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Understanding Today’s Financial Environment

Welcome, I’m Michael Hammen, a financial professional and owner of Advantage Financial & Tax Services in West Des Moines, IA. We understand that individuals and households face increasingly complex financial challenges as we navigate our way through life.

A few questions you may have. For example:

Are we saving enough for retirement? How does retirement savings impact my tax situation? How much can I save each year? What can I expect to receive at retirment in the form of income? How can I save on my income taxes each year? Can I save for my kids/grandkids college expenses? How much life insurance do I need? and other simular questions.

Our professionals have years of experience in financial services. We can help answer many of those questions, and assist you moving forward.


Helpful Content

A Look at Diversification

A Look at Diversification

Diversification is an investment principle designed to manage risk, but it can't prevent against a loss.

Good Health is Good Business

Good Health is Good Business

Good employee health can be great for the company’s bottom line.

Social Security: Maximizing Benefits

Social Security: Maximizing Benefits

There are other ways to maximize Social Security benefits, in addition to waiting to claim them.


Revising Estate Strategy Assumptions

Estate tax exemptions rules appear to be stabilizing, prompting many to reconsider conventional estate strategies.

Choices for Your 401(k) at a Former Employer

Individuals have three basic choices with the 401(k) account they accrued at a previous employer.

Trends in Charitable Giving

Some people may want a more advanced gifting strategy that can maximize their gift and generate potential tax benefits.

Volunteering in Retirement

For many, retirement includes contributing their time and talents to an organization in need.

Getting a Head Start on College Savings

A few strategies that may help you prepare for the cost of higher education.

Inflation - Back to the Future

Even low inflation rates over an extended period of time can impact your finances in retirement.

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Federal Income Tax

Use this calculator to estimate your income tax liability along with average and marginal tax rates.

Should I Pay Off Debt or Invest?

This calculator will help determine whether you should invest funds or pay down debt.

Social Security Taxes

Estimate how much of your Social Security benefit may be considered taxable.

Should I Buy or Lease an Auto?

This calculator compares the financial impact of leasing versus buying an automobile.

Potential Income from an IRA

Estimate your monthly and annual income from various IRA types.

Taxable vs. Tax-Deferred Savings

Use this calculator to compare the future value of investments with different tax consequences.

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Investment Strategies for Retirement

Investment tools and strategies that can enable you to pursue your retirement goals.

Retirement Plan Distributions

There are a number of ways to withdraw money from a qualified retirement plan.

Principles of Preserving Wealth

How federal estate taxes work, plus estate management documents and tactics.

5 Smart Investing Strategies

There are some smart strategies that may help you pursue your investment objectives

Managing Your Lifestyle

Using smart management to get more of what you want and free up assets to invest.

Protecting Those Who Matter Most

The importance of life insurance, how it works, and how much coverage you need.

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Jane Bond: Scaling the Ladder

Agent Jane Bond is on the case, uncovering the mystery of bond laddering.


Making the most of surprises is a great reason to work with us.

Should You Ever Retire?

A growing number of Americans are pushing back the age at which they plan to retire. Or deciding not to retire at all.

The New Wild West: Bitcoin

Bitcoin’s future is uncertain, but one thing is for sure: it’s the wild west out there, and there is no sheriff in town.

Jane Bond: Decoding Diversification

Agent Jane Bond is on the case, discovering how bonds diversify a portfolio.

What to Do When You Lose Your Wallet

Ever lost your wallet? Frustrating. Here’s what you can do to keep yourself safe.

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