, 2018 at the Smart Money Conference in Troy

What is the Smart Money Tour? Smart Money will give you Dave Ramsey’s 7-step proven plan for dumping debt and building wealth. You’ll leave with a clear vision for your family’s financial future. Whether you’re living paycheck to paycheck, need to reset your family’s financial plan and get back on track, or if you’re already seeing success with the 7 Baby Steps – Smart Money will encourage you and ensure that you continue down the right path. More Info   How are We Involved? We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to co-sponsor this event and bring some of the Dave Ramsey team for a live event in our home town of Troy, at Zion Church on Livernois. Brandon has had the opportunity to meet and learn from featured speakers Chris Hogan and Anthony ONeal at various partnership events over the years. They are both dynamic speakers and it’s sure to a motivating evening. Please take advantage of our discount code below. We hope to see you there. ENTER PROMO CODE “SMARTVESTOR25” for 25% off your order (except for the already discounted couples pass) Get Tickets It’s sure to be an unforgettable night with the Ramsey team. Don’t forget to take a minute to drop by our SmartVestor booth and say hello. We hope to see you there. For more information from us, give our office a call at 248-528-0485 or email...
Steven Fronrath: Director of Client Relations

Steven Fronrath: Director of Client Relations

Steven is dedicated to educating people on how to make sense of their personal finances and create a game plan for how to win with money. He believes with the right information, tools, and support, almost anything is possible. Working side by side with people is one of Steven’s greatest passions, and he is confident that personal relationships and trust are the foundation that a successful financial plan is built on. A lifelong resident of Southeastern Michigan, residing in Clinton Township, Steven shares his free time between his high school sweetheart, Mary, his large family, and his love and passion for music and the arts. You can also find him playing in a band, reading a great book, or tinkering with the latest technology gadget. Steven is a proud graduate of Wayne State University, earning his Bachelor’s degree in Music Business and a minor in Business Administration. While exposed to the powerful impact that arts and music have on people, he realized that he could help impact a similar change in personal finance, combining his business and financial knowledge with the human aspect of art and music, truly putting the personal into personal finance. Fun Fact: He has spent the last 14 years as an avid saxophonist, playing in everything from jazz bands and classical concert bands to rock bands and solo performances. Favorite Bands: Coldplay, Relient K, The Beatles Why He Loves His Job: “We help people become at peace with their money, freeing up time and energy to focus on what matters most to them in life.” Contact Steven: steven@kennedyfinancialgroup.org...
One Clear Sign You Have a Rotten 401(k)—And What to Do About It

One Clear Sign You Have a Rotten 401(k)—And What to Do About It

If your 401(k) is a big deal in your retirement savings strategy, you’re not alone. According to the Investment Company Institute (ICI), more than 52 million workers participate in a 401(k) plan. That adds up to $4.7 trillion in retirement assets, making 401(k)s one of the most common sources of retirement income for U.S. workers. But plans vary from employer to employer, so not every 401(k) plan is what it’s cracked up to be. The last thing you need is to throw your retirement investing budget away in a plan that’s going nowhere. Take a look at some reasons why you might consider stopping your contributions to your employer’s 401(k), then check out our suggestions for how to keep your retirement plan on track without one. No Match? No Deal All 401(k) plans come loaded with certain benefits. First, there’s the tax deferral that helps your retirement money grow faster. Then there are the automatic contributions that make regular retirement investing a breeze. On top of that, traditional 401(k) contributions lower your taxable income, allowing you to invest more without feeling the pinch in your paycheck. But the crowning glory of any 401(k) plan is the employer match. It can take many forms, but the most common is a 50% match on the first 6% of your salary, according to a recent Vanguard report. It’s an instant and guaranteed return on your money. Awesome, right? But without an employer match, the other benefits lose their punch. In fact, if your employer doesn’t offer a match, you’re better off to skip it (as a first step) and start by investing in a Roth IRA...
Draw a Line in the Snow: How to Set and Stick to Gift-Giving Boundaries

Draw a Line in the Snow: How to Set and Stick to Gift-Giving Boundaries

Blessing your children and spouse with gifts is one of the greatest joys of Christmas. But what about everyone else? Between friends, co-workers and extended family, where do you draw the line? You don’t want to leave anyone out, but you also don’t want to stretch your Christmas budget to the limit. Before you hit the packed mall and online stores this year, set some gift-buying boundaries. Figure out how much you have to spend and prioritize accordingly. And absolutely refuse to go into debt for anyone—no matter how cute they would look in that Rudolph sweater. Extended Family You thought you budgeted for every cousin, grandparent, niece and nephew. But then Aunt Mindy shows up with her new boyfriend and his two teenage sons in tow. So you swing by the store and grab some overpriced plastic junk, even though you can’t really afford it and they probably don’t want it. As your extended family changes and grows, it can get exhausting to buy gifts for 30-plus people—especially when surprise guests show up! So why not change the Christmas rules? Talk to your family about limiting individual gifts to smaller kids, and playing a fun game of Dirty Santa with the older kids and adults. (Just bring an extra gift for any unexpected visitors.) This keeps the focus on family time, rather than a carload of unwanted candles and picture frames. Casual Friends Of course you’re going to bless your closest friends with something special. But what about your Facebook friends, workout buddies or the next-door neighbors? Where do they fit in? You can’t be friends with everyone....
3 Ways to Defuse Heated Money Conversations This Holiday Season

3 Ways to Defuse Heated Money Conversations This Holiday Season

There you are, enjoying a plate of pita chips and salmon dip at your neighbor’s annual party, when someone mentions Dave Ramsey. Suddenly, you’re on trial. And you get an earful of questions and comments like: Oh, you’re a Dave fan? I agree with everything he says except . . . Be honest: How many credit cards do you really have? No one can afford to pay for Christmas with cash. It’s too expensive! After a few rounds of this, you start searching for the nearest exit. While it may not be fun to take the high road, it’s your best option.  Here are some easy tips for defusing a heated money conversation this holiday season: 1. Share Your Story. No one can dispute your own story. Instead of talking about their choices, turn the conversation into how much debt you’ve paid off and how much freedom you’ve experienced with a budget. If someone tells you that you can’t pay for Christmas gifts with cash, just say, “Actually, I just did. I’ve been saving all year, and it really wasn’t that bad.” That’s what we like to call a mic drop. 2. Don’t expect to change their mind. You could get through to this person, but chances are they just want to prove you wrong—and prove themselves right. If they’re trying to justify their car loans and second mortgages, don’t start preaching at them. If you do, the conversation will soon descend into who has the loudest voice and the best comeback. You can respectfully disagree without making a scene.   3. Ignore the Dave-bashing. People like to “catch”...