Financial Basics

Getting Organized

Take Control

Build Your Credit

Banking Basics

Taking the Next Steps

Determine Financial Goals

Creating a Budget

Building Your Career

Borrowing Basics

Investing for Your Future

Investing 101

Saving Strategies

Choose the Right Investment

Investing Online


Increase Your Earning Power

Tuning Your Career

Negotiating for Success

Changing Careers

Going Back to School

Starting Your Own Business

Smart Borrowing

Take Control of Your Debt

Paying for Major Purchases

Getting a Loan

Finance an Education

Managing Your Finances

What's Your Net Worth

Managing Daily Finances

Tax-Planning Strategies


Plan for Financial Success

Creating a Financial Plan

Achieving Short-Term Goals

Plan for Long-Term Goals

Retirement Planning Basics

Investing Wisely

Investing Considerations

What's Right for You?

Investing Techniques

Preserving Your Wealth

Reallocating Your Assets

Insurance Options

Wills and Trusts

Plan for Heirs

Gifting to Family & Charity

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Plan for Long-Term Goals

In 1999, the average annual cost for a four-year education at a private college or university in 1999 is $104,488; $48,495 for a public college. By 2017, those costs are estimated to increase to $298,243 and $138,420.

Paying for college tuition is a big concern for many Americans. It won't be long before it will cost $100,000 for a 4 year public college. We already know private schools have already reached this number. According to a study by Louis Harris and Associates, eighty percent of parents polled stated that they would give up their vacations to save for college. Seventy nine percent said they would work overtime or even work a second job to help pay tuition costs.

Paying for your child's college education is a long-term goal many people share. Long-term goals are generally defined as those that can be achieved over your lifetime. They are best facilitated by:

  • Adopting a practical lifestyle that stays within your means
  • Investing the same amount of money each month
  • Investment education to instill the confidence to weather periods of market decline
  • The discipline to continue investing regularly even when share prices drop

Long term goals
Most people have fewer long-term goals but they are lofty in size and require disciplined commitment. For example:

  • Paying for children's college education
  • Funding a long and active retirement

Investing strategies

  • Dollar cost average. Invest the same amount of money each month, buying more shares when prices are low and fewer shares when prices are up; results in a lower cost per share over time.
  • Diversify. Spread your money across many different securities, increasing your chances that one or more of the securities will perform well at any given time-and minimizing your risk.
  • Asset Allocation. Approximately 91% of your investment portfolio's performance is determined by how your assets are allocated, so it's important to allocate your money across different asset classes, such as stocks, bonds, and cash-as opposed to simply diversifying holdings within one particular asset class.

Investment selection
With long-term goals, you can be more aggressive in where you invest your money, since there will be time to recoup any losses and take advantage of bargain buying during down markets. The following are your basic choices:

  • Stocks. Represent ownership in a company, and generally offer the best growth opportunities over the long term
  • Bonds. Represent your loan to a government or corporation, and generally offer steady, fixed income
  • Cash. Represented by short-term instruments, providing more downside protection for your investment but less opportunity for growth

As a general rule, riskier investments offer higher returns. However, by investing in all three categories, you combine riskier investments (stocks), with moderate-risk investments (bonds), and low-risk investments (cash). This strategy maximizes your return potential while minimizing your overall investment risk.



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