Emerging affluent – case study

Chris & Jenny Miller

Chris and Jenny are married with one child and another due any day now.  Chris is a lawyer at a large law firm in town and Jenny is a sales professional at a publicly traded company.  Chris isn’t sure if he will stay at the firm and become a partner or become an in-house counsel to one of the firm’s clients.  Jenny struggles with whether to stay at home or continue working – She would like the option to stay at home.  They have a lot more excess cash coming in these days and wonder if they should be doing something smarter with their money.

The Miller’s Concerns:

  • How much income should we be saving for retirement?
  • We’d like to pay for college but how do we know how much to save and where to invest?
  • We’re worried about what would happen to the other spouse and kids if one of us died prematurely
  • A relative mentioned we should have an estate plan. Do we really need one now? 
  • We’re paying a lot of tax on our income – is there a way to pay less?

How Moneta helped:

The Millers sat down with the Duff team and laid out their concerns.  The team created a financial action plan that laid out how much the Millers should be saving for retirement, even though that was a long way off.  For college, the Millers learned what savings vehicles offer the best tax benefits and how much to save in order to pay for a private college they had in mind.  They now have automated monthly savings amounts deducted from their checking accounts to their various savings accounts.  The Duff team explained how to protect the other spouse with term life insurance and how much is appropriate for their lifestyle.  The team explained how the estate planning process works and what documents were necessary for their current needs.  Finally, the team discovered a variety of ways to lower their yearly tax bill. 

The Millers now have more time to spend with their family.  They meet with the Duff team frequently to discuss how their plan is changing as their goals evolve and their family and income grow.

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