JUNE 2014 | Vol. 1
VAULT APRG — Guiding You to Personal & Financial Wellness
DON Goettling & GINO Fronti The BEST Window of Opportunity in Real Estate is Closing!
IN THIS ISSUE CHRIS INGRAM Is Dollar Cost Averaging Costing You Dollars?
FIT FOR LIFE The Values of Getting and Staying Fit
M. LISA ODOM, ESQ. Preparedness for School… and the Future: Estate Planning
ALL MIXED UP The Martini
LOU ESBIN Like, Want, Need, Afford
APRG APRG | 1
SANTA CLARITA VALLEY
Our APRG members are COMMITTED to finding ways to make sure your problems get SOLVED! Many have been told how to solve a problem, and paid for advice and counsel, only to find the problem still exists, remaining unsolved. Our goals and practices, working as experts in our fields, are to ensure that the solution is CORRECT and LASTING to you and your family. That is our pledge to YOU! We provide experts in many diversified services catered to you as you follow your path to financial security. One advantage of this Group is the availability of interdisciplinary thinking. Team thinking! Whatever decisions you face, we believe in providing the right expert to help assess the full implications â€“ providing the right information, resources and options to fix the problem. 2 | JUNE 2014
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Team APRG | 3
WHAT’S INSIDE … FEATURE STORIES
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The Best Window of Opportunity in Real Estate is Closing By Don Goettling & Gino Fronti with Cherry Creek Mortgage
Common Ways to Hold Title By Steve Corn with Newhall Escrow
Is Dollar Cost Averaging Costing You Dollars By Chris Ingram with Infinity Wealth Management
Like Want Need Afford By Lou Esbin with Esbin Law
Changes to The SAT By Ryan Kiick & Robert Schwartz with Princeton Review & Total College Planning
Advisor Strategy By Scott Zimmerman with Corporate Strategies & Insurance Services
Alternatives to The Public Courtroom By Jim Reape, Reape-Rickett
Preparedness for School and the Future Estate Planning by Lisa Odom, esq. with McDowell Odom LLP Law Firm
Common Property Insurance Mistakes by Carlos Villalobos with Carlos Villalobos Insurance
12 | THE MAN CAVE – COOL STUFF FOR MEN
Apollo’s Men Salon – Treat a man like he deserves
13 | IN-STYLE – WOMEN’S FASHION SECRETS REVILED
Clay & Tiffany Friedman with N-Style Salon shares why the experience of your stylist matters and why less can be more
14 | FERMENTATION – WINE BLOG
Tom Warks takes you on a wine trip to the country of Shangri-la in the Anderson Valley
18 | FOODIE – TOP CHEFS SHARING THEIR SECRETS
The Salt Creek Grill & Chef Ignacio Munoz cooks up their famous Chilean Sea Bass recipe just for you
22 | ALL MIXED UP – BARTENDERS CHOICE JUST FOR YOU
The Social shakes you through some secret recipes & why the Martini is the drink of choice for so many
23 | GOING GREEN – ENVIRONMENTALLY CONSCIOUS & COST SAVINGS FOR YOU
Chris Hall with L.E.D. Inc. puts green in your pocket with new LED light bulbs for your home or business
26 | FIT FOR LIFE – SHAPING UP YOUR LIFE
Tony & Allison Vellasco with Afterburn Fitness are passionate about The Values of Getting and Staying Fit
30 | HEALTH & WELLNESS – BECAUSE YOUR HEALTH MATTERS
Author and SCV’s top chiropractor Chase Unruh goes over A Daily Example of The Perfect Diet
31 | HOW SWEET IT IS – YUMMY FOR THE TUMMY
Lisa Jurado with The Kupcake Kitchen shares a Nostalgic Treat
34 | DESTINATIONS – HELPING YOU GET AWAY
Kelli Alexander shares why San Francisco is the #1 destination
39 | GIVE YOURSELF CREDIT – BECAUSE EVERYONE WANTS BETTER CREDIT
George Hartman with Prime National Credit Repair gives you tips on erasing BAD CREDIT
44 | QUICK REFERENCE GUIDE
APRG Contributors and Resource Guide APRG | 5
YOUR APRG EXPERTS
DON GOETTLING & GINO FRONTI The foundation upon which Don Goettling and Gino Fronti have built their Cherry Creek Mortgage Branch in Valencia, CA is a simple one: “It’s about relationships.” This simple declaration permeates every transaction and interaction in which they participate Throughout Southern California, Don and Gino have successfully applied their 38 combined years in the industry and their unique education-based approach to the real estate and lending industry. They pride themselves on taking the time and the effort to gain the support and knowledge you need to guide you towards the best options for your particular scenarios. Their unique combination of experience, knowledge, and desire to do what is best for its clients inspires everyone to constantly improve. This demanding drive comes easily to the team because, as Goettling puts it, “We all truly love what we do.” The team enjoys speaking at conferences and sharing its knowledge and mission with professionals across the county and has enjoyed the last three years hosting “The Don and Gino Real Estate and Finance Show” airing every Thursday from 12pm2pm on AM 1220KHTS or live at www. donandgino.com.
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Christopher Ingram exemplifies fiduciary responsibility and, as a financial advisor for over 15 years, has successfully transitioned from an employee at a financial services firm to an independent investment advisor. Servicing more than 150 households, he has dealt with a diverse array of financial situations and has used a myriad of financial tools, solutions, and products to help his clients achieve their financial goals. Mr. Ingram spent the first five years of his financial services career with PaineWebber, now UBS, and Morgan Stanley. While working at Morgan Stanley from 19992003, during one of the longest bear markets in history, he was awarded the National Director’s Award in each of the three years he was eligible to receive the honor. He was able to accomplish this feat by educating his clients on the importance of having a financial plan to guide them and help them achieve their financial goals and objectives. He brings sound advice and solutions to his clients’ most difficult and important financial challenges, and he does it with the utmost honesty, integrity, loyalty, and undivided service of the client’s best interest.
Rob attended UCLA and earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Business Administration in 1998. He continued his education at California State University, Northridge, where he earned a master’s degree in U.S. and Military History in 2002. Rob has dedicated the last eight years of his life to providing sound and timely information to schools, parents, and students in the realm of college admission and college admission testing. During this time, Rob has worked for The Princeton Review and Eureka Review (now a subsidiary of TPR), where he is the Director of Community Outreach. In this role, he speaks at nearly 100 high schools in California and Nevada about college admission, college admission testing, and how to make college affordable. Rob merged his interests into the college counseling universe and completed his College Counseling Certification at UCLA in 2012. He has worked for the past four years as an Independent College Counselor with the firm Total College Planning. He is an active member of WACAC (Western Association of College Admission Counselors), and is currently writing a book on Understanding America’s Religious Collegiate Institutions. Rob also founded and currently presides over the Schwartz Scholarship Fund, providing merit and need-based scholarships for California high school juniors and seniors. For more information about the scholarship program, visit www.schwartzscholarshipfund.org.
Steve has been employed in the Real Estate Settlement (Escrow) Industry for 25 years. His journey in the Escrow Industry started after realizing his potential in the field of Telecommunications with Siemens as a District Manager. Newhall Escrow Company, a family business, was established in 1963 and has served the Real Estate Industry for over 50 years. Steve transitioned to owner in 2004 and has since grown the company to be one of the premier Escrow companies in the Santa Clarita Valley. Steve is actively involved in the community and give back by serving as President of the Santa Clarita Valley Rotary Club, First Vice Chair of the College of the Canyons Foundation Board of Directors, member of the Capital Campaign Committee for the College of the Canyons Culinary Arts Building Campaign, Board Member of Single Mothers Outreach and Board Member of Campus After Dark. Steve is a Past President of the Santa Clarita Valley Escrow Association and is currently a member of Vistage International, The Tom Hill Institute, Southland Association of Realtors (Affiliate), California Escrow Association and the Escrow Agents Fidelity Corporation.
James P. Reape, received his Juris Doctorate from Pepperdine University in 1982. After practicing law in Encino for several years, he founded James P. Reape, A Professional Corporation in 1992 and moved his practice to Valencia, California. Mr. Reape has significant trial and settlement experience. His reputation and excellent track record are widely recognized in Southern California. He is a member of the Family Law Sections of the California State Bar, the Los Angeles County Bar Association, the San Fernando Valley Bar Association, and the Santa Clarita Valley Bar Association. Mr. Reape has throughout his career taken leadership roles in each of these organizations. He serves as an Arbitrator and Mediator for Los Angeles Superior Court and Arbitrator for Los Angeles County Bar Fee Dispute Program. He has served as Chairman of the Los Angeles area for UNICEF, pro bono attorney for Domestic Violence Clinics, and he donates his time to various non-profit groups within his community. Over more than 30 years Mr. Reapeâ€™s clients have included Business Owners, professional athletes, Doctors, Lawyers, Dentists, Corporate executives and celebrities, to name a few. Mr. Reape is an expert when it comes to highly compensated individuals and business owners.
Louis J. Esbin founded his law firm and has been practicing in Valencia, California since 1993, where he provides Bankruptcy, Corporate Formation, Transactional, Merger & Acquisition, and Commercial Law services to clients throughout California and other states. Mr. Esbin currently represents a diverse group of corporate and individual clients, including small emerging businesses, corporations and individuals, as debtors and creditors, as well as clients who operate in the restaurant, construction, entertainment, retail, casino, real estate and manufacturing industries, distressed debt traders, and mortgage bankers.
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CLAUDIA MCDOWELL & LISA ODOM McDowell Odom, LLP is a familyowned transactional law firm located in Valencia, California, committed to assisting individuals and businesses throughout California on a wide variety of business and corporate law matters, contract drafting, estate planning, probate and trust administration, and real estate matters. The dynamic mother-daughter team of Claudia J. McDowell and M. Lisa Odom started the law firm in 2010, and together they have over thirty years combined legal experience, including large law firm and in-house counsel practice experience. McDowell Odom, LLP prides itself on its extensive “big city” legal representation acquired from their many years of practice, but with smaller firm, suburban rates, without sacrificing the quality or efficiency found in larger competitors. When you engage McDowell Odom, LLP as your business, real estate, or estate planning law firm, you can be confident that you will get intelligent legal representation with the personal attention you are looking for in your legal team.
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Scott has been in the Financial Services industry for 25 years. His company Corporate Strategies, Inc. specializes in Employee Benefit Planning for firms of 2 lives to 1000+. As a company they help take care of 450 company’s employee benefits plans. Scott also is a life insurance, Disability Insurance and Long Term Care Insurance specialist. He is a member of the million Dollar Roundtable which members are in the top 1% of insurance professionals in the world. Scott’s firm is a Boutique agency, who’s focus is to offer the best service possible to all of their clients. When it comes to Insurance policies, the rates are the rates are the rates. We concentrate on offering the best policies possible for our clients and have amazing staff that helps service all of our clients so they all feel how important they are to us. Corporate Strategies, has offices in both Encino, CA and Valencia, CA.
Carlos Villalobos has been providing professional and knowledgeable insurance advice since 1981 and most of that in the Santa Clarita Valley since 1989. Mr. Villalobos insurance services include but are not limited to Homeowners, Automobile, Commercial, Life and Health. Carlos has expressed that his insurance agency is here to help you and your business. This can be as simple as requesting a quote on your car, business or home or a more complicated custom package that fits all of your insurance needs. We are your one-stop shop for all things that relate to insurance and protecting you and your family. At Carlos Villalobos Insurance, we work diligently on behalf of our customers to obtain the lowest rates with the best coverage along side the best insurance advice available.
VAULT PRODUCERS Don Goettling Brad Burnell Steve Corn Gino Fronti Louis Esbin CREATIVE DIRECTOR
Hillary Broadwater PHOTOGRAPHY
Ed Ouellette ADVERTISING & MARKETING
Brad Burnell - ALME Inc. CONTACT
APRG | 9
WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY IN REAL ESTATE IS CLOSING!
By Don Goettling & Gino Fronti with Cherry Creek Mortgage
LET’S START WITH FIRST TIME HOMEBUYERS It is possible you may be shut out of purchasing your first home in a matter of years and you could be pushed out of your local market for years to come if you fail to take action. With our goal of helping our clients and listeners achieve personal and financial wellness we feel obligated to reach out and let you know that your window to purchase a new home in many areas of California is disappearing. A friend of mine, Barry Habib with MBS Highway and FOX news, shared this fact with us: Consider that prices in 1980 the median home price was $93,000 and today it is $184,300. Taxes and insurance would have cost approximately $150 fewer dollars per month in 1980 versus today. Now, with interest rates at a mere 13.50% in 1980 compared to today’s mid 4% range, the total payment with principal, interest, property taxes, and insurance with 20% down would be $50 fewer dollars per month than it would have been 30 years ago. If you take inflation into consideration, this number becomes even more dramatic.
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We truly love numbers, this is our area of expertise and we believe that numbers DON’T Lie. Below is a link that we feel is imperative to your decision making process. It will compare in detail the difference in cost, payment and purchasing power if prices go up just $50,000 and interest rates rise just 1.00%. For this analysis we are comparing a sale price of $350,000 at today’s estimated interest rates vs. a future sale price of $400,000 with potential yet conservative interest rates in the near future. You will see a dramatic payment change of around $584/mo. Click to see more: http://mcedge.tv/16ggvj All figures and APR fees are included in above link Please find more great information by visiting our website at www.donandgino.com where you can view past shows and show highlights and also please like our facebook fanpage for regular updates, great information, and fun. Don & Gino
RISING PRICES CHIP AWAY AT HOUSING AFFORDABILITY Daily Real Estate News | Wednesday, February 12, 2014 Strong year-over-year price gains are starting to take a bite into housing affordability, particularly in the West, according to the National Association of REALTORS®’ latest quarterly report.
NAR’s Housing Affordability Index, calculated on the relationship between median home prices, median family incomes, and the average effective mortgage interest rate, dropped to 175.8 in 2013 from a record high of 196.5 in 2012. The higher the index, the stronger household purchasing power is, according to NAR. http://www.realtor.org/topics/housing-affordabilty-index/ data
The median single-family home price rose in 73 percent of the markets, or 119 out of 164 metro areas, in the fourth quarter of 2013, with 26 percent, or 42 of those metros, posting double-digit gains. “The vast majority of home owners have seen significant gains in equity over the past two years, which is helping the economy through increased consumer spending,” says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. “At the same time, home prices have been rising faster than incomes, while mortgage interest rates are above the record lows of a year ago. This is beginning to hamper housing affordability.” The national median existing single-family home price in the fourth quarter was $196,900, up 10.1 percent from $178,900 one year earlier.
A Message from Don Goettling I am excited to help you get to know me more and more over time to let know that I am a regular person that has fun and passion for life just like you. My beautiful wife Cindy and I love traveling together. We recently had the opportunity to enjoy spring baseball. Yes, we wore our Dodger blue to an Angels’ game—classic. If you haven’t experienced spring ball in Phoenix, you really need to put it on your list next year. Next month I will share how our upcoming Chicago trip goes; it should be a great time!
A Message from Gino Fronti What a treat having the opportunity to share my life and my amazing family with you. The best thing about me is my family and the wonderful life we share. Recently, we shared a great day at Magic Mountain during spring break. One of favorite things to do is spend Sunday with family, cooking some fine meats on the grill; life doesn’t get any better. I can’t wait to share more with you next month. I sincerely hope you enjoy our new magazine and thank you for sharing it with your friends.
Apollo's Barber Shop THE MAN CAVE
Treats a Man like he Deserves
For $2 more, would you choose a drive-through burger or a steak-house filet? Would you choose a Craigslist jalopy or a dealership dream car? These are the questions I found myself pondering as I lounged in Apollo Barber Shop’s deep leather seats, watched sports on a giant flat screen television, sipped an ice-cold complimentary beverage, listened to rockin’ music, and
What ’s the Big Difference? Each hair-cutting professional at Apollo’s is a licensed barber, not (just) a cosmetologist. These trained, experienced, hand-selected barbers can do more than just give you the best cut or fade of your life - they can also legally perform safe, hygienic and oh-so-relaxing straight-razor shaves. (Think: steaming towels, warm shaving cream, coco butter facial and gel coolant, finished with after shave, powder and face, head, neck and shoulder massage.).
watched my husband get the best haircut of his life—made better with a neck and shoulder massage. Why was I—while in the midst of luxury, warmth, and professionalism—trying to come up with entirely divergent examples of items that could be had for two bucks more? 12 | JUNE 2014
Because Apollo’s Barber Shop cuts cost about $2 more than the snip-and-go hair-houses (Get it? Like “warehouses,” but for hair…) that are high on the dissatisfaction scale but low on cut quality, customer service, and ambiance. I wondered: Why would any guy choose “Super” anything when one of Apollo’s professional barbers provides the best in scissor, clipper, and razor cuts, ethnic hair, head shaves, straight-razor, and signature facial shaves—the Signature even comes with a cigar!—beard and goatee design, men’s hair coloring, waxing, skin therapy, and more… for a cost difference that’s less than the price of a tall cup of coffee? There could only be one answer: Those men just don’t know about Apollo’s. But wow - the ones who do are a loyal bunch - and that group is growing exponentially as word gets out about this man-zone escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. In less than four years, Apollo’s has grown to two locations in the SCV: Tournament in Valencia (254- 2891) and Town Center Drive, next to the Hyatt (259-7844). Within the next year, the plan is to bring Apollo’s old-fashioned class and service to Canyon Country, West Lake, and Old Town Pasadena, too.
Clay & Tiffany Friedman and the team of stylists at N’Style Salon believe that true beauty is only revealed when a person’s appearance, personality and life style merge and become one. “Every client is an individual and unique not only in regards to their looks, but also with the sparkle that surfaces as you begin to bond. Changing your hair and hair cut design is a journey when great results are truly realized and the process is comfortable from start to finish. A Stylist recommendation should suit the client’s budget, lifestyle and the goals for their personalized look. “Sometimes less is more and more is sometimes more.” Our Stylist experience, technical training and artistic visions provide the confidence for clients to relax and have trust. A standard of principles recognized by the industry leaders such as; “ Modern Salon Magazine 2011, Top 200 in America”, Best Salons in America,” and “ Best Salon SCV,” N’Style Salon is committed to making a true difference with our clients and with our community.
Santa Clarita’s N’Style Salon was recently named to the SALON TODAY 200 by SALON TODAY magazine, the top business publication for salon and spa owners. N’Style Salon 26111 Bouquet Canyon Road Suite A3 Saugus, Ca 91350
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TAKE A TRIP TO Wine Country Shangri-la
Mendocino County, about 120 miles north of San Francisco, is a wine country Shangri-La. Google “Anderson Valley” and do a scan of the images this search returns; you’ll begin to appreciate why this bucolic valley is so dear to the relatively small number of wine lovers who visit. It’s also the source of some the most magnificent wines made in America. Wine-making in Anderson Valley began to take off in the 1980s when the region’s pioneer wineries like Handley Cellars, Christine Woods, Pullman Vineyards, and Pepperwood Springs Vineyards opened their doors. Without access to hoards of visiting wine lovers from any nearby metropolitan areas, the wineries remained small. But, their reputation grew. Today, Anderson Valley wines still represent a drop in the ocean but what a beautiful and elegant drop it is. Among the wine cognoscenti, Anderson Valley Pinot Noirs have become among the most sought out examples of this popular varietal. Anderson Valley is among the cooler wine-growing regions in California, and that’s something Pinot Noir grapes love. But even more, they like the wild temperature swing the Valley experiences. During the growing season, temperatures can experience fifty-degree swings between day and night, and it’s this “diurnal” temperature swing that allows the grapes to retain beautiful and refreshing acids while the sugars and flavors develop fully. 14 | JUNE 2014
These same conditions also favor cold climate white grapes like Gewurztraminer and Riesling, and Anderson Valley is the source of some of the state’s finest examples of these wines. Each February the Valley’s winemakers host the Alsace Festival that celebrates these cold climate white wines, attracting winemakers from across the globe. The Alsace Festival is followed up each May with the Valley’s Pinot Festival, a celebration of all things Pinot and a perfect excuse for wine lovers to get off the beaten path and visit this remarkably beautiful locale. For the wine lover who does want to get beyond Napa and Sonoma, Anderson Valley is the perfect getaway. But, you have to want to go there. From San Francisco, the drive up Highway 101 to Cloverdale, where you head west on Highway 128, takes about two hours. Another alternative is to take a flight into the small Santa Rosa Airport, which will leave you with about an hour drive into the Valley. But, what a magnificent drive it is. The jaunt between the Cloverdale/Highway 101 exit and the town of Boonville in Anderson Valley is the quintessential back road. Around the corner you emerge into a grove of redwood trees; the next corner opens up to an ancient, imposing barn; around the next turn you may come across a heard of sheep grazing in a pasture. It’s the kind of drive you happily take slow and leisurely. There are not many places to stay in Anderson Valley, so make sure you plan ahead with reservations. You’ll likely be staying in or around the little town of Boonville. While in the Valley, wine tasting must be your first priority. There are about 30 wineries open for tasting in the Valley. Among my favorites are Handley Cellars, Navarro Vineyards, Roederer Estate, Goldeneye, and Phillips Hill. In preparation for your getaway, you’ll want to visit your local wine shop and let them know you want to taste the wines of Anderson Valley. They will point you toward Pinot Noirs and Gewurztraminers that can range from $25-$50+ a bottle. Take the leap and explore this region’s wines. Then go visit what might be the most beautiful wine region in California.
Tom Wark is the Founder of the American Wine Consumer Coalition, the only national advocacy organization for wine lovers. Additionally, he is an award-winning wine blogger and regularly judges at wine competitions. Tom lives in Napa Valley with his wife Kathy and their Italian Greyhound, Louis B. Shrimperton III.
A TITLE By Steve Corn with Newhall Escrow
There are different types of real property ownership in California mainly divided into sole ownership and coownership. There are several variations as to how title is held in each type of ownership. The following are the seven most common examples of sole and co-ownerships: SOLE-OWNERSHIP 1. A Single Man/Woman: A man or woman who are not legally married. 2. An Unmarried Man/Woman: A man or woman that have been married and is legally divorced. 3. A Married Man/Woman as her or his sole and separate property: When a married man or woman who wishes to acquire title in his or her name alone, they must receive their spouseâ€™s consent by Quit Claim Deed or otherwise, to transfer thereby relinquishing all rights, title and interest in the property. 16 | JUNE 2014
CO-OWNERSHIP 4. Joint Tenancy: Is one owned by two or more persons in equal shares, by a title created by a single will or transfer, when expressly declared in the will or transfer to be a joint tenancy. A chief characteristic of joint tenancy property is the right of survivorship. When a joint tenant passes away, title to the property immediately vests in the survivor or surviving joint tenants. As a consequence, joint tenancy property isnâ€™t subject to disposition by will. 5. Tenancy in Common: Under tenancy in common, the coowners own undivided interests. Unlike joint tenancy in this type of co-ownership the interests need not be equal in quantity or duration. There is no right of survivorship; each tenant owns an interest that upon his or her death is vested to the legal heirs or devisees. 6. Community Property: is one acquired by husband and wife or either during marriage. Real property conveyed to a married man or woman is presumed to be community property, unless otherwise stated. Under community
property, both spouses have the right by will, to dispose of one half of the community property. If a spouse does not exercise his/her right to dispose of one-half to someone other than his/her spouse, then the one-half will go to the surviving spouse without administration. If a spouse exercises his/her right to dispose of one-half, that half is subject to administration in the estate. 7. Community Property with Right of Survivorship: (Effective July 1st, 2001). Community property acquired by husband and wife, when expressly declared in the transfer document to be “community property with right of survivorship,” shall pass to the surviving spouse without having to first pass through the administration of the estate. 8. Trust: Title to real property in California may be held in a title holding trust. The trust holds legal and equitable title to the real estate. The trustee holds title for the trustor/beneficiary who retains all of the management rights and responsibilities. How to hold title is not always a simple decision and your decision on how to hold title can have significant tax and legal ramifications down the road if you make the wrong
A Message from Steve Corn Steve lives in Valencia and is married to his lovely wife Carla of 20 years and has a wonderful daughter Chelsea, 18. He is passionate about helping others, growing his Real Estate clients business, and creating lifelong relationships along the way that foster achievements in business the way it is meant to be—with heart, honesty, and integrity. Steve believes it is his responsibility to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those he touches. Steve’s hobbies include traveling, biking, fishing, spending time in his RV, cooking, competing in BBQ contests, wine tasting, spending time with family and friends, reading books, and helping to improve the lives of others.
choice. We recommend that you speak with your tax professional and/or estate planner prior to deciding how to take title to any real estate
Tastes Town OF THE
Salt Creek Grille is a classic American grille serving fabulous food, distinctive wines—in a casual warm ambiance—offering live entertainment, and a loyal team of service professionals. Think rustic meets California casual at Salt Creek Grille in Valencia. We are proud to be a part of the community for the past 15 years. If you’re looking for relaxed, upscale dining, it’s time to experience Salt Creek Grille. The award-winning Salt Creek Grille features mesquite grilled hand-cut steaks, PRIME Steaks, fresh Pacific seafood, tangy barbeque ribs, and Zagat Guide’s acclaimed “Best Pork Chop on the Planet” as well as signature salads, hearty pasta dishes and juicy halfpound burgers. An extensive wine list perfectly complements the classic American fare. Enjoy private parties, patio dining, a Sunday Champagne Brunch, live weekend entertainment, and a cozy outdoor fireplace to enhance your dining experience. Come experience Salt Creek Grille’s hospitality and impressive offerings that are the talk of the Santa Clarita Valley! Just like all the dishes we serve at Salt Creek Grille, we start with the highest quality and freshest ingredients. Considering our Chilean Sea Bass is one of our most popular signature entrées, Chef Ignacio Munoz is pleased to share the recipe with Vault readers and the community alike. 18 | JUNE 2014
Chilean Sea Bass
Ingredients 4 8zo portions Chilean Sea Bass Marinate Marinate the Sea Bass for 24 hours in 4oz Buttermilk ½ oz of Sesame Oil After marinating remove Sea Bass from Marinate Sprinkle with 1 oz Sesame Seeds Preheat oven to 350 and cook for 12-14 minutes Sauce 2oz rice wine vinegar 1 Pinch of Cayenne Pepper 1 Pinch of Ground Fresh Ginger ½ Teaspoon of Sesame Oil Garnish with chopped tomatoes, chopped Green Onions & Daikon Sprouts We serve the Sea Bass with Salt Creek Grille’s Garlic Mashed Potatoes & Sautéed Asparagus Enjoy!!!
APRG | 19
IS DOLLAR COST AVERAGING
Costing You Dollars? By Chris Ingram with Infinity Wealth Management
So, you waited until the last minute again to make your IRA contribution for the prior year. To give you the benefit of the doubt, you didn’t wait until the last minute. You made your contribution on April 1st, two weeks before the April 15th deadline. However, you did make your entire contribution at one time and ever since then, the markets seem to be falling. Ugh, doesn’t that always seem to be the case? Every time you invest money, the first move the market makes is down. You know what they say. If not for bad luck, you wouldn’t have any luck at all. Well maybe you could have avoided this situation by using dollar-cost averaging. Dollar-cost averaging is where an investor contributes a designated dollar amount at pre-determined, regular intervals. You’ve heard your financial advisor preach about dollar-cost averaging in the past. Maybe it’s the solution. While this time-tested strategy has been a favorite of financial professionals for some time now, a study by Vanguard, the mutual fund giant, suggests that maybe it is not the best strategy after all. Back in 2012, Vanguard created hysteria in the financial planning community when they advised investors, with a lump sum to invest, that it would be to their advantage to invest all of that money at one time instead of using dollarcost averaging. This was, obviously, contrary to everything financial planners had been preaching to their clients for several decades, dating back to the 1940’s, when the concept of dollar-cost averaging was first introduced. I mean, the 20 | JUNE 2014
numbers in Vanguard’s study may tell you one thing, but have you ever invested a large chunk of money only to have the market selloff over 20% immediately following. Ouch! That is a painful experience that number crunching, certainly, cannot replicate. However, the numbers don’t lie. The Vanguard study showed that the above scenario is so uncommon, it should not be a factor. In their study, Vanguard used a $1 million and $20 million dollar investment and ran thousands of simulations over rolling 10-year periods dating back to 1926. They compared the returns of investing all of the money at once to dollar-cost averaging strategies ranging from six months to 3 years. What they found was: The longer investors took to invest their money, the lower their total return. For example, those who invested the entire lump sum at one time earned a higher total return than those investors who took a year to fully invest their money two-thirds of the time. Is this really that surprising? Another common saying in the financial community is, “It’s not timing the market. It’s time in the market”. It has been acknowledged for over 30 years that lump sum investing does have superior long-term returns. So what about dollar-cost averaging? Why was the concept ever created in the first place? Dollar-cost averaging works best during periods of wild volatility. This was the case in the 1930’s, which led to the creation of dollar-
cost averaging in the first place. It has also been the case recently, especially from January 1, 2000 to December 31, 2009, when the market was coined the “Lost Decade”. If you would have invested a lump sum on January 1, 2000, by December 31, 2009, you would have had less money than your original investment. In this kind of market environment, dollar-cost averaging ensures that investors buy more shares when the market is down and fewer shares when the market is high. You may even show a positive return in a market that is flat or slightly negative. However, this advantage is lost in a rising, positive market environment. That being said, let’s not abandon dollar-cost averaging altogether. For many of my client’s, this is the only way they can invest. They may not be fortunate enough to have a lump sum to invest, and they need to regularly contribute to their accounts in smaller increments. For most of my client’s, we set these contributions up as automatic monthly deductions from their checking account, so they don’t have to think about it. This concept is largely what makes 401k plans so successful. The money is pulled from the investor’s paycheck before they even see it and over time it accumulates. In addition, there is the psychological element. As investors, we find losses to our portfolio more emotionally taxing than we find gains satisfying. This
A Message from Chris Ingram On June 12, 2004, I married the love of my life, Elise. As the parents of four children, Taylor (8), Zach (6), Ella (4) and Abbey (2), there is never a dull moment. Taylor dances competitively, Ella dances for fun, Zach plays baseball, soccer, and football, and Abbey terrorizes her mother. For Elise and I, there is nothing we love more than spending time together as a family. We love taking trips to the lake on our boat, snowboarding up in the mountains, or visiting Disneyland. However, our favorite pastime is snuggling up on the couch and watching movies together. When we do take some time for ourselves, you will most likely find Elise and I working out at the gym or shopping for healthy foods, as the health of ourselves and our children is of primary importance to us.
reduction of risk and peace of mind alone may be worth the underperformance. At the end of the day, there were still several scenarios where dollar cost averaging beat lump sum investing in Vanguard’s study. And as I say so often, one size does not fit all in the world of investing. What is most important is that you sit down with a qualified financial planner and map out your individual and unique scenario. Then tailor your financial plan to your specific goals and objectives. Until you have done this, it is difficult to say which of these options is right for you. However, once you have a plan in place, you may just find that dollar-cost averaging is still the best solutions for you.
ALL MIXED UP
Whether it’s the tangible preparation, the jargon, or subculture, martinis are a timelessly classic way of enjoying alcohol. The sound of ice colliding with metal, frozen water molecules combining with warm libations until the tin is strained, creating chilled nectar that is delicately poured into a glass vessel. The martini shaker itself seems to be some sort of time capsule, reminding us of a vastly influential cocktail culture and its rich history in our country. Martinis are certainly their own breed—the nuance and specificity of preparation and consumption is nothing short of liturgical. The martini has evolved over time, but in many respects has withstood trends and the fickle nature of the general public. This brings us to The Social, where Santa Clarita bartenders and patrons alike hold down the martini fort. The birth of The Social was pure and simple enough: To provide the citizens of the greater Santa Clarita area with something they were missing—a quality bistro restaurant and martini lounge with professional service. Ten years later the age-old adage remains, that the proof is in the pudding—especially when it comes to food and drink. Although the food menu is classically delicious, the martini menu defines the uniquity of The Social. Walking into the old brick building, one will notice the slightly-worn-from-use martini menus standing proudly on the cocktail tables in the bar. In an era when complex mixology is all the rage, The Social stands as a testament to amusingly straightforward martinis. The plethora of martinis on the menu feature both classic and modern styles. It’s not every day that one can order a vodka martini with hand-stuffed blue cheese olives and a rendition of a piece of key lime pie on the same menu. One of the more popular martinis is essentially an interpretation of a cosmopolitan, playfully named the “Porn Star.” Here are a couple recipe breakdowns for consideration: PORN STAR: Equal parts clementine and raspberry vodkas, one part Rated X liqueur, and a splash of cranberry juice. KEY LIME PIE: Graham-cracker-rimmed martini glass, a dash of fresh whip-cream made in-house, vanilla vodka, sweetened lime juice and lemonade.
22 | JUNE 2014
The bartenders’ martini repertoires exceed the confines of the menu, so don’t be afraid to test their knowledge. The timeless originality of the Johndécor. Eric Home 22 place is complimented by the chic ambiance, custom art, and The Social is an alternative to crafty beers and corporate cocktail menus. This is your invitation to socialize at The Social.
Finally, An Energy Saving Program That Puts Green In Your Pocket AND Is Green For The Environment Many energy savings programs require a huge upfront investment, have long payback periods, and if you look carefully underneath, involve technology risks that may result in no payback at all. But that’s not true when converting from traditional to energy efficient lighting. Converting from traditional lighting to LEDs and other High-Efficiency options are a sure thing. It’s a rapid payback, proven technology and it’s environmentally responsible too. Here’s why: 1. Business owners typically save 60-80% off their CURRENT lighting bills by shifting to lighting that draws less power to generate the same intensity of light output. With electricity rates projected to skyrocket over the coming decade, the savings will compound. 2. Most energy efficient bulbs last much longer (up to 5x’s!) than traditional bulbs. That translates to work environments with fewer burned out bulbs and greater safety. It also means much lower maintenance costs, less down-time to replace bulbs and saves on replacement costs. 3. Not only are there fewer bulbs ending up in land-fills when you use energy efficient bulbs, but there are far fewer toxic chemicals being discarded too. Traditional fluorescent bulbs, for example, have high levels of mercury that leach into the ground when discarded. LED bulbs have no such toxic chemicals.
4. LEDs do not flicker, and there are many options for the light color (warm to cool). This means the lighting is easy on your workers eyes, safer, and is directional so you can have light exactly where you need it. 5. There are a number of subsidy programs and financing options available to business owners to help reduce the load on California’s power grids. We help you find the best options for your business. To find out how much money your business can save by converting to high-efficiency lighting, and what kinds of financial incentives are available for you, call us at (661) 254-3800 to schedule a completely FREE, no-obligation, comprehensive audit of your facility. Chris Fall is the President of Lighting Efficiency & Design (l.e.d.), the Santa Clarita-based company that specializes in energy efficiency lighting for office, commercial, industrial space and much more. L.e.d. was awarded the prestigious 2013 Small Business Of The Year form the 38th Assembly District.
APRG | 23
By Lou Esbin with Esbin Law
Before the last one closes, take a visit to a bookstore and find the isle for personal improvement. You will find among the books available for sale many on how to succeed, secrets of success, and others focused on positive aspects of personal financial improvement. Positive attitude is recognized as the best perspective; the “glass half full, not half empty.” There are scores of authors ready, willing and able to lend their advice; of course at a price. It is only since the Great Recession of 2008 has the advice to be prudent been on the forefront of so many advocates of personal financial wellbeing. But, the source of advice is only as far away as some old adages: “save for a rainy day” or “never a debtor or borrower be.” But, my favorite that I have counseled my clients with for the last 28 years: “like, want, need and afford Like: This is the most basic element of a consumer based economy and society. This is the weakest of human desires, because it is the essence of selfishness. To “like” is to ignore 24 | JUNE 2014
all other responsibilities when making a decision to buy or consume something. Acting upon the “like” at the expense of all other responsibilities is the surest path to increasing the risk of failure, indebtedness or unnecessary consumption. Satisfying “like” is what the credit issuers (banks, lenders, credit card companies) spend millions of dollars in advertising. Meeting one’s desire to satisfy the “like” is acceptable once the “want, need and afford” are recognized as having been met too. Want: Much as is found in the “like,” the “want” is a foundational factor in the success of a credit based consumer economy and society. Even if there has been an honest assessment of the “like,” the ability to overcome the desire to want, even though there not be a need or affordability, is much more difficult when taunted by fashion, image, peer pressure, and easy access to credit. But, there is a difference between wanting to be accepted or admired by peers and wanting a materialist thing that is neither needed
nor affordable. And, so it is not easy in a modern society to discern and overcome these distinctions. Need: Getting over the threshold of “like and want” and moving onto “need” is a significant step forward in overcoming a temptation and onto “avoiding failure.” Assessing the “need” requires an accounting of what one has and what may be missing to make life or family better. The “need” for a better job, housing, knowledge, understanding, education, cloths, shoes, food, etc. – you get the picture, are part of critical thinking. Setting priorities is necessary, needed, to succeed and avoid failure. Afford: There is more and more written and spoken about affordability; however, often without the discussion of the other three prongs of the analysis. Of course, to afford means to be able to acquire without the loss of an ability to acquire things of equal importance; and when used here “things” are not solely material things, but things as the essentials of success of living. So, afford is not merely quantified by money, but is also defined as sustaining or improving the quality of life, not necessarily the quantity of personal objects. As my finance professor instructed so many years ago, affording a material object can be answered once one answers the question of whether there are 6 months of expenses set aside, the house payment is made, all insurance is paid, food is on the table, education acquired, and all other necessary
A Message from Lou Esbin Twenty-eight years of business and bankruptcy law, and being one of only 150 certified bankruptcy specialists in all of California, has not kept Lou Esbin from being involved in his community, profession, and family. For the last 6 years Lou volunteered as a Community Court Judge. Since 1993, he’s been a member of SCV Rotary Club, in which he is currently membership chair and is set to be president in July 2015. He is a founding member of the SCV Bar Association. In September, Lou will be Chair to the Bankruptcy Law Advisory Commission of the California State Bar Board of Legal Specialization. As well, he is a contributing author for a treatise on California Mortgages, Deeds of Trust and Foreclosure Litigation. Lou is very proud of his three adult children: the oldest son is working in Las Vegas; the second, a daughter, is attending culinary school at Johnson & Wales in Denver; and the youngest son is set to attend Lou’s alma mater, SUNY Albany, as an undergraduate in their Business School that is ranked among the top 100 in the country. In his spare time, Lou enjoys photography, as shown by this recent picture taken inside of the New York State Capitol Building in Albany, New York.
expenses are met. What I have added is the issue of priorities among apparently equal necessities. Following the Great Recession of 2008 and the admittedly sluggish employment based recovery, the ability of every household and each individual should participate in the very simple task of asking at the prospect of consuming another product or service: “Ok, I like and want, but do I really need and can I afford?” Answered honestly, the key to learning “how not to fail” triggers opening of a new set of doors of financial success and personal wellbeing absent unnecessary debt.
FIT FOR LIFE
Getting and Staying Fit Only 1 out of 3 people will maintain their weight loss goals once they have achieved them. Why is that? Once we reach our goals, it is easy to get “comfortable” or have extra cheat meals and not think about it because you are at your goal weight. It is important to remember that often times the losing is easier than the maintenance. The maintenance takes consistency and work, a lot of it! Just because you hit that “magic” number or goal doesn’t mean all that hard work you put in to get there goes out the window, instead a new level of discipline is needed. Here are a few ways to stay fit and stay at your goal: 1. Plan your cheat meals. If you know you are going to go out for drinks during the week or weekend, eat healthy all week leading up to that day. 2. Meal Prep. Following a set meal plan will help prevent mid-week binges due to hunger. When we’re busy with work or the kids, it is easy to just grab whatever is convenient. If you have the meals prepped and in the fridge, that becomes your convenience. 3. Get your spouse and or family on board. It is SO much easier to eat healthy and clean and get to the gym when you have someone else doing it with you. It’s much easier to give into your pizza cravings when your significant 26 | JUNE 2014
other is on the phone ordering an extra large pizza for takeout! 4. Workout and build muscle! The more muscle you have, the higher your resting metabolism is and the more calories your burn at REST! Many people feel that cardio, cardio and more cardio is the way to go and sure, cardio is necessary to reach those goals but so is strength training to build muscle The values of getting and staying fit: 1. Keep your heart healthy. The most dramatic benefit of workout is to the heart and blood vessels. An exercised and fit body allows the heart to pump less rapidly while at rest. 2. Keep Cholesterol in check. Exercise help cholesterol move out of the body rather than sticking on the artery walls and tissues 3. Keep up with your kids and grandkids! At Afterburn Fitness, we help you with the workouts and the nutrition by giving you a meal plan to follow to achieve your goal and also to maintain! Our intense classes, experienced trainers and full gym give you all the tools needed to get in the best shape of your life! Check it out for 1 week FREE!
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A Commentary By Ryan Kiick & Robert Schwartz with Princeton Review & Total College Planning
The recent College Board announcement extolling a new and improved SAT, launching in Spring 2016, is akin to Darth Vader proclaiming an upcoming change in lightsaber color – who cares what it looks like when its end result is pain! For decades the SAT has been a vital part of the college admissions process, though it is easy to forget that it was never truly meant to help students. Instead, it is a tool used by colleges to make slightly more informed decisions on a given student’s admissibility. In fact it’s an amazing thing to consider that the College Board’s true customers are colleges and universities, but it is students that pay for the test. What a business model, eh? While David Coleman, the College Board President, is lauding the changes as a great step forward for students, he is conveniently ignoring his organization’s true motivations. The test isn’t changing because it has been an unfair stumbling block for college bound students (it has been), but because a growing number of colleges no longer require it for admission – now over 800 schools – and because the SAT has lost market share to the ACT. All that being said, the test will remain a part of the college admission process for the foreseeable future, so rather than lament its existence, let’s take advantage of it. First, these changes only impact students who are currently 28 | JUNE 2014
freshman (Class of 2017) or younger. Older students don’t have to worry about these changes and will still be taking the current SAT and/or ACT as part of the admissions process. Both of which are known entities that The Princeton Review can outsmart with its eyes closed – just as we have for over 30 years.
The chart on the next page captures the main differences between the current SAT and the one students will be up against in 2016. Of course things can change a bit between now and then, so stay up to date by bookmarking and regularly checking www.princetonreview.com/SATchanges.
Redesigned SAT (starting spring 2016)
2400 points possible over 3 sections
1600 points possible over 2 sections
Incorrect Answer Penalty
1/4 point deduction for incorrect answers on multiple-choice questions
No penalty for incorrect answers
3 sections (Math, Critical Reading, Writing Skills)
2 sections (Math, Evidence-Based Reading and Writing)
Length of Test
3 hours, 45 minutes
3 hours (without essay) 3 hours, 50 minutes (with essay)
Paper and pencil option only
Paper and pencil AND a computer-based option
Reading and Writing
Two sections: Critical Reading and Writing Skills • Vocabulary tested by sentence completion questions; famous for “SAT Words,” often considered obscure • Passage-based questions, with passages drawn from random topics sentence completion questions; famous for “SAT Words,” often considered obscure
One section: Evidence-Based Reading and Writing • No more sentence completions • Vocabulary less esoteric, more likely to be found in real life • Focus on providing support for answers from evidence found in passages • Passages will draw from significant historical or scientific documents
• Covers topics from Arithmetic, Algebra I, Geometry, and a little bit of Algebra II • Calculators permitted throughout
• Focus more on application-based questions; will cover topics from Problem Solving and Data Analysis, the Heart of Algebra, and Passport to Advanced Math • Calculators only sometimes allowed
Required first section of the test (25 minutes, timed)
The essay will be optional (50 minutes, timed)
A Message from Rob Schwartz I grew up in the neighboring San Fernando Valley and moved to Santa Clarita in 2005 to marry my wife, Lisa. I have been a Valencia resident ever since. Education runs deep in our family, as Lisa is a long-time faculty member at College of the Canyons, and I am a practicing Independent College Counselor and also work as a Territory Manager for the Princeton Review. In our spare time, we serve our community as the President and Vice President of the Schwartz Scholarship Fund. I am a bit of a wine enthusiast, and Lisa and I regularly visit wine growing regions throughout California to sample the various varietals and nearly uncountable numbers of wine producers the state boasts. I am also an avid sports fan and closely follow the LA Kings, LA Lakers, St. Louis Rams (come home!), and the New York Yankees. We share our home with our son Harry (a budding audio engineer), his girlfriend, Tori, and two dogs—a golden retriever named Chloe and a black lab/German shepherd mix named Athena.
HEALTH + WELLNESS
A Daily Example of a
PERFECT DIET This is an excerpt from The Life Diet: Live Long, Live Lean and Maximize Your Potential by Chace Unruh
Your body is not meant to be overloaded with sugary, over-processed foods with no real nutritional value. Instead it is meant to consume natural, raw foods have not been denatured by overcooking. The ideal diet composed of no less than 60% raw foods such as fresh, organic fruits and vegetables. This diet will pave the way for me a more energetic body is also heightened mental capacity. Our ‘Super-Size” culture has led many to believe that bigger is better and that less is not more. A daily example of a perfect diet It is ideal to eat six small meals a day, rather than in frequent large meals. Eating smaller meals doesn’t overwhelm your body with large amounts of food, and allows the time to properly digest and remove waste. Blood sugar levels are also stabilized, ensuring that you have enough energy to get through the day. Breakfast is the most important meal because in it ensures your body has the right fuel to prepare it for the day. Ideally, breakfast should consist of raw fruits and freshly squeezed fruit juices. There’s nothing wrong with eating pancakes or bagels but you need to make sure you take enzymes with these foods. Make sure you take all the essential supplements as we discussed above. There are no excuses for skipping breakfast; it is that easiest meal of the day to prepare. Snack on whole foods throughout the day, such as fresh fruits and vegetables. When eating out it is critical to watch your portion size. Do not eat everything that is put in front of you. Instead, try eating only 50% and wait for 20 minutes.
Give your body enough time to tell your brain that it’s full. If you don’t want to throw away good food, there’s no shame in asking for a takeout container. It is impossible to eat perfectly when dining out, but you can control how much you eat opt for healthier choices such as lean rather than fatty meats. Foods such as fruits, vegetables, free range foods and proteins should also be part of every well-balanced diet. When cooking at home, learn how to make your own salad dressings and condiments. This small effort is not only healthier but also saves you from the vast number of hidden calories in processed food. When shopping, it is best to go organic, which isn’t as expensive as you may think. Even Costco carries organic chicken and milk. Learn how to put together good food combinations, don’t prepare meals that are full of meat and potatoes and always remember that raw is better. Your body is your most valuable asset and should not be neglected. Some people spend vast amounts of money on material possessions, but fill their bodies with dangerous chemicals and unhealthy foods. This is a complete contradiction. If you care about what’s on the outside, you should care twice as much about what’s on the inside. Instead of following the herd and not caring about what you eat, be proactive and do your own research or consulted a nutritionists, in the long run your body will thank you for it. Dr. Chace Unruh has been freeing people from pain since 2002 in his clinic in Santa Clarita, CA. Dr. Unruh is committed to promoting the health and wellbeing of his patients.
HOW SWEET IT IS
a Nostalgic Treat that’s here to stay
The popularity of cupcakes continues to grow, and nothing will truly take its place anytime soon. Cupcakes became so well loved because they brought back memories of our childhood, which are the same memories we want to pass on to our children. It’s a stylish dessert to indulge in, whether it’s
Why cupcakes over cake? There are lots of flavors to choose from. Kupcake Kitchen has over 40 flavors and offers 8 to 12 flavors a day in the shop, but you can choose from a variety of flavors for your special event. So, there’s a flavor to please everyone. From weddings to birthdays and anniversaries to corporate events, cupcakes really are the perfect treat. There are size options to fit your needs as well: mini cupcakes to complement your dessert bar, standard-size cupcakes for your birthday party, specially-designed large cupcakes for the birthday girl/boy, and jumbo cupcakes that feed 10 – 12! They look pretty on display and are easy to eat. There is no messy cutting, less waste, and they are easy to serve. This field has become saturated with competitors, including individual bakeries and grocery stores. Kupcake Kitchen is one of two that were the first to open in Santa Clarita. Today there are many, but what separates the competition is offering a high-quality product, exceptional customer service, and the passion to be the best. “And what I’ve learned through the years is that it really doesn’t matter where you’re located in town because people will travel for a quality product, and that makes it all worthwhile.”
just for you, your family, or your office buddies. Cupcakes are trendy and all grown up. Even in these economic times, cupcakes are the ongoing, affordable luxury. You may be skipping those fancy dinners, but you sure can afford to treat yourself to a cupcake. APRG | 31
ADVISOR STRATEGY Which Insurance Policy is right for you. By Scott Zimmerman with Corporate Strategies & Insurance Services
Q: Recently, I have read several magazine articles about life insurance that were contradictory. One article recommended buying term insurance and investing the difference. Another praised whole life insurance as the product to buy. And a third article recommended buying a universal life product. Which is the best product: Term, Whole Life, or Universal Life? A: The question to ask is not, “Which is best?” The best question you should ask yourself is, “What are my goals and needs, and what form of insurance best serves them?” Which do you believe are more useful, ¬cats or dogs? The answer to this question, of course, depends on what your needs are. If you have mice in your barn, a cat is going to do a far better job of getting rid of them than even the most eagerto-please dog. But if you’re a duck hunter, a dog is going to be a much more useful hunting companion. The question of term insurance versus whole life versus universal life is similar. They are all different products, they serve different purposes, and they are most useful in different circumstances. There is also a fourth type of life insurance, called a blended policy or blend, which is essentially a combination of whole life and term insurance. 32 | JUNE 2014
Term insurance is life insurance at its simplest. Each year (or more often) you pay a premium that increases, as you grow older. When you die, any person, group, or organization you choose gets a sum of money, called a death benefit, from your insurance company. Whole life (also called permanent insurance) is a multipurpose form of life insurance. As with term insurance, your beneficiary gets a death benefit when you die. But a whole life policy is also a vehicle for accumulating cash with tax advantages while you are still alive. A whole life policy usually appreciates each year, much like a savings account. If you choose, you can borrow against your whole life policy while you’re still alive or even cash it in and receive the funds that have accumulated in it. These accumulated funds are called cash values. Traditional whole life policies have an annual premium that stays the same every year and that normally must be paid as long as you own the policy. Recently, however, some new options have been introduced, some policies now have flexible premiums, and some limit the number of premiums required to twenty or ten or even fewer - while still providing coverage,
accumulation of cash values, and borrowing privileges throughout your lifetime. Every life insurance policy is a variation of either term insurance or whole life - or a combination of the two. The variations on these two basic life insurance plans are virtually endless. Universal life is one such variation: It’s essentially a form of whole life with a flexible premium and a flexible death benefit. Blends are another common variation. A typical blend includes some whole life coverage (complete with cash accumulation) and some term coverage. This type of policy offers many of the best features of each. Which type of insurance is best for you depends entirely on your personal circumstances. If you have four young children, an annual household income of $50,000, a total of $10,000 in assets, and $1,000 to spend on life insurance this year, you need as much term insurance from a reliable company as that $1,000 can buy. On the other hand, if all your children have grown up and moved away and you have $400,000 in the bank, a good whole life policy is probably far more appropriate. Cash value accumulated via a permanent policy can be used for a number of scenarios including supplementing retirement, starting or investing in a business, purchasing or improving a home, or paying for a child’s or grand¬child’s college education. The pres¬ence of whole life in an
A Message from Scott Zimmerman Scott has been married to his wife Kim for 21 years and have to amazing daughters. Samantha is 18 and just graduated from high school and is leaving to start college this fall and attending Philadelphia University and Taylor is 15 and is going into 11th grade. As a family we enjoy traveling, sailing, skiing, and just being together. Scott loves working out, eating bad foods, golf (never shot below 100), skiing, snowboarding, sailing, travel and adventure. Scott and a group of his friends have done adventure trips for the past 16 years including, hiking Mount Kilimanjaro, hiked the Inca trail to Machu Pichu, River rafted the Futalafu in Chile, Caving in Belize, Cross Country skied through Norway, biked through Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia, did a camel safari though Morocco and a bunch of other amazing adventures.
investment portfolio offers a stable return, though generally less than 5% per year. Whole life insurance is also well suited for cases involving par¬ents or caregivers of those with special needs or disabilities - an important feature for the “sand¬wich generation,” who find themselves simultaneously saving for retirement, supporting children, and taking in aging parents. A permanent policy’s cash value could be used as an extension to another source of “emergency” funds, including that money market account. “If you get laid off, you need to have created a financial plan that helps you with¬stand those unanticipated blows that come in life,” he says. People buy adjustable-rate mortgages because they seem cheap in the beginning, which is the same reason people buy term insurance. But, whole life can actu¬ally end up being the better value in the long run, because whole life gives a cash value, which could be tapped as an alternative to the three to six-month living expenses most financial advisors tell people to keep in a money market fund. Once a good insurance agent knows a little bit about you and your finances, he or she will tell you, up front and straightforwardly, whether you will be best served by a term policy, a whole life plan, a universal life plan, a blend, or even two or more different policies.
San Francisco City by the Bay Art, Light and the Celebration of Life! By Kelli Alexander with PlanetKelli
San Francisco is probably my favorite California city! No, IT IS my favorite California city - and for so many reasons. Hop a flight. Take the BART train. Check into your home away from home (more about this later). Drop your bags. Jump on a trolley and exit at China Town! This isn’t just any China Town. It’s San Francisco China Town and it feels authentically Chinese! Fun shops; conical hats, colorful gifts, great food and excellent fresh made cocktails! Go to R&G Lounge and try the just- pressed watermelon or pear martini and have it with whole crab, Peking duck and some fabulous flat noodles...Heaven! Dashing in and out of the many shops along narrow side streets will tempt you with anything from books, silk robes, Asian home decor, gag gifts, brightly colored costume wigs and more. Are we in California or somewhere in the Far East? You let your mind decide. Next stop check out the Ferry Building Marketplace on the Embarcadero. It’s the hub for all water transportation, moving suburbanites into and out of the city and en masse. This is a place where one (tourist as well) can grab a ferry for Tiburon or other charming coves around the bay for some exploration, shopping and dining. What’s so cool about this building is before boarding, pick up an artisan loaf of bread, gourmet cheese at Cowgirl Creamery, the perfect prosciutto 34 | JUNE 2014
or salami from Bocalone or lobster from Hog Island, a bottle of bubbly, roses and all this before stepping onto your water vessel headed for home. And the best part of this picture is NO FWY traffic getting you there! Now that’s my idea of stress free commuting! I think there’s a movement going on in San Francisco. And that movement is art! And that art is the beat and pulse of a city by the bay with air as crisp as new white linens and its people moving about life and living it well. Aah and I left my heart there as the song goes. It’s no coincidence giant heart sculptures have been installed throughout the city since 2004 (inspired by the cow sculpture exhibits throughout the world) and all for charity to help support the San Francisco General Hospital. Each year notable’s such as Tony Bennett take on this task and display their heart “works” from Union Square to other points of interest in town. San Francisco has been through and seen it all from its humble yet brave beginnings during the Gold Rush with the hopes and promise of a fruitful future to a modern, tekkie and sophisticated urban locale flanked by world renowned wineries of Napa and Sonoma, a wild and majestic coastline producing some of the most succulent Oysters and fish of the Pacific, a cornucopia of organically grown produce affording some of the best Farm to Table menus throughout the area. Feeling energetic? Take a hike! Cross the Bridge to Sausalito and do a 7 mile loop beginning at the water’s edge near Cavallo Point and traverse the hills embracing the wild flowers. It’s something out of the “land of Oz” with vivid colors not even Crayola has thought of. And then there you are at the summit above the clouds and the Golden Gate Bridge. Nirvana. One of my favorite pastimes in the city is milling around Fillmore St and Pacific Heights. It’s a little bit of Bohemia and lot of upscale one of a kind boutiques, antique shops, restaurants and turn of the century apartment buildings. It’s the perfect place to get lost and have a coffee, discover a must-have item for your home or a pair of shoes you can’t live without. And let’s not forget Sundays in the Presidio during the summer. This is an iconic area which during WWII was the housing base for our military brass. It’s now a hotel along with other businesses and studios but on Sundays in the spring through summer it’s a gathering place in the Central Park area with food trucks and venues, a pop up bar show casing local wines and brews along with lively music. One can still feel the energy of what went on there during those war days (I can almost hear the Big Bands of Benny Goodman and see the classic cars stopping in front of the dance hall with a procession of ladies dressed like...ladies! Hair coiffed perfectly, gloves, seemed stockings and lips painted a daring velvety red. After a busy day of hiking the surrounding mountains, walking the streets of San Francisco and navigating the transportation it’s time to retreat to my favorite relaxation
spot in the city - Spa Vitale located on the rooftop of this wonderful boutique hideaway in the city! Don’t miss the herbal bath soak which is situated outdoors tucked in the bamboo trees. They have two deep soaking tubs situated side by side so couples or friends can do this during the same time frame yet be in our own sphere simply breathing. Guests are raised high above the hustle and bustle of the city however can catch subtle glimpses of it between the shade and privacy of the foliage. Clandestinely you are removed from the outside world while floating away in this organic herbal bliss getting the body and mind rejuvenated from the day’s excitement. And as the sun sets over the city by the bay and you sit in the window seat of your room at Hotel Vitale with a view, listening to the chill sounds of the hotels thoughtful playlist in your room you anticipate what is to come… The sky darkens and the Bay Bridge Lights come alive! This is truly a work of art crafted by Leo Villarreal who set out to create a “Digital Campfire” of 25, 000 LED lights in celebration of the bridges 75 years in existence and with the intention to draw spectators to appreciate it as perhaps the Golden Gate has drawn so much affection. The lights have been choreographed to dance with no two steps repeated from dusk until the curtain of the night closes softly at 2 am. But catch it again tomorrow night and as often as you can till they are dimmed for good in 2015. San Francisco is a painting you can pick up in a gallery and place on your wall or a priceless work you can hang in your mind’s eye after returning from the perfectly crafted visit.
APRG | 35
Alternatives to the
Public Courtroom by by James P. Reape, Esq. The Reape-Rickett Family Law Firm
Not always can a dispute be settled without some court intervention or other assistance from a third party. In some instances parties opt for mediation and appoint a third party to act in that role to help them through a settlement process. But for some, despite their efforts, they are unable to close the gap. Their option is to go to court, queue up and try to be heard by a judge who has an enormous case load and little time or staff to deal with the press of business. Another option is to hire a private or “rent a judge” The judge and the parties and the court all sign documents appointing the third party as a private judge. The judge is paid by the parties but because of the efficiency of that judge, money is saved over a court process that can drag for months to years. One private judge relayed to me his experience is that each side saves $2 or more for each dollar they spend on a private judge. That’s because there’s no waiting around for hours and hours, travel time is either zero or less than if you have to go to the courthouse (private trials are usually held in an attorney’s conference room), there are no interruptions for other cases or ex partes or folks who come in with a stipulation, which judges reward by giving them priority over whatever contested 36 | JUNE 2014
matter is being heard. If the attorneys can estimate correctly how much time a trial or big Order to Show Cause will take, the hearing or trial can be scheduled so that the matter can be heard to completion without having to break it up into bits and pieces; thus saving the client money because the lawyer doesn’t have to keep re-preparing. Some private judges will even conduct a lot of hearings, both noticed and ex partes, telephonically, which saves even more time and money. You and the other side also choose who the judge will be. While the single most valuable benefit to litigants is that it actually saves the parties money there are other benefits. Consider that a lot of the bumps along the way can be resolved quickly and cheaply through telephone conference calls. Consider the lawyers are in the middle of a deposition with a discovery dispute. That could result in the deposition being adjourned and the matter being briefed and presented to the court or call the private judge, tell him what it is, and get an answer. With a private judge, you get orders that are legally identical in their effect to orders obtained from a judge in the courthouse. They are enforced exactly the same way. The parties have the same rights of appeal whether the order or judgment is issued by a private judge or by one sitting in the courthouse.
A Message from Jim Reape Jim is a long-time resident of the Santa Clarita Valley and almost immediately became community involved. Jim is married, has one son off in college and is still trying to learn how to play a guitar after 50 years of practice. Jim also enjoys snowboarding, hiking, biking and anything that takes him out of the house and into nature. Jim’s favorite quote that defines him well is, “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.” Henry David Thoreau
THE DON & GINO REAL ESTATE & FINANCE SHOW National Sales Trainers for the nationally recognized Real Estate Radio Network that has helped launch over 100 radio shows nationwide and countless radio show hosts careers. The Weekly “Don & Gino Real Estate & Finance Show” Interviewing the top real estate & financial experts to help deliver the timely truth on what’s really happening in the real estate & financial markets today.
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GIVE YOURSELF CREDIT
g n i s ra
Credit Repair – WOW, where do you start with this subject? I guess I will start with this – CREDIT IS FEEDOM! With it you can do almost anything and without it you can do almost nothing! It takes years to build, and a very short time to burn. So let’s nail down a few things as far as what builds your credit, what ruins your credit and how to fix and rebuild it. Building credit is fairly easy. It normally starts at a young age right out of high school. Especially college students, who guess what, were NEVER taught in high school about credit and how it works. How to get it and how to ruin it! How about a class on handling money, wealth accumulation, building credit and how important it is to your future? The consequences of borrowing a $1000.00, and how interest works, and how long it would take to pay back if you have a $12.00 an hour job , minus taxes and expenses of having the job? Ok let’s get to the point. Building credit and ruining credit is very simple. You gain a higher credit score the more credit you have and paying that credit on time. You ruin your credit by borrowing money and not paying it back on the terms you borrowed it. Here are a couple things to raise, ruin or repair your credit score. RAISE 1. Pay all your credit cards and loans on time. Not always simple to do in this “Have to have it now world.” 2. Do not carry a balance OVER 50% of the credit card. If you have a credit card with a $5000.00 limit, and your balance is $5000.00, your credit score will drop. You have maxed out your borrowing power.
RUIN 1. Pay late on any credit card, auto loan, mortgage loan or any institution that reports to the 3 major credit bureaus. Trans Union, Equifax and Experian. 2. Defaulting on a tax bill. REPAIR 1. Find a reputable company with years of experience and knowledge in credit repair. This can be VERY difficult, but there is a way to protect yourself! 2. Check the background on the company you want to use! What are their BBB (Better Business Bureau and BCA (Business Consumer Alliance) ratings, are they bonded, how many years in business. REBUILD 1. How and where to get a secured credit card. 2. Paying your daily bills on a secured credit card and showing current credit activity. Prime National Credit Repair is A+ Rated on the BBB, AAA Rated with the BCA, Bonded for $100,000.00 with the Secretary of State and has been in business 15 years. They have the quickest turn times in the industry with its proprietary software, and offers a 100% money back guarantee! PNCR has removed late charges, charge offs, collections, repossessions, liens, judgments, foreclosures and bankruptcies. It ALL starts here- Get your FREE credit report and FREE credit analysis from one of our trained credit repair specialists.
Preparedness for School…and the Future:
by Claudia McDowell, esq. & Lisa Odom, esq. with McDowell Odom LLP Law Firm
As the summer months quickly approach, I think of all the time and effort many of us, as parents, have spent keeping our children on task throughout the school year – always making sure homework is complete, making sure lunches are ready, making sure uniforms are on correctly or that sports gear is in in the car - essentially making sure our children are always prepared for the next step. For many of us, the summer is a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the busy school year. And almost as quickly as it gets here, summer lasts one or two short months and then, once again, in August and September, parents across the United States will spend countless hours perusing their local malls and retailers to purchase school supplies, books, backpacks, lunch boxes, and clothes so that our children will be “ready” for the upcoming school year. Interestingly, many of us never even consider whether we have adequately prepared our children for unexpected life events, such as the death or incapacity of a parent or parents. This is hands down one of the most difficult topics to discuss with parents, not just because most tend to be young. Of course the topic is difficult to digest and no one wants to 40 | JUNE 2014
imagine not being here for their children. But, what if? As parents, we have always strived to best equip them for the biggest issue facing them but yet many of us have not planned for this type of final event. Indeed, the most common question I am asked by estate planning clients with minor children is â€œare we doing this too soon?â€? The answer is a resounding NO. In fact, it is the most important planning you can do. Estate planning when you have minor children will not only provide infinite guidance to your family (and potentially, the court) of your desires with respect to guardianship of your minor children, it can also provide a means by which your children will receive continued support after your death or incapacity.
A Message from Lisa Odom I married my college sweetheart, Doug, nearly 14 years ago and we have two wonderful children. Our family is very active, with both my husband and I having both recently completed fitness challenges. Our daughter is a competitive gymnast and our son plays baseball, football and would like to play basketball. We also love to travel, with it being my goal to travel to 60 countries before I am 60 years old. We moved to the Santa Clarita Valley in 2004 and have no intention of leaving. I love this community and as a result, served in numerous leadership roles including, most recently, as a member of the Citizensâ€™ Public Library Advisory Committee for the City of Santa Clarita and the Alternative Revenue Committee for the Saugus Union School District. I also served as the President of the Sunshine Preschool Student Parent Association for two years.
Common Property Insurance Mistakes You Could Lose Everything
Getting the right property and casualty insurance coverage may not rank high on your list of financial priorities. Compared with investment decisions and estate planning issues, questions about the language in your homeowners’ policy, say, may seem hardly worth considering. Yet the more successful you become, the more complicated your asset-protection needs are likely to be—and the more you have to lose. Suppose, for example, that in addition to your primary residence—a historic home—you also own a house at the beach and a condo in the city. The properties are in three different states. The value of your collection of Abstract Expressionist paintings has grown rapidly. And you just volunteered to serve on the board of directors of a charitable organization. Almost every aspect of this situation could cost you dearly. Insurance laws may vary widely from state to state, different kinds of property require specialized coverage, and collections of art, antique cars, and other unique items may be difficult to protect fully. Meanwhile, serving on a nonprofit’s board could subject you to additional personal liability. Safeguarding yourself and your family may mean buying additional coverage, but more insurance isn’t necessarily the 42 | JUNE 2014
by Carlos Villalobos with Carlos Villalobos Insurance
solution. Rather, it’s important to review all of your needs, consider specialized policies or policy options, and coordinate your coverage with other aspects of your financial situation. Here are 6 different shortcomings that could prove costly. 1. Leaving gaps in homeowners’ coverage. Any homeowner needs to review coverage regularly to keep up with rising replacement costs. But insuring different kinds of homes in different locales poses extra challenges. If you buy insurance from more than one carrier, you may face contrasting rules, limitations, and policy renewal dates. For example, the liability limit on the policy for a second home might fall below the minimum on an excess liability policy designed to complement the insurance on your primary home. You could wind up responsible for the difference. 2. Ignoring properties unique characteristics. One perk of affluence is the means to own exceptional homes; one drawback is that they may be difficult to insure adequately. Standard homeowners coverage won’t pay for the materials and craftsmanship needed to rebuild that 19th century
showplace you’ve painstakingly restored. Coastal homes may face hurricane damage, while a place in the California mountains could be subject to earthquakes or wildfires. Meanwhile, city co-ops or condos may need policies tailored to their buildings or associations coverage. 3. Under insuring art and collectibles. Standard homeowners policies limit coverage for the losses of antiques, furs, and other valuables. And while you could schedule additional coverage, insuring the real value of a collection of contemporary art or vintage muscle cars likely will require a specialized policy addressing several critical issues. How is the value of the collection determined? (You’ll need a professional appraisal when the policy is designed, with frequent updates as items appreciate.) Will a damaged or destroyed item be paid for with cash, or will you be required to have it replaced or restored? Will additions to your collection automatically be covered? 4. Forgetting to insure household employees. When someone works for you or your family, as a nanny, landscaper, personal assistant, or in another role, you could be liable for medical expenses and lost wages if the worker is hurt on the job. Several states require household employers to pay into a workers
A Message from Carlos Villalobos I have been blessed to be with my spouse Laila for 30 years now and we have two amazing children, Monique and Collin. Laila is CPA, Monique is a college grad working in San Francisco and Collin is in his last year of college majoring in Geology. When I am not taking care of my insurance business I like traveling, golfing, wine tasting, walking, all sports (like hockey of course, Go Kings!) and collecting sports memorabilia. For me, fun is just relaxing and spending time with my family.
compensation fund, while in other states it’s optional, but providing such insurance may be mandatory for ensuring your financial well-being. If an employee drives your car, also make sure he or she is included on your policy. 5. Neglecting your liability as a board member. Excess liability coverage could help protect you if you’re sued as a director of a nonprofit’s board. Or for more comprehensive protection, you may want to consider special directors’ and officers’ liability insurance. 6. Failing to get frequent policy reviews and updates. Your financial life isn’t static, and neither are your insurance needs. The value of a collection may increase; extensive home renovations could mean a sharp rise in the value of your property; and the re titling of assets as part of your estate plan—or because of divorce, a death in the family, or the birth of a child—could necessitate policy changes. Even lacking major events, you probably need a comprehensive review of all your insurance coverage at least every two years.
RESOURCE GUIDE YOUR APRG EXPERTS
DON GOETTLING & GINO FRONTI Cherry Creek Mortgage DON PHONE: 661-510-3995 GINO PHONE: 818-652-9379 27441 Tourney Rd. #100 Valencia Ca 91355
CHRIS INGRAM Infinity Wealth Management OFFICE: 661-255-9555 x 16 CELL: 661-312-4456 23734 Valencia Blvd, Valencia, CA 91355
LISA ODOM & CLAUDIA MCDOWELL Infinity Wealth Management
MCDOWELL ODOM LLP
Attorneys at Law
OFFICE: 661-449-9630 LISA CELL: 818-636-5710 28494 Westinghouse Pl #213 Valencia, CA 91355
STEVE CORN Newhall Escrow OFFICE: 661-259-3450 CELL: 661-478-1662 24010 Lyons Ave Santa Clarita, CA 91321
44 | JUNE 2014
LOU ESBIN Esbin Law OFFICE: 661-254-5050 CELL: 661-305-8995 25129 The Old Rd, Suite 114 Stevenson Ranch, CA 913815
JIM REAPE Reape-Rickett OFFICE: 661-288-1000 25152 Springfield Ct Valenica, CA 91355
CARLOS VILLALOBOS Carlos Villalobos Insurance OFFICE: 661-255-8282 CELL: 661-904-1830 25001 The Old Road Santa Clarita, CA 91381
SCOTT ZIMMERMAN Corporate Strategies OFFICE: 818-377-7270 CELL: 818-481-9342 16255 Ventura Blvd #320 Encino, Ca 91436
ROBERT SCHWARTZ & RYAN KIICK Princeton Review ROB CELL:818-359-3779 RYAN CELL: 415-312-3718
APRG | 45
YOUR APRG CONTRIBUTORS
FERMENTATION Tom Wark 707-246-6451 firstname.lastname@example.org 1135 Serendipity Way Napa, California 94558 IN-STYLE N-Style salon Tiffany/Clay Friedman 661-373-3474 email@example.com 26111 Boquet Canyon Road Santa Clarita, California 91350 DESTINATIONS Planet Kelli Kelli Alexander 661-263-2142 800-226-7076 www.planetkelli.com GOING GREEN L.E.D. Inc Chris Fall 661-510-8299 firstname.lastname@example.org 27441 Tourney Road California 91355 THE MAN CAVE Apollo Menâ€™s Salon Garo Papazian 661-964-1764 email@example.com 25860 Tournament Rd. Valencia, California 91355 FIT FOR LIFE Afterburn Fitness 661-295-5876 firstname.lastname@example.org 26007 Avenue Hall Valencia, California 91355
46 | JUNE 2014
HEALTH & WELLNESS Unruh Chiropractic Chase Unruh 661-288-0022 www.unruhspinecenter.com 23043 Lyons Ave Santa Clarita, California 91321 GIVE YOURSELF CREDIT Prime National Credit Repair George Hartman 805-432-6772 email@example.com 535 N Brand Blvd, Ste 701 Glendale, California 91203 HOW SWEET IT IS Kupcake Kithchen Lisa Jurado 661-478-7728 firstname.lastname@example.org 27737 Bouquet Canyon Rd, Ste 120 Santa Clarita, California 91350 FOODIE Salt Creek Greg Amsler 661-312-6347 email@example.com 24415 Town Center Drive #115 ALL MIXED UP The Social Patrick 661-799-9157 www.thesocialrestaurant.com 23329 Lyons Ave Valencia, California 91350
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