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Untucked Episode 100

On this episode of Untucked, the team discusses the things you shouldn’t focus on when making financial decisions. The Coach’s Corner clip can be listed to here or you can listen to the entire episode here.

Meghan Tait: [00:00:00] Um, today we are going to talk about a tweet from Thomas Kopelman. Um, he tweeted a thread that he titled six things you should not focus on financially. Um, and we wanted to, to maybe react to it or, or add to it because a lot of the things we discuss are things you should do. So we thought this was maybe a good, a good topic to think through some of the things Maybe that aren’t worth your time, energy, or efforts.

Um, I’ll just run through the seven he listed and then we can talk about them individually or anything we want to add. Um, so he talked about moving high yield savings accounts for a slightly higher yield, trying to create multiple streams of income, um, best credit card strategies, complex investment products, leveraging 0 percent interest, timing the market, and cutting out the small things you enjoy.

Any of [00:01:00] them stand out to you guys?

Jeff Mastronardo: The last one stood out to me, and I actually just came across an article maybe yesterday or today about that. Uh, not about cutting out the small things. Like this person was advocating to be mindful of like the Starbucks coffee. And so I guess disagreeing with Thomas.

And I read the article, and I just. I kind of like scoffed at it because the guy, I think the example he said was, you know, spending money on like useless things, call it 26 a week on useless things. It’s like 1, 300 a year. And I just don’t think 1, 300 a year is going to change anyone’s life. And the amount of time and the amount of dissatisfaction and, and, and disenjoyment.

If that’s even a word that, that [00:02:00] you have to experience because you spend time and energy to try to save 13 or 25 a week, it seems absolutely useless to me. So I a hundred percent agree with that.

Mike Traynor: I do too, but I’ll asterisk is that there are people who love that. Meaning like there are people who. will drive the extra five minutes to their destination on a non toll road to avoid paying the 3.

40 toll and they feel a big win from doing that. So, I just, the caveat to me is that there are people who just love cutting out the little nickels and dimes because it’s just a big part of their, who they are.

Jeff Mastronardo: I don’t think it’s a love for them, I think it’s a disease.

Mike Traynor: I mean, I know

Jeff Mastronardo: people that won’t do that.

raise and lower their garage door more than they should because of the energy [00:03:00] it, it, it, it, it, it spends, which is wild to me. Uh, my dad will drive to whatever different gas station to save 10 cents a gallon. What does 10 cents a gallon actually even work out to over 20 gallons, 2 that just does, it seems so insignificant.

I find it like very, you know, I’d rather sit in my house at 84 degrees than to put on the air conditioner because it’s gonna cost an extra, I don’t even know. Hey, let’s close the lights because it’s gonna save us.

Meghan Tait: Cents.

Jeff Mastronardo: It’s like literally cents. That, that whole, um, mindset. I’m not saying be wasteful. But our garage door goes up and down 50 times during the course of a day like at least

Mike Traynor: yeah

Jeff Mastronardo: And I can’t even imagine, like, telling my kids, Whoa, whoa, whoa!

Don’t open the garage, walk in through the [00:04:00] front door. It doesn’t cost us any money if you go in through the front door. Yeah. Like, that’s just wild to me.

Meghan Tait: Well, it’s similar to the first one he says, moving high yield savings accounts for slightly higher yield. So thinking about, you know, your Capital One account that’s paying you 4.

25, and then Ally has, you know, It’s a high yield savings account that’s paying you 4. 5, right? And you’re opening a new account, you’re moving money, um, for what is in the grand scheme of things, very, very little return. Um, so I think the, the, the mindset is one of, um, disease feels strong, but in the examples that we’re describing, maybe that is what it is.

Mike Traynor: But on number one, I would say not to. You know, uh, Confused people but If you’re getting 1 percent at your bank and it’s 5 percent at [00:05:00] Capital one. That’s that’s a different story. Sure. So like the his point is for one tenth of one percent Well, don’t don’t bother. Yes, which we agree with. Yes

Jeff Mastronardo: Let’s spend some time on the seven streams of income because I think that’s a very popular mindset in today’s world with influencers and, um, social media and the internet and, and these like entrepreneurial people that are like, you, you need to just, you need to develop different forms of income and passive income versus, uh, like when I hear that, it’s like, okay, so you want seven streams of income, which means you’re going to be crappy at seven different things.

Like who is an expert and just dialed in as a landlord, as a financial planner, as a, as a, as a real estate, like as an influencer on, on social media, like who’s doing [00:06:00] four different things exceptionally well and generating income from it. You’re not optimizing your time. If you’re really good at something, do that.

Expand there. Find different sources of income there, not from a completely different activity. Like that’s just, that’s just crazy to me.

Mike Traynor: Yeah, I agree. I mean, it’s like, I don’t even know. I’ve never even heard of this seven streams thing, but I know what it’s about. It’s like, you should have three side hustles and a W2 job.

And then you should also own property in which you get that passive income. What? I mean, no, I agree with you. Like, it’s just, Somebody has to work three jobs to make ends meet. That’s different. But deliberately creating, I guess, diversification of your income and your cashflow, that’s great in theory, but

Jeff Mastronardo: what?

I’m sure this is this opinion that I have and that Mike has [00:07:00] is very like people would disagree with this very strongly.

Meghan Tait: I think there’s a, there’s a camp of people who would disagree with it, and I think you’re right in that a lot of it is, is kind of social media influenced, um, because you see people who Have done all of the things you’re describing, right? Whether it’s like they call it house hacking, right? Um, for the real estate piece of it, or they have a side hustle beyond their, their W 2 income.

So I think when those people have a platform that reaches other people, um, and they try to come off as like, if I could do it, anybody could do it kind of thing. Yeah. I think there’s a camp of people who would see that and say, Well, why can’t I make that work? But when you frame it about your time, which is what you’re describing, Jeff, and your [00:08:00] ability to maybe not be as good at all of those things as you could or should be, or your ability to be a partner, a father, a mother, a friend, like have a life outside of, of these streams of income.

Like there’s only so much time in a day. So I think that the vision of it and the reality of it are very disconnected and the people who appear to make it work Do so behind a screen that no one actually knows the success they may or may not be having. Um, and I feel like that’s, that’s a lot of what these, these things, how, how a lot of these things you shouldn’t focus on get, um, kind of forced onto us is, is through that microphone of social media.

You hear one, two or three people, um, right? Well, you have to move your savings account for a slightly higher yield. It’s like a no brainer. You’re going to get more money over here. Like there’s, there’s very few [00:09:00] people who are just being real about these things and saying it’s not a sustainable way to exist by trying to maximize all of these different areas of your life.

Um, For what?

Mike Traynor: I

Meghan Tait: mean, like the credit card strategy one, it’s another one. You could go onto Instagram or Tik TOK, or you could Google it. Like how to best use my credit card, how to pick the credit card. That’s going to give me the most X. Like how many people do I, do I feel like I probably misuse some of my credit card points?

Sure. Do I do that to the extent that it’s going to keep me up at night or force me to spend time figuring out a better way to, no, it’s just not worth my time. Um, but it’s, there’s no shortage of people telling you that any of these things are worth the time and effort without [00:10:00] truly knowing if they’ve had any success in any of them.

Mike Traynor: Yep. Yep. I agree. I agree. I mean, uh, I’m sure that if you spent a lot of time You could open up multiple, you could have a strategy to open up multiple credit cards, transfer balances, get points for the initial sign up, and then, you know, spend that money, right. For the rewards or whatever, and continue to do that and come out ahead.

You would totally, but is it worth it? Hell no. No.

Jeff Mastronardo: If my wife wants to do that, like spend hours upon hours doing that, that means I have to go pick up the kids from school. I have to make them dinner. I have to do the laundry, which means I can’t be here working. So you’re getting a benefit from it, but it’s, it’s detracting from, it has to detract from something else because it’s all time related.

We don’t have to spend any money on timing the market. We’ve beat that to death. If you’re spending time trying to time the market, you’re wasting your time because you’re [00:11:00] eventually going to not do as well as the market. So don’t even bother. Um, I agree a hundred percent with his complex investment products.

Like there’s so many things that are complex out there and God, I want to say like 99 out of a hundred of them are not advisable for most people to own. I can’t think of a complex investment product or something like that. That is in someone’s best interest.

Mike Traynor: I can’t think of a single one. Either.

Jeff Mastronardo: No,

Mike Traynor: not a one.

Jeff Mastronardo: I mean, aren’t hedge funds like really good.

Mike Traynor: Yeah. For the people who sell them and run them. Don’t they like beat the market? Yeah.

Jeff Mastronardo: Isn’t that why all rich people put all their money in hedge funds? Cause they’re like, the people are so smart and like, you don’t even know what they’re doing, but you’re just making like, they make a lot of money.[00:12:00]

I’m kind of poking the bear

Mike Traynor: the only The ones that are consistently killing it don’t want or even will take your money It’s all their own money, right? So I mean, it’s all of them are just They’re sold on the same basis, which is that this is something for the Well, whether it’s the rich people or the, or the exclusive investors who have it, it’s all, it’s all bullshit.

And it’s every one of the examples here, private equity, real estate syndications, permanent insurance, or complex insurance products. They’re all designed to pay the producers.

Jeff Mastronardo: They’re almost like, they’re almost like directly correlated. Like the more complicated a product is, the more expensive it is. The more costly it is and the less value the bottom line investor receives from it.

And [00:13:00] people just don’t want to believe that.

Meghan Tait: Yeah. Simple. Doesn’t sell.

Jeff Mastronardo: It does not. Yeah. Um, what was he talking about with leveraging 0 percent interest?

Meghan Tait: So the example he gave was, um, when you’re on Nordstrom and you get to check out and your cart is 450 bucks and you can pay it off in, incremental payments with, I think it’s like Klarna is one of the, the, um, platforms you can use.

Um, and his point was, you know, if you can’t afford to buy, something like that, that you need to split up over a couple of payments, then you shouldn’t be buying it. The opposite of that would be, I think Mike used this as an example when we were prepping, like getting a car loan at 0 percent interest is in fact a good opportunity.

Um, so larger purpose purchases using [00:14:00] 0 percent interest, um, pretty much a no brainer, but leveraging it in, in what, I mean, I guess there may be less consequential in terms of the purchase amount, um, is just not really very responsible. So good job, Thomas. Are there any things that maybe he didn’t list that come to mind?

To you guys that like shouldn’t be the focus of people’s financial priorities, maybe social media because of comparison and how you’re going to look at your friends Instagram feeds and see them going and doing and because of slight jealousy or FOMO, um, maybe committing to financially things that you just can’t afford and it being difficult to say no.

But. Avoiding social media, or at least the lens of I want to be able to do everything everyone else is doing just might not be [00:15:00] feasible. I think you took it as all of the different information on

Jeff Mastronardo: social media. Yeah, and I think I would add to that. Like I had a meeting yesterday with a client trying to explain to her why I think doing a Roth conversion for some of her IRA each year is probably a good thing for her in the long run, probably a good thing for her, her daughter in the long run.

Um, and at the end of it, like she got it, understood it, understood there was no like giant benefit to her immediately. And she’s like, yep, let me think about it. I’m like, yeah, no problem. Do it. Don’t do it. Your life isn’t going to change one way or the other. What I will say is everyone you talk to is going to tell you you’re crazy for doing it.

Your CPA, your friend, because everybody has there in the back of their mind, why would you pay taxes when you don’t have to pay taxes? So I would, I would throw that in the [00:16:00] category of, Stop taking advice or asking advice from people who know nothing about you. And I, I don’t mean like they know your name and they know how many kids you have, unless that person that you’re asking for advice from has your tax return, has your goal list, has like your entire financial plan in front of them to, to like delve through.

Don’t listen to anything they have to say. And so many people do that. They listen to, like, they have a conversation with someone and then they bring that back into our office and they’re like, none of my friends are doing this. They told me not to do this. Do your friends, have they seen your budget? Do they know where your investments are?

Do they know your effective and marginal tax bracket? Like, No. So why? Like, it drives me crazy.

Meghan Tait: I think that’s a good one.

Mike Traynor: Me [00:17:00] too, Meg. So just real quick before we move, um, avoiding social media for financial information at all, obviously, but I would, I would say media period, like all media, you know, I have friends who watch CNBC all the time, like every day they watch Kramer or Josh Brown on there talking about stocks and talking about markets and.

Maybe not aware what the business of media is, right? And falling into the trap of it. Cause that, that gets into your psyche. If you’re, if you’re listening to that stuff and we’re paying attention to it and maybe thinking, huh, this guy seems smart. He’s calling for a 25 percent correction by year. Like all that stuff is so poison to you.

The right things to do as from an investing standpoint, so I would just say never ever ever watch That stuff [00:18:00] Don’t read the magazines if they still are out there. I’m not sure. Do they have magazines anymore? I think they do like it’s all the same poison. So

Meghan Tait: So don’t watch tv. Don’t look at your phone and don’t talk to your friends

Mike Traynor: about financial stuff

Jeff Mastronardo: and invest right like well, it’s it’s the same in the medical field, but Right.

Like if there was something wrong with you physically, would you like go on a social media or like the Mayo clinic. com to diagnose yourself or would you go see a fricking doctor and have them take your blood pressure and do blood work, right? Like hook you up to an EKG.

Mike Traynor: Yeah.

Jeff Mastronardo: Yes. You’re having a heart attack.

Oh, well the Mayo clinic. com said I have high cholesterol.

Meghan Tait: Like my neighbor told me it’s

Jeff Mastronardo: the same damn thing, dude. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. All right. That was good. Well, Mike, I appreciate that. Thank you for sharing.

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Untucked Episode 99

Untucked Episode 99 – Investing at all time highs

Listen to the team discuss investing at all time high’s here or the full episode here.

Meghan Tait: [00:00:00] All right. Um, so today for Coach’s Corner, we are going to Um, refer to an article written by Ben Carlson called What if you only invested at market peaks? A common question we get from clients is when is the best time to invest? When things are going well and markets are hitting all time highs, there’s often apprehension of putting money into the market because of the possibility it goes down, um, shortly thereafter.

There’s been a lot of work done to support the fact that investing when they have the money regardless of market environments is the best time to do so. But as humans, our emotions don’t always adhere to those facts.

Jeff Mastronardo: Yeah, I think that we have just been hearing this a lot lately, talking to clients, talking to prospective clients about like investing money if they have money and they’re just super, everyone seems to be apprehensive about why would I do it now?

Like it’s at an all time high and it just seems like such a goofy comment or, or thing for them to say [00:01:00] when dollar cost averaging is not. the preferred method, like from a mathematical standpoint from a history standpoint. Now you might get lucky, but like if you have money, 100, 000 that you want to invest nine times out of 10 is not in your favor to dollar cost average 10 grand in over the next 10 months.

You’re better off investing it right away. All of it because we know the longer your money’s invested. the better chance it has to do. And people just don’t wrap their brain around that for some reason. And this is the same thing. It’s like, if I have money and I, and I have a long term perspective, it doesn’t matter where the market is right now.

Because if I’m investing for the next 10, 15, 20, 30 years, you’re better off investing now. So it doesn’t matter where it is, unless. [00:02:00] There’s like a, like a, um, a short timeframe for when that money’s needed.

Meghan Tait: Right.

Jeff Mastronardo: And that’s what I don’t think people get. Like, if you have the 100, 000 or 10, 000, is that earmarked for something?

No, it’s earmarked for my retirement. Well, then it should go in right now. I don’t care if the S& P is at 5, 200 because 10 years from now it’s going to be higher than that. 15 years is gonna be higher than that. 20 years is gonna be higher than that. I mean, the number that he references in his article, let me find it.

Like it’s just wild. And it’s the one that really stuck with me on this chart. Like, cause I can remember very vividly. I can’t remember 1987. I wasn’t investing in 1987, but I can certainly remember March of 2000. And I can certainly remember October of 2007. And if you invested in March of 2000, you immediately lost 50 percent [00:03:00] of your money.

But now 20 years later, your money’s 220 percent more like, that’s just crazy. Like I bet nobody would believe that.

Meghan Tait: Assuming you stayed invested over that whole time. Assuming you stayed

Jeff Mastronardo: invested and didn’t freak out over that 20 year period. Yeah. 23 year period at any point, right. Cause then all, all bets are off.

But even 07, like if you invested in October of 07, you immediately lost 57%. That’s crazy. But 10 years later you have 105 percent more money than you did when you started.

Meghan Tait: And that’s, that’s the concern people have, right? When they, when they are making these decisions is that at all time highs immediately there becomes right.

A new, data point on this chart. Um, and that’s kind of the emotional obstacle you have to get around, which is what you’re describing. The reality [00:04:00] of the time frame in front of you is going to benefit you more by getting the money invested. But looking at this data, there’s going to be a lot of people who say, well, I’d rather have less on the, you know, at the long, at the end of that than see my money cut in half immediately.

Jeff Mastronardo: Yeah, and I think my comment about dollar cost averaging is probably got a lot of people saying like I’m wrong and I’m an idiot, but Most Time frames the market is up If you just happen to decide not to dollar cost average in one of those rare instances When the market goes down Yes, you would have been better off dollar cost average, but most times you won’t be.

You will be better off getting it invested now. And like, don’t even look at who cares if you don’t need it right now, you don’t need a five years from now. You don’t need a 10 years now. Then don’t even look at it and don’t even try to go back and calculate which scenario would have made you [00:05:00] better off.

Mike Traynor: Yeah. So, um, the recent one that that’s kind of. Within memory for a lot of people is that is the two thousands, right? So you had the, the internet and tech thing, which kind of peaked in March of 2000. And then there was a subsequent basically cut in half. Um, I’m talking about the S and P 500 in this case.

And then remember, so 2000 and 2001, 2002 were all down years. Um, and then if you held on, You clawed your way back, but then you had to deal with 2007 and 2008, which was another, you know, 50 plus percent decline. So by the time you get to 2010, that decade, you’re not even, you’re barely underwater, but you’re, you’re, you’re not quite back to where you started.

So like incredibly painful 10 years, it’s all said and done. And by the way, one, that’s an [00:06:00] example of, of what would happen over 10 years, maybe five out of a hundred times. I mean, they coined it like the lost decade. But if you have more than 10 years to work with at that time, let’s say you had 20 years, the numbers right here, you would have made 219 percent on your money when that next decade was said and done.

So the point about like if you have any time frame at all to work with, you shouldn’t care at all about. The level of the market and on the flip side, you know, we know people that, you know, the S and P got back to an all time high in 2013 or 14. I want to say recovering from the financial crisis and all that.

Well, it’s at an all time high and people are saying, well, it’s an all time high. I’m going to wait for it to pull back. Wait for it to pull back. Well, what’s happened from that point in time, 2014 ish. Where was it? Where was the S and P was at like [00:07:00] 2, 100 or something like that. It’s more than way more than doubled since then way more.

So it’s more than it’s psychological, but it’s also like, I think a lot of times we hear people say, well. It’s at an all time high, we’re just going to wait until it like pulls back a bit and then we’ll get it. Well, in that case, you never got in. Right. Ever. Or, yeah, you sat there for nine years, ten years, and you’re still sitting there with what you had in cash.

Yeah, and I And you will never get those returns back.

Meghan Tait: And I also challenge that because of the emotional element of it, meaning We’re going to wait till things pull back. Oh, and then we’re going to be able to convince you to get in. Right. When, when shit starts to hit the fan and there’s a, there’s some other thing, a pandemic, something, uh, an election year, whatever it is, something else that we’re dealing with in the markets or in the country or in the economy.

And at that point, [00:08:00] you’re going to say, Oh, now’s a good time. I mean, it just, it, we don’t work like that. Humans don’t operate that way. And the people who are saying, yes, that’s exactly when I would do it. The. Okay, one out of a hundred, maybe end up pulling that trigger.

Jeff Mastronardo: Yeah.

Meghan Tait: But the environment becomes scarier and you’re then going to deploy your money.

It’s just way less likely.

Mike Traynor: It’s like, I mean, maybe this is a bad analogy, but it would be like if you’re, if you’re buying a house and real estate prices are at an all time high, which they often are, I mean, you kind of don’t say. I’m assuming you can afford the house, right? You don’t, you don’t say, well, I’m going to wait for a little pullback here.

Right. You know why? Because you kind of know that over time, the price of your house is going to be higher than it is. What then now, even if the, even if it’s an all time high price, right? Maybe

Jeff Mastronardo: not a year later, but when you go to sell it 10, 15 years from [00:09:00] now or longer, it’s going to be worth more. Yeah.

Yeah. Just like investments Yeah, so if it’s not if you don’t need if you’re not buying your house now with the intent to sell it six or month six months or a year later But yeah, you’re gonna make it’s going to be worth more. I don’t want to say you’re gonna make money on right? All right more and and I’m obviously like if if the decisions are Put it all in now.

I don’t want to do that dollar cost average or never invest it Yeah, obviously dollar cost if that makes you feel better You If that will get you in the market over some time frame, absolutely do that, but certainly do not sit on the sidelines and wait until you think there’s a pullback happening.

Mike Traynor: Yeah, and, and the math behind the dollar cost averaging is pretty simple.

It’s basically if you’re buying something, if you’re buying in every month, let’s say six out of 10 months, the markets are up and I’m making that up, but it’s kind of close to that. Um, so. By that logic [00:10:00] You’re going to be paying higher prices Six out of ten times and not four out of ten times.

Jeff Mastronardo: It makes perfect sense, man, and I didn’t it I didn’t even Understand that until I was going through the cfp curriculum and they’re like, yep Dollar cost averaging is not more favorable in most cases than just investing and i’m like What are you talking about?

Like dollar we’ve been told We’ve been told All of our lives, a dollar cost averaging is the way, but it’s so simple. Like when you think about if the market’s up 13 percent this year and you’re going to invest 12, 000 in the market that year, you’re better off putting all 12 grand in, in January to get the full 13 percent return versus doing 1, 000 a month.

I was blown away, like, like totally opened my eyes. I was blown away by it.

Meghan Tait: I think your point’s a good one though. And we can probably end there that like. If it means doing nothing, then dollar cost averaging is, is, is good and, and serviceable. But if you’re debating [00:11:00] between the advantages or disadvantages of kind of a lump sum investing in an all time high market, do it.

Just get in. Yep. Yep.

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Untucked Episode 96

Untucked Episode 96

Click here to listen to our Coach’s Corner discussion about parents financially supporting their adult children.

Click here to listen to our entire episode which can also be found on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or Google Play. 

Meghan Tait: [00:00:00] Um, today we’re gonna talk about an article recently, um, featured in the Wall Street Journal, written by Julia Carpenter. The article is called Well Into Adulthood and Still Getting Money from their Parents. Um, I took this like summary right from the article. Parental support is continuing later in life because younger people now take longer to reach many adult milestones, and getting there is more expensive than it has.

Been for past generations, economists and researchers have said, so. Julia’s article explores parents helping their adult children financially, and that’s what we’ll spend some time on today.

Jeff Mastronardo: What do we consider adult children? What age? 1823. 23,

Mike Traynor: I think. Well, I was gonna say 21 or 22

Jeff Mastronardo: plus. Yeah.

Meghan Tait: Okay. Like I, I view, at least I view the way that this article framed it as adult working children.

Jeff Mastronardo: Yeah. Working or trying to find work. Or trying

Meghan Tait: to find work. Yes. So early twenties. Okay. [00:01:00] And the article focused on what they referred to as adult milestones, having their own children buying their own homes, um, supporting their own kind of month-to-month needs, or not being able to do so with the income that they were making.

Jeff Mastronardo: So what do we kind of see? We, we see all the above, right? Like we see parents that help their adult children on a monthly basis with a stipend, and I mean, adult children, like in their forties Mm-Hmm mm-Hmm. Like twenties through forties. mm-Hmm. We see clients helping adult children with milestones.

Mm-Hmm. I’m gonna give them 10, 20, 30, 50 grand to buy a house. Mm-Hmm mm-Hmm. And we see them also just non-milestone. Like, Hey, here’s 10 grand. Here’s five grand at Christmas. Yes. Here’s 15,000. Just ’cause I want to give it to you.

Meghan Tait: Yes. And I would argue the majority of those decisions are made because the parents are in a position to be able to do it.

[00:02:00] Not often coming from a place of need from the kids, kids asking for

Jeff Mastronardo: it. Yes. Hey, I need help. Yes. Will you please help

Meghan Tait: me? Which we know that exists, obviously. Um, it’s just not something maybe we. Experience as much

Mike Traynor: you have. You’re in that position. Yeah. Yourself. You have a adult. Yeah.

Jeff Mastronardo: Child. And I’m completely torn.

I have no idea what I’m doing. Uh, I don’t know if I’m an enabler. I don’t know if I’m supporting. I don’t know if, I’m certainly not like being the, like, bad cop, that’s for sure. Um, and I don’t know what you’re supposed to do. Right. Like my kid lives at home. She had a job that was miserable. Quit it kind of.

Yeah. Not the way you should have. Like she should have gotten another job then quit her job. But it was so bad. And like, I’ll use the term like abusive, like I was like, you just gotta get outta that place. Yeah. And then you could find a job waiting table somewhere that’s taken a little longer than we’d like it [00:03:00] to.

Um, so I just don’t know like, what’s the cutoff? Like, when are you like, you need to be out of the house, you need to be in your own apartment. ’cause you don’t wanna force your kid into a. Financially stressful situation, but you can’t let your kid just like sit at home and eat your Eggos for the next.

Like, yes, I eat Eggos every morning. You can’t let your kid just eat your food and be comfortable. And we’ve Melissa and I have done a horrible job. What I mean is a very good job of making our home very comfortable. So like nobody wants

Mike Traynor: to leave. Yeah, I mean, I think like most things I would say it’s situational.

And, and there’s not a black-and-white answer, in my opinion. It just never would be you. And then you get down to when you have multiple adult children, one maybe needs no help and one maybe needs a lot of help. So you handle that differently. You just have to, right. Um,

Jeff Mastronardo: if your [00:04:00] kids, if your kid’s working, this is, this is the way I, how I, if your kid’s working and they’re a productive member of society, you have way more leeway.

With me, like, yeah, let’s stay here until you have enough, and your budget and expense ratio is enough where you can get out on your own and, and not have to like really struggle too much. Now I’ll just pull, pull a number like that. I’ll pull a number outta the, outta the air. Like that can’t be till you’re 30 and like 28 is probably when I start like.

Scratching my head like, all right, when the heck are you gonna get outta here?

Meghan Tait: What if she wants to buy a house in New York? Like, what if that’s her goal? I mean, twenty-eight, she’s not gonna be able to do

Jeff Mastronardo: that. Then you have to save up here until you’re twenty-eight. Go get yourself an apartment in New York or in Hoboken, or right, wherever.

And then it’s [00:05:00] just gonna take you a little longer to save up because now you have to like. You have the expense of an

Meghan Tait: apartment for a, they rent too. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. I think the element, like I, I, I agree with you, Mike, that like, it’s very situational. I feel like it’s just so important to have the conversation and to be on the record about.

Expectations from both sides to whether or not you’re job-seeking or you are responsibly spending and saving your money. Um, you know, and, and timelines. I, I, I feel like creating them can be a little bit of a slippery slope, right? It can maybe add undue pressure, can create anxiety around an age, approaching an age that maybe isn’t.

It isn’t totally necessary. A again, I, that’s situation by situation.

Jeff Mastronardo: Uh, communication is like step one. Yeah. And we screwed that up. Like we never had the sit down. It’s so crazy that we’re having this pod now because [00:06:00] Melissa and I talked about this morning and we reached out to Kayla today and said, Hey.

Why don’t we, ’cause she’s in between jobs. She’s looking for a job. We’re like, we need to sit down this, this weekend. If, if we all can to discuss like, what’s your plan? Like how long do you want to be here in living at home? What does your budget look like? What are your goals? What are you saving up for?

What do you want your career to look like? Does that mean you have to go back to school? Do you want a career? I don’t know if you want a career and like just have that discussion. We haven’t had it. Mm-Hmm. And, and we never had it. So that was a mistake. We probably should have had that a year and a half ago.

Um, but she’s twenty-four, we’re, we’re gonna have it now. Everybody’s on the same page to have, and I think we’re all gonna feel a whole lot better after we have it. She’s gonna feel better ’cause she finally has direction. We feel better because we understand her expectations and she knows our expectations.[00:07:00]

And I think as long as you’re helping your kids make good financial decisions, that’s good.

Mike Traynor: Like I think I can, I can definitely see the helping with the down payment as becoming, as being way more of a, um, an obvious and important thing to do, given that all the other things are there. You know,

Jeff Mastronardo: the stars would have to align for me for that one.

Yeah. Yeah. Like if a kid has a house that they wanna buy and the down payment’s 50 grand and they have $5,000 saved up, I’m not helping you.

Mike Traynor: But I think part of the thing there is that the article mentions it that the price of real estate now, relatively speaking, mm-hmm. Is outrageous. So. The down payment that would’ve been required 30 years ago is it’s, it’s not even attainable,

Jeff Mastronardo: but if you haven’t shown the discipline and the financial ability to accumulate at least half of the down payment, why would I help you buy a house?

You’re probably just [00:08:00] gonna make more financial mistakes and you’re probably gonna lose the house or need more financial support from me, which I’m not gonna do. I,

Meghan Tait: I, I think that’s where conversations are important and expectations are, are required. I mean. I, I, obviously, I don’t have kids, but like when we think about that adulthood timeframe, it’s like, it’s weddings, it’s houses, it’s, you know, again, kids of their own.

And I think there are a lot of ways in which help can be used, of course. Um, but maybe. With you and your kids like identifying, you said it, the goals or the priorities of your kid and they’re gonna be different for everybody. And then I think it’s like how financially solvent are mom and dad like. Can they afford to do these things Again, we deal in a space and place where most of the time the affordability for mom and dad is not a huge concern, but that’s not [00:09:00] the norm.

I mean, the life being more expensive isn’t just impacting young adults. Yeah. Life’s more expensive for everybody. Now. Mom and dad might not be trying to buy a home or trying to have a wedding or have their own kids, so I understand that, but like. Parents deciding to help with no guardrails for themselves is like the absolute worst thing they could do for themselves and their kids.


Jeff Mastronardo: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I have a few clients where I’ve said like, you know, it’s, it’s a, it’s a single client, you know, husband or wife, predeceased. They have one child and they have more money than they need. Like, you can help your kid as much as you want. Yeah. Like you’re. You are not like filthy rich, but you’re, you’re never gonna spend all this money.

You, they’re gonna get it anyway if you want to help them. Sure. No guardrails. You’re, you’re totally fine. But I think in, in 90% of the cases, yeah, there have to be guardrails. ’cause the parents have [00:10:00] enough for themselves, but not enough for everybody else. Right. It’s interest, it’s, it’s, it’s wild how unique every situation is.

And there is no. Yeah. Okay. Here’s the rule of thumb. This is how you do it. You know, you, once your kids hit twenty-eight, you kick ’em out like it’s expensive and they don’t make a lot of money. Mm-Hmm. Uh, I, I, you know, kudos to the kid that graduates college and is immediately in an. In an apartment on their own supporting themselves.

But that’s, I don’t think that’s the norm anymore.

Mike Traynor: Yeah, I mean, I have a friend who, whose son just graduated a year ago, took a job in outta state and the job he learned, the job, he rented an apartment, spent everything he was making on that and just living. And then, you know, this particular job, I guess, has afforded him the ability to work remotely.

So he just announced he’s coming home and living at home to save the rent. While he continues to work and the parents [00:11:00] are not happy Yeah. About it at all. So, um, but I get it, like he’s not saving any money by spending, you know, $1,800 a month on a rent, wherever, wherever it is. I’m making up a number. But like he’s, he’s spending every, he’s not saving anything where he is.

And that’s a scenario where, I don’t know, I would, I would say, yeah, like a year. Two, whatever. I don’t know, maybe, but just, just bank what you can and

Jeff Mastronardo: then figure it out. There’s other options, man. You don’t have to, you don’t have to get an apartment by yourself, right? Yeah. You get an apartment with two other people, you make it affordable, but you can’t, like, I just don’t, like if your kid’s sitting on your couch, you eating Cheetos, like you need to crack them into shape to like get a job or get out.

And I, and like, I’m sorry, like that’s, if that creates financial stress for you, I’m sorry, but you just can’t like. What’s the word that people, you can’t free load. Yeah. You can’t be like a freeloader if they’re busting their butt and they’re working and it’s just expensive and [00:12:00] Yeah. That’s kind of where I’ve, this Yeah.

You help them accumulate and then figure out, okay, you wanna move out? Well, yeah. A, a 2000 apartment isn’t in your range, but I don’t want you living in a $200 a month apartment, so let’s figure out, find two of your buddies and find a, find a place, because I think that’s gonna help them grow, right.

Keeping them at home where they’re comfortable. It isn’t getting them out with roommates, that experience living with other people having to like wash the dishes. Mm-Hmm. Because your roommates are gonna give you shit if you don’t like, that’s. All growth for them.

Meghan Tait: And it, it, it affords them growth financially too.

’cause it forces a level of responsibility you hope. And obviously it could go the other way where poor habits are created, but like you hope that maybe with enough of a cushion a couple of years saved and then like a, a budget or a framework in which they can afford to [00:13:00] live that it does create maybe more sound.

Financial decision making moving forward.

Jeff Mastronardo: I mean, we’ve all done it, right? All three of us have moved out. Yeah, it sucked. It was financially stressful, at least for me. I

Meghan Tait: lived with two people I met on Craigslist. What’s Craigslist?

Jeff Mastronardo: I’m kidding. It’s tough. I’m not saying it’s not tough, but there’s ways that you can alleviate the stress.

Level a little bit and make it possible for you to move

Meghan Tait: out. Like at the end of the day, if people have parents who are willing and able to help if it’s done so responsibly and well intended.

Jeff Mastronardo: Yeah, I think and, and uh, maybe I’ll wrap with this. I think the one thing that we have to do a good job, a better job of doing, and I’ll throw my wife under the bus,

Meghan Tait: we being

Jeff Mastronardo: parents.

Parents, yeah. We have to stop looking about what we did. Like [00:14:00] Melissa always says, and this is not specifically related to like older kids, like to our younger generation, I agree with you, but she’s always like, man, like when my mom was at work and I was at home, like I started dinner and I clean that.

Like, okay, well you’re, you’re a better person, right? And you’re maybe a harder worker, but like, we can’t take what we did and and expect our children to do the same damn thing, especially when we have made their lives super comfortable.

Mike Traynor: Yeah, I think that’s a great point.

Jeff Mastronardo: Okay. All right.