Don’t Miss These Year-End Retirement-Planning Deadlines

It’s not too late to ensure that your retirement planning is on track to maximize tax savings before the end of 2017. Understanding end-of-year deadlines can help you maximize your tax savings as well as prepare for another year of saving. “Tax planning should really start in January, not in November or December,” says Randall Luebke, a financial planner at Lifetime Paradigm. “That said, if you do wait, be sure to do everything you can to reduce the taxes you pay.” Now is the time to accelerate your tax-deductible expenses and put off receiving taxable income. Here are some tips. Consider Roth Accounts If you’ve been thinking about converting a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA, it’s a good time to make a decision and act because you must file forms by the end of the year. With Dec. 31 falling on a Sunday in 2017, experts recommend aiming for …

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Challenges of Managing Certificates of Insurance for Homebuilders

Homebuilders are in the business of trust, relying on their good name to grow their business as they build new homes for families. But while they’re focused on the specifics of developing a neighborhood, the administrative challenges can sometimes derail operations. In particular, managing and tracking certificates of insurance can be a big issue. Subcontractors come and go, and when people are focused on delivering results on deadline, administrative tasks can fall through the cracks, putting companies at risk when they least expect it. “Certificates of insurance, on a large scale, impact the environment for commerce to occur,” says Lee Roth, vice president of Ebix BPO. “People need to know there’s protection should there be a need for it down the road.” Here are some of the issues that can arise when homebuilders manage COIs. Gaps in Coverage In other industries, when companies collect certificates and separate endorsements, the additional …

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Family-Friendly Work Options All Employees Can Use

Some companies like to tout themselves as being family-friendly, but are they really if their family-friendly policies only benefit married couples or employees raising children? “Family-friendly work options are not only for employees with immediate family,” says Eileen Timmins, Ph.D., founder of Aingilin. “Having diversity of options for the diverse workforce family is the key.” “Family” doesn’t necessarily refer to only spouses and minor children — it can encompass domestic partners, stepfamilies, aging parents and close aunts or uncles. Truly family-friendly policies also apply to singles and employees without children. Paid time off is one option all employees can use. “PTO is an option, but many more companies are using ‘take what you need’ time,” Timmins says. “An employee takes the time they need for vacation or sick time. It’s similar to an honor policy — if it becomes excessive, then the employer will approach the person and see if …

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