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STORM SEASON
Important Note:

June through November our agency may become prohibited from binding coverage should a “Tropical Disturbance” enter the Gulf of Mexico or Caribbean Sea.

In these cases we may be unable to bind new coverage quoted in open proposals until the storm leaves our area and our binding authority has been restored.

Please arrange your coverage protection early to avoid this type of delay. While we regret any inconvenience, the carriers impose these restrictions on all agencies.

Don’t Make These Rookie Portfolio Mistakes

Think only novice investors make portfolio management blunders? Not so; even if you’ve been saving for decades and religiously follow stock market news, you’re probably making mistakes. Consider the following errors common to both newbies and seasoned pros.

You’re investing without a purpose. If you haven’t taken the time to ask yourself what you want out of your portfolio, you may be making this mistake. Do you want your portfolio to grow? Do you want it to remain stable? Do you want to earn dividends? When do you plan to start tapping into what you’ve earned? These are all questions you need to answer before jumping on tomorrow’s hottest stock offering. If it doesn’t suit your goals, even the “greatest” investment opportunity doesn’t make sense.

You’re inadvertently exposing yourself to risk. Most investors have a low tolerance for risk, and they try to manage their portfolios conservatively as a result. However, they may not realize that some of the choices they make while exercising caution could actually be more risky in the long run than an alternative. For example, if you’re investing in a 401(k) and allow it to default to whatever funds the management company has set, you might not get what you want from your portfolio. You could find yourself too heavily invested in bonds or stocks to meet your retirement goals.

You make emotional decisions. Do you panic and sell investments every time the market dips? This is a definite sign that you’re allowing your emotions to rule your portfolio. According to LearnVest, the U.S. stock market has never lost money over a 20-year period—it’s a long-haul investment. Treat it like a short-term one and you could lose big time. In fact, investors who sold off stocks in the crash of 2008 lost 37 percent and missed out on the record rally that followed only five years later.

You forget about fees. Sure, they can be challenging to understand. However, not taking the time to get an accurate picture of what you’re paying will cost you. And we’re not just talking management fees. Every time you buy or sell an investment, you may be paying transaction fees and other trading costs. If you regularly make trades, these expenses can really eat into your portfolio. Instead of turning a blind eye, read the fine print on every prospectus. If you’re still not clear what you’re paying, ask your broker for a full fee schedule.

Investing—and investing well—is tricky, and even the most experienced make the occasional mistake. If you’d like a professional opinion before taking action, please don’t hesitate to contact us for financial planning assistance.