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Dec. 7, 2022

Lance Belline Reveals How To Achieve More Wealth Through Less Taxes (#184)

Lance Belline Reveals How To Achieve More Wealth Through Less Taxes (#184)
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“It's okay not to be perfect.” - Lance Belline

Lance is a certified financial planner who has been helping individuals and families take control of their wealth for over 20 years. Throughout most of his career as a CFP, Lance creates financial plans, helps clients stay on track, and ensures that clients are adequately insured. 

Now Lance have decided to break the mold. Instead of helping people reach their financial goals, and wants to help you thrive by reducing or eliminating the amount of wealth you pay to the IRS.

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Your liquidity event is the most important financial transaction of your life. You have one chance to get it right, and you better make it count. 

But unfortunately, up to 90% of liquidity events fail. Think about all that time, money and effort wasted. Of the "successful" liquidity events, most business owners leave 50% to over 100% of their deal value in the buyer's pocket and don't even know it.

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Enjoy the interview!


[00:00:00] Jeffrey Feldberg: Welcome to the Deep Wealth Podcast where you learn how to extract your business and personal Deep Wealth. 

I'm your host Jeffrey Feldberg. 

This podcast is brought to you by Deep Wealth and the 90-day Deep Wealth Experience. 

When it comes to your business deep wealth, your exit or liquidity event is the most important financial decision of your life. 

But unfortunately, up to 90% of liquidity events fail. Think about all that time and your hard earned money wasted. 

Of the quote unquote "successful" liquidity events, most business owners leave 50% to over 100% of the deal value in the buyer's pocket and don't even know it. 

I should know. I said "no" to a seven-figure offer. And "yes" to mastering the art and the science of a liquidity event. Two years later, I said "yes" to a different buyer with a nine figure deal. 

Are you thinking about an exit or liquidity event? 

Don't become a statistic and make the fatal mistake of believing the skills that built your business are the same ones to sell it. 

After all, how can you master something you've never done before? 

Let the 90-day Deep Wealth Experience and the 9-step roadmap of preparation help you capture the best deal instead of any deal. 

At the end of this episode, take a moment and hear from business owners like you, who went through the Deep Wealth Experience. 

Lance Belline is a Certified Financial Planner who has been helping individuals and families take control of their wealth for over 20 years. Throughout most of Lance's career as a CFP, he develops financial plans, helps clients stay on track, and ensures that clients are adequately insured.

Lance has now decided to break the mold. Instead of helping people reach their financial goals, he now wants to help them truly thrive by reducing or eliminating the amount of Wealth you pay to the IRS.

Welcome to the Deep Wealth Podcast, and as usual, you would expect nothing less than an absolutely terrific guest and episode. And that's exactly what we're gonna be doing today. And I have some rhetorical questions for all you business owners out there. What would you do if you could increase your revenues? If you could increase your wealth without necessarily working any harder. Sound too good to be true is fact greater than fiction?

What's going on here? While we're gonna answer all those questions, I'm gonna pause it right there. Lance welcome to the Deep Wealth Podcast. There's always a story behind the story, so, Lance, what's your story? What got you to where you are today?

[00:02:44] Lance Belline: Thank you, Jeffrey. Super pumped to be on your podcast, especially since it's focused for small business owners, which I am one. And so, lot to of life-sharing events that we can have on this show. You know, my story would be, you know, in my 25-year career in the financial services industry and Jeffrey, have you ever had an experience when you're fairly knowledgeable, you think you're very knowledgeable on a subject matter, and then somebody comes along and just blows your mind? And that happened to me about 15 years ago. I was 37 and I had formed a mastermind group of other financial professionals throughout the US. The purpose was to sharpen this all. To share ideas, best practices, how we pay our employees, how could we, you know, what percent of our revenue goes back into the business.

All the different things that, you know, as a small business owner you would, you kind of wanna share. And this one individual is Rich Stewart from Seattle, Washington. And he goes, I'm gonna show you guys how to take money out of an IRA and not pay taxes on it.

[00:03:44] Jeffrey Feldberg: Interesting.

[00:03:45] Lance Belline: And I was like, that's why I did that look.

I'm like, I don't think that can be done. And so, at that point, it kind of changed my trajectory as far as my personal finances, as well as obviously how I articulate and help my clients decrease the amount of taxes they pay over their lifetime.

[00:04:07] Jeffrey Feldberg: And so, while there's a lot there to unpack, and it sounds like you had a pivotal moment that forever changed your trajectory, but Lance, why don't we begin to put the foundation in place and then from there we can take it wherever that we like to take it. So, to your point, when you first learn about the strategy and you're like, I don't think you can do that, is that even possible?

There's lots of business owners if we're really open about it. When it comes to some of these strategies, they either don't care to know or they're too busy or they feel it's too complex. So, where would most business owners be getting it wrong in terms of, I'll call it beliefs that simply aren't the case?

I'm sure there's gotta be a common set of beliefs that as common as they are, or just simply wrong, that we can start dispelling these myths and putting the truths out there. 

[00:04:52] Lance Belline: Yeah, I think the common disbelief is understanding somewhat how the tax code works without getting too complicated. And generally speaking, as a small business owners during our accumulation phase of life, when we're growing the business, we're trying to make as much money as possible.

The tax code is set up somewhat to make it difficult to hide. But it is set up to allow, once a person, a small business owner, maybe sells their business and or retire from their business, then they can dramatically affect the amount of taxes they pay and take advantage of the how the tax code is written.

But the fallacy sometimes is we pay a lot of taxes. And taxes are very high. And that is correct. The tax code is that, But if you look actually at historical federal tax rates, they would actually find that we are in the lowest tax rate environment over the last 20 years.

In our entire history, there used to be 90% tax rates, 70% tax rates.

[00:05:56] Jeffrey Feldberg: Wow. Staggering.

[00:05:58] Lance Belline: 50 and so, yes, 37% is the highest bracket right now. But it's a lot less than, you know, what has been in the past. And so, sometimes I encourage individuals not to complain as much about taxes in the present world but position their business and their assets so, that in the future they can decrease the amount of taxes they pay during retirement.

[00:06:19] Jeffrey Feldberg: And so, talking about what retirement, whether it be from an Exit or a liquidity event, or whatever the case may be, I get the sense when I speak to business owners, Lance, that when it does come to taxes when it does come to planning, you get that glazed eyes look and you know, Jeffrey, I'll kind of get to it tomorrow, but Lance, between you and me, anytime I check my calendar, I never find a tomorrow so I don't know, maybe my calendar's out of date or I don't know what's going on with that? It'd be helpful for the listeners if they could understand that some of these tax strategies, you can't just pick up today, put it in place tomorrow, and get the benefit of it, particularly if there's a liquidity event that time is needed and preparation's required.

Can you walk us through that?

[00:07:00] Lance Belline: Yeah, that's a great point, Jeffrey. I so, agree. You have to plan well in advance. Especially when you're growing your business, but let's say growing your wealth outside of your business. If you plan well in advance, then you're able to position yourself in the future to take advantage of the tax code.

But if you don't plan well in advance, you're going to save and accumulate wealth and it'll be what it is, and you're gonna be dependent upon however your wealth is accumulated. So, couldn't it agree more? You. In short, outside of the business. To me, there's three categories of ways to grow wealth.

Category one, I call bucket one. It's just pre-tax money, you know, everybody would probably be familiar with it. It'd be like a 401K or an IRA that you would have. That money, you know, gives immediate tax benefits. But then when you take it out in the future, it counts as income. And bucket two would be like a small business.

You know, your business where you have capital gains taxes or you have dividend taxes. And there's only three tax rates there. And what many individuals don't know, there's one of those tax rates is 0%. So, there is a 0% tax rate that exists for individuals. They just need to know how to take advantage of it. And then the third and final bucket is your tax-free wealth so, that would be a Roth 401k or a Roth IRA or a cash value life insurance, or in those categories. What I have found is if they don't think about 20 years down the road how much I should have in each of those categories, then generally speaking they're not gonna be able to take advantage and decrease the amount of taxes they pay in retirement.

[00:08:36] Jeffrey Feldberg: And Lance, as you're walking through that, What I found fascinating about what you do because you don't always see it, and I'm gonna go to the healthcare system for just a moment because most people can relate to it. The challenge with the healthcare system as terrific as a doctor may be, most doctors are specialists and they're focusing on one very specific area, which maybe is okay, but holistically the entire person.

After all, we're not just a body part, we're a whole body can't get overlooked. And now back to the business world. The challenge for many business owners is when dealing with one Advisor, that one specialty, terrific for the business owner, but other areas inadvertently, not intentionally, can not only be overlooked but can come back and really hurt the business.

And what I found intriguing about what you do and for our listeners would love for you to expand upon that, is you're taking a holistic view because it is not just tax planning strategies that you're looking at, it's the combination of okay, what are tax planning strategies with investment strategies and the two play off of each other and so, that's really powerful.

What are you doing with that?

[00:09:45] Lance Belline: I have found in my 25-year career, that's generally the largest disconnect or fallacy or things that could be improved on. And just overall, cuz there's financial professionals regardless of their specialty, but they all act in a silo, right? They just do their thing and it's up to a client or a small business owner to bring them together. And then that generally doesn't work well because they all have different calendars and things of that nature and all speak different languages. But I find if you create a financial team where you can go in a meeting and you have everybody there and what the tax professional, the financial professional, the insurance, the estate planning person, then you're really moving the dial because all of your team, financial team is hearing one at the same time and making decisions on behalf of your best interests.

So, I think when working with a group, if they found a institution that worked as a team and brought all those financial team members in one setting, they're gonna move the needle the best.

[00:10:51] Jeffrey Feldberg: And as you're talking about that, Lance, I'm actually thinking of another episode, had an investment banker come onto the show and the investment banker's true story. Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction, and the investment banker said, I'll keep the names out of it, obviously for privacy, hey, Jeffrey, over the weekend I had a do-it-yourself project so I went into one of these big stores, these big box stores, and lo and behold, I saw one of my clients, I did a liquidity event. He sold his business, from what I could tell, it was a successful sale. But now he's not only in the store, he's wearing the apron of the store and so I went up to him and I said, hey, you know what's going on?

What's, are you working here? And he said, Yeah. And he told a very sad tale that I don't think is unique. And he said, Sold the business. Live the high life. Bought some vacation properties, traveled but a few months back I realized that I didn't really plan for taxes. I didn't really plan for life after the sale.

And for me to keep up my lifestyle, I have to get additional income. And he went on to say that he was at the age where to start a new business didn't make a lot of sense. And so, now he's working in a big box store to get some additional income coming in. And you think about that, a lifetime's worth of work really out the window because he didn't speak to a professional like yourself of, hey, you know what, before you go down this path, what's your bare minimum to live on? What are your expenses like? So, can you walk through for our listeners, they call you up what's your system Lance that you're walking them through to really cover all the bases, so that doesn't happen, and again, whether you're exiting a business or you're just running a business, it's not how much money you make, it's how much you keep that's what really counts at the end of the day?

[00:12:34] Lance Belline: Yeah, for sure. I agree with that a hundred percent. Yeah. We've developed a proven process that if we follow that process then we'll be able to know, deliver what we in our firm, our promise, which is, you know, you're a person's gonna have a financial plan one they understand, cuz I think many times at this world it gets a little right.

It's hard to communicate and people don't understand it, so I want 'em to understand their financial plan. I wanna make it as tax efficient as possible, but most importantly, I want them and ensure that it meets their financial goals. One of the major financial goals would be retirement. And so, how do I transition either my business and or my assets in a way that they'll produce income for me that will be above what my lifestyle need is to ensure that I don't run out of money?

 We don't want to outlive our assets and so, you have to have a plan in place that kind of is forecasting that. And I generally do with small business owners. I go, hey, I know the small business owner. This is your baby. I know you love it and you never think it's not going to do well.

 It's natural for us to always believe in ourselves, but I think you need to have a financial plan that includes the business. Having a liquidity event and or a income event. But you also should, hey, what if the business does not sell? Or what if the business doesn't produce the income stream in retirement that I think? So cumulating wealth outside of the business to diversify your Wealth so you're not a hundred percent dependent upon. The business, I think is very important.

[00:14:05] Jeffrey Feldberg: Some sage advice there and let's continue with that because one of the things that you've done, and by the time this podcast airs, you will have released a book, and I love the title More Wealth Less Taxes. Four words that say so, much that will resonate with everybody. And in the book, And by the way, for our listeners in the show notes, we'll have a link and you can click on that.

It can't be any easier. You can pick it up and go through it yourself and see what it's all about. You talk about some different things in the book, some different strategies that are going on, and there's all kinds of suggestions of what to do, what not to do. But why don't we start really at the beginning so what would be the biggest takeaway?

A reader picks up the book, or listener picks up the book. They're going through this. If they're to walk away with one or two strategies, must have strategies that they can apply today. What would that be Lance?

[00:14:57] Lance Belline: Yeah, for the small business owner listeners, you know, focus on that since that's generally your audience. What I find missing pieces of how I can make income but not have it taxed. But one would be making sure your children of age, 10 or above, get them on the payroll and you can pay them $12,950 a year

We'll then get a standard deduction of $12,950 a year, and that's for this year, that brings their taxable income to zero. So, you took $12,950 that was gonna be taxed at your tax rate. You put it into the child's name and now it's not taxed at all. And then you're using that money for their lifestyle expenses or for travel expenses or for their college savings so, that's low-lying fruit that I see for some reason, Jeffrey is not implemented that much. I see a lot of small business owners that have children, you know, 13, 14, 15, or, and they're not on the payroll, and I'm like, it makes no sense. And for some reason, the CPA industry is not a very proactive industry.

They're reactive so they, you go to them after the tax year ends and take them your stuff. But I think if they're working with somebody, I encourage to be proactive. But that would be one is if you have children of age, create a job description that's Legitimate. You just can't pay them just because and really in life hopefully they would have a job description and work to teach them, you know, a work ethic, teach them how the real world works. But, you know, if a person has three or four children, that can be 40 or $50,000 of income, that's not getting taxed at all.

[00:16:37] Jeffrey Feldberg: well, terrific strategy and in the book, I love some of the titles that you came up with so for chapter two as an example, which is intriguing and I'll ask you about that. What's behind it? Chapter two, the title is Dirty Little Secret Number One, how most people end up in bucket one. So, Lance, what's going on with that?

[00:16:54] Lance Belline: Yeah, so it is kind my thought processes. The way the government works is they want to make us feel like we're getting a benefit, but they actually win in the end. So, bucket one is, remember has been around the longest. It's your 401ks. It's your IRAs. It's money that you put in. It lowered your taxable income when you put it in, and then it grows and accumulates to a big, large number.

And then Uncle Sam, when you make withdrawals, gets to tax.

So, just throw this out there. Let's say you put $20,000 in your 401k just for easy math, and you're in the 30% bracket so, that saves you $6,000 in taxes. That's a good thing. That $20,000 though grows to 40. It doubles about every seven years. Let's say it goes to 40. Then in the 40 to 80, the 80 to 160, the one 60 to 320.

And so, because the government allowed you to pay 6,000 less dollars, now they're getting to get to tax $320,000 later.

And even if you say, Well, I might be in a lower tax bracket. You know, debate that, but let's say 20%, well, 20% of $320,000 is a lot more than 30% on 20 grand. So, you see how they actually get more revenue by giving us immediate gratification on paying less taxes today.

[00:18:13] Jeffrey Feldberg: You know, when you put it out there like that and you just explain it in terms that everyone can understand it, it's really, Wow, that's staggering. When you think about that and you know, speaking of the book, let's jump around a little bit because this also peaks the interest so, in chapter five who doesn't wanna learn about this Roadblocks To Wealth Accumulation: The Human Element. Now Lance too many things that you list there for us to go through in this podcast, but you've got our attention. It's a terrific teaser. What would you want us to know coming out of chapter five of you know, what you would think would be one of the more interesting things or little-known things that we really should know?

[00:18:48] Lance Belline: Two things, the human element of accumulating Wealth, generally speaking, that we just don't start saving early enough. The largest benefactor of accumulating wealth is this do you know about compounding interest compounding wealth, it doubles right, and it so saving early is usually an element that I see people kind of, they even as a small business owner, or that's new in their business, they feel like they don't have any excess income to save and invest. But if, you know, if they would just do that would be a huge advantage. And then the other human element that I find is we, in the financial markets, unlike anything else, especially let's say they're small business.

When something's wrong with the small business, it's revenue's down, their sales are down. You act, you do something.

You fix the problem. But with financial markets, like we're in one now actually, the financial markets are down over 20%. You generally say I should fix that. We should make an adjustment.

We should make a change. I should. Why invest when the markets are going down? Why would we wanna lose money? But generally speaking, that's the worst thing you can do. And then with investing, you should actually do nothing. Just close your eyes. But it's contrary to what we think we should do in life.

[00:20:04] Jeffrey Feldberg: Sure the good old said it and forget it. And you know, have a professional like yourself who just manages that and listen, that's your quote unquote full-time job. And for all of us. Get back to what we do day in, day out, what we're the subject matter experts in, and what we're world-class in. But Lance, I gotta ask you, and if it's a spoiler alert, we'll skip over it and you know, and not do it.

But in chapter five, one of the subpoints that you have is the $10,000 Coke so what's going on with that? Do you care to share?

[00:20:32] Lance Belline: Oh yeah, I'd love to. You know, I find sometimes individuals say, hey, I just don't have any money to save. I don't have any excess income to invest. And so, the $10,000 Coke, is this an example of, well, do you go to the convenience store once a day to buy a Coke or something? That cost a couple of bucks.

And usually, the answer is, yeah, I do that. Cause usually they'll come to a meeting and they have right, they're chai latte from Starbucks or something like that, and so I'm like, well, that's $2, you do that five days every day of the week. That's, you know, $10 a week, that's $40 a month. If you would've just saved that $40 over an eight-year period, you would have $10,000 accumulated.

[00:21:16] Jeffrey Feldberg: Huh. Okay. There's your $10,000 Coke over something. so, simple. That's really effortless. And drink something else. You'll be healthier anyways, that's a whole other episode that we could talk about that goes on with that. And then really so you know, when you understand, when you know, when you stop believing and you know, then you can take the smart actions.

But let's go along with that because what's nice with the book is you also you really leave nothing to chance. You cover all the different areas. And I want to go back to chapter seven for just a minute, or get into chapter seven because here you really cover off a topic that for many people is very uncomfortable and it has to do with estate planning of Estate planning perhaps we're no longer here, but for most business owners, they don't understand that it's not just for when you're not here, it's also for when you are here as well. So, can you give us some of your wisdom, some of your insights, some actionable takeaways when it comes to estate planning? It's just, you know, to me it just seems so, overlooked out there.

[00:22:13] Lance Belline: The biggest disconnect I find is just the simplicity of, hey, what is the difference between a will, a living will, and a trust? And so, I have in the book just a kind of in a link for the book that really clearly outlines the difference between a living will and a trust.

And generally speaking, sometimes individuals feel they should have a trust because it sounds, I don't know, I was gonna say sexier, but it sounds more affluent, oh, I have a trust. And so, it makes them feel more important. But really a living will and a lot of times does the necessities, which is all you're trying to do with your assets, generally speaking, when you're no longer here, is avoid probate, avoid the court system.

And we just need to have beneficiaries named on all of our accounts and so, for example, if you have a retirement plan through your company, as long as you, there's a beneficiary listed, that would avoid.

And any account so, I can, my bank account at the bank, I just need to create, it's called TOD Transfer on death.

It's just a form it says, And even in my death, this is who gets that money. So any accounts that have beneficiary designations are avoiding probate. And, but then if you're, you know, your business is, a lot of times you would say that's where you need to make sure is that structured properly, whether it's an LLC, an S corporation, things of that nature. But really the trust and will have nothing to effect that, you know, structure of the small business.

[00:23:44] Jeffrey Feldberg: And what's also interesting about that I mean, if we're gonna be open about it, the person who passes on, well, they're in a different place, and for the rest of us, we're left to pick up the pieces. And so, as simple and really straightforward as it sounds, well, you really should have your affairs in order anyways, just for succession, for business planning, for maybe get abducted by aliens tomorrow, who the heck knows.

But just to really bring the point home, and you started to do this Lance if something were to happen and a person's no longer here. They have a successful business and in their mind they're thinking, Well, you know what, If I'm not here, the family will just sort it out. You know, we all love each other. We all trust each other, and they'll get things going.

You know, I don't really need to spend time and money with lawyers and forms and, you know, make it so, formal and so, cold. I'll just have us sort it out after the fact. Why are they so, wrong in that? Can you walk us through, in addition to what you just shared, some of the other horrors that come when you don't have a formal will in place and some kind of succession planning.

[00:24:44] Lance Belline: Yeah. Money generally can make people do and react in ways that you wouldn't expect. And I've seen it time and time again. The family is close but when mom and dad or dad is gone, or mom's gone, and now it's up to the siblings to decide who's going to do what. Dissension is easily attained and a lot of times in the small business world, there is a sibling that is maybe being groomed or wants to be a part of the business, but there's also generally siblings that are not in the business and not involved, But the parents generally would like equality amongst children, so, how do we create equality for my son, let's say that is active in the business that is going to take over, to my other son whose passion was, let's say another profession.

And so, I want to, you know, you have to have planning order how the son gets the business. But how do I have my other son that is not involved in the business, receive, say the equivalent value of the business? And generally speaking, the easiest way is through a life insurance policy.

You have a life insurance policy that's equal to that value of the business. So, the son that's not active in the business gets the tax-free benefit. The sun that is active gets the business. And then, but that was all set up prior to. You can't set that up after the effect.

[00:26:05] Jeffrey Feldberg: And there you go. You know, Sage advice, hey, a life insurance plan and there's many out there, can really save the day, make a difference, save the business, save the family, through a little bit of preparation, that's upfront. And what's interesting, Lance is in the book you talk about giving and having a foundation and donating.

And I know for a lot of business owners when we get to that topic, it's something that resonates with them. Yes, I really would like to have a legacy. I would like to be able to make a difference, maybe even when I'm here and when I'm not here. And then you hear the but. But you know what? Money is tight in the business.

And when I hear that, I'm not surprised because the stats tell us that 90% of business owners have the golden handcuffs. Their wealth is locked up in the business. And with Deep Wealth our nine-step roadmap, we'll help them unlock that wealth with a liquidity event. And that's a whole other side of things.

But for a business owner who has that business, who's thinking, Well, I don't really have the money. I don't think I can do a foundation or have that legacy while I'm here, or do some kind of charitable giving, what kind of insights can you share with us?

[00:27:14] Lance Belline: Yeah. The examples I put in the book is, you know, obviously you can't take this wealth with you. It's all dusted after we are gone from this earth, so, how do we try to make a difference while we're here? And, but sometimes I find individuals say, hey, I would like to give some money away, but I don't wanna give this much to this, you know, this much.

Or how do I allocate it? And I also encourage individuals, some families that I've seen have done really successful this about community, family foundations. Meaning, hey, what is my daughter passionate about? What's my son passionate about? And get them involved in being having an attitude of generosity.

An attitude of, hey, we're going to, as a family unit, you know, give and be proactive. And so, there's, you know, what's called a donor-advised fund is usually one of the easiest ways to do that. You can put a lump sum of money in. There's an immediate tax deduction, but then the money can just be dispersed over time.

Two different charities as the family or the individual so decides on. And it's a much cost, more cost-effective way than creating actually a family foundation. And you don't have the legal fees and the things that have to be done. so I would encourage your listeners just to check out what's called a donor advise fund.

Very easy to set up any financial institution can do that. And if the business is consuming all of that, you know, hopefully, they're gonna learn to as through your coaching, how to get some of that wealth outside of the business.

Whether it's for charitable or for their own, you know, financial independence.

[00:28:54] Jeffrey Feldberg: And for our listeners, as we're talking through this, Lance is putting out these stellar strategies, these insights that can take a complex issue or question and Oh, really? All you have to do is this. And then when we hear it, it just sounds oh, okay. Yeah, I can handle that. I can do that. And so, Lance, let's talk about that now, so, for our listeners who are thinking, Okay, you know, I would love to take a lance and bottle him up and, you know, take his sage wisdom and advice with me wherever I go.

And you do talk about this in chapter nine of the book, which is how do you find a financial Advisor, not just any Advisor, but really the best kind of advisor for each individual because on the backside of that, what's not stated or not said is we hear these horror stories. Yes. You know, I started working with so, and so, and then we all know how that ends.

It just goes off, you know, the rails and it is not really a great outcome there. So, what kind of advice can you give us for finding someone like yourself, finding a financial Advisor of, you know, what boxes do we need to check? What questions should we be asking ourselves and the Advisor?

[00:29:57] Lance Belline: Well, actually with that in mind, I actually, for my mastermind group we created a list of questions of what you should ask. Knowing what we know in our profession, what questions did a person ask to find the right advisor, the right financial team for them? That's like you're going to, I don't know about you, but I'm not very educated in vehicles and how a vehicle works.

And so, if I take my car into the mechanic, I don't know what questions to ask, for sure. And so on my website link, your listeners can go to. There's gonna be a questionnaire that if they're going to go and meet with a financial professional, here's the questions that should be asked and that will ensure that they check off all the boxes that need to be checked to validate this person or this firm is legitimate and is the right fit for them.

[00:30:48] Jeffrey Feldberg: Lance, it's terrific that it's there. And again, we're gonna have all that in the show notes for our listeners. It'll be a point and click. That said, literally as a saying goes, You wrote the book and so, you know, in regards to that. If you had to pick out really some highlights for you of, okay, you have all these questions here that said these attributes or these questions really for me are the game changers. These are what separates the wheat from the chef as they say. Anything that you can share with us?

[00:31:15] Lance Belline: Yeah, I think it's for your listeners, they're small business owners. We wouldn't have asked questions like, how many other small business owners are clients of theirs. Do they have a specialty in the small business owner market? We need to know what their general client looks like. You know, is that client in their thirties, their forties, their fifties?

What occupations, what incomes, what is a typical client for them, is what I would also ask. We need to also find out if they are, you know, have a fiduciary status, you know that they're held to. And we also need to find out if they've had any problems in the past. There's many individual don't know that you can actually check advisors' records and find out if they've had complaints that's been filed against them in the past.

Cuz they're generally not gonna bring that up, it has to be found so those are the things I think would, and then again, I think it's a lot about personality, Jeffrey. Is this person my gut, is this somebody I can relate to? Is this somebody that I can talk with? Is this somebody I can understand?

[00:32:15] Jeffrey Feldberg: Absolutely. And you know what, Lance, as you're talking about that you're reminding me of one of the things that we talk about in the 90- day Deep Wealth Experience, when you're selecting an Advisor, one of the thought experiments that we have is, Lance, let's imagine that you're gonna be taking a trip, a business trip with an Advisor that you're looking for.

And you're both on the plane and the plane's getting ready to take off, but it stops in the middle of the runway. The pilot comes over the announcement system, Ladies and gentlemen, very sorry. We've had a mechanical issue. We're not able to take off, and ground control is not letting us go back to the gate.

We're unfortunately gonna have to wait nine hours for a part to be flown in. so, you're sitting next to this Advisor, Are you crawling outta your skin after the first five minutes or you know, nine hours come and go and, okay, not terrific, but you know what? Speaking to this person, the time flew by. I actually enjoyed myself and it's one of the thought experiments that we.

The deep off community asks when finding advisors, which really goes back into what you're saying and so, Lance jumping around here a little bit. I wanna go back to chapter two for just a moment, and that's the dirty little secret number one, how most people end up in bucket one. And you talk about instant gratification.

Can you know, just give us what's the bird's eye view on that one as it pertains to this subject with instant gratification?

[00:33:32] Lance Belline: Instant gratification comes back to if I'm going to save money in a retirement plan, it's getting that tax deduction upfront. Saving the $6,000, which I, you know, gave an example earlier that makes us, that's the instant gratification versus, I would recommend that they do not do that so, that pay the taxes today, on the $20,000 that you're saving so, it would go into bucket three, which is the Roth feature so that way in the future, $320,000 is tax-free. So, take your medicine in essence, or pay the taxes now accumulate wealth, so, that as it grows, then we can get, avoid paying taxes on a lot more money.

[00:34:16] Jeffrey Feldberg: So a little bit of patience. A little bit of discipline goes a long away. You know, Lance offline, you and I were talking and you shared, and it was very evident to me. You really enjoy what you do. You do what you do. Not because you quote unquote have to. It's because you choose to. And it shows in our conversation offline is showing in our conversation right now, and even with the book, More Wealth, Less Taxes.

What's the story behind the story on the book? You're busy, your time is valuable. You could have done many things with that, but you wrote the book. Why did you write More Wealth, Less Taxes? What's going on with that?

[00:34:50] Lance Belline: I feel very fortunate. I've been surrounded by some great people in my life that have given me a lot of great ideas.

And I just feel like compelled, I want to get those out to help as many people as possible for maybe going good to great with their finances. And if I can help individuals pay less taxes, give them ideas to pay less taxes, then I hope that's gonna benefit some charitable organizations their family.

More giving it to Uncle Sam. That's, you know, anything's better than that so it was really just to try to pay it forward as much as possible. And I was, I had the opportunity. I, well, I chose to take the opportunity. I took a four-month sabbatical in the previous year just to get away. Many benefits of that, but one, I had the time right to put in the effort to get the book started and, you know, sometimes, one of my mentors recommended that you know, hey, take 50 days when you're 50, and I just decided to extend a little a bit and can't tell you enough how much that one, that my business worked without me there.

That I had a team that continued on, was a neat experience. And the clients continued and sometimes as business owners, we feel like it's up to us with everything. And if you can learn that when you get removed and you literally remove yourself and not right, not checking emails, not get involved, and it's stills there three or four months later, and not only surviving, but thriving.

That's a good, neat feeling.

[00:36:21] Jeffrey Feldberg: Right up our alley. You know that? Step number two, X-Factors. Does the business run without you and lands your walking the talk? Yeah. Your business not only ran without you, it thrived, and that's just a testament to you and the team that you put into place. And Lance, this is a terrific segue as we begin to wrap up the episode, let's do a fun thought experiment.

And here's what it is. I'd like you to think about the movie Back to the Future. And in the movie, you have the magical DeLorean car that can take you to any point in time. So, here's where the fun starts. So, Lance imagine now is tomorrow morning you look outside your window and there it is. There's the DeLorean car.

And this time though, the door is open. so, you hop on in and you can now go to any point in your life. Maybe it's Lance as a young child, Lance as a teenager, whatever point in time it would be. Lance, what are you telling your younger self in terms. Hey Lance, here's some life lessons or life wisdom or do this, but don't do that.

What would that sound like?

[00:37:23] Lance Belline: Wow. Great question. Love that. These are my weaknesses when I get put on the spot like that. But I would tell my, I do have a section of the book, like my younger me, what would I have told myself on the financial side? but I'm gonna go non-financial first. I would've told myself that it's okay not to be perfect.

[00:37:40] Jeffrey Feldberg: Oh, good advice. 

[00:37:41] Lance Belline: I would've told myself it seeks counsel. Seek others' advice before making decisions. I would've told myself to be slow to speak and slow to anger. Just you know, sometimes we react fast, and our mouth, or at least my mouth sometimes can get me in trouble and so and I would, on the financial side, I would've said, save early earn than you ever thought. Just learn to live on 60 or 70% of your income from day one and you would've never felt like you were having to because my younger me sometimes lived beyond my means so, I would appear successful. I spent money so, that I would appear successful, that image thing. And that got, you know, caught me and got me in some jam sometimes so, I would've tried to have encouraged my younger me that it's okay, you don't have to, you know, live like the Jones is and keep up.

[00:38:34] Jeffrey Feldberg: Lance, what's terrific here is, as you've done with everything else, you've really gone above and beyond. You've gone the extra mile. Not only did you give us one scenario or one answer, you gave us two sets of answers, both personal and financial. I gotta share with you and each of those instances, as you're having that wisdom come on out.

I'm reflecting back on my life and oh yeah, yeah, yeah. I did that. I did that. I shouldn't have, and great advice. Let me be more mindful of that. so Thank you so, much for sharing that. We're gonna put all this in the show notes for our listeners who want to pick up the book. We'll have a link and they'll just be able to point and click and get the book.

If they'd like to reach out to you, if they'd like to find you online, learn more, have a conversation, maybe even become a client, What's the best way to find you online? How can they do that?

[00:39:19] Lance Belline: Yeah, I have two websites. My, you know, the link for the book who is a connection for me, it's just my name, And then my company's website, its name is Lighthouse Financial. And that is website is And would love to be of impact and positive experience to anybody that reaches out.

[00:39:39] Jeffrey Feldberg: Terrific. And again, for listeners, it can't be any easier. It'll be in the show notes. You can point and click. Well, Lance, this is an official wrap and as we wrap up the episode, a heartfelt thank you for sharing your insights and your wisdom, and your passion with us. And as always, please continue to be healthy and safe. 

[00:39:55] Sharon S.: The Deep Wealth Experience was definitely a game-changer for me. 

[00:39:58] Lyn M.: This course is one of the best investments you will ever make because you will get an ROI of a hundred times that. Anybody who doesn't go through it will lose millions. 

[00:40:08] Kam H.: If you don't have time for this program, you'll never have time for a successful liquidity 

[00:40:13] Sharon S.: It was the best value of any business course I've ever taken. The money was very well spent.

[00:40:19] Lyn M.: Compared to when we first began, today I feel better prepared, but in some respects, may be less prepared, not because of the course, but because the course brought to light so many things that I thought we were on top of that we need to fix. 

[00:40:35] Kam H.: I 100% believe there's never a great time for a business owner to allocate extra hours into his or her week or day. So it's an investment that will yield results today. I thought I will reap the benefit of this program in three to five years down the road. But as soon as I stepped forward into the program, my mind changed immediately. 

[00:40:57] Sharon S.: There was so much value in the experience that the time I invested paid back so much for the energy that was expended. 

[00:41:08] Lyn M.: The Deep Wealth Experience compared to other programs is the top. What we learned is very practical. Sometimes you learn stuff that it's great to learn, but you never use it. The stuff we learned from Deep Wealth Experience, I believe it's going to benefit us a boatload.

[00:41:21] Kam H.: I've done an executive MBA. I've worked for billion-dollar companies before. I've worked for smaller companies before I started my business. I've been running my business successfully now for getting close to a decade. We're on a growth trajectory. Reflecting back on the Deep Wealth, I knew less than 10% what I know now, maybe close to 1% even. 

[00:41:39] Sharon S.: Hands down the best program in which I've ever participated. And we've done a lot of different things over the years. We've been in other mastermind groups, gone to many seminars, workshops, conferences, retreats, read books. This was so different. I haven't had an experience that's anything close to this in all the years that we've been at this.

It's five-star, A-plus.

[00:42:06] Kam H.: I would highly recommend it to any super busy business owner out there.

Deep Wealth is an accurate name for it. This program leads to deeper wealth and happier wealth, not just deeper wealth. I don't think there's a dollar value that could be associated with such an experience and knowledge that could be applied today and forever. 

[00:42:25] Jeffrey Feldberg: Are you leaving millions on the table? 

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