Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

  • Plan for the Future. How an Estate Plan Puts You in Control

    Friday, January 27th 9:30am to 11:00am During this seminar you will learn ways to care for the people and things you love after you’re gone and leave behind a lasting, meaningful legacy. This seminar focuses on five key financial planning issues associated with estate planning: proper account ownership, beneficiary review, strategies to minimize estate and income taxes, gifting strategies and how long term care insurance can protect your estate. This session will be led by Karen Goersch, CPA, CRPC®, APMA®, Financial Advisor, Ameriprise Financial, who will be joined by Michelle Beltrano, Estate Planning and Elder Law Attorney from Beltrano Law. Coffee and pastries will ...Read More »

  • The Darien Community Association, in collaboration with At Home in Darien and the New Canaan-based Alliance of Business Professionals, will present a panel discussion “Dementia: A Primer for Families and Caregivers” at the DCA, 274 Middlesex Road, on October 18th from 5:00-7:00 pm.  The program is targeted not only for the families - spouses, adult children and caregivers of those with dementia - but also other seniors and/or their children who would simply like to learn more about this disease, which is affecting a larger portion of the population in today’s world, as people live longer. Panelists include Dr. Stephen Jones, ...Read More »

  • Members of the Alliance of Business Professionals meet to plan the November 10th Arts and Culture event, “Valuing Art, Architecture and Real Estate in a Challenging Environment” Front row: Carol Hollyday and Rita Kirby, (William Pitt Sotheby’s ) Anna Maria Kinberg (Interiors by Anna Maria), Nancy Helle (free lance writer, PR consultant) Back row: Bill Bergner (State Farm Insurance), Don Nelson (Nelson & Koepen, accounting, tax planning/preparation), John Murphy and David Boudreau (Morgan Stanley Smith Barney) and Morris Barocas (The Barocas Law Firm) Missing from photo are J Berry (JB Design), Michael Gregor ...Read More »

  • New Website is Resource for Multiple Services From New Canaan’s Alliance of Business Professionals A New Canaan based group of business professionals from the area has just opened a new website: www.allianceofbusinessprofessionals.com as a community resource which includes information about both the variety of left and right brain services offered and the members who provide them. The group encompasses professions ranging from legal services, insurance, banking and mortgages, financial advisory services, accounting and tax preparation, payroll & HR solutions for small businesses, and managed IT services, to real estate, architecture, interior design and feng shui,  public relations and graphic design, corporate ...Read More »

  • A flood can happen anytime, anywhere.

    By Bill Bergner A flood can happen anytime, anywhere. All 50 states experience some type of flooding, even in low risk areas. Just a few inches of water can damage your home and your personal belongings. A severe flood could destroy a home and all its contents. You can prevent a major financial loss with flood insurance. Many people do not realize the standard renter’s or homeowner’s insurance policy does not cover damages caused by floodwaters. If your community participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), you can purchase a flood insurance policy from the federal government or a participating insurance agency. Flood ...Read More »

  • Can you build a house today for less?

    By Andrew Nuzzi If one were to ask this question to the average person, the answer would of course be YES. If you were to ask the same person why, the obvious answer would be that the real-estate market has dropped about twenty percent in value in the past few years, therefore today you can build for less. Before the end of 2010 I was told by Northeast window representative that their windows would be going up in price about five percent in the start of 2011. The windows are just one component that goes into building a home. If one were to multiply ...Read More »

  • Feng Shui in the Northeast in 2011

    By Anna Maria Kinberg Northeast has very favourable feng shui energies of the White star # 1 in 2011. The right nourishment of these energies will strengthen the career and good luck energies in one's home or office. Metal element is good here. Good feng shui colors for this feng shui area in 2011 are water and metal colors, such as black, blue, charcoal gray, white. You can also add other water feng shui element decor cures, choose the ones that work best with the decor of your space. Avoid fire feng shui element colors, such as red, purple, hot pink, orange, etc, as ...Read More »

  • The strength of any business is its employees

    By Mike Gregor The strength of any business is its employees. Hiring, developing and managing employees is critical to your success — and mistakes can be costly. That’s why ADP’s Complete Payroll package is designed to give you everything you need to manage your employees and your payroll. Accessible at any time from any computer via the Web, offering a wide range of features to help your business save time and money. These are some of the features offered… Tax Filing — ADP calculates, files, deposits and reconciles your payroll taxes. New Hire Reporting — Helps protect your company from penalties due to ...Read More »

  • Top Small Business Tax Write-offs

    By  John Nelson Maximizing your small business tax write-offs is a year-long process. While it involves meticulous record keeping and a moderately high level of organization, the end result is worth the work put in. The key, though, to getting the best break is recognizing tax write-offs for your small business in the first place. Here are a few of the top write-offs that your business should be taking advantage of. Car Deductions This is one example of a deduction that requires in-depth record keeping. Keep receipts for parking, tolls and gas as well as a detailed log of your trips' mileage from start to ...Read More »

  • Helpful tips for Home Loan Refinancing

    By Patrick Hoey Refinancing has become a very popular option for many homeowners today. Borrowers can get into better interest rates and terms, and sometimes they can pull out cash from their existing equity for other financial ventures. With the plethora of refinance mortgage loans available today, you should consider the following helpful tips to get the best loan for you: First you should start by finding out your credit score. Lenders depend on credit information to determine what type of loan and mortgage terms you qualify for. You can get a free copy of your credit report once a year from ...Read More »

  • Health Insurance – Fact vs. Fiction – Dispelling popular “myths”

    By Don Moyle Fiction #1: I can’t really control how much I pay for health insurance. Fact: If you think you’re paying too much for health insurance, you probably are. A simple check of the market and understanding your options – including various tax advantages – can save significant money now and in the future. For example: A family of four was paying $2,100 per month for COBRA coverage. After reviewing their options, they purchased a high-deductible individual health plan with a Health Savings Account for $900 per month – a savings of over $14,000 per year. Fiction #2: Health insurance options are very ...Read More »

  • Challenging Your Property Tax Assesment

    By Morris Barocas With the rapidly declining home prices, I frequently hear complaints about the property tax assessments.   In many instances the property tax assessment is greater than the purchase price of the home.  This is because properties are assessed once every five years and many homes in lower Fairfield County were assessed in 2007 or 2008 when home prices were near their peak. However when challenging the assessment, I do not look at present market values.  Instead I look at the value of the property at the time of the assessment to see if property is valued equitably with similar ...Read More »

  • Data Loss Fast Facts

    By Manny Louis Each year, 1 in 10 laptops are lost or stolen; 1 in 4 computers suffer data loss; and 7 in 10 firms with major data loss go under. Never risk your critical data files on undependable manual backups or inferior data storage solutions. Notebook computers are the perfect tool for busy on-the-go executives -- powerful, compact and portable. But those same attributes make them vulnerable to a variety of data loss risks. You only need to suffer data loss ONCE to significant damage your business... and they do happen more often than you might think. Could your business recover if ...Read More »

  • Halted Foreclosures: Positive News for Buyers

    All real estate is local is the old adage and while Lower Fairfield County was certainly seriously impacted by the recession, we can say with confidence that in 2010 we turned the corner and have begun the road to recovery, therefore leading the country in that recovery. Today Fairfield has had  five consecutive quarters of market acceleration, in both number of single family residences sold and dollar sales gains.  The Northeast as a region showed the strongest sales performance of the US in 2010. Buyers are seeking homes that they perceive to be extraordinary value in order to take advantage of current market ...Read More »