Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Scary LTC Facts

“In preparing for battle I have always found the plans are useless, but planning is indispensable”
-Dwight D. Eisenhower

Long-term care is a huge personal fear, perceived as a financial disaster waiting to happen. Yet many people feel that the obvious solution, buying long-term care insurance, is more painful than the looming disaster.

Consider these facts:
  • 70% of people over age 65 will require long-term care insurance in their lifetime. The national average cost for nursing home care is $7,543 per month ($90,520/year)
  • Last year the national average cost for full-time home healthcare is $15,330 per month ($183,960)
  • Women need care longer (on average 3.9 years) than men (on average 2.2 years) mostly because women usually live longer.
  • More than one in six Americans working full or part-time report assisting with the care of an elderly or disabled family member, relative, or friend. Caregivers working at least 15 hours per week said it significantly affected their work life.
  • In 2010, 40% of those who received long-term care services were between the ages of 18 and 64. Trends show that people are starting to prepare for long-term care expenses earlier in life. In 2010, the average age of a person with LTC protection was 61.
  • 7.6 million Americans age 55 and older have private long-term care insurance, accounting for 10.7% of adults in this age group.
The odds are about 75% of Baby Boomers will need some sort of long-term care yet only about 10% of the population has taken steps to cover this risk.  The good news is, there is a solution to the long-term care crisis in America.  If your clients haven’t allocated some of their assets to cover a long-term care event, they have essentially allocated ALL of their assets to cover a long-term care event! 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

H.R. 2029

The President signed into law H.R. 2029, the-Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2016 (The Act) on December 18, 2015. The Act includes several retirement account related provisions.
The following is an explanation of some of these provisions.

Extension of the Tax-Fee Qualified Charitable Distribution Provision
The qualified charitable distribution (QCD) provision has been extended for distributions made January 1, 2015 and after.

A distribution of up to $100,000 per calendar year is tax-free, if the amount meets the requirements for a QCD. These requirements are as follows:
  • The distribution must be  made on or after the date on which the  IRA owner reaches age 70-½,
  • The distribution must be made from a traditional IRA, a Roth IRA, or a SEP or SIMPLE IRA that will not receive SEP or SIMPLE employer contributions for the plan-year that ends with or within the taxable year that the QCD is made. This includes inherited IRAs,
  • The IRA Custodian/trustee must make the amount payable to a qualified charity. For the purpose of a QCD, a qualified charity is described in section 170(b)(1)(A), which are generally, public charities other than a supporting organization or a donor advised fund.
Note: The amount can be sent directly to the charity; or delivered in the form of a check to the IRA owner who can then deliver it to the charity, providing the custodian/trustee makes the check payable to the charity.

The IRA owner must be eligible to deduct the amount as a charitable contribution, if the amount had been donated to a charity outside of a QCD.

Since it was created as a temporary provision under the Pension Protection Act of 2006, the QCD provision has been extended for a year or two  on multiple occasions. In this case, The Act makes the extension permanent.
Reminder: QCDs can be used as RMDs
A QCD can be used to satisfy the account owner’s RMD for the year, if it is the first distribution made from the IRA during the calendar year, up to the RMD amount.

Allowing Rollovers to SIMPLE IRAs From Certain Other Types of Retirement Accounts
Rollovers can now be made from employer sponsored retirement plans and traditional IRAs, to SIMPLE IRAs that have met the 2-year requirement.


Since it was created by the Small Business Job Protection Act of 1996, the only amounts that could be rolled over or transferred to a SIMPLE IRA were amounts from other SIMPLE IRAs.

In addition, amounts could not be moved from a SIMPLE IRA to another retirement account that was not a SIMPLE IRA, unless the distributing SIMPLE IRA had been funded with a SIMPLE IRA contribution for at least 2-years.

The New Rollover Rules

Effective Friday, December 18, 2015, the day the Act was signed into law, SIMPLE IRAs that meet the 2-year requirement are eligible to accept rollovers of eligible amounts from employer sponsored retirement plans and traditional IRAs.

Employer sponsored retirement plans are defined contribution plans such as 401(k) and profit sharing plans, 403(b) plans, and governmental 457(b) plans.

Designated Roth accounts and Roth IRAs still cannot be rolled over to SIMPLE IRAs.

The 2-year restriction on rolling SIMPLE IRAs to other retirement accounts that are not SIMPLE IRAs is still in effect.

Technical Amendment for Rollovers of Certain Airline Payment Amounts
Under the Worker, Retiree, and Employer Recovery Act of 2008 (WRERA), and the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 ( the FAA- Act), a qualified airline employee may rollover up to 90% of all airline payments received to a traditional IRA, and –consistent with the rollover rules- exclude the amount from income. There is no limit on the amounts that can be rolled over to a Roth IRA; however, such amount would be taxable.

An airline payment amount was defined in the FAA- Act as “…any payment of money or other property payable by a commercial passenger airline, under the authority of a Federal bankruptcy court in a case filed after September 11, 2001, and before January 1, 2007, to a qualified airline employee in respect of certain claims of the employee against the airline”. The definition was amended in 2014 to include any payment of money or other property payable by a commercial passenger airline to a qualified airline employee in certain cases.

Under the FAA- Act , an airline payment is treated as a rollover to a traditional IRA, if the rollover is made within 180 days of receipt of the amount , or within 180 days of February 14, 2012, the date of enactment of the 2012 FAA Act- if later.

For Roth IRAs, WRERA provides that the 180 days period is within 180 days of receipt of such amount ,or, if later, within 180 days of December 23, 2008, the date of enactment of WRERA.

The Change Under The Act

The 2014 amendment did not contain a provision to allow previously made payments that came within the definition of airline payment amounts as a result of the amendments to be rolled over within 180 days after enactment.

The Act allows such amounts to be rolled over within 180 days of receipt or, if later, within the period beginning on December 18, 2014, and ending 180 days after December 18, 2015.

Expansion of the Age 50 Exception to the 10% Early Distribution Penalty
The definition of qualified public safety employee has been expanded to include more employees.


A distribution from a retirement account is subject to a 10% early distribution penalty, if the distribution occurs before the account owner reaches age 59½. There are some exceptions to this penalty, one of which is commonly referred to the age 55 exception.

Under this exception, the 10% early distribution penalty does not apply if the individual separates from service with the plan sponsor in the year he reaches age 55 or later, and the distribution occurs after separation from service.

This age-55 requirement is reduced to age 50 for qualified safety employees. A qualified public safety employee is defined as an employee of a State or political subdivision of a State if the employee provides police protection, firefighting services, or emergency medical services for any area within the jurisdiction of such State or political subdivision.

Earlier this year, the exception was expanded, effective for distributions made 01/01/2016 and after, to include certain Federal law enforcement officers, Federal customs and border protection officers and Federal firefighter air traffic controller. In addition, the provision was also expanded to include governmental defined contribution plans, such as Thrift Savings Plans and 403(b) plans.

The Change Under The Act

The Act further expands the definition of qualified public safety employee to include nuclear materials couriers, members of the United States Capitol Police, members of the Supreme Court police, and diplomatic security special agents of the United States Department of State.

Please call us with questions 1-866-225-1786 X 305  
This is a high level overview of the rules that apply to these provisions.

Please do not hesitate to call my office with any questions regarding the above, or any other retirement plans related matters. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Stock Blunders

When it comes to stocks, big blunders can be devastating. Big mistakes picking stocks can be nearly impossible to bounce back from. Why?

It's really a mathematical exercise. Here's an example. If you buy a stock for $100/ share and it falls to $60 a share that's a bruising 40% loss. Some investors assume a 40% gain would erase that loss. That's not true, unfortunately. A 40% gain would only get you back to $84 a share. To get back even after a 40% loss an investor would need a 67% gain.

Climbing back from stock losses is extremely difficult due to the harsh reality of math. That's why investors picking individual stocks need to be extra careful to not allow losses to get so big that they are nearly insurmountable.

The sheer difficulty of coming back from a big market loss isn't just theoretical. A study of actual returns of the Standard & Poor's 500 stocks bear out how investors who get hammered with a big loss have such a difficult time coming back. What does all this mean? For the average investor it means avoiding the loss in the first place is the key to success. A wise investor should be willing to give up some of the upside of the market in return for downside protection.

The world of fixed indexed annuities (FIAs) offers exactly that. The opportunity to have 100% downside protection in return for a smaller portion of the upside return is the main value proposition of an indexed annuity.

There are three miracles of indexed annuities:

1. No loss of principal
2. Ability to reset and measure gains from the low point of the index annually.
3. The Ability to capture and lock-in all gains annually.

The advantage of a fixed- indexed annuity is that you can't lose your principal, regardless of indexed performance unless during the early withdrawal period you withdraw your money by surrendering your contract.  With FIAs, your clients can have their cake and eat it too.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas

Now that Christmas week is finally upon us we can all say Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. This is the time of year when we feel that wonderful joyous spirit that washes over us and we wish goodwill to all.

The time of year when we set our petty differences aside and treat one another with good cheer. We sing carols, and even if we sing out of key no one minds. We put on a few extra pounds on and put a few extra dollars in the red bucket for the Salvation Army. We exchange gifts and hope that we got the right present for that person. We hold  enormous feast with our friends and families to celebrate the birthday of Jesus. The bottom line is, we treat others – even strangers – better than we would throughout the rest of the year.

And why is that?

Why is there so much joy in December that we can’t  hold onto the next 11 months? The greatest gift we could give ourselves would be to bottle up this month and splash some of it on throughout the year when the going gets tough and we become forgetful of how we felt throughout the holiday season.

Perhaps as the new year begins, we forget December and settle into January and the routine grind of our daily life's, cycling through each month and the events that takes place, like in February when we all think about romance because of Valentine's Day. We know March is set aside for green beer on St. Patrick's Day as we all become Irish for a day. Easter in April, Mother's Day in May, Father's Day in June and so on until we reach December once again.

The difference between December and the other 11 months lies in a single, special day. It's that one day that changes the whole month and fills us with good cheer that grows day-to-day starting with the first of the month until we reach Christmas Day.

Just a week after Christmas comes New Year's Day and all those annual resolutions. We promise ourselves to do some things that will change us or that we're going to do something we haven't yet done, from improving our diet  to quitting smoking. But somehow most of us will see those resolutions slip away before May, if they even last that long.

However, some of us will hold true to them. At Table Bay we are committed to making 2016 the best year ever for our partners, advisors, clients, employees, and CPAs.

From all of us here at Table Bay Financial, America’s Tax Solutions, America’s IRA Experts, and Bay Financial Holdings LTD., be joyful this month my friends, and let yourself have a Merry Little Christmas. We'll see you next year!

Avoiding a Common Roth Conversion RMD Error

A particular error is common in the Roth conversion arena and you need to be aware of it so you can avoid it. The following information applies to those clients who do not have other IRAs from which an RMD may be satisfied.

If an IRA owner is required to take an RMD, the RMD must be taken before the funds may be
converted to a Roth. Since this is a common mistake, it is especially important to highlight this RMD error issue in light off the large number of IRA owners out there who believe their taxes are going up and want to convert to a Roth.

IRA owners are not permitted to rollover an RMD into another retirement plan, thus, RMD amounts may not be converted to a Roth. The result of failing to satisfy an RMD before converting the IRA to a Roth is that the IRS will not treat or tax the event as a conversion. The IRS will treat the minimum amount that was wrongly converted as a taxable distribution and a tax year regular contribution to the Roth.

Correcting this type of violation is not impossible but it can be very complicated and costly. A possible solution, albeit a highly simplified version, is that the client may remove the amount as an excess contribution along with any net income attributable. It is imperative for a client to immediately consult their personal tax professional to try and come up with a solution based on their particular circumstance.

Friday, December 18, 2015

IRA Summit - December 2015 San Diego

Our IRA Summit is underway here at HQ in sunny San Diego! Our advisors and CPAs are learning a great deal of valuable information from Barry and Joe.

Embracing Annuities

Here at Table Bay Financial, we love annuities. I continue to be amazed at the reticence of some consumers and their advisors to use annuities to help solve the intractable challenges of financial security in retirement. Whether seeking a secure way to accumulate additional savings for retirement or a way to guarantee a stream of lifetime income, it seems that non-annuity alternatives continue to be explored and promoted as the only viable alternatives. However, what often is missing in the equation is the simplicity with which annuities can help consumers reach their financial goals. As one ages, it seems that simplicity is an increasingly important virtue.

As clients age and experience cognitive decline, financial solutions that are self-completing and require little if any oversight would seem to be of value. While complex withdrawal strategies have their place in providing more liquid non-annuity alternatives that some retirees and their financial professionals prefer, the fact remains that there can be no guarantee that the professional oversight required to execute a complex strategy will remain consistent and present throughout the retiree’s life.

Given these considerations, it would seem that a core holding of many retirees needing sustainable retirement solutions should include annuities, either classic income annuities or deferred annuities with lifetime withdrawal features. Rather than minimize the value of the financial professional in the process, these self-completing solutions can be a core holding and ensure that the financial professional’s legacy of prudent planning is executed throughout the client’s lifetime, regardless of the presence of the financial professional.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Rome Less Traveled

                I’ve gone through the list of some of the most popular attractions, cafes, pastry shops, gelato shops, but now it’s time to take a look at the Rome less traveled.  You’ve seen the Pantheon and stopped for lunch at Caffè Sant'Eustachio; now you want to see the beauty and taste the food that the tourists may not know about.

The Botanical Gardens in Trastevere

The quiet and shady Orto Botanico in Trastevere is said to be one of Europe's finest botanical gardens. The greenery stretches over 30 acres and is situated on the lower slopes of the Gianicolo Hill. Many locals love this quietly kept secret of over 3,000 species of plants from all around the world. Take a break from the hustle of the city and escape into a nature lover’s paradise.

Da Enzo

After working up an appetite walking around the gardens, swing by Da Enzo for a nice lunch. Da Enzo is touted as one of Rome’s best kept restaurant secrets and is cherished by all the locals.  It is a genuine Roman trattoria which focuses on the quality of their ingredients.  The olive oil comes from an area only a few miles away, and all of their produce is gathered from nearby farms.  If you are lucky enough to have a meal here, try one (or more) of their most well-known dishes: carciofi judia, cacio e pepe, stuffed zucchini blossoms, and baccalà

Whatever you choose to do with your time in Rome, remember to take a breath, look around, and immerse yourself in their history and culture.

Your Perspective Determines Your Prospects

It is our job as savvy advisors to start rebuilding people’s faith in their ability to retire successfully and stop the despair about the problems that exist in the economy today. A look back at history teaches that when one door closes, another one always opens. Just think of what would have happened if our grandparents had given up on the country during the Depression, had stopped dreaming the American dream and working toward a better future for their children. 

Yes, the pendulum always swings too far but giving up-on government or on the economic possibilities is not the answer. As long as we have our capitalist spirit alive and motivating us as part of our inherent nature, then we can work to create our own success and move our clients back to a feeling of control over their futures.

For the investor looking for growth but protection of principal the index annuity is an excellent alternative to CDs and the risk inherent in the stock market. People believe that they have two places to invest – the stock market and the bank. Now is the time to educate your clients about the opportunity for great gains; no losses; a retirement income you can’t outlive; and protection against increased cost of living expenses due to health issues.

Discuss with your clients that your job is to Preserve, Protect, and Defend their retirement Nest Egg. Preserve their retirement income for life, Protect against the ravages of the stock market, and Defend it against the highly confiscatory tax system.

Monday, December 14, 2015

How Much of Your Nest Egg Would You Like Guaranteed?

You may have heard me ask this question, “How much of your nest egg would you like guaranteed?” The answer almost always is “100%”.

Annuities offer very strong guarantees. The reason why some clients don’t have at least some of their nest egg in annuities is because they think that annuities have high costs, low liquidity, low earnings potential, etc….

We need to help them become more educated on the costs, liquidity, earnings potential, etc… of our annuity products.

Let’s take a look at the earnings potential, since I think this may be one of the main reasons why clients may not be looking to annuities.

I’ve been talking about Opportunity Cost with agents and how the crediting potential of annuities compares to other options. While it is true that products like Fixed Indexed Annuities may be capped on the maximum your client may receive in crediting, you need to remember that annuities should not be compared to equities.

These products are a great safe money alternative. What do you normally consider as a safe money vehicle? When you compare the crediting potential of the annuity to those other safe money vehicles, you can see there really is either no opportunity costs or very little opportunity cost.

Do you think that with no opportunity cost or very little opportunity cost and stronger guarantees, that clients may prefer an annuity over other alternatives?

I do.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

It's Not Ice Cream, It's Gelato

You’ve had the pasta, the wine, and the pizza, but now you need something sweet. The solution? Gelato. Italy may be known for their exquisite entrees, but the gelato is not to be missed.

Known for their interesting flavors and experimentation, Fatamorgana has locations tucked away in little spots throughout Rome. Each option is made from all natural ingredients, with no chemical additives and artificial flavors. After touring the Coliseum or Vatican City, stop in to enjoy a refreshing sweet treat in flavors like almond, pistachio, Madagascar chocolate, or Kentucky.

Riva Reno

If you’re looking for the full-fat gelato experience in Rome, look no further than Riva Reno. This gelateria even lists on its website why it’s so good; whole milk from the north of Italy and steel bin storage to keep the freshness in and air out. Chocolate lovers will adore the dark and extra dark chocolate flavors. They even have “New York-New York” (a butter-pecan delight) as a flavor for anyone who is missing the stars and stripes.

Gelateria del Teatro
Want to see first-hand what goes into making this delectable dessert? Head on over to Gelateria del Teatro. Walking up you will usually see someone in the window chopping ingredients along with a display of the fresh ingredients they use on a daily basis. Many tourists and Romans alike have touted this location as one of the best for nut based flavors such as pistachio, hazelnut, and almond. If you’re feeling crazy, take a chance and try one of their experimental flavors.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

One For Rome, Two For Love

The Trevi Fountain, one of the most iconic fixtures of Rome, was designed by Italian architect Nicola Salvi and completed by the sculptor Pietro Bracci in 1762. The fountain itself dates back to ancient Roman times when it was built at the end point of the Aqua Virgo aqueduct at the junction of three streets (tre vie) giving it its name.

Legend holds that throwing a coin into the fountain ensures a return trip to Rome; throwing two in is supposed to bring you love. What many don’t know, however, is that the estimated 3,000 euros are collected every night and donated to the Italians charity Caritas. The charity then uses the coins on a supermarket program to help the needy get groceries.  

The central figure of the façade is a depiction of Oceanus, god of the waters, who stands atop a shelled-shaped chariot.  On either lower side of the mythological god are two seahorses controlled by tritons coming out of the water, representing the waves of the sea. The left side symbolizes rough waters, seen in the chaotic depiction, while the right signifies calmness. The figures directly to the left and right are allegorical, depicting abundance and good health respectively.

Should you make your way over to the Trevi district in Rome, be sure to bring a coin or two and take part in the legend that is the Trevi Fountain.

Monday, December 7, 2015

8 Common Tax Mistakes To Avoid

The following 8 mistakes may seem silly to some, but they are the most common mistakes made by tax-filers.

1. Wrong Or Missing Social Security Numbers: Be sure you enter all SSNs on your tax return exactly as they are on the Social Security Cards.

2. Wrong Names: Be sure you spell the names of everyone on your tax return exactly as they are on their Social Security cards.

3. Filing Status Error: Some people use the wrong filing status, such as Head of Household instead of Single. The Interactive Tax Assistant on can help you choose the right one. Tax software helps e-filers choose.

4. Math Mistakes: Double-check your math. For example, be careful when you add, subtract, or figure items on a form or worksheet. Tax preparation software does all of the math for e-filers.

5. Errors In Figuring Credits Or Deductions: Many filers make mistakes figuring their Earned Income Tax Credit, Child and Dependent Care Credit, and the standard deduction. If you're not e-filing, follow the instructions carefully when figuring credits and deductions. For example, if you're age 65 or older or blind, be sure you claim the correct, higher standard deduction.

6. Wrong Bank Account Numbers: You should choose to get your refund by direct deposit. But it's important that you use the right bank account numbers on your return. The fastest and safest way to get a tax refund is to combine e-file with direct deposit.

7. Forms Not Signed Or Dated: An unsigned tax return is like an unsigned check - it's not valid. Remember that both spouses must sign a joint return.

8. Electronic Filing Pin Errors: When you e-file, you sign your return electronically with a Personal Identification Number. If you know last year's e-file PIN, you can use that. If not, you'll need to enter the Adjusted Gross Income from your originally-filed 2012 federal tax return. Don't use the AGI amount from an amended 2012 return or a 2012 return that the IRA corrected.

What CPAs Want

Many advisors find it hard to form an effective alliance with a local CPA firm. Here’s some new information that should help.

How many CPA firms do you know? More important, how many are you working with to develop your practice? If the answer is “none” it’s time to make alliances with CPAs a key part of your business building efforts.

Here’s why: Almost 82% of wealth manager’s report that referrals from other professionals, such as CPAs, are their #1 source of new clients. What’s more, referrals from accountants are a key driver of these wealth managers ‘success. The same percentage (almost 82%) told us their five best new clients were the result of referrals from CPAs. Nothing else compared!

One reason is that advisors don’t know what CPAs really need and want. The conventional wisdom is that CPAs often distrust financial advisors and don’t want to work with them. However, we believe that over the past decade that Table Bay Financial has developed a unique program to form strong alliances with accountants in your communities. Here are some of our key findings over the past decade.

First, most CPA firms desire to take a collaborative approach to offering wealth preservation services to their clients. This means that they are extremely interested in partnering with the “right” financial advisor. At the end of the day CPAs do not want to sell products and services to their clients, rather they want to take a team approach in offering their clients these critical services. Most importantly CPA firms are interested in helping your clients eliminate heavy, immediate, and unnecessary taxation that can destroy their retirement programs. Recently CPAs have also become aware of and concerned about the devastating effects that a long-term care illness on the client or spouse can have on the ultimate success of the retirement program.

Working collaboratively with an advisor who is highly skilled and trained in distribution planning to provide their clients with beneficiary reviews, custodial reviews, guaranteed income strategies, and protection from long-term care events are currently driving significant new business opportunities for the CPA. When examining non-tax -related revenues for CPA firms we find that the average firm working in a fully collaborative environment utilizing a systematic approach are generating on average $660,000 of new annual revenues.

Firm’s willingness to turn to outsiders is a response to market factors such as increasing complexity of financial products, Social Security issues, and greater client challenges due to market volatility. The top five reasons that CPA’s site for seeking these alliances are as follows:

  1. The alliance partner provided them a turn-key marketing and practice management program.
  2. The alliance partner was willing to commit resources to help them incorporate wealth preservation strategies into their existing tax practice.
  3. The alliance partner was able to help them identify critical issues their clients face and how to effectively communicate those issues to the client along with a resolution.
  4. The alliance partner provided systematic and ongoing high-level training regarding tax issues related to distribution planning.
  5. The alliance partner was a recognized “expert” in life insurance and IRA distribution planning with respect to effective tax planning for clients and specifically clients nearing retirement.

It is also important to know that the CPA focuses on wanting to partner with top advisers who bring a significant set of resources along with them. Therefore, it is imperative for the advisor to be seen as part of a larger scale operation than simply their own local advisory firm. The CPA wants to be assured that the advisory bringing more to the table than simply an ability to sell product to their clients. Therefore, for advisors who are serious about building strong alliances with CPAs they must partner with a firm that is focused on and devoted to assisting CPAs build their practices. This is why we believe so many CPA referral programs fail because CPA determines quickly that the advisor and the firm to represent only has interest in accessing their database to sell more product. While the CPA is and should be interested in revenue generation opportunities their first concern will be practice building considerations and client retention issues that the advisor can help them with.

If you are interested in learning more about Table Bay’s CPA Advantage Edge Program™ please give Samantha Mayer a call at 866-225-1786.

Summer Educational Conference 2016

We are thrilled to announce that our 2016 Summer Educational Conference will be held in La Jolla, CA at the beautiful Torrey Pines! Not only will you gain an immense amount of training, but you can also experience all that La Jolla and Torrey Pines have to offer.

Take a stroll around Girard Avenue and Prospect Street in La Jolla to pick up some gorgeous jewelry, antiques, clothing, and more. After you've worked up an appetite stop in to Donovan's Steak House, The Marine Room, or Eddie V's for a delicious lunch.

If shopping isn't quite your thing, book a tee time at the historic Torrey Pines golf course, home of the 2008 U.S. Open. Relax on the course with a drink in your hand and the breathtaking views of the ocean.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Piazza di Spagna

We’re already counting down the days here at Table Bay Financial until we are in Rome next summer for the Elite Advisors Meeting.  One of the sites at the top of our lists is Piazza di Spagna.

Named after the Palazzo di Spagna, it is one of the most famous squares in all of Rome and within it you will find yourself surrounded by wonderful works of art and history. In the center of the square is the famous Fontana della Barcaccia dating back to the beginning of the baroque period. This well-known piece was created by Pietro Bernini and his son Gian Lorenzo Bernini.  In the right corner of the Spanish Steps you will see the house of famed English poet John Keats. His house is now a museum where you can take in all that your literary heart desires. In front of the two facades within the square is the Column of the Immaculate Conception, erected in 1856.  Within the Piazza di Spagna are the Spanish Steps which was built to link the Bourbon Spanish Embassy and the Trinità dei Monti church.

Other than the aforementioned sites, you can also see Giorgio De Chirico house, Fountain of the Babuino, Bagington’s tea room, and more. Whatever monuments or sites peak your interest, you definitely don’t want to miss this location.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Creating A Plan For Living

Clients need help planning and outlining their goals for a comfortable and fulfilling retirement. The Plan for Living Presentation was developed to outline some major risks that may jeopardize retirement income.

Potential action steps are identified with the help of targeted questions and practical worksheets for the clients to complete. The Plan For Living Workbook helps lay the foundation for better planning discussions, data analysis, asset gathering and financial product sales including LONG TERM CARE insurance, LIFE INSURANCE and ANNUITIES.

The main retirement risks that are addressed:
  • Running out of money
  • Unexpected health-related costs
  • Leaving loved ones unprepared
  • Cost of long term care
  • Retirement withdrawal strategy
  • Social Security Benefits

Want more information on how to use this system to conduct compelling interviews? Call us at 1-866-225-1786 to learn more.

Monday, November 16, 2015

How Much Of Your Nest Egg Would You Like Guaranteed?

You may have heard me ask this question, “How much of your nest egg would you like guaranteed?” The answer almost always is “100%”.

Annuities offer very strong guarantees. The reason why some clients don’t have at least some of their nest egg in annuities is because they think that annuities have high costs, low liquidity, low earnings potential, etc….

We need to help them become more educated on the costs, liquidity, earnings potential, etc… of our annuity products.

Let’s take a look at the earnings potential, since I think this may be one of the main reasons why clients may not be looking to annuities.

I’ve been talking about Opportunity Cost with agents and how the crediting potential of annuities compares to other options. While it is true that products like Fixed Indexed Annuities may be capped on the maximum your client may receive in crediting, you need to remember that annuities should not be compared to equities.
These products are a great safe money alternative. What do you normally consider as a safe money vehicle? When you compare the crediting potential of the annuity to those other safe money vehicles, you can see there really is either no opportunity costs or very little opportunity cost.

Do you think that with no opportunity cost or very little opportunity cost and stronger guarantees, that clients may prefer an annuity over other alternatives?

I do.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Indulge As The Romans Do

Rome may be known for its history and architecture, but the cafes and pastry shops are two things you definitely won't want to miss out on. Hone in on two of your most powerful senses by experiencing a few of the following culinary wonders.

Caffè Sant'Eustachio – Located just a few hundred yards from the Pantheon, this coffee shop tops the list of nearly every local coffee drinker’s favorite destination. It was founded in the late 1930s and still holds many of its original furnishings; even the stainless steel bar. Take note, however, if you prefer your cappuccino or cafe espresso unsweetened - let them know; both are served zuccherato (with sugar).

Cristalli Di Zucchero – Its name translates literally to sugar crystals; what could be bad about that? Cristalli Di Zucchero specializes in pretty cakes and miniatures pastries and is said to be the best pastry shop in all of Rome. Stop in for a quick pick-me-up to keep you going during a day of sightseeing.

Said – Calling all chocolate lovers! If you find yourself around Via Tiburtina, do yourself a favor and detour into the Said chocolate factory. Founded in 1923, this chocolate paradise specializes in handmade chocolates and other concoctions. The caprese and torta di pere e cioccolato are widely raved about.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Winning The Sales War

Table Bay Financial has the great pleasure of working with and consulting with successful advisors throughout the country. The truth is, we all want the same thing…we want a greater level of success.

Everyone’s definition of success may be slightly different… some advisors with whom we work want a higher level of personal income, some are focused on building a more efficient business, and some just want more free time to enjoy the successes they've worked hard to achieve.

There are only three ways to increase your level of success. When I share these three variables with advisors with whom we consult, there’s usually an instant moment of clarity. The irony is that these three success variables aren't earth shattering, but having a clear understanding of the impact they can have on the bottom line is essential.

Success variable #1 – WALLET SHARE - if you get more wallets share from the clients you currently have and from prospective clients, you’ll obviously drive more premium and increase your income. This is accomplished by adding products and services into your overall mix.

Success variable #2 – INCREASE OPPORTUNITIES - in baseball terms, this is simple… The more at-bats that you get, the more hits you will get. In business terms, this is marketing. Get in front of more people. Frankly, this is one of the biggest things we work with advisors on – helping them create effective marketing campaigns to increase their opportunities. As much as we hate the cliché that “it’s a numbers game,” guess what… It’s a numbers game!

Success variable #3 – INCREASE CLOSING PERCENTAGE – if we want to stick with the baseball analogy, this is about getting in the batting cages working on your approach at the plate in order to increase your batting average. In business terms, this means becoming a more effective rainmaker – closing more opportunities.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

It Is, As It Were, The Visible Image Of The Universe

The Pantheon, meaning “every god” in Greek, is one of the greatest works of architecture in Rome, and frankly, in the entire world.  Built around 126 AD, the Pantheon is the best-preserved ancient building in the city. This is due in large part to the fact that it was turned into a church in 609 AD after being presented to Pope Boniface IV, so its repairs and upkeep has been immensely thorough.

The building’s spiritual history is quite interesting. Historians know it was a pagan temple before being turned into a church; however, no one truly knows which god was worshiped here. This confusion is partially blamed on the building’s name. Because it pulls from the Greek word meaning “every god”, there is no way to pinpoint which god or gods were worshiped to. The Pantheon was also used as a tomb, and was made the final resting place for the famous Renaissance painter Raphael and his fiancée, Maria, as well as the Italian kings Vittorio Emanuele II and Umberto I.

Walking in, many visiting tourists feel a sense of calmness, frequently related to the building’s perfect proportions; the dome’s height from the floor is equal to its diameter. Additionally, its oculus, a 9-meter hole in the center of the dome, lets in daylight making it easy to see the immeasurably spiritual significance this building had in its ancient years.

The Pantheon’s architecture has inspired a multitude of Renaissance and contemporary architects. Brunelleschi and Michelangelo both drew from the Pantheon to design the domes of the Duomo of Florence and St. Peter’s Basilica. Furthermore, the Jefferson Memorial, Low Memorial Library, National Gallery of Art, US Capitol, and Pantheon in Paris were all inspired by the Pantheon. 

Thursday, October 29, 2015

The Pope Is Calling Your Name

If this will be your first trip to Rome, visiting Vatican City is more than likely a must see prerequisite. Home to approximately 920 full-time residents and 3,000 workers, the Vatican City is the smallest recognized country in the world. 

St. Peter’s Basilica

According to many, St. Peter’s Basilica is said to be the largest church in the world.  Designed by Donato Bramante, Michelangelo, Carlo Maderno, and Gian Lorenzo Bernini, this work of art is the most renowned work of Renaissance architecture as its dome dominates the Roman skyline. Construction of the current basilica was finished in November 1626, replacing the Old St. Peter’s Basilica of 4th century AD. Pertinent to its name, it is the burial site of its titular, St. Peter, who was the head of the twelve Apostles of Jesus. Upon arrival to the historic church, you will encounter a multitude of architectural masterpieces; Maderno’s Façade, the Narthex and portals, and Maderno’s nave.

The museums situated within the Vatican City display works of art from the vast collection built by Popes throughout the centuries. Included are some of the most renowned classical sculptures and masterpieces of Renaissance art in the world. The museums you can explore are:

       Pinacoteca Vaticana – home to some of the most famous paintings in the world
       Collection of Modern Religious Art - houses paintings and sculptures from historic artists
       Museo Pio-Clementio - home to works of Greek and Roman sculptures
       Museo Gregoriano Etrusco - home to pieces found during archaeological excavations
       Museo Gregoriano Egiziano - where you can find a grand collection of Ancient Egyptian Material
       Vatican Historical Museum - where visitors can see the collection of portraits of the Popes, memorable items of the Papal Military, and past Popemobiles

The Vatican City, home to the Catholic Church, is one of the most breathtaking sites in the world, so do yourself a favor and take in its beauty. 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

When The Colosseum Falls, Rome Will Fall; But When Rome Falls, The World Will End

When the possibility of traveling to Rome arises, many sights and attractions come to mind - the first of which
for many is the historic Colosseum. This amphitheater is most famously known for hosting gladiator games, where combatants would entertain audiences in violent confrontations with other gladiators, wild animals, and condemned criminals. Another prominent event was the animal hunt, or venatio. This genre of entertainment was often elaborately staged and involved the hunting and killing of wild animals imported from the Middle East and Africa. Though the colosseum has a bloody history, less gruesome events occurred such as simulated sea battles, recreations of natural scenes, and reenacted mythological legends.

Completed in 80 A.D., Rome’s most renowned classical ruin, also known as the Flavian Amphitheatre, is considered one of the greatest works of architecture and engineering of all time.  Constructed from brick and concrete, the exteriors were faced in travertine held together by 300 tons of iron clamps, and the interiors in marble. The 'cavea' (spectator) bleachers were set on three different levels: the 'podium' with the imperial box, reserved for the nobles; the 'ordine del mezzo', for Roman citizens and people of a certain standing; and the 'summa,' for the rest of the populous.

Though restorative projects have taken place over the centuries since its construction, the site’s first full cleaning and repair is underway. The public-private partnership between Diego Della Valle and local officials is set to clean and restore the Colosseum’s arcaded façade as well as replace the metal enclosures that block the ground-level arches. Furthermore, the €25 million restoration project aims to create a services center and restore the galleries and underground spaces inside the Colosseum.

Whether you have an itch for the deep-rooted mythological history, an eye for architectural design, or a simple curiosity, this historic ruin is one attraction you do not want to miss.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Annual Elite Advisors Meeting: Rome, Italy 2016

We believe our advisors deserve the best, and we at Table Bay Financial want to whisk our top advisors to the striking city of Rome.

At this annual meeting for our top qualifying advisors, you and a guest can experience the history, excitement, and the beauty of Rome, Italy. Attendees will have the chance to visit some of the world’s most historic landmarks,  embark on a culinary journey available only in this enchanting city, and stay in first class accommodations all while receiving exclusive training from America’s Premier FMO.

As one of the most historic sites in the world, Rome is a city rich with culture, blessed with extraordinary landmarks such as the Colosseum and Pantheon, and a world-class culinary experience. This once in a lifetime opportunity gives you and a guest the opportunity to experience the Eternal City, and immerse yourself in Rome’s prosperous culture.

The Table Bay Elite Advisors Meeting awards the top qualifying advisors, and those advisors will be invited to join Table Bay in the Summer of 2016. We look forward to celebrating the rewards of your 2015 success in the Eternal City of Rome!

Friday, September 25, 2015

The Table Bay Story

  Table Bay Financial Network, Inc. began its mission in 2005 and became one of America’s Premier Field Marketing Organizations.  Headquartered in San Diego, California, Table Bay helps financial advisors prosper by providing excellent support, sales tools, exceptional marketing strategies, and world-class sales training.  

The “Good Life” in America means “Reaching For Your Dreams.”  It means building a family and giving your children the things you never had.  It’s about being prepared for all of life’s challenges, from retirement planning to building a legacy for our grandchildren.  Table Bay Financial works with financial advisors across America to provide solutions so that their clients are prepared to meet tomorrow’s challenges. 

We believe that everyone deserves to feel confident and secure in their tomorrow.  That’s why we offer smart financial tools and products to help build better tomorrows today.  At Table Bay we see the advisor’s business as our business.  We have concentrated on giving advisors the information and sales assistance they need so they can help Americans live better tomorrows.  We are Table Bay and we can help dreams come true.

“We’re in Business to Make Better Tomorrows For Your Clients.”

For the past several years, Table Bay has been fortunate to work with many Crown Capital Securities advisors.  We are very proud of their successes and value each business relationship as well as the friendships that have formed.  For more information or to find out how Table Bay can help you, don’t hesitate to contact us at (866) 225-1786, Ext. 302.   

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Growing Your CPA Practice

More and more accounting and tax professionals are discovering that they can generate more value for their practices by moving up the value chain – and one of the most natural value-added service they can offer is financial services. This webinar will show explore the diminishing returns associated with the basic “time” offering of providing tax services vs the real “value” you can deliver, and profit from investment services. We will share insights from practitioners who’ve made the move on this blog – and profited from it!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

How does the Rule of 100 effect your clients?

The article, “Rethinking the Shift-to-Bonds Strategy” from Bloomberg Business points out that “Low Rates and Longevity alter rules for retirement”. If you have relied on using the Rule of 100, the rule that take the clients age and uses it to determine the amount that should be in Bonds or fixed income assets, then based on the current low interest rate environment you may need to reconsider the amount of income you may have in retirement or you may need to reduce your bond or fixed income allocation percentage.

The article illustrate a New Jersey couple, ages 51 and 53 looking for $80,000 of income from their $1,000,000 nest egg. If I illustrate the SecureLiving Growth+ with Income Choice rider, using only $250,000 of premium, you can create $21,938 of income based on the past performance of the S & P 500, when starting income in year 13. This income is a joint payout that will be paid as long as either the husband or wife are still alive. This represents a 6.59% payout on a 64 year old male and a 66 year old female.

The article points out that each client’s situation can be unique, however we know that many clients may prefer to have the benefits that Fixed Indexed Annuities(FIA) offer, including:
1) protection from market declines and interest rate spikes for 100% of money allocated to the FIA
2) potential to create more income (on a guaranteed basis) than a do it yourself strategy, and
3) a personal pension plan where you don't have to stay up at night wondering where the income will come from once you retire.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Why Cold Marketing Doesn’t Make Sense

Attracting the wrong kind of client is like dumping trash into your sales pipeline. So why do so many advisors think that getting a huge list of cold leads rather than looking in their own backyard is the right move? If you cram tons of cold leads into your pipeline, soon it gets so clogged that you don’t have any room for the right clients.

The traditional sales pipeline has
schooled many of us to think that we
should throw as many leads as possible
into our pipeline, including so-called leads
from mailers and advertising sent to the
masses. The problem is the advisor’s
message isn’t reaching targeted groups
of prospects - the message is broadcast
to ice cold leads. If that’s your strategy,
you may as well save a few bucks and
open your local phone book and start
mailing. While you may get a few sales
after spending thousands of dollars
sending thousands of postcards out
based on a list you got out of the White
Pages or a list you bought from the
same company everyone else uses,
cold marketing strategies are highly
inefficient and never pan out the way
that you hope.

All cold leads really do is create a ton of
busy work and waste your valuable time.
To successfully market to a targeted
group of qualified people, you only
need to work smarter, not harder. The
trick is knowing how to generate more customers who are ready to buy with heartier leads. Getting the right people into your sales pipeline is what drives sales, not increasing the number of wrong people.

Your “ideal” clients will not only understand the need for your services but they naturally pass on the information to people they know. Never underestimate word of mouth and the power a client has to bring others just like them to your door. After all, people tend to associate with others who possess similar qualities, have similar financial
situations, have similar concerns and have similar planning issues. The more you associate with your “ideal” clients, the better the chance you have at converting their similarly situated friends, relatives or acquaintances into your new clients.

Advisors need to create an inbound marketing approach to building their practice. It takes some skill and specialized planning, but it’s much more sustainable and you will yield better results. By focusing on marketing channels that work, you can systemize your marketing process, increase the number of prospects you touch and dramatically increase your selling appointments.