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Patrick Villanova

Personal Finance Expert

Patrick Villanova is a writer for SmartAsset, covering a variety of personal finance topics, including retirement and investing. Before joining SmartAsset, Patrick worked as an editor at The Jersey Journal. His work has also appeared on and in The Star-Ledger. Patrick is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, where he studied English and developed his love of writing. In his free time, he enjoys hiking, trying out new recipes in the kitchen and watching his beloved New York sports teams. A New Jersey native, he currently lives in Jersey City.

Posts by Patrick Villanova:

by Patrick Villanova Jun 07, 2023

If you’re saving for retirement, a broad market index portfolio is typically a good option. Investing in a target date fund or S&P 500 index fund, for instance, are low-cost ways to gain broad market exposure. However, newly published research indicates there may be a significantly more lucrative way to handle your nest egg. A financial advisor can help find the right mix of investments for your retirement portfolio. Find a fiduciary advisor today. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jun 07, 2023

People often opt to move to the suburbs for myriad reasons – space, affordability, schools, employment and sometimes to seek safety. Violent and nonviolent crime rates, roadway safety, and drug and alcohol abuse within a community can affect the quality of life for an individual and family alike. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jun 06, 2023

Donating to charity isn’t just a way to have a positive impact on society – it’s also a savvy approach to reducing your tax liability. Schwab suggests people who donate to charity on an annual basis may want to consider a tax-smart strategy known as “bunching,” which involves making at least two years’ worth of charitable contributions in one year. Doing so can allow you to itemize your deductions for that year and increase the size of your tax deduction over the two-period. Consider working with a financial advisor if you need help with tax planning or charitable giving. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jun 06, 2023

  Catch-up contributions allow people age 50 and older to save extra money in their retirement accounts. These additional savings are currently capped at $7,500 per year, but some workers will soon… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jun 01, 2023

An annual income of $250,000 won’t put you in the top 1% of earners, but it will get you close to it. That’s because only 7% of households in the United States earn $250,000 per year1. How far that… Read more

by Patrick Villanova May 18, 2023

People with health savings accounts (HSAs) got some good news this week when the IRS rolled out the largest contribution limit increases in history. In 2024, an individual with self-only coverage can… Read more

by Patrick Villanova May 19, 2023

The ongoing costs of child-rearing can be hard to size up – and digest. The average cost to raise a child in the U.S. is $20,813 annually. By understanding what to expect to pay for a child’s needs,… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jun 02, 2023

College graduates are under immense pressure to land a job right out of college, especially during economic downturns, when the job market may be less stable. However, it’s not just the job itself… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 28, 2023

Gone are the days of series I savings bonds paying almost 7% in interest. The U.S. Treasury announced Friday that the inflation-protected bonds would start paying investors 4.3% on May 1, down from… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 25, 2023

There’s a new way to add a lifetime income stream to your retirement plan. State Street, the world’s fourth-largest asset manager, is joining Annexus Retirement Solutions and Global Trust Company to… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jun 05, 2023

When inflation surges and cash loses its purchasing power, retirees’ hard-earned savings suddenly don’t go as far as they expected. Inflation may also lead to widespread salary increases, but… Read more

by Patrick Villanova May 03, 2023

A hypothetical stock portfolio has taken hands-off investing to a whole new level. Jeffrey Ptak, a chartered financial analyst (CFA) for Morningstar, recently devised a passive investment portfolio… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 20, 2023

A financial windfall like an inheritance or salary bonus can be a wonderful opportunity for investing. But what’s the best way to invest your newfound wealth: all at once or little by little? New… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 27, 2023

When interest rates were low and stocks were on a tear, the demand for American homes pushed prices to unprecedented heights1. Down payments have also risen, but the median down payment of 14% is… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 19, 2023

Many retail investors are interested in index strategies but lack an understanding of how they work, according to a recent survey. In fact, many retail investors say they want more information on… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 18, 2023

If you’re looking for ways to generate more retirement income, now may be the perfect time to consider an annuity. Payout rates for guaranteed lifetime annuities are currently at their highest levels… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 12, 2023

As the Federal Reserve has aggressively raised interest rates over the last year to fight inflation, shorter-duration bonds have offered higher yields than their longer-duration counterparts. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 14, 2023

The middle class has long been considered the backbone of the American economy. But the American middle class is shrinking. The percentage of adults living in middle-income households in the United… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 11, 2023

Deciding which accounts you’ll withdraw money from – and when you’ll take it – is an important decision in retirement. However, you may want to consider preserving assets held in a taxable brokerage… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 07, 2023

After months of job growth and tight labor conditions, the latest employment data suggests the U.S. economy may finally be slowing down. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 05, 2023

With the April 18 tax deadline looming, Americans must choose between itemizing deductions or taking the standard deduction to reduce their tax obligations and pocket as much money as possible. Since… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Apr 17, 2023

Fixed incomes can’t go as far for retirees with the current pressures from high inflation and a volatile stock market. For some, relocating to a cheaper or more tax-friendly part of the country may… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Mar 31, 2023

When financial markets are falling fast, risk-averse investors may be tempted to cut and run. But cashing out your investments when markets are falling often means locking in investment losses. And… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Mar 29, 2023

The SECURE 2.0 Act ushered in a number of consequential changes designed to bolster the American retirement system, including an updated timeline for required minimum distributions (RMDs) and new… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Mar 30, 2023

Down markets can present a difficult decision for new retirees. On one hand, withdrawing money from the market during a downturn can lock in investment losses, wreaking havoc on the longevity of… Read more