Use This Easy Hack To Leverage Your 2017 Tax Refund


It’s March. The time of year when the early tax filers start to see their tax refunds in the mail. Marketers, sales people, car dealers and just about everyone with a product or service to sell knows this and are out to separate you from your money.

The IRS estimates that the average tax filer will receive a refund check of about $3,050. Here in MN, taxpayers can expect an average tax refund of $2,430.

That kind of money won’t change your life, but what you choose to do with it now can make a big difference over time. Rather than spending it on more stuff that you don’t need, consider leveraging your tax refund for even greater benefit in the future by using this easy hack: 

New Video Series Answers Clients’ FAQ’s

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a will and a living trust? Or how your social security benefits are calculated?

Maybe you have questions regarding what Required Minimum Distributions are, when you need to take them and how much you need to take out.

These are just a few of the most frequently asked questions I get from my clients. Recently, I put together a series of short, easy-to-understand and informational videos to help answer questions like these.

You will find them here

Or perhaps you just need to know a little more About Mike Branch. You will find that here too.

Is there a question you need answered? Let me know and I may post a video based on your feedback.

Why A Roth IRA Should Be Part Of Your Retirement Income Plan

Photo by Mathieu Turle on Unsplash

Roth IRAs were created 20 years ago to give investors a way to invest for retirement that allowed for tax-free distributions after age 59 ½.

But they came with a catch.

These new IRAs were to be funded with after-tax contributions. Unlike traditional, tax-deductible IRAs and workplace retirement plans like 401(k) accounts, contributions to Roth IRAs are not tax deductible.

Since then, investors have debated whether it’s best to fund a Roth IRA or a traditional, tax-deductible IRA. Strong arguments can be made for both, but most financial professionals agree: whenever possible, the Roth IRA should be part of your retirement income plan.

Here’s why:

Add These Five Things For Your 2018 Financial Planning To Do List

Make 2018 the year you finally get your finances organized

Photo by Green Chameleon on Unsplash

For better or worse, 2017 is in the history books. If 2017 was a great year for you, congratulations. 2018 presents an opportunity to build on that success. If you had a more challenging year, the new year offers fresh start, new opportunities and hope for a better future.

As you prepare for the year ahead, consider adding these 5 things to your 2018 financial planning to do list.

How To Make The Most of The Dow at 25,000

5 ways to capitalize on markets that are at all-time highs

Photo by Federico Respini on Unsplash

“Make hay when the sun shines.” That’s what the farmers say.


On Thursday, January 4, 2018 the Dow Jones Industrial Average (Dow) topped 25,000 for the first time.

That’s a lot of sunshine! And it’s obviously great news for investors and anyone who has been “long” in the market these past several years.

How high will markets go? What’s the best way to make hay before the sun sets on this amazing run in the stock market?