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Jul 2021

The Biggest Purchase of My Life – Part I

Three house icons with a magnifier glass. West Financial Services.
By Ryan Streilein, CFA®, Equity Analyst
During the pandemic, my fiancé (now wife) and I arrived at the conclusion that a one bedroom, 750 square-foot apartment is not ideal for two people and a dog to share 24-7 for an extended period of time.
Jul 2021

Cryptocurrency in Your Estate Plan

Coins West Financial Services Cryptocurrencies
Rasti Nikolic, Associate Financial Planner
Cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency that uses cryptography for security. Each cryptocurrency uses a unique electronic address for transfer between users’ digital wallets. The user must have a ‘private key’ to be able to move cryptocurrency. If the
Jun 2021

Track Attack

Dana Tomisek, West Financial Services Director of IT & Client Services entering a sports car
By Dana Tomisek, Director of IT & Client Services
We arrived at the Charlotte Motor Speedway on a warm July morning. I had been there over 10 years prior to watch a race, but this time I was going to be the one behind the wheel. My stomach was in knots!
Apr 2021

Buy vs. Lease — Car?

By Kristan Anderson, CEBS®, CFP® | Dir. Of Retirement Plan Services & Dir. Of Financial Planning
Last summer, my daughter wanted her own car, to get to work and show rehearsals. But I didn’t feel like we needed to buy another car, specifically for someone who was going off to school soon. So, I was left with the task of figuring out how to provide transportation, without creating unnecessary long-term costs. This led me to the question: When should you buy a car, versus lease? It’s complicated and, like a lot of financial decisions, depends on a number of circumstances.
Mar 2021

Who Let the Dogs Out?

By Kristan Anderson, CEBS®, CFP® | Dir. Of Retirement Plan Services & Dir. Of Financial Planning
As an independent young adult, soon after I brought home my first puppy, I found myself in the vet’s office. He had apparently ingested a piece of metal, making him throw up repeatedly.
Feb 2021

What’s in Your (Digital) Wallet?

Rasti Nikolic, MBA, Associate Financial Planner West Financial Services
By Rasti Nikolic | Associate Financial Planner
If you want to own Bitcoins or any other cryptocurrency, you need to have a digital wallet. The purpose of a digital wallet is to provide a space to send and receive cryptocurrency and to store private keys. Private keys are known only to the owner and are needed to authorize transfers.
Jan 2021

Paying for College – Top 529 Plans

Kristan Anderson, CEBS®, CFP® | Dir. Of Retirement Plan Services & Dir. Of Financial Planning
By Kristan Anderson, CEBS®, CFP® | Dir. Of Retirement Plan Services & Dir. Of Financial Planning
In this, the first in our series of blog posts around paying for college, we take a look at the Morningstar report regarding the top 529 College Savings Plans.
Jan 2021

Traveling to Europe in Times of COVID

Rasti Nikolic, MBA, Associate Financial Planner West Financial Services
By Rasti Nikolic | Associate Financial Planner
It seems strange (and difficult) to travel outside of the U.S. during the COVID-19 pandemic, but when you have family across the world, like I do, then you may have no choice.
Dec 2020

Get Credit When Credit is Due

Cheryl Langston, CFP®
By Cheryl Langston, CFP® | Relationship Manager
Credit cards offer convenience and safety for purchases. During this pandemic, credit card transactions are an even more attractive option for contactless payments. However, consumers need to make sure their cards are managed appropriately. Accumulating desired perks is attractive, but maintaining credit scores, minimizing interest costs and fees, and managing balances are more important. Below are a few guidelines for using credit cards to your advantage, while still being a responsible consumer.