1

Hacking & Identity Theft – 7 Tips for Protecting Your Identity & Money

It’s a non-stop topic in today’s news.  No, not COVID-19 but identity theft. Hacking is big business for thieves. Just go back and consider the result of two examples. At least 110 million consumers have been affected by the hack involving Target and Neiman Marcus retailers.

Millions more will have their identities manipulated and finances ruined within the coming months. Due to additional breaches of security at other stores is anyone’s guess. With the holiday season upon us, please be safe. Identity theft recovery expert Scott A. Merritt states,

“By necessity, I became an expert on identity theft. My information was stolen in 2006, and in repairing the damage, I learned some not-so-obvious ways we can all protect against identity theft in the first place,” says Merritt, CEO of Merritt & Associates (scottamerritt.com) and author of “Identity Theft Do’s and Don’ts.”

Merritt’s problems began quickly. For example, while disputing financial charges and dealing with resulting business problems, in 2007 he was stopped for a traffic violation.  As a result, he was arrested on a false outstanding felony warrant. He immediately knew why.

“I had to enlist my U.S. congressman and convince the state police, NCIC, FBI and Secret Service that I didn’t commit the felonies. For a few years, I had to prove that the prints did not match the false record in question. After legal action, however, I was able to have this corrected.”

Unfortunately, millions are affected by the recent hacks. As a result, they may be dealing with similar identity theft repercussions in the years ahead.

Before you become a victim of identity theft, Merritt offers seven ways to guard against it.

Understand how and where it happens. Identity theft is like being robbed when you are away from home. Therefore most thefts occur in places where you do business every day. Either a place of business is robbed or a bad employee acts improperly. Also, a hacker may breach the office through a computer.

Secure your wallet’s information. Photocopy everything in your wallet: photos, credit cards (front and back), membership cards – everything. Put the copies in the order the cards are arranged in your wallet. Next, staple the pictures and place them in a strong box or safe.

Account for your interactions with vendors. Every time you speak to someone with whom you do business, do these steps. Write down the time, date, name and the purpose or outcome of the call. If an identity theft occurs on the vendor’s end, you will be able to reference these prior conversations effectively. Lastly, be sure to note any animosity or reluctance from the vendor.

Protect your banking information. While in the bank, keep account numbers and other data out of sight. Also avoid stating account numbers, Social Security numbers and similar information out loud. For example, when planning a bank visit, have deposit and withdrawal slips prepared in advance.

Make sure your information is consistent. For all of your identity and financial documents, make absolutely sure, to the smallest detail, that all of your personal information is accurate and consistent! Discrepancies such as using your middle initial on some documents, and not others. In addition, having different addresses, can wreck havoc in proving your identity, and can compromise your credit score.

Secure your digital habits and data. Change your passwords at least twice a year on a non-scheduled basis – don’t be predictable. Have a strong firewall if you shop online. Plus, only access sites that are protected by a strong firewall and high industry standards. Access accounts of a financial nature only from your personal computer.

Don’t carry around your birth certificate or Social Security card. Unless it’s necessary, keep those vital items in a safe, or at least a firebox. If you know someone is going to need a copy of your tax returns or your driver’s license, for example, make the copies ahead of time. This avoids the need for a firm’s employee to leave the room with such information.

Merritt concludes, “Of course, you can greatly reduce being a victim of such recent hacks that occurred at the major retailers by using cash more often,” he says. “But if you’re going to use credit, use a card from a national bank. Or consider a national credit union and never a debit card, no exceptions.”

The lessons to learn are be careful and pay attention. Don’t give the crooks easy access to your personal information. If you are effected, then immediately seek out help to minimize the damage.

The Life of Luxury can assist you. In addition to offering a wide variety of luxury concierge services, we work with the best firms in the financial industry. We are ready to help you.




Summer VIP Access to the Hottest Luxury Events

Summer is in full swing. It’s time for relaxation, taking luxury vacations and a great backyard BBQ. But now we can help you with VIP access to the hottest events! Everybody wants a VIP experience. Where do I find a luxury concierge company who can offer VIP access?

The Life of Luxury can provide you a VIP experience to over 50,000 events all around the world. From red carpet award shows, sporting events, sold out concerts, fashion shows, Hollywood movie premiers, and even a “meet and greet” with your favorite celebrity.

sold out concert

Just look at the next 3 months. It’s packed with unbelievable events that are on most people’s Bucket List. Here’s a list of some of the top VIP events that should not be missed.

World Class VIP Access

JULY

  • Wimbledon Tennis Championships – July 3rd through July 16th in London
  • U2 Concerts – European Tour Leg
  • Australian Grand Prix – July 9th in Spielberg
  • MLB All Star Game – July 11th in Miami
  • ESPY Awards – July 12th in Los Angeles
  • Kendrick Lamar Concert – North America Summer Tour

AUGUST

  • Teen Choice Awards – August 13th in Los Angeles
  • PGA Championship – August 18th in Charlotte
  • Boxing: Mayweather vs McGregor – August 26 Las Vegas T – Mobile arena (Biggest Event of the Year)
  • MTV Video Music Awards – August 27th in Los Angeles
  • Burning Man Festival – August 24th through September 4th in Desert Rock
  • US Open Tennis Tournament – August 28th through September 10th in New York

SEPTEMBER 

  • NFL Season Opener – (Kansas City @ New England) September 7th in Boston
  • NFL Regular Season Weeks 1, 2 and 3.  Some of the best games of each week listed below.  Suites, tickets and on field access available.
    • Week 1 – Giants @ Cowboys (September 10th)
    • Week 2 – Dallas @ Denver (September 17th)
    • Week 3 – Giants @ Philadelphia (September 24th)
  • New York Fashion Week & Parties – September 8th through the 15th in New York
  • Prime Time Emmy Awards – September 17th in Los Angeles
  • London Fashion Week – September 8th through the 20th in London
  • Presidents Cup Golf – September 28th in Jersey City, New Jersey

We also offer several VIP membership options. As a result, your wishes and dreams can now be met. We can offer our loyal clients that world leading luxury concierge and lifestyle management service they deserve. The VIP membership provides superior service for individuals and families, business executives, as well as corporations.

The Life of Luxury can offer VIP access to the world’s best luxury events. Enjoy a VIP experience that you will never forget. Stop by and follow our luxury blog for more updates on upcoming shows and events.




4 Tips to Consider Before Selling Your Luxury Home

If you decide selling your luxury home, it can be difficult to do. But once the decision is made, you may be ready to move ahead quickly with the process. At first glance, you may think that you can simply hire a realtor and list the property on the market. However, there are a few helpful steps that you can walk through initially that can prepare you and your home more fully for the process. We want to share 4 tips to consider before selling your luxury home.

Pricing and Paperwork

The list price for selling your luxury home is critical to enjoying the best results. While you may want to get the best price possible for your property, overpricing may turn off many buyers and result in less interest in the home.

On the other hand, if your list price is too low, you may leave money on the table by agreeing to sell the home for less than it is worth. Some underpricing strategies, however, can spur a bidding war that drives the price higher.

Your luxury real estate agent should complete a detailed comparative market analysis to help you price the home appropriately for a fast and fair sale. Data research and market exploration will be completed, and the home’s amenities, size, location and condition will all be taken into account.

High-tech features, such as a lavish home entertainment system or smart home technology, boost the value of the home. Ensure that your real estate agent is aware of all of your home’s features. It can also be helpful to pull out the property’s blue prints, the survey and your mortgage documents before listing the home for sale.

Review your mortgage payoff information to ensure that the list price will cover the mortgage payoff amount. The survey and blue prints may be provided to an interested buyer upon request. If selling your home quickly is important, you can consider using a concierge auction service rather than walking through the traditional sales process.

Marketing

Your real estate agent will help you to learn about all of the marketing techniques and strategies available when listing your home. Keep in mind that proper marketing for a luxury home involves more than just placing a sign in the front yard and the listing in the MLS.

A good real estate agent will take time to learn more about your property’s key features to determine the target audience. The listing will have descriptive wording that appeals to the specific target audience identified. A detailed listing will showcase the luxurious benefits of the house and sell the lifestyle that your target audience desires. The agent will also actively market your home in as many online real estate platforms as possible.

When selecting your agent, focus on the marketing strategy they will use as well as their other listings in your community. Look for an experienced agent who understands your neighborhood’s appeal and who has several listings nearby. Consider researching the real estate agent online. If their website ranks high in local search results, you can rest assured that the agent knows how to market a property online as well.

You should also ensure that their website is mobile-friendly because many buyers use smartphones and tablets when looking for properties. An experienced real estate agent is also no stranger to social media sites, such as Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter. Open houses are also effective at creating interest in luxury homes, so ensure that’s part of the plan as well.

luxury home decor

Photography and Staging

Many buyers today will scour online listings before deciding which homes to tour. They will make a snap judgment about their interest level in your home based on the online pictures linked to your listing.

A smart idea is to work with a home staging expert to beautify your home before having professional photos taken of your property. Staging a home makes it more attractive and accentuates its benefits.

Photographs may motivate potential buyers to visit your home, but scents can trigger old memories, lure people to stay longer and act on impulse. Consider taking that one smart step ahead by leaving freshly baked bread or cinnamon rolls in the oven or burning essential
oils and scented candles before the arranged visit. However, keep in mind that burning candles left unattended or active appliances could cause serious damage.

Many luxury home buyers will have virtual reality home tours before deciding to see it in person. So, after a professional stager has emphasized the best features of your home, you can then look for a professional photographer and videographer to create visuals that will help to sell your home quickly and for top dollar.

Public Open Houses

When listing your home for sale, you will need to prepare yourself for potential buyers and real estate agents to tour the home. Most people will not make an offer on a home sight unseen . Some may even want to tour the home two or three times before deciding to make
an offer.

Others are only in town for a short time, so you should plan to make your home ready for a tour at short notice. In fact, you may only have an hour or less to clean up your mess and leave the home. Many real estate agents will respect your wishes, however, if you request a
24-hour advance notice for home tours.

The last thing you want is for your home listing to result in theft of property. So while selling your luxury home, do not entice others by leaving valuables out (electronics, artwork, jewelry etc.). If necessary, get a safe or an off-site storage unit to secure valuables while your home is on the market.

As you can see, a lot of time and effort is put into preparing a home to list for sale. A great starting point to consider is to look for a reputable real estate agent to assist you. The agent may then make staging tips or recommend an experienced stager and photographer to assist with the next steps in the process. While it can take time and strategy to sell a luxury home, the end result will be well worthwhile.

Selling your luxury home can be a challenge. But it also can be a rewarding experience. The Life of Luxury can help you through the process. We work with many top realtors around the world. Return soon and follow this popular luxury blog.

Author: Sandra is a freelance writer based in Ohio. When she is not writing about lifestyle or self-improvement, she enjoys reading, swimming and spending time with her Lab dog Buzz. You can follow her on Twitter @SandraMoncadaOh

Photo: Pexels




8 Ways Women Can Improve Dealing With Money

It’s no secret that women view money differently than men. Meriflor Toneatto is an entrepreneur and certified business and life coach. She states, “A woman’s emotional relationship with money directly impacts her overall level of satisfaction in life – or lack of it.”

Toneatto continues, “Wealth isn’t just about money; it’s about the quality of a woman’s overall life. Greater awareness of how you feel about your life can yield helpful insights regarding your relationship with money, which can immediately change for the better.”

Below are 8 ways women can help with their confidence dealing with money and being successful with their own financial management.

1) Be honest. Total honesty is the best way to get to the root of your feelings, beliefs and attitudes about money. Women often keep secrets about our true feelings, especially regarding money.

2) Give yourself permission. For better or worse, women tend to seek support or permission for significant life decisions. Skip a step and give yourself permission. It’s important to have an open mind and heart as you proceed with financial self-improvement, which includes being grateful for who you are right now, warts and all, for arriving at this moment in your life.

3) Practice forgiveness. A key way to move beyond your emotional obstacles with money is to let them go and forgive. Practicing forgiveness is a powerful way to remove what’s standing between you and having more money in your life.

4) Celebrate the big and small – have fun! We always notice the big things in life, but we tend to overlook the little steps we took to get there. They all count! And, take heart in your journey – an adventure of self-discovery, love, courage and possibility. This is at the heart of true, lifelong self-improvement.

5) Put yourself first. Commit to taking care of yourself and putting your needs at the top of your priority list. Think of it as “self-full” rather than “selfish.” When you love yourself, you’ll experience positive changes that will benefit those around you; you will operate better. “Self-fullness” may include scheduling uninterrupted time alone for reflection, reading, meditation, physical training and other ways to get in touch with your emotions.

6) Start a money journal. Consider keeping a gratitude journal and, taking it a steep further, a financial journal. What you focus on will grow, so focus on being grateful about money and you’ll start to see positive changes in your life.

7) Pay attention to synchronicities. As you begin to work on transforming your relationship with money, pay attention to what comes back to you as a result of your intention. Be aware of coincidences, synchronicities and opportunities that come your way. This may include new clients at unexpected places, hearing references to new books or even a mentor, or the possibility that you’re at the right place at the right time.

8) Feel prosperous and rich now. Prosperity and wealth is a state of mind. It’s essential that you don’t feel poor because that brings your thoughts toward poverty. Your goal is to take stock of what you have now, embellish it with gratitude, and enjoy the return.

We hope you enjoyed reading the 8 Ways Women Can Improve Dealing With Money article. If you are in need of help with your finances or investments but don’t have someone to work with, please contact us today. We can refer you to a qualified financial advisor. Educate yourself on financial industry news by following this popular luxury blog.




Seven Golden Rules For Successful Retirement Planning

As the Baby Boomer generation continues to age, about 10,000 people in the U.S. turn 65 years old each day. That is an astonishing figure. Many of us worry about retirement planning and if we will be ready. It’s a very scary thought.

Everybody is concerned about retirement and retirement planning is critical. The recession over the last 8-9 years has really hurt many families who thought they had a nice, nest egg set aside for retirement.

Financial planners are needed more than ever to help navigate individual portfolios and manage retirement planning for their client.

Carl Edwards is the owner of C.E. Wealth Group there are numerous factors to be concerned with regarding retirement planning for baby boomers – the uncertainty about the future of Social Security funding and dealing with one’s workplace retirement accounts like a 401(k).

Edwards states, “Many advisors and clients rely too much on single product lines. This misuse often gives products and the financial industry in general a bad name.”

Edwards provides seven helpful points that everyone should know and better understand, related to your retirement planning.

• Avoid trying to time the market. Markets often move in cycles and some investors believe that they can boost their investment returns by buying at the bottom and selling at the top. The problem is that investors are terrible at correctly predicting market movements and multiple studies have shown that market timers usually end up with significantly smaller retirement savings than buy-and-hold investors. While it can be stressful to see your portfolio plummet during a market correction, it’s important to stay calm and focus on your long-term strategy.

• Use risk-appropriate financial vehicles. Retiring can be a risky business. The days of relying on employer-provided pension plans are largely over and retirees now have to deal with risks including investment, inflation, healthcare, longevity and others. Though the total elimination of risk isn’t possible, we can manage many of them through competent retirement planning and a clear understanding of factors like your goals, time horizon and financial circumstances.

• Complete a cash flow analysis. Retirement will involve major changes to your finances. Sources and timing of income will change and financial priorities may shift as you start generating income from retirement savings. A cash flow analysis will identify spending patterns and help ensure that you have enough income to support your retirement lifestyle.

• Consider the effects of inflation. Inflation is one of the biggest issues facing retirees because they are disproportionately affected by rising prices. Escalating food, fuel and medical costs can devastate a retirement portfolio unless these costs have been factored into your planning. Positioning your retirement portfolio to fight inflation is critical to ensuring adequate income in retirement.

• Invest in the most tax-efficient manner. Taxes can take a big bite out of investment returns, which is why we stress tax-efficient planning with our clients. While taxes are just one piece of the overall financial puzzle, it’s important to structure your investments so that you are able to keep what you earn.

• Guarantee your required income. For many retirees, having income that is not subject to market fluctuations is an important part of their retirement plan. Many will have at least some level of guaranteed income from Social Security or defined benefit pension plans. However, if you are worried that your expenses exceed your guaranteed income, a financial advisor can help you explore options for additional streams of income for life. Guarantees are subject to the paying ability of the income provider.

• Utilize longevity planning. Today’s retirees are living longer than ever and many worry about outliving their assets. Longevity planning is about preparing for a happy, comfortable and independent retirement and can help ensure that your wealth lasts as long as you need it to.

If you are concerned about retirement planning and are seeking a certified financial advisor, contact us today. We can refer licensed and respected financial advisor professionals in your area to help you. Return to follow this luxury blog and learn about other financial tips and investment industry news.




Gold and Diamond Adorned Galaxy S7 Edge Smartphone by Legend

Legend has introduced their latest bespoke product – Gold and diamond adorned Galaxy S7 Edge smartphone. The company is based in Helsinki Finland and specializing in creating incredible, custom smartphones

Their latest release is a Galaxy S7 Edge smartphone that is blinged out in 24k gold and stunning diamonds. Legend’s focus is on taking the best in today’s technology consumer products and turning them into bespoke products.

Their luxurious, Galaxy S7 Edge smartphone now becomes the first Galaxy mobile phone that is decorated with VVS1 grade diamonds, plus a 24k gold plated back.

Most of us want to make our smartphones unique and stand out in a crowd. Who doesn’t like bragging rights about what phone they own and what protective case they use? The new product release unveiled from Legend is definitely a show stopper.

What we like about the new Galaxy is how Legend created an embellishment using the well known Samsung logo, along with a diamond halo and enamel filling. This unique feature gives the Samsung Galaxy device both a distinctive and luxury looking appearance.

What if you want to add a unique touch to your phone? No worries. Legend will make each custom smartphone to the client’s own specifications. The Galaxy S7 Edge has several custom packages available to give it the perfect look. For example, choose from laser or hand engraving, adding a custom logo, or your gemstone placement on the Galaxy smartphone.

In addition to 24k Gold the Galaxy S7 case can also be made in Platinum. If you are a fan of leather, you’re in luck. Legend also offers several exotic leather editions. Take your pick from CITES certified shark, crocodile, lizard, stingray or ostrich options.

By working closely with your Legend bespoke designer, you can make your purchase the ultimate swag belonging. Impress your friends and family with your own or purchase one for that special person in your life. It makes the perfect birthday, graduation, anniversary or business gift.

The custom Galaxy S7 Edge Smartphone is carefully packaged in a luxury presentation box. Included is an impressive leather folder that holds the phone’s certificate of authenticity.

Pricing for the bespoke Samsung Galaxy S7 is 2350 euros for the gold or platinum option. The exotic leather option is priced at 2390 euros. Both prices include worldwide express shipping.

If you would like to purchase the luxurious Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge smartphone from Legend, please contact us. We hope you enjoy reading about the luxury industry and return again to follow our luxury blog.

Photo: Legend




Luxury Tax Penalties – Major League Baseball Paying the Price

We all know that there is a lot of money involved in professional sports. For sports teams that exceed the salary cap budget each other, must pay hefty, luxury tax penalties.

For example, MLB (Major League Baseball) teams are currently being audited to evaluate what their payrolls ended up after this past season. The 2015 MLB season ended witht he Kansas City Royals winning the fall classic, World Series. The Royals beat the New York Mets in five games. The win gave Kansas City the second World Series championship in their franchise history.

According to a recent Forbes article, it’s time for MLB teams to pay the dreaded, luxury tax penalties for 2015. It’s often hard to predict what the luxury tax penalties will be for each team. During the course of the baseball season, there many changes to a team’s 40 man roster. Players get traded and cut from a roster. They may retire or new players can join from minor league team affiliates.

We read all about the skyrocketing player salaries in professional sports like baseball, football, basketball and hockey. For this past baseball season, the average player salary is a whopping $12.9 million. That figure includes both benefits and extended benefits for the players. A lot of different things go into that staggering salary number including: payroll, workman’s compensation, unemployment and Social Security taxes; health and pension benefits; club medical costs; travel and moving expenses; spring training allowances; postseason pay; insurance in addition to player meals and tip money and more! Don’t forget about incentive bonuses that were earned and non-cash compensation. Now that’s quite the benefit package.

In Major League Baseball, the leagues Luxury Tax is called the Competitive Balance Tax (CBT). In 2015, that payroll value was $189 million. Foe each dollar a MLB team spend above the CBT, then they must pay luxury tax penalties. Since 2003 when the Competitive Balance Tax first went into place, more than $400 million in luxury taxes have been paid by MLB teams.

So who leads the list of big spenders. No surprise, but the Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees lead the pack. In fact, those 2 teams have paid a luxury tax every year. The current estimates are as follows:

Los Angeles Dodgers – $298,320,297
New York Yankees – $241,150,787
Boston Red Sox – $199,732,694
San Francisco Giants – $196,631,618

The Dodgers team salary breaks an all-time high this year. The Red Sox exceed the cap for the first time since 2011 and the Giants have done it for the first time ever. Does loading p your team with big salaries guarantee a World Series win in October? Of course not. None of the above teams won or even made it to the World Series.

We realize it’s not as simple as stocking a team with high salary players. There are many factors that must be looked at as to why a team doesn’t win it all. Remember, only one team is the big winner each year. Injuries, bad luck, players not jelling with each other, poor performances, etc….

No one has a crystal ball so we’ll all wait and watch until that last out is made and only one team is standing at the end of a long season as World Series champion!  Will big spending buy a team’s way to the title?  Only time will tell.

Do you love reading about money and power stories like the above luxury tax penalties article? Follow our luxury blog for the latest luxury news. Contact us if you would like to attend a red carpet event, meet your favorite celebrity or take a luxury vacation to your dream destination.




Avoid Big Financial Mistakes for a Successful Retirement

As we enter into the holiday season, we all have so much to do and have to endure a very stressful time. People often neglect their personal finances, or even worse – make big financial mistakes that will haunt them down the road.

We need to always be aware of our investments and retirement goals. It’s an ongoing process and not a one time event and never considered again. To avoid you making big financial mistakes, consider some advice from an expert.

A few questions to consider are – should you convert part of their IRA to a Roth IRA with little or no tax liability? You may not have done that was possible, but yes you can actually convert your IRA with no tax consequence. Great news!

Marc Sarner is the president of Wake Up Financial and Insurance Services, Inc. He offers his clients retirement solutions for both retirees and pre-retirees. The goal is reduce taxes, increase your income and carefully manage your risks. A good financial adviser has the training and experience to help you succeed.

Should you convert your traditional IRA to a Roth IRA? Here are several advantages to consider.

1) Any growth in a Roth IRA is tax free as long as it has grown for at least five years.

2) Withdrawals from a traditional IRA are taxed because you were able to defer taxes on that money when you made contributions to your account. Withdrawals from a Roth IRA aren’t taxed because the deposits into the account weren’t tax deductible.

3) With a traditional IRA, when you reach age 70½ you must begin withdrawing a certain amount each year whether you want to or not. That’s called the Required Minimum Distribution. But with a Roth IRA, there is no Required Minimum Distribution so even at 70½ you can withdraw as much or as little as you like.

Many financial advisors are used to manage money and plan. But taking into account your tax situation is a critical piece to a successful retirement and another key to avoid big financial mistakes that will hurt you down the road.

Retirement planning for pre-retirees and retirees is a complicated and stressful process. The goal is to be financially independent, so be sure to consider all available options.

So possibly looking at a Roth IRA conversion may be part of your investment strategy to consider by the end of this year. The end result may mean you saving thousands of dollars in the long run.

Choosing the right financial advisor is an important step to help avoid big financial mistakes and impact your retirement plan. If you need to find one, contact us and we can refer a licensed adviser in your area to help you steer through the complicated world of investing. Return to follow this luxury blog for more helpfula nd informative investment tips.




4 Keys for Baby Boomers to Consider Regarding Retirement Planning

Regardless of your age, retirement planning should be high on everybody’s list. Baby Boomers are generally defined as people who were born between 1946 and 1964. This important generation were part of the post World War II era and is now an important group of people as they enter the retirement age.

With about 75 million Baby Boomers alive today, about 10,000 boomers actually turn 65 years old each day. That is a staggering number and shines the light on the importance of retirement planning. It’s important to remember, it is never too late.

Michael Bivona is a certified public accountant who already retired about 20 years ago. He understands how critical it is to map your strategy and have a sound the retirement planning road map. People often dream of unlimited travel, sipping Mai Tai cocktails on a tropical beach, and having no worries about life. Well it’s reality check time!

Bivona states, “I had a simple plan: When I stopped working I planned on living on my 42-foot Chris Craft cruiser with my wife, Barbara, which was a very pleasant pastime during my busy working years. But, after a few weeks, as we tried to make our dream a reality we found that we were bored out of our minds.”

But if you want a rewarding retirement, you need to assess your current situation and make the important changes if needed. Bivona continues, “Pre-retirees and retirees are rightly concerned about whether they can afford retirement. But not having enough to do is another kind of deficit that is frequently overlooked until it’s too late.”

He shares 4 keys for Baby Boomers to consider regarding retirement planning:

1) Make the most of your travels.
Traveling is a common bucket list item for most retirees. Of course, it’s going to cost you. That’s why this is a subject that perfectly combines the two great concerns for retirement: money and purpose, both of which can be maximized with “research, research, research, Bivona says. You might even parlay traveling with another interest, such as your family history. You may learn about your roots at www.Ancestory.com, and then visit areas based on your research. Or, you may be more interested in stretching your dollar. There are many cost effective deals to be had by researching your heart’s desire on the internet.

2) Try on a pair of dancing shoes.
For some, the thought of dancing may elicit a strong sense of aversion, but you may want to try it anyway. The benefits include exercise, coordination and possibly enjoying a romantic hobby with your spouse or others. Dancing is a beautiful art form that gives participants something with which to challenge themselves, Bivona says. A goal-oriented mindset is a healthy one especially when approaching the encore years.

3) Develop a social network with senior civic centers.
Civic centers, which usually have a department dedicated to the betterment of the senior citizens who live in their areas, can be found in almost every municipality in the United States. These centers offer a wide range of activities. Additionally, the following online search, “Fun Activities for Senior Citizens,” offers a nice list of activities and associated details that can be explored prior to retiring.

4) Stay sharp and keep learning.
The mind is much like the body: If you don’t use it you will accelerate the process of losing it. Building bridges to new adventures is the key to maintaining your mental acuity and increasing your vitality. There are an abundance of educational courses developed for seniors to keep them exercising their mental prowess. Remember, if you started working in your twenties and retire in your sixties, there’s a good chance you’ll spend as many years in retirement as you did working. So building bridges to what you want to do in a rational manner for your encore years is imperative if the last phase of your life is to be enjoyable for you and your love ones.

Don’t let you retirement dreams slip away. If you want to live a VIP lifestyle, it’s not going to happen on its own. Plan, plan and plan again. Retirement planning is so important and often overlooked. Don’t delay anther day, get back on the right path and enjoy your golden years of retirement …. worry free.

If you need a professional financial advisor to help with your Retirement Planning, contact us today. We can recommend someone who is licensed in your area to help you plan for retirement and look at your current and future financial situation. Read more about investing and financial planning by following this popular luxury blog.




What We Can Learn From Celebrity Breakups

At seems like every day, there’s a news flash regarding celebrity breakups. Whether it’s a sports star, Hollywood actor, famous musician or a millionaire – celebrity breakups are nothing new, but seem to be happening at an increasingly alarming rate.

Split-ups and divorces are not immune from celebrities. We love reading about them and often mock them for getting what they deserve, even during their emotional lows.

But maybe we can all learn something from these public, celebrity breakups. Hillel L. Presser owns The Presser Law Firm, P.A. and represents both businesses and individuals, helping them establish comprehensive asset protection plans.

Asset protection is an often overlooked aspect of managing one’s personal wealth. Attorney Hillel Presser believes we also can all learn something from our heroes. He states, “Whether you rejoice in seeing how the mighty have fallen or you truly empathize with their pain, celebrity divorces remind us of at least one thing: it can happen to us.”

From dealing with prenuptial agreements and other divorce issues, there is a silver lining if you can get help to prevent major financial issue down the road when things don’t go your way.

Below are four key areas to be consider when planning your own Asset protection. Learn from other celebrity breakups and don’t make the same mistakes.

1) Write a post-nuptial agreement:
Even if you’re married, most states allow for these post-nuptial agreements. Married spouses may want to contractually agree on how they’ll divide their assets should they later divorce. As with pre-marriage agreements, the enforceability of the post-nuptial agreement requires the agreement to be fair; that both spouses fully understand the agreement; that neither party defrauded the other; and that each party had independent legal counsel.

2) Insist on a pre-marriage agreement:
This is a written contract between intended spouses. It specifies how their property and income will be divided in divorce. Pre-marriage agreements – or premarital, prenuptial or ante-nuptial agreements – aren’t only for the wealthy. Every couple could use one. It’s their most efficient, equitable way to settle matters in advance of a future divorce. Pre-marriage agreements resolve many issues less easily reconciled by divorce courts.

3) Don’t cohabit without a cohabitation agreement:
Many couples now live together without marriage. Some want to test their relationship before they marry. Seniors live together because marriage would disqualify Social Security or pension benefits. Others want to avoid the financial responsibility of marriage, or they don’t want to commit to the care of an ill partner. More than a few want to avoid the legal and financial complications from marriage – particularly when one party has substantially more wealth.

4) Divorce-proof your assets with an international trust:
A spouse can put his or her assets beyond the reach of the divorce court with an international asset protection trust. Those anticipating a divorce can shelter their assets in off-shore asset protection trusts. They must disclose the trust assets to the divorce court, but the court cannot recover or divide these assets. However, such maneuvers do not ensure victory. Divorce courts can award the victimized spouse more U.S.-based assets to compensate for the trust-shielded assets. Or, compensation may be awarded via alimony or support. But such asset protection is useful for those with few remaining assets in the U.S. and one’s income is too small for the court to score through an excessive alimony award.

Presser encourages us to always plan ahead, even for the worst. “Divorce can happen to anyone. While you may not suffer the same kind of public humiliation as a public figure, it’s still very painful – and, it can cost you your life’s work in assets.”

Planning is everything. Don’t get caught like the many celebrity breakups we all read about. Learn what you need to do to protect yourself. Come back often to follow this popular luxury blog. Read about other money and financial planning tips and advice.




Locksley Hall in San Francisco Bay Area Sells for $47.5 Million

A record breaking real estate deal has taken place near San Francisco. The impressive Locksley Hall located in the Bay Area city of Belvedere, has just been sold for a staggering $47.5 Million. The home, across the bay from San Francisco was listed with Neal Ward Properties.

Locksley Hall features 9,235 square feet of living space and includes five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, plus three half-bathrooms. The property includes about 30 acres of land on the southern tip of Belvedere Island.

This incredible luxury home was originally built back in 1895 by CO Perry, who was a banker from San Francisco.

Although the $47.5 million sales price is steep, Locksley Hall was actually listed for much higher prior to the real estate market crash almost a decade ago. The luxury home was once listed at $70 million.

The home is three stories high and provides stunning local views, including the iconic San Francisco skyline, the world famous Golden Gate Bridge and nearby Angel Island. This gorgeous place provides a VIP lifestyle. Elevator service provides access to all the home’s floors.

Locksley Hall in San Francisco home

The luxury mansion was last purchased in 1995 by millionaire Robert Friedland for $5.5 million. He and his wife invested about $30 million in remodeling and renovations to the amazing property. The listing states, “The home underwent a massive restoration of approximately $30 million to retain its original architectural detail while bringing the property into the 21st century.”

On the top floor you’ll find the luxurious Master Suite. There’s an adjacent sitting room and of course, a luxurious bathroom. The master bath features double showers and woven mosaic marble tiles. There’s a spa tub and extra spacious walk-in closets to hold all of your clothing and fashion accessories.

If you are in the market for a luxury home, please contact The Life of Luxury. We work with many of the top real estate agents, and can refer a professional realtor in your area. If you like reading about luxury homes and a luxurious lifestyle, then please come back again to follow this luxury blog.

Photo: Neal Ward Properties