Inside the Economy with SH&J: June 22, 2015

Our first economic discussion of the ‘official’ summer covered everything from the recent bond rally to household debt and the CBO’s forecast for Congress. Larry answers an interesting question on HELOCs and provides some commentary on education’s ‘last gas.’ A quick 15 minutes will bring you up to speed on the economy and provide some dinnertime discussion. Listen now!

Five Tips to Keep Your Spending (and Your Stress Level) in Control on Summer Vacation

Keep your budget in check on your summer vacationSummer. It’s the season most of us spend the rest of the year waiting for. We look forward to vacations, time off and traveling with family and friends, picturing ourselves relaxing and celebrating the good things in life.

But we spend far less time thinking about how we’ll pay for it.

Without a little forethought and planning, a few weeks of fun can turn into months of credit card bills. With that in mind, here are a few tips to keep your summer spending under control so you can make memories without creating a financial burden that could last the rest of the year. Continue reading

Inside the Economy with SH&J: June 8, 2015

Though this week’s Inside the Economy is shorter than usual, it is full of interesting tidbits worth knowing. Larry goes into detail on the U.S. GDP’s recent correction, shares important notes on the labor market and unemployment, and takes us around the globe from Europe to China. He also touches on the S&P 500’s ‘less exciting’ trend, as well as the bond market’s increase in volatility. Listen in and share your comments and questions below.

Meet Joel Javer

Joel JaverName: Joel Javer

Title: Partner and Certified Financial Planner™

SH&J team member since: December, 1990


As a Partner of Sharkey, Howes & Javer, a financial advisor, marketing director and member of the investment department, you wear many hats around here, and are a role model to your staff. What advice do you have for our younger team members and for people wanting to join the financial planning industry?

Be honest with yourself and clients.  Listen carefully to what clients say and provide non biased advice as to what they should do to achieve their goals.

What was your first job and how old were you?

I had a paper route when I was 10 and then worked in a stationary store when I was 15.

You have traveled all over the world. What was your favorite destination and why?

Italy. The people are fun to be with, the country and cities are beautiful and I can recognize what I am eating.

Looking back, what do you feel has been your biggest accomplishment?

Starting Sharkey, Howes & Javer. The number of clients we have helped with their financial decision making and the generations of planners that we have developed to assure continuity of client needs and the legacy of the firm, when I stop to think about it, is richly rewarding.

Tell us something we would be surprised to learn about you.

As I child, I liked listening to classical music.

4 Tips for Buying the Right Mountain Retreat

Mountain RetreatThe mountains of Colorado welcome vacationers looking for peace, solitude and natural beauty. If you find yourself returning to a mountain community in Colorado, you may wish to consider buying a mountain retreat in Colorado. Here are four tips to keep in mind before you buy.

1. Water and Utilities Access

The remoteness of the location may be what is drawing you to your particular cabin, but before you buy, make sure you have access to utilities. Remote cabins will often run on solar power, but you need to know what it will cost to hook up to the local public utilities if you wish. Also, make sure you understand wells and septic systems and have permission to drill if you need a new well.

2. Home Maintenance When You’re Away

When you are not enjoying your home, who will handle the maintenance? Many mountain communities where people are buying homes or condos for vacation retreats have property management companies. Plan to spend about two percent of the value of the home every year to keep it maintained.

3. Seasonal Accessibility

When buying a mountain retreat in Colorado, you need to consider when you will be visiting. If you plan to enjoy the home in the winter months, make sure it is located somewhere that will be accessible, even in deep snow. You will want to consider the cost of snow removal or access via snowmobiles. For summer access, think about the cost of road maintenance for damage caused by winter weather.

4. Proximity of Amenities

Before buying a mountain cabin in Colorado, consider how close the amenities you will need are, such as grocery stores and dining options. This factor is particularly important if you will be renting your place to other vacationers when you are not using it. Typically, folks on vacation want to have access to the grocery store and other amenities without a long drive.

Whether you are looking to buy a property near a ski town like Breckenridge, Vail or Winter Park or want a secluded mountain retreat to enjoy in the warmer months of the year, buying a mountain retreat in Colorado can be a great way to enjoy the beauty of the mountains whenever you wish. Make sure you do your homework before you purchase and find an agent who knows the area well. Then, you will be able to invest in a property that will be a true asset to you and your family for many years to come.