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Planning for Life’s Hardest Moments

From advisor Luke Porter: Early in my career, I had just started working with a couple nearing retirement. About 3-4 months into our work, the husband passed away without warning at his job. We were one of the first calls, outside of family, the widow made.

Her husband had generally managed the household finances. The Monday after his passing, I remember sitting with her as we called banks, insurance companies, 401k providers, etc.

It marked me. I was deeply grateful that they had begun working with us when they did. Had they not begun working with our team, she would have had to re-assemble a picture of her financial world on her own. We knew enough about their financial world to effectively support her and give her the freedom, at least financially, to face the grieving process.

It was formative for me, but there are two quick thoughts for those of you who are married.

  1. You and your spouse should be involved in the financial planning process whenever possible. There’s never a guarantee that “the money manager” will always be around.
  2. If your spouse isn’t interested in participating, make sure they know who to call. One of the best gifts you can give to your spouse is access to guidance to walk them through life’s hardest days whenever they should happen.

Vacation Planning: With summer approaching, vacation planning is likely in full swing. Apollo Global Management group released this chart last weekend:

A foreign vacation is one of those “things” that are unnecessary, but everyone seems to desire. Researcher James Bianco mentioned, in reference to this chart, that Americans have a higher propensity to spend since the COVID shutdown/restart. This chart illustrates his perspective quite clearly.

And for all our adventurers, we’re all for foreign travel! This is just an interesting observation of current trends.

If you plan to adventure this summer, we would love to provide you with a Compass Ion t-shirt—whether you’re going on a trip to Tahiti or running a 5k. Let us know, and we’ll send you one. In return, we’d love a photo of you in full adventure mode—a virtual postcard, if you will!

Unclaimed Property: We wanted to provide a quick (and random) reminder that you can search for unclaimed property in Pennsylvania for free at patreasury.gov/unclaimed-property. You can search by first and last name or company name to see if the state has any unclaimed property in your name. The search results may include cash, physical property, abandoned bank accounts, forgotten stocks, uncashed checks, unused gift cards, life insurance policies, and proceeds from safe deposit boxes. You never know—it’s worth a look!

Before We Move on From the Eclipse: While the celestial event we witnessed on April 9 was undoubtedly incredible, we also thought this story was awe-inspiring. In 1978, at 22 years old and in his first year of teaching, earth science teacher Pat Moriarty gave his 9th-grade students a list of solar eclipses. He told them to circle the one in 2024 and promised they would watch it together as it was expected to pass over their hometown of Rochester, NY. More than 100 of his students joined him earlier this month for the solar eclipse. Watch the heartwarming story here.