By Jon Marzano, Managing Principal
The end of the year will be here soon and we will finally be into the “New Year” that I have said so many times I couldn’t wait to get to after the difficultly we all faced in 2020. However, that “New Year” is still a month or so away and we have the wonderful holiday of Christmas to celebrate first. I felt this would be a great time to share a list of gifts that you can still give, last minute or not. These gifts are the type of gifts that will keep on giving. To make it easier, I separated the list into two categories: 1) gifts for the family 2) gifts for our community.
For the family, especially the little ones, a gift of a future education can be empowering. If we are thinking about college, a 529 college savings plan or an educational IRA are great ways to start building up some dollars for the future. If you are a parent of an adult child and you want them to start saving for the future, give them shares in a publicly traded stock to get them interested. Here is a hint – if you are going to give them stock, try and give one that they are interested in. For example, I ate McChicken sandwiches pretty much every day in high school. A gift of McDonald’s stock would have been great for me. Gifts of stock can be done easily and if it’s allowed to grow untouched for years, could potentially become a prenominal amount of money. That money could be used for a home down payment, a new vehicle, or any number of things. If you have children who still have some student debt, make a payment on that balance. Any additional principal you pay will lessen the overall interest expense and save them money over time. Money saved is money earned, period. If there is no student debt to pay on, there may be a home mortgage that you could help make a payment on. Think about this: one extra payment on a home mortgage every year can shorten the length of a 30-year mortgage by over 5 years. That’s powerful, and that sounds like a good gift.
Let’s shift to the community for a minute. If you want to better your community, and brighten up someone else’s day, here are some great ways you can do it. Link up with your local Community Foundation. Find out what needs they have and how they make a difference. A gift of service may only cost you a little time and very little money. Remember your local food bank – I can assure you that this has been an extremely busy year for them. I would encourage you to make a financial gift to the food banks, as the way these organizations purchase food on the scale that many of them have, means that money goes further than bringing in food items. They can buy much more for the same dollar than we ever could on our own. Take a basket of baked goodies to your local fire station or sheriff’s office. These men and women protect us every single day. It’s the least we can do. There are so many people that we could thank for one reason or another and the best way to do that is to just be a good neighbor yourself.
I hope that everyone reading this has a safe and joyful Christmas holiday. We look forward to continuing to serve your wealth management needs in the new year.
Content in this material is for general information only and not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. No strategy assures success or protects against loss. Investing involves risk including loss of principal.
Prior to investing in a 529 Plan, investors should consider whether the investor’s or designated beneficiary’s home state offers any state tax or other state benefits such as financial aid, scholarship funds, and protection from creditors that are only available for investments in such state’s qualified tuition program. Withdrawals used for qualified expenses are federally tax free. Tax treatment at the state level may vary. Please consult with your tax advisor before investing.
Securities offered through LPL financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment Advice offered through Independent Advisor Alliance, a registered investment advisor. Independent Advisor Alliance and Marzano Capital Group are separate entities from LPL Financial.