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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 NJ.com 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 Feb 07, 2022

A federal lawsuit seeks to vacate a U.S. Department of Labor rule under which insurance agents who help clients roll over retirement assets are considered fiduciaries. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 01, 2022

The investment options in your retirement plan may improve after the U.S. Supreme Court sided with Northwestern University employees who alleged the university’s retirement plans had excessively high fees and simply too many options. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 01, 2022

Is tax season a time when you look forward to an eventual refund or dread a looming tax bill that could cost you thousands of dollars? Taxpayers who owed the IRS money when they filed their 2019 federal tax return faced an average tax bill of $5,893. That’s $272 more than one year earlier when those who underpaid their taxes during the year ended up owing $5,621. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 28, 2022

Investors have likely noticed a particular phrase appearing in recent financial news headlines, and for good reason. “Market correction” has been been the catch phrase du jour as the stock market… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 27, 2022

It’s been dubbed the “Great Wealth Transfer”  — a massive intergenerational shift in assets that will reshape the American financial landscape. Just how large? Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 25, 2022

Yet another financial services firm has rolled out a new way to add a guaranteed lifetime income stream to your retirement portfolio. TIAA last week announced the launch of its Secure Income Account,… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 21, 2022

How much cash do you have in your portfolio? While conventional wisdom suggests limiting the size of your cash position, a recent study from Dalbar calls for holding enough cash and cash equivalents… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 21, 2022

Social Security benefits and housing expenses are two of the most important elements of a successful financial plan in retirement. While Social Security is the primary source of income for many… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 18, 2022

The IRS has good news for retirees starting in 2022: you can now keep more money in your tax-deferred retirement accounts thanks to lower required minimum distributions (RMDs). Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 12, 2022

  How much will you need to save before you can retire? It’s a simple question at the root of most people’s plans for their golden years. Answering it, however, can be far more complicated. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 11, 2022

When selecting a financial advisor, there are a number of things you should consider, including an advisor’s professional credentials,  fee structure and investing philosophy, not to mention your… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 11, 2022

Not all couples can afford to buy a home and have the wedding of their dreams. Some must choose between the two or postpone one in favor of the other. The Netflix reality series “Marriage or Mortgage… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 10, 2022

A workplace 401(k) can be a great tool for retirement savings, but it isn’t the only way to build a nest egg for the future. If you don’t have access to a 401(k), there are a variety of alternatives… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 10, 2022

Buying and selling stocks involves paying capital gains taxes. How much you’ll owe depends on the amount of your earnings and how long you hold the stocks. While high-earners can pay as much as 37%… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 07, 2022

The HEMS standard is used in estate planning to guide trustees in how and when they should release funds to a beneficiary. By including HEMS language in a trust, you can exert greater control over… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 07, 2022

Retirement savers are no longer limited to traditional assets like stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Instead, they can now invest in cryptocurrency through self-directed individual retirement accounts… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 07, 2022

When a person uses a will to leave property to their family, friends or the causes they support, the act is known as a bequest. A bequest can be the cash, investments, jewelry or other items that a… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 06, 2022

Cash dividends are so last year. A blockchain infrastructure company will break new ground in March when it issues its first Bitcoin dividend to shareholders. BTCS Inc. announced Wednesday that it… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 06, 2022

A self-proving affidavit is a sworn document that attests to the validity of a will. While not required, a self-proving affidavit can speed up the probate process and render the court testimony of… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 06, 2022

An inter-vivos trust or living trust is a legal arrangement that allows a person to transfer ownership of assets to a trust while they are still alive. Inter-vivos trusts distribute property to… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 06, 2022

An AB trust is a legal arrangement for married couples that can minimize estate taxes by splitting assets between two separate trusts when one spouse dies. While a federal provision that went into… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 06, 2022

In 2021, millions of Americans voluntarily left their jobs every month in what is now called the “Great Resignation.” Some were burnt out, while others quit to look for better pay or new careers. A… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 05, 2022

Money can’t buy happiness directly, but it seems like paying a financial advisor sure can help. A new survey found people with more than $1.2 million in household assets report higher levels of… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Jan 04, 2022

How much will you spend in retirement? This is a vital question to ponder as you approach your golden years. After all, a successful retirement plan not only focuses on the accumulation of money and… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Dec 28, 2021

When it comes to claiming Social Security, most retirees can’t wait to start collecting those checks. A 2020 report from the Bipartisan Policy Center found that more than 70% of Social Security… Read more