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Jocelyn Black Hodes

What Is the Alternative Minimum Tax?

What is the alternative minimum tax, and how do I know if I owe it? The alternative minimum tax, or AMT, is an income tax levied by the U.S. government on certain individuals, corporations, estates and trusts and was intended to prevent wealthier...

Ask an Advisor: How Much House Can I Afford?

I’m about to start house hunting for my very first home. But before I do, I’m curious: How much house can I afford?  The most dangerous thing you can do when house hunting is to not know how much you can afford ahead of time. This is because your...

15 Tax-Saving Steps to Take Now

With the end of the year quickly approaching, you are probably focused on finalizing travel plans and squeezing in last-minute holiday shopping. There’s a good chance that the last thing on your mind is tax planning. However, now is the time to...

Ask an Advisor: What’s the Difference Between Being Pre-Qualified and Pre-Approved for a Mortgage?

Many homebuyers are easily misled by lenders who pre-qualify them for a loan only to later deny them after they make an offer on a home they really can’t afford. Understanding the difference between pre-qualification and pre-approval is...

8 Ways Your Upbringing Can Affect Your Money Habits

Whether we realize it or not, how we were raised has a tremendous impact on how we make decisions as adults. Sometimes the results are positive, certainly. But other times the results are detrimental to our well-being, especially when it comes to...

What Is My Tax Bracket?

What is my tax bracket? Your tax bracket determines the rate at which your income is taxed. How much of your income is taxed depends on your state of residence and filing status, which may be as single, married filing jointly (or qualifying...

Do I Really Need a Financial Advisor?

While many people avoid working with a financial advisor because of the presumed cost, hiring a trustworthy, qualified advisor can actually be the best investment you make. Experts generally recommend seeking out an advisor prior to a major life...

The Real Reasons You’re Not Saving Enough

As a financial advisor, working with clients is often a lesson in psychology. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard the same old excuses for why people aren’t saving more money or saving at all. The truth is that these excuses are just...

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