VeriPlan Overview 1: Personal Finance Decisions
VeriPlan Overview: Part 1 of 7
Improving personal finance decisions with VeriPlan
VeriPlan gives you significant personal insight into your most important personal finance and investment portfolio decisions. Through comprehensive and customized lifetime projections, VeriPlan’s integrated financial calculators and investment calculators model your particular financial situation across your adult lifetime. VeriPlan projects fully integrated scenarios about your income, expense budget, debts, investment portfolio assets, investment returns, and investment costs within the context of the U.S. federal, state, and local income taxes that apply to you. VeriPlan presents all your personal lifetime financial modeling information in clear graphics and data tables.
You can easily customize any of your personal data and settings in VeriPlan. After you make any modification, VeriPlan’s financial calculators and investment calculators automatically and instantaneously revise your complete lifetime projection. As you use VeriPlan’s rich set of fully integrated “what if” financial modeling tools, you take control of your own financial, investment, and retirement planning.
Personal Users: VeriPlan helps self-directed personal users to understand the possible future implications of current financial planning behaviors. VeriPlan projections model the lifetime finances of one or two adult users and their dependents. Any family member who resides in the same household may use VeriPlan.
Advisory Users: VeriPlan is a valuable tool for financial advisors who serve the fiduciary interests of their financial planning clients. Advisors can obtain a right-to-use VeriPlan on behalf of their clients, when they provide VeriPlan to their clients.
VeriPlan can help you to analyze important personal finance decisions, including:
- What tradeoffs are associated with accelerating mortgage loan payments or other debt repayments?
- Will I be have enough college savings to pay for my children’s education?
- How could my savings rate and investment strategy affect the size of my estate?
- After my living expenses, how much could I give or bequeath to family and charities?
- How large might my exposures to insurable financial risks be over time?
- How might different budgets for insurance premiums affect my lifecycle financial plan?
Investment Cost Reduction:
- What investment returns might I earn net of investment costs?
- How much could I waste on unproductive investment costs?
- How might I optimize my investment returns, while keeping costs to a minimum?
- How does my current investment strategy compare with a scientific strategy focused on long-term, risk-adjusted returns net of investment costs and capital gains tax?
Investment Risk Management:
- What returns might I expect from the balance of expected investment returns and investment risks that I have chosen?
- Am I saving enough to stay in my investment risk and return comfort zone and still reach my financial planning goals?
- If I were to lose income in the future, how long would my liquid investment portfolio assets cover my projected expense budget?
New Business Ventures:
- What are the likely long-term benefits and risks, if I fore-go current income to start a business?
- Could I self-fund my business venture or would I need external capital?
Personal Career Planning:
- What are the long-term economic benefits of changing positions or employers?
- Would returning to school to improve my career skills make economic sense?
- Could starting a business lead to both entrepreneurial and financial success?
Real Estate Planning:
- When will I have sufficient capital for a real estate purchase?
- How would increased mortgage debt affect my investment portfolio and other financial goals?
- Would I have sufficient investment assets to retire early?
- Would my investment assets be adequate to cover my expenses, if I live a very long time?
- What is a relatively safe asset portfolio withdrawal plan?
- Am I saving at a sufficient rate to fund all our future financial planning goals?
- How much benefit might I expect from increasing my income and/or reducing my expense budget?
- What is the long-term value of saving most of my bonus?
- Am I managing my investments from an income tax efficiency standpoint?
- How much should I put into either taxable, traditional retirement accounts, or Roth retirement accounts?
- Would my retirement portfolio assets be adequate after my income taxes and other taxes are paid?
Personal Financial Planning Software for Individuals
- The Value of Future versus Current Consumption (These are some thoughts that I provided to a client couple struggling to live within their means, while also saving and investing for their future:
The most important long-term topic we discussed was how you as a couple can find a way to balance current consumption, which presently exceeds your dual incomes, against the need to [...])
- Roth Estate Planning Strategies (Roth IRA and Roth 401k Accounts and Roth Estate Planning Strategies
There are trade-offs when deciding whether to allocate contributions to Roth retirement savings accounts versus traditional retirement savings accounts that have deferred income taxation features. In the majority of personal finance situations, making 100% of allowable contributions to Roth retirement plans would probably not yield [...])
- Lifetime Investment Fees (Use a long term investment calculator to understand the lifetime costs of excessive investment fees
High mutual fund fees and other excessive investment fees are huge problems for the average individual investor. These excessive investment fees are the major factor that undermines the financial welfare of millions of Americans. The potential value of your investment portfolio [...])
- Projecting the size of your future estate (VeriPlan's investment growth calculator helps you to project the size of your estate in future years
Your investment portfolio and other property assets are simply your evolving estate. These valuable assets could become your estate at any time. As you proceed through life and become more successful financially, you need to monitor the size and trajectory of [...])
- VeriPlan Overview 3: Your Income and Debt Projections (VeriPlan Overview: Part 3 of 7
Your income and debts in VeriPlan
The VeriPlan financial planning software with its wide variety of fully integrated financial calculators and investment calculators uses your inputs about your financial situation and investment portfolio to develop your current projection baseline. VeriPlan collects the following personal financial information:
Your Initial Ages:
VeriPlan is a lifetime projection [...])
- Where to buy investment funds (Where to purchase mutual funds and ETFs
Whenever possible, low cost no load mutual funds should be purchased directly from mutual fund families that deal with the public. Otherwise they should be acquired through some other low cost channel such as a discount brokerage account. It only makes sense to purchase funds through the most inexpensive [...])
- Buying low cost mutual funds and ETFs (Do your mutual fund and ETF investment research – and do it BEFORE you buy
Screened mutual fund and ETF lists are very helpful to any investor who wishes to focus on low cost mutual funds and ETFs. However, this is just the beginning of the investment process and not the end. Always understand any security [...])
- 2013-11: November 2013 What Works in Personal Finance Newsletter (
November 2013 Newsletter
You are a financial industry profit center
For the full article, either click the title above or paste this address into your browser:
Why allow the financial industry to help itself to your money? In case you did not notice, the financial services industry has not done the world any favors lately. The financial industry [...])
- How to Use the VeriPlan Comprehensive Financial Planner (Developing a Family Financial Plan with VeriPlan
VeriPlan is personally customizable financial planning software that helps you develop your own comprehensive lifetime financial and investment plan for your family. Functioning as financial decision support software, it automates millions of integrated projection calculations behind the scenes. With VeriPlan you can improve your financial decision-making, because you are [...])
- Cash Asset Allocation (VeriPlan's investment growth calculator helps you to understand the projected value of your cash assets across your lifetime
To develop your lifetime projections, the VeriPlan compound investment calculator allows you to enter as many as 24 separate cash and cash equivalent asset holdings. For each of your current cash holding in your investment portfolio, you can [...])
- 2014-02: February 2014 What Works in Personal Finance Newsletter (
February 2014 Newsletter
Diversification and the credit crisis
For the full article, either click the title above or paste this address into your browser:
The best personal investment and financial planning practices are durable and should not change because of market cycles and financial crises. Nothing that has happened in the credit crisis changes the value of broad [...])
- Economic ETF trade size cost considerations (Economic ETF trading size considerations
This article discusses some considerations regarding efficient ETF trading and economic trade sizes. At the end of this section, you will also find two tables on ETF brokerage and trading cost amortization over 1, 3, 5, 10, and 20 year holding periods. There is one table on do-it-yourself ETF discount brokerage [...])
- ETFs are for experienced securities traders (ETFs are for experienced securities traders with open eyes
Some of my time, I work directly with paying clients to develop comprehensive lifetime financial plans and investment plans. I always explain the virtues of a globally diversified, fully passive, very low cost, index fund investment strategy. This is consistent with this website and with my other [...])
- Protect Your Financial Security (The Only Real Protector of Your Financial Security Is You!
Reduce the Chances of Mail Theft
Never leave any outgoing financial letters containing checks or sensitive information outside in public for the postman. To receive mail, you should have a mail drop slot rather than a mailbox on the outside of the house. Always mail your financial [...])
- Too few low cost mutual funds and ETFs (Too few low cost mutual funds and ETFs – Far too many high cost funds
In screening and selecting low cost mutual funds and ETFs, you should understand this involves sorting and screening thousands of mutual funds and ETFs using databases from data vendors such as Morningstar and/or Lipper. It is shameful just how few low cost [...])
- About (
About the author
Lawrence J. Russell is the author of this website and the books offered through this website. He is also the architect and developer of the VeriPlan software discussed on this website. He holds a BS from M.I.T. (1975), MA from Brandeis University (1979), and MBA from Stanford University (1982). Larry is a former [...])
- Instead of non-traded REITs, buy publicly-traded REIT index mutual funds and ETFs (Publicly-traded REIT index mutual funds and ETFs add can add far more cost-effective real estate exposure to your portfolio
If you really need to add real estate securities to your portfolio, the most sensible way to do so is to buy very low cost REIT index mutual funds or ETFs. This article will overview why and [...])
- Savings and Withdrawal Rates (Understand how your current savings rate and retirement withdrawal rate would affect all of your lifetime personal financial planning goals
Along with your efforts to increase your earned income, your personal savings rate largely determines your lifelong financial planning success or failure by steadily and more substantially feeding your investment portfolio. The attempt to be clever [...])
- College Savings Calculator (College savings calculator software helps you to plan college savings and other education expenses for you and your children
VeriPlan's fully integrated and automated financial calculators and financial software tools help you to determine whether your current savings rate would lead to a sustainable financial plan across your lifetime.
In addition, the VeriPlan lifetime retirement planning calculator [...])
- Whole stock market investments versus strategy skews (Whole stock market investments versus investment strategy skews
Investors who decide to pursue passive equity index strategies still have a few very important strategy decisions to make. They can choose to buy the whole stock market or to adopt a “strategy skew,” when choosing stock index investment funds.
If an investor buys the whole stock market, they [...])
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