August Newsletter 2019

Welcome to August!  Back to School



We would like to introduce to you Paul Walker.



Paul Walker


Partner, Investment Representative


Phone: (912)387-0111


Mobile Phone: (912)348-5647




Paul Walker is a partner of Parable Financial Network (PFN) and serves as the Chief Financial Officer.   He works out of our Waycross office as a Financial Advisor and he intends to continue pursuing excellence in assisting his clients to meet and exceed their life financial goals.  After 39 years of owning a profitable business, Paul developed a successful exit strategy in order to satisfy a God given desire to help others be successful in different stages of life. Paul has a Series 7 and Series 66 License and he has over 6 years’ experience.


He grew up on a farm and attended High School in Blackshear, Georgia and  has a 4 year business and finance degree from Georgia Southern University.  He is happily married to Shan and they have 2 children and 7 grandchildren.  He acts as the Treasurer at his church and also at a local mission organization where he is very active.  His hobbies are anything outdoors especially when his grandchildren are included.  He was the owner of Sapp’s Florist for over 39 years located in Waycross, Ga.  Today, August 1 is his birthday!  Happy Birthday, Mr Walker!


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Paul believes that an early start makes a world of difference.  He says to plan early, plan often and plan well for a secure financial future.  Paul understands the transition from working into retirement and has navigated the emotionally difficult process.  He can assist in strategy tax estate planning and he is continuing his education  in ways to position clients in the most advantageous portifolos  possible in order to complete their financial life cycle  for their beneficiaries or estate.




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  Help with College: A Gift for Your Grandkids


College graduates generally earn more, have lower rates of unemployment, lead healthier lifestyles, and are more active citizens than those without a degree.1 One estimate places the lifetime value of a bachelor’s degree at $2.8 million.2


That kind of opportunity requires a substantial investment that can be overwhelming even for families who are on solid financial ground. For the 2017–18 academic year, the average annual cost for tuition, fees, room, and board was $20,770 at a four-year public university and $46,950 at a nonprofit private university.3


Helping a grandchild obtain a college degree could be life-changing for the student and bring joy to you as well. However, to maximize the gift, it’s important to consider the potential ramifications for student aid and taxes.


Consider the FAFSA


The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the standard application for need-based student aid. Some schools also require additional, more detailed applications. A direct gift to your student would be included under the student’s income and savings on the FAFSA and may have an outsized effect on aid.


Depending on the size of your gift and the student’s other sources of funding, you might consider waiting until his or her senior year of college, after all financial aid has been finalized. Or you could wait until graduation and help pay back student loans.


Giving to the parents rather than the student is also an option. Parent resources must be entered on the FAFSA but generally count for significantly less than student resources in financial aid calculations. Under the federal aid formula, students must contribute 20% of their assets each year toward college costs, and parents must contribute about 5.6% of their assets or less, depending on their situation.


Gift Taxes


The gift tax would probably not be an issue unless you plan very large gifts over your lifetime. In 2018, you may contribute $15,000 ($30,000 combined if you’re married) to any number of individuals without being subject to the gift tax. Gifts above the annual exclusion may be applied toward the combined lifetime gift and estate tax exemption, which is $11.18 million in 2018 ($22.36 million for a married couple). Tuition (but not room and board charges) paid directly to the school is not subject to the gift tax, but any such payments would likely reduce need-based financial aid.


Be sure to consult a tax professional if you have questions about gift or estate taxes.


Types of 529 Plans


Saving for Future College Costs


 With today’s costs of a college education sharply rising, a 529 plan is a tax-advantaged savings plan that can help save for future college expenses. Introduced in 1996, 529 plans are sponsored by states, state agencies, or educational institutions and may vary slightly between states.


 Money invested in 529 plans grows tax-deferred, so there are no state or federal taxes when the money is withdrawn for qualified higher education expenses. Below is information about the two types of 529 plans: college savings plans and prepaid tuition plans.


 College Savings Plans


College savings plans give a range of investment vehicles to choose from when investing your savings contributions for a designated beneficiary. Your 529 account balance will rise and fall depending on the investment performance within the market, much like a typical investment account. There is no specified enrollment period for college savings plans and they can be established at any time.


Prepaid Tuition Plans


Prepaid tuition plans allow for the pre-purchase of credits for a beneficiary’s college tuition costs associated with participating in-state universities. Many prepaid tuition plans can also be converted for private or out-of-state institutions. Pre-payment of tuition allows you to lock-in the current tuition rates now in order to avoid higher prices in the future. Prepaid tuition plans can only be established during set enrollment periods.


529 plans can help you start saving early for future education costs. Investors should review the two types above in order to determine the most suitable plan for the designated beneficiary.







Money Lessons to Teach Your Kids


Children as young as three-years-old can understand basic money concepts. By setting a positive financial example and teaching good money habits early, parents can influence their children to lead healthy financial lives. Here are three money lessons to teach your kids.


  1. Delayed Gratification

Teach children the concept of delayed gratification and the benefits of waiting to buy something they really want. Avoiding an “open wallet” policy as a parent while encouraging financial discipline will help kids learn to budget and save for future wants and needs, instead of spending all their money on an impulse. Older children may benefit from seeing an online compound interest calculator to learn how their savings can grow over time.


  1. Money is Finite

Teach children money is a finite resource and everything bought comes with an opportunity cost. In today’s world of swiping credit cards and using Apple Pay with the tap of a wrist, it can be less obvious to children where money really comes from. The old saying “money doesn’t grow on trees” still rings true – you must prioritize, plan, and save for the things you want to buy.


  1. Charitable Giving

Teach children charitable giving to help cultivate a spirit of generosity and giving back to those in need. Parents and their children can decide as a family what cause or charity to support based on unique interests or specific community needs. In doing so, children will develop a greater social awareness and learn every little bit, no matter how small, can make a positive impact on the world and others less fortunate. 


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Back-to-School Expenses


Planning for a New School Year


As school season ramps up, shopping commercials will become more prevalent as parents and their children start planning for the next school year. Below are strategies to keep in mind as you navigate back-to-school expenses.


Set a Budget


According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), $3.4 billion was projected to be spent on backpacks alone in 2017. Take the time to calculate the amount of funds you can set aside for your shopping trip. If you plan ahead, you should be more relaxed when shopping.


Create a Priority List


Once your budget is set, sit down with your student(s) and determine what items will be listed as “needs” and what items will be listed as “wants.” Having this list while shopping should give you a roadmap for what stores to visit and an estimate of how your budget will match up. At this point, you should be able to determine if your budget meets or exceeds your expenses.


Sales Tax Holiday


Research if your state offers a Sales Tax Holiday. On that date, you may be able to shop within categories for items that will be free of state and local taxes.


Used Textbooks


For college-aged students, textbooks may be one of the largest expenses behind tuition and room/board. Companies such as Chegg or Barnes and Noble offer rentals and/or used textbooks for a fraction of the price of purchasing new textbooks. If shopping for used textbooks, be sure to check the version of publishing before purchase. Otherwise, you may have the burden of needing to track down the correct page number for assignments.


The long lines and bin diving will be enough to deal with on your shopping trip. Plan ahead and do research before heading out.


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As the New School Year Approaches


Summertime is coming to an end and back to school we go.  Please pray for everyone during this 2019 school year, the administration, teachers, paraprofessionals, bus drivers, lunch room staff, custodians and students.  May this year be one of the best!


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