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Advocate - Lake Highlands (October 2009)

Loving Life!

Janet Elaine Fresquez 0000-00-00 00:00:00

I THOUGHT LONG AND HARD about what to say in my first foray into the Advocate. I’ve read and enjoyed it for many years and want to make a good contribution to my neighborhood mag. I guess I could say how long we’ve lived, loved, cried and had fun in Lake Highlands starting with our first house over on Yorkford when our two kids attended Wallace. October reminds me of pumpkins and trick-or-treating up and down those streets with all the neighborhood kids. There was one street that had the yard decorated like a funeral home and it even had a casket complete with a very real-looking dead person who would wake up and scare you when you got too close! And then there are always the pumpkins in the Church yard on Audelia. Autumn always meant Lake Highlands High School football games when our son played in the band and when our daughter was cheerleader for the Junior High and Freshman Center. October is when the leaves turn shades of color, the weather (hopefully) gets cooler and the changing season is upon us. My husband and I are official “empty nesters” but are fortunate that our children still love to spend time with Mom and Dad. October equals change, and change is good. WE ALL EXPERIENCE CHANGE in our lives, a crossroads so-to-speak. The last couple of years have seen great changes in my life as I closed the chapter on a 16 year passion and career in the film industry and dove head first into a new love and passion as a Life Insurance Advisor. I love Life Insurance and what it can do for people and businesses and I want to share that with my neighbors and local businesses. The Advocate seemed a great way to reach out to those around me and share this love that I have and since September was Life Insurance Awareness Month, October seemed the perfect time to dive in. THE NEXT STEP was to give my column a name. Inspiration came from a mantra during a long week-end in Miami on a Mother/Daughter trip. One of the girls, Zoe, kept saying, “I’m loving life right now…”, and by the end of the trip, whether we were on the beach, at a restaurant, walking in South Beach, shopping, you name it - we were all, “LOVING LIFE”! IT CLICKED! Loving Life, that’s what I’ll call my column. Because I am loving life right now in our wonderful neighborhood, change is in the Autumn air and possibilities abound. I may not write feature length scripts or direct and edit short films and music videos anymore, but I can share my love of all things Life Insurance, keep writing, and help business owners, neighbors and friends get an advantage and a safety net. I hope that all of you will email me with any questions you may have about life insurance, disability and long term care insurance, wealth accumulation, estate planning and business planning… And also, how you are Loving Life in Lake Highlands! Here is a question I received from a friend last week about retirement planning: Dear Janet, My wife and I are in our 40’s and have some friends who retired last year just when their 401K was cut in half and a portfolio that had been reduced by 40%. Talk about bad timing! How can I sleep better at night without this uneasy feeling that my retirement plan may be built on sand? I mean, if the market goes up and I have gains for a few more years, what will happen if the market corrects just as I’m about to retire? What if everything I’ve worked hard to accumulate is suddenly, like the house built on sand, wiped out? Sleepless in Lake Highlands DEAR SLEEPLESS IN LAKE HIGHLANDS, Fortunately, there is a strategy that can not only help you address those questions, but also help ensure that the assets you’re accumulating for the future won’t be washed away should the flood waters actually come. That strategy is life insurance. As a component of your savings and investment strategy, life insurance can help you accumulate, protect and preserve your assets; pass your assets on to your heirs privately and tax efficiently; and accomplish a wide range of charitable and estate preservation goals. IF YOU’RE STILL SAVING for retirement, adding life insurance to your overall investment strategy can give you the freedom to invest in other assets more aggressively. Why? Because life insurance cash values accumulate income-tax deferred, and as they accumulate, they can function as the conservative portion of your investment portfolio. At retirement, you can borrow from your policy on a tax-favored basis to supplement other sources of income. As a result, you may be able to continue growing your investment portfolio and you may be able to postpone drawing Social Security past your normal retirement age, allowing you to increase the amount you ultimately draw on a monthly basis. Finally, you may not have to repay the money you borrow from your policy but this should be done with proper planning because loans and other policy withdrawals will adversely impact cash values and death benefits. THERE ARE MANY WAYS to integrate life insurance into your overall investment strategy. The simplest way might be to start allocating a portion of the assets you are already investing into a policy appropriate for your circumstances and objectives. By adding a life insurance component to your asset accumulation strategy today, you can establish an instant reservoir of funds which can self complete your savings program should you die prematurely; you can help ensure that market volatility or unforeseen world events won’t wipe out everything you’ve built over the years; and you can achieve a variety of both charitable and estate preservation objectives and hopefully sleep a little better at night. JANET ELAINE FRESQUEZ is a Life Insurance Advisor with Ayres Financial Group in Dallas, Texas and is a registered representative with Horner, Townsend and Kent (HTK). She and her husband, Rick, have been married for 28 years and have lived in Lake Highlands since 1992 with their two children and two dogs. For questions and comments: A9JC-0908-11

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