The LEARNING library

Tune in to valuable financial insight on WTCM AM 580 at 10:10 a.m. every Thursday to listen and learn while Retirement Planning Expert, Dennis Prout, CFP, and co-host Shea Petaja discuss and answer your questions on the latest financial news, tips, and strategies.

If you miss the Thursday show, you can hear it rebroadcast every Saturday at 9:00 a.m. on AM 580.


Questions or comments?

Call (231) 947-7675 during the show to talk with Dennis and Shea on the air.


Play Special Guest Ed Slott, CPA radio show
Special Guest Ed Slott, CPA October 29, 2020

If 2020 were a candy bar, it would be a baker’s chocolate-covered sour patch with an endless sucker for the center (that’s our opinion anyways). Is it a trick or is it a treat? Well, maybe both! Our guest and America’s IRA expert, Ed Slott, has a few things to say about the tricks and treats of 2020. He’ll discuss the potential disadvantages and possibilities of the SECURE Act and CARES Act. And we’ll also get his take on the best strategic moves for the remainder of the year, how to plan for taxes and whether or not you should convert to a Roth IRA.

Today’s show will be a mixed bag.

Play Company Plan Distributions radio show
Company Plan Distributions October 22, 2020

A lot can change in a year (insert sarcastic laugh). Maybe the job you thought would never end has been eliminated. Or perhaps you’re retiring earlier than expected. Or maybe this year has brought a lot of clarity and you’ve decided to change directions.

If you have a 401(k) company plan, you have options for the distribution of it. In fact, you have SIX options! How exciting is that? Today, Dennis and Heidi will go through the six options with you along with tips on how to invest if you’re over 70 and working.

Play Life Insurance vs. Roth IRAs radio show
Life Insurance vs. Roth IRAs October 15, 2020

There is one thing we can all agree on: 2020 isn’t the year we hoped it would be. We also realize that this year’s pandemic has forced many of you to revisit your estate planning, which might not have been at the top of your New Year’s Resolution list. A hot topic regarding estate planning and retirement saving is life insurance vs. Roth IRAs.

Both life insurance and Roth IRAs have something in common: they are wealth transfer tools that help facilitate an efficient transfer of assets from one generation to the next and can provide a tax-free legacy. And yet, they are very different because they play by different rules.

Today, Dennis and Heidi will give you three important differences between the two along with tips on how to investigate both!

Play The Deficit and Deadlines radio show
The Deficit and Deadlines October 8, 2020

It’s hard to believe it’s already October! This time of year is not only breathtakingly beautiful up here in northern Michigan, it’s also a good time to slow down and review important financial details. On a national level, considering that both the Democrats and Republicans have spent a lot of money to stimulate the economy, it’s important to understand why the U.S. deficit matters as well as how this spending will eventually affect you.

We’ll also discuss the multiple investment deadlines you need to be aware of, cover the Coronavirus-related distributions from the federal government, and review how the CARES Act has affected your investing strategies (like waiving required minimum distributions deadlines).

Play There Are No Secrets radio show
There Are No Secrets October 1, 2020

Bob Simpson, District Manager of the Traverse City Social Security Administrative office, wants to be clear: “There are NO secrets when it comes to Social Security despite what the headlines say.” After 35 years on the job, one would think he’d would know a thing or two about that. On today’s show, Bob will join Heidi and Shea to talk about how to schedule an appointment with one his office’s 17 representatives who are working remotely. He will also give you the ins and outs of some more complex issues related to collecting Social Security and how to avoid scams.

Remember, the Social Security office is there to provide you with options, not give you advice. After you’ve collected the facts, consider meeting with your financial advisor and CPA to decide on your income strategies in retirement.