8 Creative Ways to Win Your Dream Home Without Making a Poor Investment

SHJ080116_Win_a_Bidding_War_Blog_ImageIn a hot real estate market it’s easy to let your emotions get involved possibly resulting in making a poor real estate investment. It’s not uncommon in today’s market for buyers to waive inspections or pay an amount over the listed value in order to get the home of their dreams. Instead of risking your investment with emotional decisions, we’ve put together some more creative ideas to help your offer stand out.

Here are 8 tips for standing out in a bidding war: Continue reading

Family Dynamics: Financially Assisting Adult Family Members

Sharkey Howes & Javer Financially Assisting Adult Family MembersProviding financial assistance to adult family members, while sometimes very helpful, may also create conflicts. As Certified Financial Planners ®, our clients often ask us to help them work through such issues. When working with clients who find themselves in the midst of a difficult family dynamic involving money, our process is to help our clients understand the impact of providing financial assistance to adult family members. Below we share a few of the conflicts we have found (Please note: identifying information has been changed for privacy purposes). Continue reading

Meet Mimi Hackley

Name: Mimi Hackley

Title: Shareholder and Certified Financial Planner™

SH&J team member since: 1998


You are admired for the way you are with clients. What advice do you have for building and maintaining strong client relationships?

Listen first. Be honest, yet compassionate. Do what comes naturally and is best for the client. Focus on practical and applicable solutions while keeping it as simple as possible.

What does your ideal weekend look like?

  • Family time with our children,
  • Unstructured as often as we can manage it,
  • Unplugged for much of it,
  • Plain-old fun playtime with cooking, laundry and administrative stuff thrown in on the sidelines.

We try to keep it simple and always manage to find things to laugh about even when we’re arguing (which happens a lot with two boys close in age – the laughter typically diffuses the spite!).

As a child, what did you dream of being when you grew up?

First, I wasn’t aware I’d grown up. As a child, I dreamed of always being a child, a la “Peter Pan”. My brothers and I had more fun as children than anyone I know – except my mom who still has more fun than the rest of the world.

Also, if I had to grow up, I wanted to be a teacher. My mom practically forbade my “Teacher” aspirations because, back then, teachers were not well paid nor well-enough respected for the great service they impart. It’s interesting that while I didn’t become a “teacher” I teach clients every day how to make wise financial decisions and thoroughly enjoyed teaching CFP students for several years.

You have been with Sharkey, Howes & Javer for over 15 years. What do you love most about your job?

The fulfillment that comes from helping people help themselves.

Finish this sentence: As a mother of two boys…

…I’m busier than I’d ever imagined was possible and am having more fun now than I did as a child… Wow! That’s really something!

Inside the Economy with SH&J: November 23, 2015

The Federal Reserve shows a textbook yield curve in anticipation of a raise of rates, inflation continues to be an important economic indicator and new housing starts are slowing all in this week’s edition of Inside the Economy with SH&J. Larry also covers consumer spending and comments, “Those who are betting on a huge Christmas, well, I wouldn’t bet the farm.” A shorter discussion than normal this week, but an informative one which will give you some Thanksgiving table talking points. Listen in!

5 Personal Finance Tips for Everyone

Brown Wallet with credit cards and dollar banknotes over woodenPersonal finance is important whether you are just starting out or have been in the game a while. Here at SH&J, we know how you manage your personal finances directly impacts the success of your complete financial plan. We’ve pulled together five tips anyone can use to help manage their own finances.

  1. Start Early
    There’s no time like the present to start working on your personal finances. The sooner you start saving and investing your money, the better off you will likely be in the long run. Seek advice from a Certified Financial Planner™, read books and blogs on finances to gain knowledge, and find tools to help you stay on track. We also recommend talking to your kids about money from an early age to help set them on the right financial path.
  1. Know Where Your Money Goes
    Have you ever come to the end of a month and wondered where your monthly paycheck really went? If so, you’re not the only one. Staying on top of your personal finances means paying attention to where your money goes. Find a system that works for you. Some prefer online tools for tracking expenses, while others need to carry a notebook and write everything down. Whatever the system, make sure you pay attention to how your money is being spent.
  1. Learn Self Control
    At any age or stage of life, it can be difficult to say no to the vacation, night out on the town or those new shoes. But, the practice of self-control can lead to much greater monetary achievements. When you really want to purchase an item or experience, give it a couple of days before pulling the trigger. Consider whether what you want is really what you need, and how your decision will impact your long term goals. By learning to delay unnecessary purchases, you may free up more money to save and invest elsewhere.
  1. Simplify Your Life
    It’s easy to get caught in the race to keep up with the Joneses – a bigger house, the newest car model, the latest fashion. Rather than trying to keep up, simplify. Warren Buffet, one of the world’s richest men, still resides in the home he bought in Omaha, Nebraska in 1957 for $31,500 (source). When it comes to finances, focusing on the big picture, while keeping your life as simple as possible, often leads to greater success.
  1. Take Control
    Instead of being a passive bystander, take the reins of your personal finances. Build a team you can trust, from your banker to your financial planner to a trusted friend or family member, people who will hold you accountable. Stay in touch with your team, and pay close attention to the information they send you such as quarterly reports. Take an active interest in not only where your money goes, but also how it grows.

Personal finances can be tricky at times, but with the right tools and a commitment to seeing your goals come to fruition, you can find financial success. Take our tips and implement them into your personal finance strategy. If you need help creating a more in-depth financial plan, we’d love to talk. Reach out today.

What do you charge for your services?

We knew we didn’t want to be bound to selling products to our clients. We wanted freedom to offer objective advice to our clients without an agenda to sell them products. Therefore SH&J was founded and still is a fee-only or non-commissioned firm.

Fee-only means our clients pay us a flat fee for our advice, not for products. We do not work on commission and are only paid by our clients. One of our founders, Larry Howes, says, “All of our efforts are designed to get you a better result.”

Melissa does a great job of giving you a quick rundown on our fees.

Here’s a quick overview of the information Melissa shared:

Financial Planning

  • One-time fee depending on case complexity
  • Planning fees range from $500-4,500.00
  • No additional charge for planning updates

Investment Management

  • 1% of assets under our management up to the first million
  • Reduced rate on managed assets above $1,000,000.00
  • Fees billed at 0.25% at the end of each quarter in arrears

Other small charges may include a fee for portfolio design, strategic implementation and asset transfers.

We’d love to meet you to share our firm’s philosophy with you in person. Give us a call at 303.639.5100 to set up a time to come in.

Wishing You Happy Holidays and a Wonderful New Year

Christmas concept. Happy Holidays.With the holidays upon us, we pause for a moment to reflect and say thank you. Thank you for your trust in us and for allowing us to be part of your financial family. We look forward to many more years of working together to plan, invest and succeed. We wish you the happiest of holidays and a prosperous New Year!

Please note our holiday schedule:

Wednesday, December 24: 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Thursday, December 25: Closed

Friday, December 26: Closed

Wednesday, December 31: 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Thursday, January 1: Closed

Friday, January 2: Closed

Here are a few bits of holiday trivia to impress your friends and family this season.

  • Which witch? Italy has a tradition of a witch dropping gifts for children through the chimney at Christmas. (source)
  • Nog notes. The popular holiday drink, eggnog is an American invention. (source)
  • Dashing through the snow. Popular Christmas song, Jingle Bells, was actually written for Thanksgiving. (source)
  • Doe a deer. Vixen is the only reindeer named after another animal. (source)
  • Spelling bee. There have been 16 ways found to spell Hanukkah in English. (source)
  • For the rest of us. Seinfeld character Frank Costanza created the alternative holiday, Festivus. (source)
  • Royal tidings. Queen Victoria was the first English monarch to own a Christmas tree. (source)
  • Dreamers dream. White Christmas is the number one selling holiday song of all time. (source)
  • Too much time on their hands. Norwegian scientists have hypothesized that Rudolph’s red nose is caused by a parasitic infection of the respiratory system. (source)
  • Presents galore. The presents given in the Twelve Days of Christmas add up to 364 gifts. (source)


Highlights from the Sharkey, Howes & Javer Open House Event

Open HouseLast month we were thrilled to open our doors to clients and friends for our open house and shred event. It’s been a couple of years since we have hosted an open house and a lot has changed around the office and on our team.

We love to entertain so we can spend time getting to know our clients (and their friends) in a more casual environment. The event featured live music, great drinks, a lettuce wrap station and a mashed potato bar with martini glasses! We had a wonderful evening and look forward to hosting many more client events.

Click here to see some highlights from the night >

Thank you to all of you who were able to attend. We missed those of you who weren’t. If you are a client of SH&J, please watch for invitations to our future events.

Next up on the agenda: our Client Appreciation on Thursday, October 9th. More details on the event coming to you later this summer!

Have an idea for other events you’d like us to host? Please comment below.