All posts by Mickey Ellison

Mickey Ellison has over 18 years experience in the financial industry and has dealt with debt for over 22. He wants to use this experience to help improve the lives of others. Mickey also has a love for baseball and God. He plans to use what he's learned in baseball, finance, debt and life as a catalyst to helping others.

The Love of Money – Cancer

“For the love of money is a root all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” 1 Timothy 6:10

Do not overcomplicate this. Just think!

You have the power to create money, yet you are in debt? How is that possible? If you had a money tree in your back yard, would you sell it?

This is the beginning of understanding our cancer, and we are only treating the symptoms. There are many theories, some conspiracy. At the root is the love of money fueled by envy and selfish ambition.

Jesus overturned whose tables?

Envy and Selfish Ambition

If there is a lot of money, prices go up. When money is short, prices go down. Where does the money go when it’s short? Where does it come from when there’s plenty?

When it’s plentiful, the money comes from loans. When money is short, someone stopped offering as many loans or started charging more for those loans.

So, if I were evil and greedy, and had control of the money, here is what I would do. I would offer to loan money at low rates. People would borrow to buy stuff; houses, cars, land, buildings, and even stocks. As long as I did this, prices would continue to rise. The money I loan actually has very little value, but what it buys does. I really want the stuff.

Now, I raise interest rates to borrow new money. In some cases, I offered to loan them the money at a really low rate, with the understanding that if interest rates go up, I can raise the rate I’m charging them. Money is now tight or too expensive to borrow. You can’t afford the new interest rate, you default, and now I have the stuff.

Some Things to Think About

  • Your government can create money, but is in debt. That make sense?
  • If the government isn’t creating money, then who is?
  • Houses, cars, companies, and other property are the collateral to back up most loans. What is the collateral on a student loan?
  • What can we do about it?

 

 

 

Faith in God

I’ve hesitated to write this blog because I’m not a preacher and I’ve not been to seminary. Yet, I feel like something has to be said.

Recently I read this on Facebook. “God is up to something big just for you. He is preparing to bless you. No matter what, stay focused and stay the course. You’re going to be blessed because of your persistence and faith.”

Another from a wealthy pastor. “Understand that if God planted you somewhere, he’s established you in the proper soil to facilitate prosperity,” T.D. Jakes.

Others have used verses of scripture out of context or left words out of a verse. Why? You’d have to ask them. Let me give you an example. The Newsboys have a song that says, “You make all things work together for my good.” Sounds great but they are playing off of Romans 8:28 that actually says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” You decide if those say the same thing?

Another is Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” In this passage God was talking to Jeremiah at a specific time and place.

Rather, Jesus  said this, “I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of this world, even as I am not of it.” John 17:14-16

Later in the same chapter Jesus prayed, “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.” John 17:24

God is eternal. This world is not. The things we have here will rust and deteriorate. Understanding God is something that we are not capable of. His power and wisdom, we cannot fathom.

There will be people that are going through things that will not make it. Believers that live in unbelievable poverty. Followers of Jesus that will be killed simply for believing. Disasters that are impossible to understand.

Taking scripture out of context and making promises such as prosperity in this world that may or may not happen cheapens the gospel. Faith in God is so much bigger!

It comforts a mother who has lost a child or a wife who has lost a husband. Faith gives hope for eternity in illness because this isn’t our home. Knowing that Jesus prayed, “I want those you have given me to be with me where I am.”

Have faith that gives hope in love. The ultimate love that gives us eternal life with Him.

 

Retiring – How Much Income Can I Take?

How much income can I take when I retire?  Answering this question wrong can be disastrous.

The answer to this question depends on whether you want to be an employee or a business owner. Let me explain what I mean.

An employee has a set salary. A business owner does not. How much income the business owner takes is dependent on the profitability of the company. The employee’s salary is paid regardless.

There are countless studies that have been done to figure out what is a sustainable income a person can take from their retirement accounts. When I started in 1999, retirees were told they could take 6% or higher. Then the dotcom bubble burst followed by the Great Recession of 2008. When I left the business, some had dropped the percentage down to 3%.

Over my 18 years the percentage continuously changed. Those that started taking 6% in 2000 were quickly met with the possibility of running out of money before they die. It happened again in 2008. When will be the next time?

So, what is the correct percentage that you should take? Is there a correct answer to this question? The answer in short to the second question is no. Then, what should you do?

Business Owner, Employee, or Combination

Business Owner:

As a business owner, your income is based on profitability. This retiree will base his/her income off of returns. In a year that their account returns 10%, they will take more income than they will in a year in which the accounts return is zero or negative. Good returns equals higher income. Bad returns equals lower income.

Another option for the retiree/business owner is to own assets that produce income such as bonds or real estate. The owner of a rental property still receives income despite the value of the rental property. The bond still pays income despite the value of the bond.

Both options come with risks such as market risk, interest rate risk, and default risk to name a few.

Employee:

As an employee, your income is set as a salary. What you are doing here is similar to a pension and is usually done with an annuity. Just as with a pension, there are decisions to be made. Do you need income for one life or two. If all the money isn’t used, would you like it to be left to a beneficiary? Each decision made will impact the amount of the income.

The dollar amount paid is set, and running out of income isn’t a risk. The risk comes with inflation because the income typically does not change.

Combination – Business Owner/Employee:

If possible, many retirees will choose a combination. First, they will solve for the amount necessary to pay the bills or slightly higher. The remainder will be run like a business. This option provides inflation protection while covering the necessities of life.

Which retiree will you be? Do you know? Don’t wait until you’re about to retire to find out how much income you can take.

Mickey Ellison

mickey@aegis.insurance or mickey@mickeyellison.com

Office: 316-243-2131 or Mobile: 316-209-9005

 

 

 

Things to Think About

Life can become so cluttered that we find ourselves directionless.  Unless we’re willing to stop, we will wind up somewhere, but where? Here I will share with you some guidelines to help regain control.

  1. First, take a moment to think about who and what is most important to you. The decisions you make or don’t make will have consequences.
  2. Do you take time each day to address your health and physical fitness?
  3. Financially, do you know your income and outflow? If your outflow is greater than your income, we must address that first.
  4. Have you protected those you love? What happens to your family if your are no longer here? What happens to your family if you can’t work? Can you protect them for pennies on the dollar? Do you have children. If so, who will be their guardian if something happens to you and your spouse?
  5. Do you have any emergency assets should you lose your job? How long could you survive as a family?
  6. Non-Retirement Assets: Once we’ve navigated the above areas, this is we build freedom. Think about creating other sources of income and assets or real value.
  7. Retirement Assets: Much of our focus today seems to be here. While it is important for some, it is also the most restrictive. It is also the area where many people fly blind. What do you have? What risks are you taking? How much are you paying? Is there better alternatives.

The earlier you start on these, the better. When should you start? NOW!

Mickey Ellison

(316)209-9005

mickey@mickeyellison.com

mickey@aegisgroupprotects.com

What Qualifies Me?

What qualifies me to be a life coach? Is it the fact that at one time I had the initials CFP after my name on business card? Is it because I was a NCAA D1 athlete? Did having licenses to sell financial securities? Or, that I have a degree from Vanderbilt University.

In my past, I would have used those things in an attempt to impress people, but the truth is, none of those things qualify me. So what does? While those things are real, they only give a perception of success and may hide a reality of failures.

Real life is what qualifies me! I’ve messed up so many things. Yet those failures are only failures if I never use them to help others. If they help others, then they become successes. So, here comes a list of things that I’ve lived through.

  • Failed at reaching my highest potential in baseball – Why? What did I learn.
  • Failed multiple times at losing weight until around 12 years ago – Why? What changed?
  • Failed at a business, and left with a mountain of debt.
  • Watched people lose half of their wealth twice. (2000-2002 and 2008)
  • Saw what happened to people who were unprepared to lose their income. Felt that one personally too!
  • Witnessed what can happen to a family when one spouse dies without insurance to protect those that they loved most.
  • Lived and still living through a child’s illness that isn’t covered by insurance.
  • Failed so many times that I couldn’t sleep. If I could sleep, didn’t want to get up. And, at times just wanted the emotional pain to go away.
  • Wondered where God was, and still do at times.

So, my failures have done more to qualify me than the degree, the initials, or the licenses. Despite those failures, I’m still here. Let me help you!

Mickey Ellison

(316)209-9005

mickey@mickeyellison.com

mickey@aegisgroupprotects.com

 

Landmines (Who’s Most Important)

“Expect the best, plan for the worst, and be prepared to be surprised”   Unknown Author

What would happen to your family if you were killed in a car accident today? Would your spouse be able to pay the mortgage? Could they stay in the house or would they be forced to move?  How about your kids? Speaking of kids, if both you and your spouse were in that same car, what happens to your children? Where and who do they live with?

If you were laid off tomorrow, how long would your family be able to pay the bills? What if the car accident mentioned above didn’t kill you, rather it left you unable to work?

The financial industry spends most of its time focusing on retirement planning, yet there are landmines in each of our lives that can make retirement impossible. What are they? Have you addressed them? Can you plan for those landmines?

Retirement is only one aspect of our lives, and focusing too much on it leaves us blind to the landmines of life. Life planning addresses all aspects of life, and protects those who and what is most important to us.

For personal advice and help, contact me.

316-209-9005

Email:  mickey@aegisgroupprotects.com

 

 

 

Life Coach

Thank you Andy Frieze and the Aegis Group for giving me this opportunity.

Great coaches help athletes reach their highest potential on the field. Teachers can be invaluable to students in the classroom. We associate coaches and teachers with sports and academics, but what about life?

For 18 years I worked as a financial advisor; the last 10 as a Certified Financial Planner. Over the course of those years I endured the dot.com bubble and the Great Recession of 2008. Over a 7 year period of time, I watched people lose significant amounts of money, gain it back, and lose it again.

It was in 2009 that I began to question what I was doing for a living. What I wanted to do was help people, but how I got paid was by selling them an investment product or charging them a fee for assets under management.

Real Life # 1

In my time as a planner, here are a few things I saw. A man lost his job. He had significant savings in retirement accounts but very little in personal accounts requiring him to either pull money from those retirement accounts or borrow money to survive. When he returned to work, his income was significantly less than it had been before. By the time he could stop the bleeding, his retirement accounts were decimated. To make matters worse, he wasn’t over 59 & 1/2 requiring him to take out more money to pay taxes and a penalties.

Real Life #2

Just recently, I was contacted by someone who had lost her husband. He was responsible for the majority of their income. She is now faced with selling their home or losing it in foreclosure. Not only did she lose her husband, she lost the majority of their income and she is going to lose her home.

How could I have helped the client in Real Life #1 better? What could have been done to help Real Life # 2?

Nothing could have been done to prevent the man from losing his job. None of us are immune from death. That being said, the disasters that followed were preventable.

What I Learned

The vast majority of those that hold themselves out as financial planners are in reality retirement planners. Why? Because that’s where they make most of their money. Think about it. What’s more profitable? Making 1% of assets under management on  a $500,000 401(k) rollover or helping a couple with two kids create an emergency fund?

Who or What is Most Important to You?

As a coach with 18 years experience as a financial planner, I can help people navigate through the complexity of life, developing a plan to prioritize based on who or what is most important. Then implementing that plan, followed by monitoring and adjusting as needs and priorities change.

We start with one question.

What happens to who or what if _________________ happens?

Mickey Ellison (316)209-9005 or mickey@aegisgroupprotects.com or mickey@mickeyellison.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apathetic Ignorance

Apathy is defined as a lack of interest, enthusiasm, or concern.  Ignorance is a lack of knowledge or information. Apathetic ignorance can then be defined as a lack of interest in knowing.

When it comes to wine, I don’t know and I don’t care that I don’t know. Others may feel that way about sports. That’s okay when it comes to sports or wine but is it okay when it comes to financial planning?

When using a realtor to buy a house, it’s common for the commission to be around 6%. So, for a house that costs $100,000  you will pay around $6,000 in commissions. What if I came to you and said I would only charge you 2% or $2000. You in? Let me tell you the rest of the story, and let’s see if you’re still in. Next year you will pay me 2% and you will continue to pay me 2% every year for as long as you own the house. You still interested in my “discount”?

If you’re fortunate, the value of your house increases over time. Sometimes you are unfortunate, and the value of your home declines. Did I have anything to do with either of those scenarios? Would you have been better off paying me 6% up front or 2% annually?

While this sounds ridiculous, this is what millions of people agree to every year when it comes to financial planning. Would it be a better deal if the realtor met with you for an hour once or twice a year? Did your house go up more than the houses around it based on the advice of the realtor? Did your house lose less value than the houses in your area? Did the realtor have anything to do with it?

How much is remaining apathetically ignorant going to cost you?

 

 

Focused Control

Understanding this is a key to either success or failure whether you are on a baseball field, planning for your future financially, trying to lose weight, or life in general. Baseball has been a part of my life either as a player or a coach since I was 5 years old. I’m almost 47 now. It wasn’t until my 11th year coaching that this finally clicked. If I had understood this at an earlier age, I might have played longer than I did.

There are things that we can control and then there are things that we can’t control. Focusing on what we can’t control is a recipe for failure and if we continue focus on what we can’t control long enough, it will lead to misery and possibly depression.

There are parallels to my baseball career and my career in the financial industry. As a player, the beginning of the end came when my focus turned from what I had control of verses what I didn’t. The exact same thing happened in my career in the financial industry. In college as a player during my freshman year of baseball, I began to struggle for the first time. I went from starting every day to playing very little. Rather than focusing on what I had control of I began to make excuses and focused the guy starting in front of me and the coach. Neither of which I had any control over. The only thing I had control of was to do what got me there in the first place. Hours in the cage. Hours in the weight room. Running and being a good teammate. Focusing on Jeff and Coach Mewbourne did nothing to get me back in the lineup but it did lead to misery and ultimately to my failure as a player.

Focusing on what I couldn’t control also lead to the end of my financial career. I became obsessed with the one thing that I couldn’t control, the stock market. After watching people lose half of their life savings in 2008, I wanted to do everything in my power to prevent that from happening to them again. At night before I went to bed, I had to see what the markets were doing overseas. As soon as I woke up the next morning, I would grab my phone to see how the overseas markets finished and how the day was going to begin here. Constantly throughout the day, I was checking the markets. I was miserable and at home, I was distant. My wife told me this more than once, “you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t. You protect them from loss, they will yell at you for not making as much money as they could have. They lose money, they will yell at you because you didn’t protect them and it’s killing you and your family is paying the price.” In September of 2017, I walked away.

Just the other day, I had a former client reach out to me, and the conversation that we had is the inspiration for this video. His exact words were, “We need to talk because I don’t want to lose what I have saved.” He went on to say, “I know there are no guarantees, but I also know that you can move it to a safe place if things start south.” What he said is both dangerous and naïve and makes him vulnerable. What he said he knows doesn’t exist, but there are plenty of salesmen that will tell him it does.

In my 18 years in the financial industry, I learned what you can control and what you can’t. Most people when they come into a financial adviser’s office will focus on what they can’t control and believe that the adviser can control what the advisor can’t. My hope is that there are people watching this video reach out to me to learn these things because knowing what you can control and what you can’t could save you thousands if not tens of thousands in fees and prevent you from becoming a victim because of ignorance.

Take a moment now and think. What do you have control of and what do you not have control of? Which do you focus on? For athletes, do you have control of the person that you are competing against on the other team or the person on your team who you are competing with for a position? No, so don’t focus on them or what they are doing. Focus on what you have control of and that is you!  If you get beat, learn from it, use what you learned, and go back to work.

In planning for your life financially. Learn what you have control of and what you do not. If you don’t know what to focus on, Mickey Ellison, Inc exists to teach you.

If you want to lose weight, focus on what you can control. This is one of the few things that I have done and have maintained. In a future video, I will share with you how I’ve done it and why I’ve been successful. It’s something I call The Process, and it applies not only to weight loss but is vital for athletes and in life.

Finally, what do you focus on? That which you can or cannot control. Things are going to happen that we have no control of but how we respond is in our control. Nothing can change the past, so don’t let your past dictate your future. Focus your control because what you focus on will control you. And, what you can’t control, leave to God.

Common Sense – Slaves to Ignorance

What if we were in control, yet we were ignorant to that fact? What if 2008 gave us a hint, but in our fear and ignorance we were too blind to see it?

Let’s go back to 2008 for a moment. I’m not interested in conspiracy theory, simply looking at what happened. What happened to the price of real estate? They dropped and in some places significantly. Why? Forget politics and use common sense. What caused the prices to go up? The availability of debt! What caused the prices to come down? The inability to obtain debt. This is simple, if we apply common sense.

You ever have someone give you a card on your birthday showing the prices of items when you were born compared to the prices of items now? Have you ever asked why?

Now, let me ask you another question. Who is helped when prices go up? Are you? Am I? As a financial planner for 18 years, helping people plan for the future, we were taught of a multitude of risks that every family has to be aware of; market risk, political risk, longevity risk, and interest rate risk. Another was inflation risk. What is inflation? What causes it?

In economics, we are taught about supply and demand. If the supply is too high with little demand, the price of an item will drop. If demand is high, but supply is low, the seller can charge a higher price. So, if dollars are easy to borrow, what happens to the price of stuff in high demand?

I’m going to continue with questions in hopes that it will cause you to think. Is it easier for us to build a house today than it was 30 years ago? Can cars be produced faster and easier now than in the past? Is it possible to achieve a college degree from the comfort of your own home?

What if no loans were available for a house, a car, or a college education? What would happen to the prices? What if were content with where we are until those prices came down? Could you be disciplined enough to as NO to any new debt?

An evil man once said, “Give me control of a nation’s money supply, and I care not who writes the laws.” Mayer Amschel Rothschild.

Again, keep it simple. Who borrows the money? We do! Then who controls the money supply? We do!

When we figure this out as a people and act on it, we have a chance to free ourselves and our children from the burden of debt. This is a fight that we can win together if we use Common Sense!