So here’s a fun fact!
Did you know that if one of your beneficiaries is dead, s/he cannot collect your monetary leftovers?!
What?! Dead people cannot receive money! (Ludicrous, I know; yet true nonetheless.)
Heaven won’t try out Zell because it sounds too close to Hell.
So they’re beta-testing Apple Pay, but they have an aversion to apples…ya’ know, because of the whole Eve “mishap”. So they’re still in limbo.
O for 1.
So one of my beneficiaries won’t be benefiting. (Sorry, mom. Really sorry if Heaven has a T.J.Maxx and/or a Marshall’s.)
And I was also caught in limbo with my files and folders of financial papers. Another “Meg in the Mid” moment: middle-aged, middle of the floor, the middle of mindfulness.
That’s when I noticed that my first beneficiary was still designated as my mother.
I was feeling overwhelmed. So many things in my life have changed. This paperwork needed to change too.
So I called my “Money Guru Andrew“, which is how I have him as a contact on my iPhone (clearly, I have no issues with Apples).
Money Guru Andrew is Andrew McCulloch: the man, the myth, the legend at Maximus Wealth Management.
Although he contacts me at least once a year, it’s been a decade since I’ve actually sat down with him and reviewed all of my stuff. My bad on not meeting him sooner. (Insert the “see no evil monkey” emoji here).
So, when a teacher first gets hired within my school district, they give us a list of a few selected names of financial advisors with whom to consult regarding our retirement and pension, and all that “stuff” that 20-somethings put off to the side because they’re already so overwhelmed with adulting.
Luckily, because of my dad, I knew better than to put it off.
Time really is money.
So I randomly selected some guy near the top of the list and that was that.
All seemed well at first. Like a relationship you’re totally excited about until you get ghosted. (Not that I would know.) But then my emails weren’t being answered. Then my calls weren’t being answered.
Ahem. Pardon moi? Whose money was this? Oh yeah, MINE. See ya, guy. Out with the old and in with the new? But who?
I began asking other teachers within my district whose names they had chosen.
The same name came popping up, and not like in a business-card kind of way, but more in like a “Oh my gosh he’s SO nice” and “Oh my gosh he’s SO easy to work with” kind of way. And that’s all wonderful, but was he good with money, honey? Unanimously, they all endorsed his financial savviness fully.
And that name was Andrew McCulloch.
So I called him up–and he answered! And he was SO nice and he was SO easy to work with. And he is SO savvy with monetary decisions.
He even re-arranged his schedule to accommodate my teaching and parenting hours, and he came to my office (teachers have the biggest offices by the way). And there, he helped me fix my past, reconstruct my present, and assemble my future.
Fast forward a decade…
Time for a touch-up.
Andrew is very patient: our one hour session took three hours. Apparently my stuff was in desperate need of a makeover.
We immediately changed my mom as beneficiary #1. One and done.
My second beneficiary is more like Patrick Swayze in “Ghost”. I can hear him and feel him around, but I can’t really see him. So “ditto” on the revision there.
0 for 2.
My third beneficiary is getting remarried. As Forrest Gump once said, “That’s all I have to say about that.”
0 for 3.
Three hours later, coincidentally, I was 3 for 3!
And every time I felt lost in the maze of jargon, I just said, “Okay, I have no idea what the hell you just said, so could you speak in Megan language please?” And Andrew did. Every single time.
I even learned that I own part of Amazon! So now every time I add something to my cart (or my kids do), I feel like I’m adding to my retirement, which helps me sleep at night.
Stress out of the way, we were finally able to chit-chat about his wife, his son, his new office and new locale: Giroux Amburn.
So the “Giroux” is THE Bob Giroux who was actually the managing partner for the Fieger law firm for many years before he moved.
Long story short: Bob Giroux and his cherry-picked team of lawyers actually rep people in personal injury cases, as opposed to those TV and billboard lawyers who you think you’re getting, but you never do.
And Giroux Amburn never settles with the first offer(s) from the insurance companies because they know better, even if that first number sounds great to you! They know better. Way better. You could be giving up tens of thousands of dollars.
I have personal interest in this territory because my stepmother was the victim of a horrifying car accident years ago. I wish I’d known Andrew was part of Giroux Amburn–I would’ve called him first on my stepmother’s behalf. After being released from the hospital, she was so wounded that she ended up trying to sleep in a Lazy-Boy recliner for the entire year because she couldn’t lie down, and she didn’t receive nearly the money she could have for all of her pain and suffering, in addition to her medical expenses, and lack of being able to work. She’s still recovering.
Let’s all learn from this.
If I ever get injured, I’m calling the following numbers: 911 first, Matt second, and Andrew third. (Assuming, of course, I’m able to make phone calls.)
So while Andrew is 297,000% adept at retirement planning, college planning, and estate planning, he’s also a great conduit as part of the Giroux Amburn firm to personally keep his finger on the pulse of your case and he feels like your brother, your son, your neighbor, your friend.
Every holiday season he hands out gift cards to his clients. And he gave me a mug to go. Don’t worry: he’ll give you one, too, but only if you mention my name because I said so. 🙂
But before I left, I had to ask him about the first thing I noticed in his office upon entering: a super cool Vector image of Jackson Hole.
I’ve mentioned before that my fiance Matt and his kids schuss the slopes of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. I thought a Vector image of Vail might be a nice gift (spoiler, Matt, if you’re reading this); so I asked Andrew about it.
Turns out, he’s friends with artist Robert Duhaime.
Step 1: Andrew gave an image to Robert of Jackson Hole.
Step 2: Robert begins his “process” of Vector imaging.
Step 3: The Finished Product!
So I left feeling refreshed, relieved, and in a good mental and financial state of mind.
How do you feel about your retirement? Kids’ college funds? Powers of attorney?
I know a lot of people are afraid of this kind of thing. Single? Married? Separated? Divorced? Widowed?
No need to be scared or feel ignorant.
And even if you’re the kind of person who feels as though you’re on top of the finances, riddle me this: Why do we get oil changes every 3 months or 3,000 miles and yet don’t give our portfolios as much needed attention?
The point is that no matter what age you are, no matter where in life you are, you need to see a professional who knows the in’s and out’s of the financial world.
It’s never too early nor too late.
Time is money.
Life changes whether we like it or not. Maybe you’re in a Heavenly place, or in Limbo, or God love you–in a Hellish place. I hear you. I’ve been you. I’ve visited all three locations so often, I could create a really pretty brochure on Canva.
My portfolio does not.
In essence, here’s what Andrew has done for me and can do for you:
- Investments, Retirement Planning, College Funding, Life Insurance
- Estate Planning: Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, Deeds
- His law firm, Giroux Amburn, specializes in personal injury, which enables Andrew to extend that service to his clients, who are injured, and he can therefore put them in touch with an exceptional team of attorneys who will actually represent them
- Show you his @bodechehandcrafted super-swag wood artwork
- Make you laugh.
Therefore, I proudly endorse Andrew McCulloch 297,000% for 2020 and beyond. 🙂
But seriously, I just leave all that stuff in Andrew’s hands, and then I just sit back and watch it all grow.
Maybe there is such thing as a money tree.
Just not an apple tree.