Personal Wealth Planning

5 lessons for wealth and happiness

The lessons in this article are based on the work of Anthony Robbins who has written many books on personal achievement. He believes that you will get from life what you ask of it. So if your requests are small and limited so will your successes and rewards be. Find out how to reach personal and professional success using five key lessons.

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Are you looking after your (own) interests?

Small businesses owners are famous for eating, sleeping and living their businesses. It is after all, your creation, your baby, and your livelihood. The problem comes in when all your money or investment is tied up in your business, which you'll usually discover when you're in a financial bind on the home-front. Rather learn the lesson the easy way. This article helps you to be as responsible about your personal finances as you are about that of your business.

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Cash shortfalls in estates becoming a bigger problem

Cash shortfalls in estates remain a problem and as a result of the current global debt crisis and concomitant high cost of living and poverty, the problem is becoming worse. The fact that there is a cash shortfall in an estate does not mean the estate is insolvent. But, if the problem cannot be solved and a forced sale is the only solution, insolvency could be a risk if a good price is not fetched.

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Certain provisions in a will could be invalid

Testators can rightly argue that an inheritance is a privilege and not a right, and can be prescriptive about it. However, the last statement has limitations. For example, the word “wish” in a will must also be used correctly so that the testator's intentions are very clear to the executor. Depending on the exact wording of the will, the word "wish" could be considered as a directive or only a wish. Expert advice is therefore recommended when drawing up a will. Guard against "ruling from the grave".

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Communication between executor and stakeholders in an estate is important

A number of sections in the Administration of Estates Act make some form of communication or disclosure compulsory. The first is the reporting of an estate and the submission of a will to the Master of the Supreme Court. This is not the executor's responsibility, as at this stage no official appointment has been made. Find out why communication between an executor and stakeholders is important when handling an estate.

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Family monthly budget worksheet

This family budget worksheet is set up to be used for projecting your family monthly budget schedule for 12 individual months. The monthly schedule is easier to understand than an annual family budgeting tool. We've formatted the worksheet and put in most of the income and expense descriptions. All you have to do is put in your numbers and print it. If you need additional categories of income or expense items you can quickly modify it. Just plug in your amounts and the spreadsheet will automatically compute the totals.

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Judgements and law amendments are opportunities to review your affairs

Do you keep abreast of the latest judgments, amendments of the law and the state budget, especially if you handle your own will and financial affairs? And if you make use of the services of a financial adviser, are they well-informed and do they use the opportunity to review your will and financial affairs? Successful advisers are well aware of various opportunities, however, most top achievers go one step further. When they come across interesting cases, they find out more to determine how it might apply to their existing clients.

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Keeping it all in the family poses specific challenges

What makes a family business different to any other? Some of the world's most famous and successful businesses were started by families, including Wal-Mart, Toyota, Ford and De Beers. Many of the businesses that are now listed on stock exchanges globally, started out as family businesses. No doubt many other ventures were started, but failed to reach such heights of success. What makes them different, and do they face the same challenges as any other business?

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Managing debt in the workplace

Download the presentation prepared by Nigel Willmott. The topic was presented at a workshop held in Johannesburg for SME Toolkit members on Managing employee debt in your business and why it is important to do so. The workshop was arranged in response to a survey done with small business owners to assess the risk employee debt poses to a business.

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Matters the newly divorced must attend to

Events such as birth, marriage, divorce and death each involve unique administrative procedures which, in some cases, have to be attended to as a matter of urgency. When a person is in the process of getting divorced, he or she must make sure that he/she obtains the correct legal and financial advice before the divorce is finalised. Rushing through the traumatic process just to get it over and done with could hold financial implications for one or both of the parties.

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Preserve your wealth

Most entrepreneurs put all their money into their business, seeing it as an investment for the future. But what if things go wrong? Therefore, it's important that you think a bit more broadly, investing some of your earnings elsewhere. This article will give you some insight into the best places to invest your money.

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Replacement of income at death

The family of an owner is seriously exposed to a financial shock that follows the death of that owner. The income that the owner drew from the business cannot continue, since the owner can no longer contribute to the business. If the income is earned as a salary, this salary stops at the death of the owner, leaving the family without income. This is especially important if the business is going to close down or if the family cannot harvest the true value of the business after the death of the owner.

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Sanlam

Sanlam is a diversified financial services group, headquartered in South Africa, operating across a number of selected global markets. We have been creating value for stakeholders since 1918 – for more than 100 years. Sanlam is one of the biggest internationally active insurance groups globally, and is classified as a domestic systemically important financial institution in South Africa. We contribute to financial resilience and prosperity in all the markets where we are present.

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The implications of marriage in Community of Property

If you think your marriage in community of property means that only half of your and your spouse's assets are exposed to the consequences of insolvency and to executor's fees, think again! Berrie Botha, CEO of Sanlam Trust, says couples married in community of property are often confused or uncertain about the rules applicable to their estate when one of them is declared insolvent or dies.

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This could happen to your business at your death

Death is a very emotional event for loved ones left behind. It could also cause disruption with regard to the material side of life, especially when the breadwinner dies. This could also be the case when the key person in a business dies. In this article common problems of which business owners should be aware, are discussed briefly.

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Tips for choosing a financial planning adviser

Poor financial planning is a key contributor to the failure of most small to medium-sized businesses. Don't let that be the reason for your business failing. It's important that you get a professional in to help you with your financial planning and management. There are various criteria to look for when searching for the person who is most experienced to deal with your specific circumstances. This article outlines those criteria.

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Understand the implications of your marital dispensation

Marriage is not a business transaction, but as in the case of any other transaction, there are certain administrative tasks that need to be done beforehand and other decisions that have to be made. The first important decision concerns the form the marriage is to take. Will it be in or out of community of property? There are a number of advantages and disadvantages that can be weighed up.

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What happens to your business at your death?

Death is a very emotional event for loved ones left behind. It could also cause disruption with regard to the material side of life, especially when the breadwinner dies. This could also be the case when the key person in a business dies. A small business owner needs to plan for the time when they are no longer able to run their business. In this article, common challenges of which business owners should be aware of, are discussed briefly.

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What if the spouse who is expected to live the longest dies first?

In traditional (or typical) marriages, estate and financial planning focuses mainly on the more economically-dominant partner's retirement, disablement and death. Their will, whether a separate or joint will, also focuses on the "breadwinner" as the first deceased or if they and their spouse should die simultaneously or shortly after each other. But what would happen if the "breadwinner's" spouse dies first, especially in the case of a joint estate?

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Would you rather be the tortoise or the hare?

In a related article, “How not to manage your business and personal finances” I wrote about the Spenders and their business Printing Pain, and how through a lack of focus and self-discipline they landed themselves and their business in a financial mess. Their conduct is in many ways similar to that of the Hare in Aesops fable about the race between a tortoise and a hare. Contrast the Spenders with this case study, which is about the Tortoise* family and their manufacturing business called Wealth Manufacturing*.

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