Libman Tax - August 2019

LI BMAN 'S AWESOME LETTER

LIBMAN TAX STRATEGIES

AUGUST 2019

Age Discrimination Is Real: How Are You Preparing to Battle It?

School is just around the corner, and if it weren’t for my boys reminding me at least a few times every day, I probably wouldn’t believe it. It feels like summer just barely started, so the thought of shopping for new backpacks and binders seems crazy. Nevertheless, it’s true. It’s time to head into a new season: autumn. In the midst of preparing for my kids’ first day of school this year, I’ve also been interviewing people to fill a position at the office. Anyone with their own business knows that finding, interviewing, and making an offer to someone new is one of the most important and difficult parts of entrepreneurship. There are hundreds of great candidates out there battling for a job, so it can be tough to pick the right person. Having a team that can work together to keep operations running smoothly is the foundation for a successful company. Throughout this preparation for autumn interviewing and hiring, I’ve been reminded that age discrimination truly exists. Folks heading into the “fall” season of their lives can experience a whole new set of problems when it comes to finding work. After hearing from folks who are 50 or older, I’ve determined that most of them are stuck in two scenarios. Many of them have reached a ceiling or a cap on advancement at the company they’d been serving for 20 or more years, while others have been laid off for financial reasons. After spending decades becoming more and more specialized in a specific occupation, they’ve been forced to rejoin a job pool where they are skipped over because they are older than their competition.

I have a few questions to ask these folks: What steps can you take to help yourself? How do you expand beyond your reach when age discrimination is at play?

Here are some of my suggestions:

1. SKILLS The vast majority of people, regardless of age, don’t work to develop their skill sets. No matter what job you currently have, you should be

pushing to better yourself by attending seminars and conferences to keep your skills up to date and invest in your own continuing education. Work to keep pushing the boundaries of what you already know. 2. MEET-UPS Surround yourself with like-minded people in the same general industry and start networking. Ask what they’ve done to continue their own development and exchange data. Brainstorm ideas to see what ways you can continue improving. 3. VOLUNTEER Look at the high end of your current job market and identify what types of skill sets you need to qualify for those jobs. Then, find where you can volunteer to gain that knowledge for free. You’ll have to donate your time and energy, but you will attain the knowledge you need to continue advancing in your field. Heading into the fall season of life should feel rewarding and exciting rather than scary. By continuing your own education and personal development, you’ll be setting yourself up for much happier later years filled with immense peace of mind. Happy autumn!

-Adam Libman

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RING, RING — IT’S A ROBOT

What You Can Do to Protect Yourself From Phone Scams and Robocalls

Two of the most common scams are phone scams and robocalls. These calls are incredibly annoying and can trick you out of valuable information if you’re not careful. While it might seem like these scams are inescapable, there are some precautions you can take to avoid their traps. GIVE THEM THE SILENT TREATMENT. One thing you can do to avoid these fraudulent, time-wasting calls is to simply hang up. If possible, it is best to not answer at all. It’s always good to have a list of numbers you can reference, so you never have to guess who is calling. Think of it as going one step beyond caller ID. In some cases, answering and then hanging up can actually do more harm than good. Answering the phone gives the scammers confirmation that the number works and that they should try again. Once your number is confirmed as active, it often gets put on an “active number” list that can then be sold to other scammers who market in these types of phone numbers. If you can’t verify who is calling without picking up, don’t answer. Let it go to voicemail. If it’s important, the person will leave a legitimate message and you can respond afterward. PUT UP SOME DETERRENTS. You can even go a step further and block the calls. Many phone service providers offer call-blocking options, including AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. You can sign

up for this service in-store or on your service provider’s website. Each service costs about $4 per month. There are also a number of call-blocking apps available on Android and Apple devices, but if you subscribe to a blocking service through your phone provider, these apps are unnecessary. Finally, you can sign up for the Federal Trade Commission’s “Do Not Call” program (DoNotCall.gov). While the Do Not Call program can help cut back on calls, this list is largely ignored by scammers. If you’re getting a ridiculous number of robocalls every day, signing up can offer you some brief respite. Thankfully, Congress is already attempting to fix this problem by making it harder for scammers to call you. But until they are able to pass tough, effective legislation, it is up to us as consumers to remain vigilant and do what we can to keep our personal and financial data safe and secure.

A ClientYou NEED to Know!

Gregg Knight, Mortgage Broker and Owner of Heroes Financial

One of the scariest transitions in life is starting a new career path. After spending years studying your job, learning all the material you can get your hands on, and helping your clients find quick and easy solutions, starting from scratch sounds terrifying, but one of our awesome clients, Gregg Knight, navigated it with gusto.

Gregg continues to learn as much as he can about the industry and increase his skill set, all in the name of better serving his clients.

Because of his efforts, Gregg’s clients are some of the happiest I’ve seen. Whether you travel to his website, Google Reviews, Yelp, or Social Survey, you’ll encounter numerous client testimonials raving about Gregg’s services. One of his clients exclaimed, “Gregg was extremely helpful and always on our side when my wife and I bought our new home! Even when issues came up that were beyond Gregg’s control, he took care of us! Gregg has helped us when we refinanced our first home, bought our new home, and has done the same for my brother. I have already told my parents and friends to talk to Gregg if they ever want to move or refinance.” This client’s experience mirrors hundreds of others who have had the pleasure to work with Gregg. If you have any mortgage questions or plan to move, buy a second home, or refinance, then Gregg is your guy!

Before starting his own company, Heroes Financial, Gregg was a police officer who was injured on the job. While any first responder knows injury is possible, when Gregg faced the question: “What do I do for work now?” he answered it with more courage and ambition than most. Knowing he needed to find a new career for himself, Gregg decided to become a mortgage broker, and he has been wildly successful.

While he’s always had a knack for helping people, Gregg took to mortgage lending quickly, and his success continues to grow.

2 • www.AdamLibman.com • Pay Less Taxes by Implementing Tax Reduction Strategies

Awesome Business in the Spotlight:

Senegalese Lamb Skewers

MARIVEL COSTANZA CAN HELP YOU FINDYOUR DREAM HOUSE!

Inspired by Food & Wine Magazine

Adapted from a recipe by famed Southern chef Sean Brock, these skewers are seasoned in a Senegalese style and served alongside mustard-flavored onions.

INGREDIENTS

For the lamb: •

For the onions: •

2 lbs. trimmed leg of lamb, cut into 1-inch cubes

1/2 cup distilled white vinegar

1 tbsp peanut oil, plus more for grilling Salt and black pepper, to taste

1/2 cup Dijon mustard 1/2 tbsp agave nectar

• • • •

1 yellow onion, thinly sliced

With the kids out of school these past few months, families have been spending more time finding ways to entertain themselves at home. The famous saying goes, “Home is where your heart is,” and, when you really think about it, the sentiment rings true. You commemorate some of life’s biggest milestones within the four walls of your home: the first time you brought your daughter home from the hospital, the first time you tried to make dinner for your new husband, or the first time you cheered because your puppy was finally housetrained. Your home is where life’s magic happens, so it’s important to find one to suit your needs. That’s where Marivel Costanza comes in. Owner of Marivel Costanza, Inc., Marivel has paved her way as a successful real estate agent in the South Bay area for the last 20 years. Fortunately for me, she has been a client of mine for approximately the same number of years. Marivel was raised with strong family values and work ethic. Prior to falling in love with real estate, Marivel worked in the legal and administrative field where she acquired skills that translate to successful transactions for her clients and a growing by-referral real estate business. She has always aimed to be a caring, knowledgeable realtor who puts her client’s needs first — a true role model for others. In the years I’ve worked with Marivel, I always hear about the crazy number of deals she closes. She is versatile in the homes she shows and understands her clients on a deep level, which helps her determine which properties will suit their needs best. Doing so has earned her several awards and a reputation for honesty, compassion, and dedicated service. I can’t recommend her enough. If you’re considering putting your house on the market or starting the process of shopping for a new home, Marivel Costanza, Inc. should be your first call. You can reach her at (310) 519-1080!

Salt and white pepper, to taste

EQUIPMENT

Bamboo skewers

DIRECTIONS

1. In a bowl, coat lamb with 1 tbsp oil and generously season with salt and pepper. 2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together vinegar, mustard, and agave nectar. Toss in onions and season with salt and pepper. 3. Heat a grill or grill pan to medium and oil the grates. 4. Thread lamb on skewers and grill for 6–8 minutes. 5. Serve alongside onions. TAKE A BREAK

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‘Ego Is the Enemy’ Get Over Yourself and Find Success Once in a while, a book comes along with a truly transcendent message. “Ego Is the Enemy” by Ryan Holiday is one such work. This book is not just for business owners, athletes, or those trying to lose weight; it’s a guide for everyone . By digging into the root of the human condition, this instant bestseller examines the single greatest threat to our own success: ourselves. This ambitious premise shouldn’t come as a surprise if you’re familiar with the author. Dropping out of college at 19 to be mentored by business strategist Robert Greene, Holiday has become one of the most trusted advisors of our time, working with brands like Google, Taser, and Complex. His other bestseller, “The Obstacle Is the Way,” tackles the difficulties of the creative process and our natural tendency to avoid necessary steps toward our success. “Ego Is the Enemy” dives deeper into the latter concept, highlighting ways we sabotage or deceive ourselves. For Holiday, ego is defined loosely as our perception of self. Some may have a poorer outlook on themselves than others, but, as the book’s title suggests, ego hurts us regardless of which end of the spectrum we fall on. Holiday argues our self-perception can act as

both a roadblock and a pitfall: Those with low self-esteem get stopped by doubt, while those with inflated

egos often trip over their own arrogance. Those who unshackle themselves from their own personal narratives, however, can find lasting success.

“Ego Is the Enemy” is rich with examples of this concept in action as it explores the lives and contributions of often overlooked historical figures like Katharine Graham and Howard Hughes. These powerful individuals remain relatively obscure thanks to their tendency to put their work before self-promotion, yet their impact on global events is undeniable. Pulling from history, literature, and the latest psychological findings, Holiday weaves an argument as engaging as it is thought- provoking. At times contemplative and other times combative, “Ego Is the Enemy” holds up a mirror to readers and asks them to challenge what they see. For those willing to attempt conquering themselves, this book is a worthy companion.

School’s Back!

Tap Into the Back-to-School Season

As you load up the family for some final summertime adventures, preparing for the upcoming school year is probably one of the last things on your mind. Instead of shopping for school supplies, your main focus might be finding the best place to position your lawn chair around the campfire for optimal marshmallow roasting! But the back-to-school season is coming up, and families need to begin the expensive task of purchasing items for school. According to the National Retail Foundation, back-to-school shopping contributes to 17% of total annual sales. That’s a nearly $76 billion industry that your business could be cashing in on. However, when you only offer a special or sale because of a particular season, you are not tapping into the full capacity of the market. You need to make the offer something people actually want or need, be it chiropractic adjustments for kids carrying too many books or discounts on vehicle services for carpooling families. For example, if you sell and service computers, you must do more than offer 10% off all technology services for the back-to-school season. Provide a sale on installing and updating programs for students or provide a gift with the purchase of a laptop for college

students on the go. This makes your offer more appealing to your customer base, which will guarantee you happy and returning customers. There’s also a key demographic in the back-to-school market that often gets forgotten: teachers. Thousands of dedicated teachers across the U.S. have a classroom budget, and some must dip into their bank accounts to keep their classrooms stocked. Offering “thank-you” discounts and sales for teachers will bring more business through your door and help you support your community. Teachers can also serve as a direct marketing tool for your business. Whether it’s via mailers or in person during open house nights, August is full of teacher-to-parent communication that could include coupons or recommendations to your business. The back-to-school season isn’t just for the big-box stores or retail providers. You can tap into this powerful market and make this last summer stretch a lucrative business season.

6 • www.AdamLibman.com • Pay Less Taxes by Implementing Tax Reduction Strategies

A Vital Member of Our Team Have You Met Ara?!

If you’re a business owner, you know the only way to keep operations running smoothly is by bringing on excellent, hardworking team members who can make your dream of company-wide success a reality. Here at Libman Tax Strategies, we consider Ara, our in-house enrolled tax agent, one of the main factors that contributes to our positive outcomes and client satisfaction. Before joining our team in March 2018, Ara graduated with his bachelor’s degree in accounting from California State University, Northridge and was working in the master’s taxation department. Last year, he brought his great educational background and experience with him to our office and has helped many existing and new clients find solutions to their complex tax cases. Ara explains, “Early on, I could tell that Adam’s establishment wasn't just a prototypical tax return firm. He works hard to maintain his ongoing relationships with clients, some who have been working with him for over 20 years. I love being a part of that. Since we specialize in helping small businesses and start-ups, we have to get to know folks and their companies on a much deeper level in order to take care of every aspect of their accounting needs.”

When it comes to his work, Ara believes these client relationships are what make him excited to come to the office every day. “Meeting with

your agent shouldn’t feel like going to the dentist,” Ara attests. “It should feel more like brainstorming and reflecting with someone who knows your business well: 'Did you have a good year? A bad quarter? What can we do to make it better?' What we do requires a lot of collaboration. In fact, in a few cases, we’ve directed some of our newer business owners to reach out to our established business owners for advice. We are like one big family in that way.” When Ara isn’t hard at work helping his business family, he spends as much time as he can adventuring outdoors with his wife and two sons. They pack up his 4Runner and find great camping spots up in the mountains, on the lakeside, or along the beach somewhere. Ara says, “No matter where we are, my happy place is with my kids.” All in all, we couldn’t be happier to have Ara working with us. If you see him around the office, be sure to pick his brain. You’ll be happy you did!

SUDOKU

Here at Adam Libman Tax Strategies, our Diamond Club is invitation only and reserved for our top clients. If you have questions about the privileges that come with being a Diamond Client or want more information, make sure you give Adam a call! Diamond Clients Have You Heard About Our Diamond Club?

• Randy Gleckman * • Jay & Laine Zuckerman * • Ken Ma & Juliana Tu • Max Keylor • Lynn Adkins * • Ms. X

*Founding Members of the Diamond Club

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On May 15, 2019, more than 1 million students around the world skipped school to call attention to climate change. The effort included over 2,000 protests aimed at legislators in 25 countries, which is no small feat for a bunch of middle and high school students. For businesses, movements like these should be red flags because today’s students are tomorrow’s consumers and employees. Luckily, there are plenty of simple moves you can make to lower your business’s environmental impact. Just be sure to avoid “greenwashing” — a term for marketing initiatives that make companies look environmentally friendly, even when they’re making no effort. Here are some tips to better our planet and help your business attract today’s climate-conscious youth. GO PAPERLESS According to the EPA, the average office worker uses 10,000 pieces of paper per year. Multiply that by everyone in your company, and you have a whole forest in your building waiting to be saved. With advances in technology that provide replacements for products like punch cards and spreadsheets, why not ditch internal paper altogether? Hopping on your bicycle for a family bike ride through the neighborhood is a great activity for beautiful summer weather, but nothing spoils a fun day of riding more than a flat tire or dislodged chain. That’s why it's important to keep up with bike maintenance, even if you typically stay close to home. By following these four tips, you and your family can enjoy a smooth ride all summer long. GIVE YOUR BIKE A ONCE-OVER. The best way to avoid any problems with your bike while riding is to inspect it thoroughly before you head out. Check each component and make sure everything is in working order. If you notice your handlebars are loose or your brake pads are worn, you’ll be able to make adjustments or repairs before hopping on. FILL YOUR TIRES PROPERLY. Proper bike tire pressure can seem ambiguous; many people just inflate the tires until they seem plump enough to ride on. But a bike tire will typically have the recommended air pressure in psi (pound-force per square inch) stamped into the side of the tire. For example, your tire might say Min. 85–Max. 135 psi. This may seem like a broad range, but it all depends on what you’re looking for: A higher psi will increase speed, while a lower psi will give you a smoother ride. Going Green Ride Into the Sunset 4 Tips to Maintain Your Bicycle

KEEP IT CLEAN. Cleaning your bike regularly is essential in preventing premature wear and tear. When cleaning the body of the bike, use a damp rag with window cleaner or diluted dish soap to wipe it down, and take extra care not to get any of it on the chain. If the chain is dry to the touch, remove any debris that may be caught in it with a small brush or old toothbrush before applying a good bicycle chain lube. INVOLVE YOUR KIDS. Encouraging your kids to maintain their own bikes will help them understand the importance of taking care of their possessions. Teach them to inspect their bike, clean and lubricate their chains, and regularly check their tire pressure.

This summer, set yourself up for cycling success and make bike maintenance a priority.

3 SustainableMoves Your Business CanMake Today

INVEST IN A DISHWASHER After China announced in 2018 that it would no longer accept the majority of U.S. plastics for recycling, single- use plastics like cling wrap,

water cooler cups, and plasticware became impossible to recycle in most cities. As a result, more than 6

million tons of those plastics end up in local landfills and the oceans each year. Buying a dishwasher for the office kitchen and providing reusable silverware, cups, and plates will cut down on that waste. OFFER ALTERNATIVES TO THE TRASH CAN If your city provides recycling and composting services, this step can be as simple as making sure the bins in your office are visible and educating your employees on what should be tossed where. Barring a local compost program, you can start your own company compost pile for things like coffee grounds, lawn clippings, and lunch leftovers. If you don’t know what can be composted or recycled or are unsure if you are allowed to create your own compost pile, city officials and the internet are there to help.

4 • www.AdamLibman.com • Pay Less Taxes by Implementing Tax Reduction Strategies

My Best Business: Zach Crawford's Psychologically Unemployable, LLC

With a company name like Psychologically Unemployable, Zach Crawford’s journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur is bound to be interesting. Just like any other young, budding business owner, Zach had dreams of building his own online marketing company but had to jump through hundreds of hurdles to get there. Unfortunately, Zach’s hurdles were quite a bit bigger than most. According to his e-book “Psychologically Unemployable: Six- Figure Blueprint,” Zach was riding his motorcycle back in 2006 when he was hit by a 16-year-old drunk driver, an accident that left him with two broken legs, piles of medical bills with no insurance to cover them, and complete mental devastation. He had creditors chasing him to pay his medical bills for injuries he played no part in all while trying to relearn how to complete simple tasks like walking and running. In order to survive, Zach knew he needed to make a major change in his life and find a way to get out of debt so he could focus on finding happiness. That’s when he started learning about online marketing.

Zach wasn’t successful overnight, but eventually, he created three business models that can benefit a multitude of companies: affiliate marketing, creating your own products, and licensing. Over the years, he has

helped hundreds of business owners build companies on which they can proudly hang their hats. He’s coached many successful individuals through the process of creating passive income, and he’s dug himself out of medical debt and into a kind of joy he created through hard work, innovation, and the refusal to give up on himself. If you think you could benefit from Zach’s coaching or want to learn more about his business, go to TopEarnerMentor.com. You won’t be sorry you did!

What’s the Question That Makes Me Sick to My Stomach? Don’tWait Until 2020 to Call AboutYour 2019 Taxes!

Besides a client calling me up to say, “I just got an IRS audit notice,” nothing saddens me more than hearing them ask, “Adam, what can I do to save on taxes?” It’s not the question itself that bothers me — it’s a great one, by the way! It’s the timing of the question. If a client asks me on March 15, 2020 how to save on their 2019 taxes, I can’t help but feel a bit sick because, honestly, there’s not a lot I can do at that point.

Yes, for a business owner, we can reclassify things.

Yes, we can play with different rates of depreciation.

Yes, you can do IRAs and SEPs.

But still, it’s not much. You pay great money to our firm, so we can save you great money. The only way — and I mean the ONLY way — we can do that is through effective and timely year-end tax planning. And that planning needs to start now! Our office is waiting for your call!

Starting your taxes before the end of the year will save you so much extra time come spring! Don’t wait until March to schedule an appointment with me. Don’t wait until there’s nothing I can do to help you save big. Call 424-253-0200 before it’s too late!

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150 N. Santa Anita Avenue, Suite 740 Arcadia, CA 91006 424.253.0200 www.AdamLibman.com

LIBMAN TAX STRATEGIES

INSIDE THIS ISSUE P1 Heading Into the Fall Season of Life? P2 How to Best Protect Yourself From Scam Calls One Super Cool Client: Gregg Knight, Mortgage Broker P3 Our Vital Team Member, Ara! Our Diamond Club P4 A Biking Adventure Greening upYour Business P5 HaveYou Heard About Psychologically Unemployable, LLC? What’s the Question That Makes Me Sick to My Stomach? P6 Your Ego Is HoldingYou Back Get the Most out of BTS Season P7 Marivel Costanza Can HelpYou FindYour Dream House! Senegalese Lamb Skewers P8 Maria's Corner Maria's Corner

It’s Time for School and Netflix!

It’s crazy to think school is already just around the corner. I feel like it was just last week when I was picking up my older two boys from their classrooms on their last day, and now, we’re already starting plans for me to drop them off again. I know it’s a bit of a cliche, but time really does go by fast, doesn’t it? While we’ve had some epic vacations this summer splashing around in the water and exploring new places, I’m not afraid to admit I’m more than slightly thrilled the school year is on the horizon. Adam and I are still debating whether or not to sign up our third oldest son, Eli, for preschool quite yet. But, even if he stays home for another year, going from having four wild and rambunctious boys to only two makes it easier for me to keep up on everything in the house. And then there’s still my husband to take care of, who might be just as rambunctious as the rest of them! We like to joke that it’s too bad I can’t drop him off at school in a few weeks, too!

awesome opportunity to binge watch all the shows I can’t watch with young ears and eyes in the house. I’ve had to wait through the entire summer to actually watch the last season of “Game of Thrones,” so I’m looking to some long afternoons getting caught up. If you need me, I’ll be making popcorn!

-Maria Libman

Don’t get me wrong; I love spending time with all my boys. But, once they head back into the classroom, I will finally get the

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