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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 Mar 01, 2022

Americans who rely on the state and local tax (SALT) deduction at tax time may be in luck. A Democratic proposal aims to restore the SALT deduction for taxpayers who make less than $400,000 a year and increase the deduction cap for Americans who make up to $1 million. The Supporting Americans with Lower Taxes (SALT) Act, sponsored by U.S. Reps. Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.) and Katie Porter (D-Calif.) would undo the $10,000 cap on the SALT deduction instituted in 2018 under former President Donald Trump. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 24, 2022

In recent months, investors have contended with the emergence of the Omicron variant, central bank policy tightening and persistent inflation. Now, Russia has invaded Ukraine, igniting a geopolitical crisis that is shaking global financial markets. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 23, 2022

The financial advisory industry comprises a multitude of professionals, services and products. But when it comes to financial planning, advisors who hold the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation are the gold standard. These financial advisors must go through a rigorous certification process that includes passing an exam and logging thousands of hours of professional experience. However, the qualifications to be a CFP do not end with accreditation. A CFP not only has an ethical responsibility to operate with honesty and integrity, but also a fiduciary obligation to act in their client’s best interests. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 23, 2022

Paying off your mortgage early, especially before retirement, is a worthy financial goal. But doing so in lieu of investing isn’t the best decision for everyone, according to a recent study from… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 18, 2022

Perhaps no topic is more hotly debated in retirement planning circles than the viability of the 60/40 portfolio. This investing strategy, which calls for 60% of a portfolio’s assets to be invested in… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 16, 2022

How much money will you need to cover your medical care in retirement? The answer may surprise you, especially if you haven’t begun to plan for these future medical expenses. Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 12, 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic gave rise to a new wave of investors — who suddenly have more time and money on their hands, thanks to lockdowns and stimulus checks. The DIY investors have taken advantage of… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 14, 2022

The costs associated with withdrawing money from a 401(k) or IRA early are well-known. Doing so before age 59.5 means paying a 10% penalty on top of ordinary income tax. However, there is a lesser… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 10, 2022

The primary risk that retirees and those approaching retirement face is an obvious one: running out of money. However, a study published in the Journal of Financial Planning suggests reverse… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 10, 2022

The low interest environment during the COVID-19 pandemic has been a boon for the vacation real estate market. While millions of Americans took advantage of low interest rates and bought their first… Read more

by Patrick Villanova Feb 08, 2022

After a particularly strong 2021, the three major stock market indexes have gotten off to a rocky start in 2022. While the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average are down 5.92% and 3.43% this year,… Read more

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

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… 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