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Financial Tips for Millennials

Thursday - February 16, 2017

Stuart Vick Smith, ML&R Wealth Management, Austin, TX, 2/1/2017

Each generation in America has their own unique struggles and challenges. Baby boomers came of age after World War II with parents that survived the Great Depression, the war or both. This forever molded their financial outlook on life. Gen Xers are the sandwich generation, balancing the world of entitlement their millennial children were born into while taking on the care of their baby boomer parents as they slide into their golden years. Millennials will have their own battles to fight and dragons to slay. They will likely face a world of excessive college debt and difficulty finding jobs in their chosen fields. Others will either incur high housing costs or deal with the prospect of moving back home with their parents. So, how do they best approach and conquer these life challenges? Here are some tips millennials should consider when planning out their financial future.

Economize: Once you get your first real job and go out on your own, it is easy to get caught up in the excitement of spending, perhaps your entire paycheck (or more). Take a deep breath, step back and be thoughtful when it comes to spending. Don’t overspend on a bigger apartment or fancier car than you actually need. You have an entire lifetime to build up your finances, allowing you to buy the things you may want. When you are starting out, learn the value of a dollar. It’s more important to pay off debts and create some savings than to start a lifetime habit of overspending and incurring debt.

Pay down debt: As a new college graduate, you may have student loans or even credit card debt. Set up a plan to pay off your debt over time. Lay out your various debt obligations, your monthly payments and the interest rates on each. Build a plan to focus on the highest-interest-rate debt first. Integrate this payment plan into your monthly budget. Commit to having your debt paid off in a reasonable time, giving yourself the satisfaction of accomplishing your task and having a small balance in the process.

Avoid new debt: A new job means newfound freedom. Credit will be more available than it ever has been before. Access to this new flexibility is very tempting, whether it may involve buying a new house or a better car. Be careful. Think hard about new purchases. How do they work into your annual budget, your debt plan and your savings goals? Try to avoid new debt that is not necessary. Shore up your savings first before succumbing to temptation and buying that big-ticket item.

For the full article please visit: https://copperleaffinancial.com/14-financial-tips-for-millennials.html

Davis & Hodgdon is a full-service public accounting firm with offices in Williston and Rutland Vermont. The firm is a member of the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR), Vermont Business Environmental Partnership (VBEP), Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce (LCRCC),  Women Business Owners Network (WBON).  The firm serves its clients by providing progressive, proactive services through expert staff, sophisticated technology, and unparalleled efficiency.

Kiki McShane: The Vision for Evolve Rutland

Thursday - February 09, 2017

My Story

By Kiki McShane, Evolve Rutland

My Inspiration

“Tremendous amounts of talent are lost in our society just because that talent wears a skirt.” - Shirley Chisholm

US Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm is the first woman politician that I remember seeing in person. She spoke to a large group of college students and faculty about her life and career as a leader. It was 1969 and I was a college freshman. I remember how she impressed me with her strength, openness and accomplishments. She stated that the most difficult barriers she faced were not because she was black, but because she was a woman. I was shocked! I had never thought that being female created barriers. I had a lot to learn.

My mother and grandmother had careers, were well educated and outspoken. Growing up, I saw only equality among the key adults in my life. So Ms. Chisholm’s perspective made a deep and lasting impression on me.

Forty seven years from that event I can say that some of the toughest barriers I have faced are because I am a woman. Not all of course, but the most consistent.

My Expertise

I first entered the management consulting field in 1983, when it was primarily a male-dominated industry. It was rare to work with women in the C Suite. A desire to have more women colleagues and to combat being targeted as less qualified based on my gender drove me forward. My own experiences and a few key qualities play an influential role :

* Perceptive - Staying open minded while being fair, clear and credible is crucial for effective problem solving. As a leader and facilitator I am frequently able to identify problems before others. Weighing evidence, observations, facts, experiences and points of view, and making sense of it all, aids in stretching limitations and getting teams “unstuck.”

* Problem Solver - I especially like creating and working with diverse teams, and I don’t mind when things get messy. Creative conflict is an integral part of problem solving. It ensures that different perspectives are voiced, mutual trust and respect are cultivated and solutions are implemented with multi-level support.

* Compassionate - Working as a marriage, family and child counselor taught me a lot about what works and what doesn’t work. I learned that HOW we talk to each other, give feedback, ask questions and punch holes in ideas is as important as WHAT we are trying to accomplish. Working with leadership teams in companies was a natural transition from working with families and couples.

For the full article please visit: http://www.advancingvtwomen.com/

Kiki McShane, Evolve Rutland

Remote Bookkeeping the Logical Solution for Many Small Businesses

Wednesday - February 08, 2017

Davis & Hodgdon Associates CPAs introduces "RAD" - Remote Accounting Department. RAD is the all-inclusive small business accounting package developed to free up time for entrepreneurs looking to focus on their business, not in their business.

For an affordable monthly fixed fee, RAD takes care of several accounting and bookkeeping tasks - including paying bills, balancing checkbooks, and providing helpful financial data along the way including critical quarterly analysis of the books.

The Process - Implementation begins with a thorough assessment of your needs and follows with training. From there, we explain processing schedules.

Setup & Training - We meet with you to assess your accounting needs. Once determined, we instruct you on the information and data required to manage your bookkeeping tasks. We also work with you to designate a point of contact (POC) in your office. We will train the POC on the process of providing our firm with the daily information required to generate your financial information. We also train your POC on how to use RAD tools on the web.

All activity is facilitated online through our advanced, secure web-based platform. For more information visit:  http://dh-cpa.com/r.a.d.-remote-accounting-department.html.

“Martha was great in helping us with our QuickBooks file and made it all very easy on our end. What felt like a nerve-wracking issue to us was handled pleasantly, without inducing stress... It feels nice to know we've got a bookkeeping resource we can feel good about.”  Lisa Sylvester, Interrobang Design Collaborative.

Davis & Hodgdon is a full-service public accounting firm with offices in Williston and Rutland Vermont. The firm is a member of the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR), Vermont Business Environmental Partnership (VBEP), Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce (LCRCC),  Women Business Owners Network (WBON).  The firm serves its clients by providing progressive, proactive services through expert staff, sophisticated technology, and unparalleled efficiency.

A New College Tradition: In Debt and Underemployed

Tuesday - February 07, 2017

Dr. Bill R. Path, Forbes, 2/2/17

College campuses are well-known for their annual traditions, but one of these "traditions" is neither a source of pride or school spirit. This ritual has sorely diminished the value of education for most college graduates across the country. I am speaking of the annual tuition increase and the impact it has on students. The insatiable budgets of most colleges have resulted in annual hikes in student tuition that exceed the rate of inflation. This disconcerting trend has been readily apparent for the last 30 years, as documented by the College Board.

As colleges spend more each year, they require more revenue; and as long as students are willing to pay more, college prices continue to balloon. Students are simply taking out larger loans and assuming more debt. Student loan debt hit an all-time high in 2016. The average 2016 graduate owed over $37,000. This figure has increased an average of six percent per year for the past six years.

College students are paying more for their education each year, but are they really getting more for their money? Again, the statistics would say "no." While the number of college graduates in the U.S. has steadily grown each year since the start of the recession in 2008, they are reporting themselves to be unemployed and underemployed in higher numbers. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York found that nearly half (45%) of new college graduates were working in jobs that did not require a bachelor’s degree.

With more college graduates settling for unskilled labor positions just to stay afloat in this troubled economy, how has this affected them? In two words: "low wages." The number of college graduates working minimum wage jobs has more than doubled since the recession started. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, last year, 272,000 college graduates were working at or below the minimum wage.

Now, let's put all the pieces of this academic puzzle together. With fewer employment opportunities in this economy for persons without a college degree, more young people are looking to improve their odds by going to college. With more students enrolling in college, operational costs on college campuses increase and those costs are often passed along to students in the form of higher tuition.

For the full article please click here.

Davis & Hodgdon is a full-service public accounting firm with offices in Williston and Rutland Vermont. The firm is a member of the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR), Vermont Business Environmental Partnership (VBEP), Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce (LCRCC),  Women Business Owners Network (WBON).  The firm serves its clients by providing progressive, proactive services through expert staff, sophisticated technology, and unparalleled efficiency.

5 Reasons to Consider a Career as a Public Auditor

Tuesday - January 31, 2017

Discoveraudit.org has published  a white paper outlining 5 reasons to consider a career in public auditing:

1. You can bank on it.

One of the benefits of a career in public company auditing is the paycheck. On average, public company auditors, with at least two years of professional experience, bring home more than $65,000 a year. Additionally, if you stay at a firm and make partner, an analysis by the Center for Audit Quality showed that many audit partners in large public company accounting firms can make close to a million dollars a year! Take that to the bank…

2. Moving on up.

As a public company auditor, you will have endless opportunities to continue your education and development, while still getting paid. Consider it an MBA without the student debt. After only a few years on the job, many public company auditors are supervising teams and participating in meetings with some of the smartest business executives around. You could be in a meeting with executives like Mark Zuckerberg (yes, the founder of Facebook)!

3. Auditors are in high demand.

The history of accounting and auditing dates back to the 13th century. Kings and other wealthy folks needed smart people to keep track of all of their gold bars, cows, and sheep; so accounting and auditing was born. As long as there is business to be done, there will be a job for auditors. In fact, the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) released a 2015 report that shows that accounting students are in great demand. So much so that firms hired a record number of accounting graduates in 2014, representing a 7 percent increase from the previous survey. Experts say the number of jobs for accountants and auditors will grow 11 percent from 2014 to 2024, faster than the average for many other occupations.

4. You're not tied down.

Because public company auditors are in high demand, you can work pretty much anywhere. It might require some extra training, but a career in
public company auditing could take you around the world. So, make sure you have your passport handy at all times!

5. Keeping it fresh.

Another benefit of public company auditing is it’s the land of opportunity where most of your colleagues will be as young and fresh as you! Similar to starting high school as a freshman, when you join public company auditing, you will come on board with a starting class of many other young
professionals as new to the working world as you are. You will learn together, grow together, and possibly develop priceless lifelong friendships and relationships with people you meet in your starting class. Not many careers give you that opportunity! 

To view the full white paper by DiscoverAudit.org please visit: http://www.discoveraudit.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Five-Reasons_College.pdf

Davis & Hodgdon is a full-service public accounting firm with offices in Williston and Rutland Vermont. The firm is a member of the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR), Vermont Business Environmental Partnership (VBEP), Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce (LCRCC),  Women Business Owners Network (WBON).  The firm serves its clients by providing progressive, proactive services through expert staff, sophisticated technology, and unparalleled efficiency.

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Recent Posts

Thursday - February 16, 2017

Financial Tips for Millennials

Thursday - February 09, 2017

Kiki McShane: The Vision for Evolve Rutland

Wednesday - February 08, 2017

Remote Bookkeeping the Logical Solution for Many Small Businesses

Tuesday - February 07, 2017

A New College Tradition: In Debt and Underemployed

Tuesday - January 31, 2017

5 Reasons to Consider a Career as a Public Auditor

Thursday - January 26, 2017

Business Development Remains as Chief Concern within Accounting Industry

Wednesday - January 25, 2017

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Tuesday - January 24, 2017

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