Mark P. Cussen, CFP®, CMFC, AFC

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  1. 8 Qualities That Make A Good Insurance Agent
    Professionals

    8 Qualities That Make A Good Insurance Agent

    Insurance agents must possess each of the following qualities in order to be successful.
  2. Help Your Clients Prepare For The Fiscal Cliff
    Professionals

    Help Your Clients Prepare For The Fiscal Cliff

    With the fiscal cliff fast approaching, financial advisors need to help prepare their clients for coming changes to their taxes.
  3. Who Does The Current Tax Code Benefit?
    Taxes

    Who Does The Current Tax Code Benefit?

    Are the non-workers benefiting from the current tax code in any way or is it the wealthy who are still getting the big breaks?
  4. Is A Retirement Career Right For You?
    Retirement

    Is A Retirement Career Right For You?

    More and more people are realizing they must work part time during retirement. Here's a look at if you might have to.
  5. Are You Mature Enough To Buy A Home?
    Home & Auto

    Are You Mature Enough To Buy A Home?

    Owning a home is a big responsibility. Here is a look of some basic things you will need to be able to accomplish if you plan on owning a home.
  6. Overlooked Tax Deductions For 2012
    Taxes

    Overlooked Tax Deductions For 2012

    From jury duty to student loan interest, here are some deductions for 2012 that people may overlook.
  7. How To Use The 4-Box Strategy For Retirement Income
    Retirement

    How To Use The 4-Box Strategy For Retirement Income

    In today's volatile market, Generation X can't sit around waiting for things to improve. Gen X must implement innovative strategies for retirement planning.
  8. Jump Start Your Financial Career With The BAT
    Professionals

    Jump Start Your Financial Career With The BAT

    The BAT is quickly becoming known in the job market as a tool to provide a window into the minds of those seeking financial jobs.
  9. Tax-Efficient Wealth Transfer
    Taxes

    Tax-Efficient Wealth Transfer

    Taxpayers with large taxable estates were required to take steps to reduce them before 2011.
  10. Introduction To Employee Stock Purchase Plans
    Investing Basics

    Introduction To Employee Stock Purchase Plans

    ESPPs offer a very straightforward method of allowing employees to participate in the overall profitability of their employers.
  11. How To Qualify For The Home-Office Tax Deduction
    Taxes

    How To Qualify For The Home-Office Tax Deduction

    Homebodies can save big on their tax bill. Learn how to get in on the action.
  12. Present Your Clients With A Year-End Review
    Professionals

    Present Your Clients With A Year-End Review

    If you want to build a better rapport with your clients, this is a good place to start.
  13. Introduction To Incentive Stock Options
    Investing Basics

    Introduction To Incentive Stock Options

    Here are some basic highlights of how ISOs work and the ways they can be used.
  14. Start Your Own Financial Planning Firm
    Professionals

    Start Your Own Financial Planning Firm

    Read on to find business tips to make your dream a reality.
  15. Short Sales For Market Downturns
    Fundamental Analysis

    Short Sales For Market Downturns

    This strategy can help in market downturns, but it's not for inexperienced traders.
  16. Introduction To Phantom Stock And SARs
    Investing Basics

    Introduction To Phantom Stock And SARs

    Phantom stock and stock appreciation rights reward employees with compensation tied to stock performance.
  17. Save Safely With The DB(k) Retirement Plan
    Retirement

    Save Safely With The DB(k) Retirement Plan

    Your retirement savings can have the best of the defined-benefit plan and the defined-contribution plan with this hybrid.
  18. 4 Ways To Get A Head Start On Your Financial Career
    Professionals

    4 Ways To Get A Head Start On Your Financial Career

    Breaking into the finance business is tough, but these tips can help.
  19. When Your Bond Comes Calling
    Bonds & Fixed Income

    When Your Bond Comes Calling

    Callable bonds can leave investors with a pile of cash in a low-interest market. Find out what you can do about it.
  20. What are Government Pension Offsets, and who is subject ...
    Retirement

    What are Government Pension Offsets, and who is subject ...

    Government Pension Offsets (GPO) apply to government workers at any level who are not covered by Social Security. Any federal, state or local employee who works for a governmental institution in any capacity ...
  21. How do you plan for retirement if you have multiple employers? ...
    Savings

    How do you plan for retirement if you have multiple employers? ...

    Retirement planning for those who work for more than one employer is essentially the same as for those who work for only one. You must still make the same asset allocation decisions and determine your ...
  22. I have a 403(b) from a old employer. I would like to convert ...
    Savings

    I have a 403(b) from a old employer. I would like to convert ...

    The IRS says that you can roll a 403(b) plan into a 401(k) plan if you now work for an employer that offers a 401(k) plan. You can also roll a 403(b) plan into a self-employed 401(k) plan if you are self-employed. ...
  23. Moving Back Home: A Win-Win Situation
    Savings

    Moving Back Home: A Win-Win Situation

    When a young adult moves back home it can be beneficial for their finances and their parents'.
  24. Should You Hire Friends As Employees?
    Entrepreneurship

    Should You Hire Friends As Employees?

    Here is a look at the pros and cons and the ethical implications of hiring (or not hiring) a friend.
  25. Ethical Wills Share Final Thoughts With Heirs
    Retirement

    Ethical Wills Share Final Thoughts With Heirs

    This document allows a testator, the person making the will, to leave a personal legacy.
  26. RV Travelers: A Niche Market For Advisors
    Personal Finance

    RV Travelers: A Niche Market For Advisors

    RV travelers can provide an interesting challenge for advisors.
  27. Investing In Oil And Gas UITs
    Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Investing In Oil And Gas UITs

    Unit investment trusts provide direct exposure to the energy sector, fueling better returns.
  28. Technology Sector Funds
    Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Technology Sector Funds

    Evaluate past performance before investing in these types of gadget funds, as technology investors have been on a wild ride for a few years.
  29. Utility Funds: A Bright Choice In Bear And Bull Markets
    Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Utility Funds: A Bright Choice In Bear And Bull Markets

    Gas, electric and water companies' non-cyclical nature can power strong gains in any portfolio.
  30. 7 Affordable Ways To Buy Happiness
    Personal Finance

    7 Affordable Ways To Buy Happiness

    Whether it's taking up gardening or adopting a pet, there are many ways a person can improve his or her level of happiness without breaking the bank.
  31. Financial Preparation For Deployment
    Personal Finance

    Financial Preparation For Deployment

    Are you preparing for deployment? Here are some things to know to get your funds in line before you go.
  32. Morningstar: A Premier Mutual Fund Source
    Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Morningstar: A Premier Mutual Fund Source

    Looking for current mutual fund information? We'll look at one of the places to start your search.
  33. Not All Retirement Accounts Should Be Tax-Deferred
    Retirement

    Not All Retirement Accounts Should Be Tax-Deferred

    It may be better to leave your assets exposed to the tax man when you're saving to retire.
  34. The Risks Of Real Estate Sector Funds
    Mutual Funds & ETFs

    The Risks Of Real Estate Sector Funds

    Discover the risks and rewards of investing in real estate funds, as well as some of the best and worst performers.
  35. Ethical Issues For Financial Advisors
    Professionals

    Ethical Issues For Financial Advisors

    Learn what to do when that devil on your shoulder begins to whisper.
  36. Avoiding A Big Tax Bill On Real Estate Gains
    Taxes

    Avoiding A Big Tax Bill On Real Estate Gains

    Installment sales allow sellers to defer taxes on real estate profits.
  37. Start Over With The IRS
    Taxes

    Start Over With The IRS

    If you're struggling to pay back taxes, try a fresh start with the IRS. They really can help.
  38. How To Deal With (Seriously) Dysfunctional Clients
    Professionals

    How To Deal With (Seriously) Dysfunctional Clients

    Difficult, unreasonable and eccentric people seek financial planners too. Find out how to cope.
  39. Be A One-Stop Shop For Your Clients
    Professionals

    Be A One-Stop Shop For Your Clients

    Offering comprehensive financial services can bring in business, but coordination is the key to success.
  40. Selecting The Right Mix Of Insurance Benefits
    Home & Auto

    Selecting The Right Mix Of Insurance Benefits

    Choosing employee benefits involves weighing the probability you will need them against taxes and cost.
  41. Reporting Your Interest Income
    Taxes

    Reporting Your Interest Income

    Find out how your accounts are taxed and which forms you need.
  42. Should Your 401(k) Be In An Annuity?
    Savings

    Should Your 401(k) Be In An Annuity?

    Housing your retirement plan inside a variable annuity contract offers some big advantages, but only if you are close to retirement.
  43. An Introduction To Fiduciary Advisors
    Professionals

    An Introduction To Fiduciary Advisors

    Offering personalized solutions in a world of cookie-cutter advice may be your ticket to career perfection.
  44. Income Funds 101
    Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Income Funds 101

    Income funds don't have to be bonds, there are plenty to choose from. Read up on the types of income funds and whether they fit your investment needs.
  45. Happily Married? File Taxes Separately!
    Taxes

    Happily Married? File Taxes Separately!

    Just because you are in love doesn't mean that a joint return is best for both of you.
  46. Taxing Times For Divorced Parents
    Taxes

    Taxing Times For Divorced Parents

    Find out how to deal with the tax issues that arise for divorced parents with dependent children.
  47. Introduction To Annuities
    Retirement

    Introduction To Annuities

    Everything you need to know about annuities.
  48. A Close Look At Certified Senior Designations
    Professionals

    A Close Look At Certified Senior Designations

    We examine the validity of senior financial designations and whether they are worth pursuing.
  49. Build Your Own Annuity
    Retirement

    Build Your Own Annuity

    Here are some tips on the different types of annuities to have in your portfolio.
  50. Get A Tax Credit For Your Foreign Investments
    Taxes

    Get A Tax Credit For Your Foreign Investments

    The foreign tax credit provides a break on investment income made and taxed in a foreign country.
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