Family Wealth Planning: And Then There Was Avery Grace
What better way to continue our back-to-school blogging season than by introducing our newest (and most precious) student of life and SAGEbroadview star, Avery Grace Annello?
Born last May to our Wealth Manager Chris Annello and his wife Lindsay, Avery fast became the light of their life, as well as “Grampy” Larry Annello’s favorite photographic study. (Sorry, Colbie, you’re still cute too.)
That said, tiny babies represent big changes to any family’s dynamics, from seismic shifts in the daily routine to major new financial planning needs. In this and a follow-up post, Chris and Larry share their respective perspectives on ways that little Avery has been rocking their wealth management world. First up …
The Proud Parents: Chris and Lindsay
As first-time parents, Lindsay and I have experienced more love than we ever thought possible since Avery was born. We’ve also been doing all we can to prepare for her ongoing needs – from year one, onward. So far, we’ve tackled the following as our highest priorities:
Work/Life Balance: On the one hand, we want to be with our daughter as much as we can. On the other hand, her financial well-being is important too. We discussed whether we wanted to be a single-income family, with Lindsay staying at home. Ultimately, we decided that Lindsay would continue her work as a CPA. Besides the money, she has put a ton of time and energy into her career; neither one of us wanted her to give that up.
Daycare Costs and Considerations: Daycare costs are scary-high these days. Fortunately, our parents are willing to babysit a few days a week, and we received a trusted referral for a quality facility right down the street from Chris’s office. We’re grateful to have found what we hope will be an effective balance for all of us.
Current Cash Flow: As a financial planner/accountant household, of course we already had a monthly cash flow spreadsheet for managing our money. With Avery on the way, we reviewed and revised our plans to reflect the new costs – increased medical, daycare, baby supplies, etc.
Higher Education: With no time to waste, we started saving for Avery’s college education even before she was born. Her Social Security card took three weeks to come in the mail, and we had her 529 College Savings plan set up the next day!
Insurance and Estate Planning: We’ve also stepped up our life insurance coverage and started crafting the necessary estate-planning documents. As busy young parents with everything to look forward to, this can feel awkward, but it’s so important for Avery, should something happen to either or both of us.
Enjoying Quality Family Time: Even with all of the above, we’ve also made sure to spend time together as a family. I think my favorite part has been taking Avery on day trips all over New England, most recently to our favorite locale, Newport, RI. What a joy it’s been to see our old, familiar places through her fresh and wondering eyes!
Check back next week for Grampy Larry’s perspective on what sort of wealth dynamics to consider when welcoming new generations into the family fold.
SAGE Serendipity: US New & World Report published 7 Fun Money Apps for Kids, a tech savvy way to get young ones, ages six and up, thinking about finance. Many of the apps teach kids how to save and manage their allowance. One, which we find particularly, well, funny, is called Celebrity Calamity; it actually “allows children to act as financial consultants for spendthrift, out-of-control celebrities.”