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Bonnie SewellCFP®

Fee only advisor serving individuals and families since 1992. In my spare time I help Loudoun Therapeutic Riding.

Leesburg, VA
CFP, American Capital Planning, LLC
Fee Structure: Fee-only

This describes how advisors are compensated for their work. Learn more in our Guide to Advisor Compensation
Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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  • 4 out of 4 people found this answer helpful

    How are career assets divided in a divorce?

    Divorce, Personal Finance

    It depends.  If you see an attorney before you see a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, you may

    more »


    It depends.  If you see an attorney before you see a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, you may have a very different outcome.  If a couple can see their way to fairly negotiating all marital assets and income, then the assets attained throughout a career can be split fairly with considerations given to taxes, survivor benefits on pensions, and the timing of executing stock options for example.

    Take a quick read of my book, "Love-Jacked! Divorce Your Spouse, Not Your Dollars" on Amazon and see if that helps you understand both what's at stake in a marital property division and how you might accomplish a split so that both parties are financially safe afterwards.

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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  • 6 out of 7 people found this answer helpful

    Can I get a credit card using alimony as my source of income?

    Personal Finance, Credit Scores

    First, I'm sorry you had to go through the tough transition of divorce and on top of that, Chapter 7. 

    more »

    First, I'm sorry you had to go through the tough transition of divorce and on top of that, Chapter 7. 

    You can and should start re-building your credit right away.  The credit card companies decide who they issue cards to - and yes, they can ask if any of your income comes from alimony, child support, etc.  You also are not required to include alimony in your income - although you may wish to in order to strengthen your application.

    You may find it frustrating to get a card after the bankruptcy, since they are likely to charge high rates.  I suggest you try to get a low limit credit card at a credit union, use it for staples (things you buy anyway like gas and food) and nothing else and repay the whole balance each month.

    After six months of that you may wish to see if the same credit union will give you a small personal loan - again, simply stash the money and repay the loan for a year.  This is another part of your overall score - loans.

    I wish you the best on your new path.

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 174 views
  • 3 out of 3 people found this answer helpful

    How can I anticipate what will happen to my finances in a divorce?

    Divorce, Personal Finance

    I would answer this question very differently.  I've been doing divorce financial planning for more

    more »

    I would answer this question very differently.  I've been doing divorce financial planning for more than 20 years and I would strongly suggest your first stop be at the office of a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst - we are trained specifically in dividing marital estates.  Attorneys rarely have formal personal finance education.  And once you sign off on a settlement, you are stuck with it - no do-overs in divorce. 

    Going to an attorney first, except in cases of abuse or a completely non-responsive spouse, will almost always cost you much more of your marital assets.  My book on this is a 99 cent download at Amazon.  Love-Jacked, Divorce Your Spouse, Not Your Dollars.  

    Understand what there is to divide and its tax impact.  Get agreement with your soon to be ex on division of assets and income.  Take those agreements to a competent attorney to get executable documents.  Get on with your life with both of you as safe financially as possible and a new foundation to build on.  Live low for up to 5 years - all divorces have a financial impact.  Doing battle is expensive.  Be smart and see a competent financial professional first.

    Was this a helpful answer?

    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 288 views
  • 3 out of 3 people found this answer helpful

    Should I open a balance transfer credit card to help with my boyfriend's credit card debt?

    Personal Finance, Debt

    No.  The answer to this question is always no.  Everyone gets to figure out how to pay off

    more »

    No.  The answer to this question is always no.  Everyone gets to figure out how to pay off their own credit card debt. 

    And for those who consider helping someone else with their credit card debt or actually do it, I would recommend counseling to understand why you are doing it.  In the end, figuring that out will save you from doing it in the future.

    Remember, the answer to this question is always no.

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 655 views
  • 2 out of 2 people found this answer helpful

    How should I invest my money if I want to buy a house?

    Investing

    One investment (depending on your risk tolerance - the other planners have covered time horizons) you

    more »

    One investment (depending on your risk tolerance - the other planners have covered time horizons) you might consider is something like the low cost Vanguard REIT (VGSIX) or its ETF (VNQ).  It's enjoyed nice returns, pays out its cash (as all REITs do), and can be a nice alternative to bonds.  It is NOT risk free.  It is not FDIC insured.  It is an investment in someone else's real estate and it might get you to your savings goal for your own real estate faster IF you can handle the risk in the time horizon you have. 

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 2326 views
  • 2 out of 2 people found this answer helpful

    I bought a significant amount of bitcoin at ~$30 per coin. They're now trading at around $700. How should I think about cashing out now vs continuing to hold?

    Personal Finance, Investing

    Congratulations on being so savvy so young - that's great.  As for bitcoins or any investment you

    more »

    Congratulations on being so savvy so young - that's great.  As for bitcoins or any investment you participate in, try to have a goal or sell price at the time of purchase.  The thinking is that when you hit the sell price, you exercise the discipline to take the winnings (and the original investment) off the table and find another good place for your money.  Sometimes, people overthink gains and assume if it has reached the intended sell price (gain you wanted) that it will probably go up EVEN MORE from there.  That's greed.  Unless your research tells you that you missed something the first time and your sell price should have been higher.

    Remember, any 'info' you have lots of other people have too.  They may not have research but many investors get lazy on research.  Know yourself, exercise discipline in deciding a sell price on purchase and when you get there, pull the trigger and do it again with another investment.

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 247 views
  • 3 out of 4 people found this answer helpful

    What are the tax implications of exercising my stock options?

    Personal Finance, Taxes

    Nick and Lyman have covered the tax basics to consider on stock options and both are correct that specific

    more »

    Nick and Lyman have covered the tax basics to consider on stock options and both are correct that specific tax questions should be addressed by your tax professional.  All I would add is that stock options can be a very valuable piece of your financial planning.  Optimizing stock options is the expertise of certified financial planners.  Aside from tax considerations, make sure you are optimizing your options in concert with your overall financial plan.

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 4420 views
  • 3 out of 4 people found this answer helpful

    How much life insurance should you buy?

    Insurance, Life Insurance

    Joel and Lyman have covered some key aspects of deciding how much life insurance to buy.  Like every

    more »


    Joel and Lyman have covered some key aspects of deciding how much life insurance to buy.  Like every insurance decision, you are trying to answer the risk you're paying to protect.  Recently, I had a client who had no 'need' for life insurance, however, she did have a desire to fund her estate after she goes.  One way she can do that is through life insurance. 

    Like the other two planners who have answered, I favor and carry for myself term life insurance.  The last policy I bought was for 20 years at age 50 for $1M and costs me $1,300/year.  I send my clients to my fee-only insurance agent who is independent and licensed in every state.  We've been working together nearly 20 years. 

    First, find a planner who can guide you on the amount and type of insurance and then shop at their recommended shop where they have no financial ties to that shop.

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 171 views
  • 4 out of 6 people found this answer helpful

    In what circumstances can children receive social security benefits in the case of the death of a parent?

    Social Security, Estate planning, Retirement

    Robert has answered the basics so I will simply add that this question points up the need to have a power

    more »

    Robert has answered the basics so I will simply add that this question points up the need to have a power of attorney for financial matters for your children in the event of your demise.  You can include language that addresses any Social Security payments to minors.

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 280 views
  • 3 out of 5 people found this answer helpful

    What level of oversight should I have on my investments, if they are in a retirement account and/or managed by a professional?

    Personal Finance, Investing

    My clients don't need to do the analysis I do, get the education I have, or manage millions but I want

    more »

    My clients don't need to do the analysis I do, get the education I have, or manage millions but I want them to have a reasonable understanding of what they own and why they own it.  We connect it to their goals and that usually assists understanding.  Oversight should always be available to you and because there are no stupid questions when it comes to your own money, you should expect that your advisor will take the time necessary to ensure that you have a reasonable understanding of what you own and why you own it. 

    If that isn't offered or available, I'd seek another professional.  If you ever feel intimidated by asking questions about your own money, that's a signal that you don't have oversight, you simply have what the advisor wants you to have.

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    Advisors offer free consultations to determine if you're a good fit for one another. Providing more information in the consultation request will help advisors have a better sense of what you're looking for. The advisor will contact you via email and set up a time to meet. Depending on the advisor, and your preferences, this could be an in-person or online meeting. You are under no obligation to engage them after meeting with them.
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    • 291 views

About

Our clients have busy lives with lots of moving parts. Oftentimes, they have significant resources and substantial planning issues with limited time to address them. They appreciate that our expertise can save them time, money, and energy. We use technology to enhance our relationship with you by simplifying the investment and planning process to meet your needs.

While there is no typical client, you can expect a consistently high level of service regardless of which service you need.

Examples from actual client files ~

» Creating a paycheck from assets at retirement » Stock option strategies where options were from more than one company » Demonstrating the financial impact of property settlement options in a divorce » Selling your business » Guidance on decisions after the loss of a spouse » Guidance on multiple real estate transactions » Real college planning (the finance and the nuance) In our less complex offering (Money on Mondays!), we offer a one-time, two and a half hour financial planning session on a Monday evening for new clients. You will leave the meeting with specific recommendations and answers to your questions. We also include telephone and email assistance on the items covered in our meeting for 30 days post meeting.

Our clients have a wide range of life experiences, income and assets, and are geographically spread out from Miami to Washington, DC to Chicago, to northern California’s wine country. They range in age from 25 to 89 and their finances range from just starting out to retired executives with net worth over $20 million. The compelling connection is their desire for professional planning to navigate their financial life issues.

Why should you work with us? If you believe your financial capital should serve your human capital, your physical capital, and your social and community capital, you share our belief in total resource planning at American Capital Planning.

If you are someone who values a team of highly trained professionals that work well together to coordinate your estate, tax, investment, and insurance solutions inside a comprehensive financial plan, we can help.

PLEASE NOTE:  The 99 cent download mentioned in the video is an occasional special I run.  Otherwise the book is normally priced at $18.16 in paperback and $9.99 as a Kindle download.

Details

Contact Info
View contact info »
Email
bonnie@americancapitalplanning.com
Phone
703-579-7031
Address
202 Church Street SE, Suite 509
LeesburgVA 20175
Firm Website
Focus Areas
Personal Finance, Retirement, Investing
Client Specializations
Divorcing couples, People near retirement, Young professionals
Education
BS, Family Economics and Management, Southern Illinois University - Carbondale

MS, Financial Planning , College of Financial Planning
Registrations
Firm CRD #151142
Regulatory Records
Please visit FINRA's website to review American Capital Planning, LLC's records
While designations are not everything when selecting a financial advisor, they often indicate a certain level of knowledge related to a specific field and/or commitment to certain ethical and professional standards. Please see our detailed Guide to Financial Advisor Designations for more information.
Designations
AIF®, CDFA, CFP®

*Financial Advisor Disclaimer: Disclosure: All written content on this site is for information purposes only. Opinions expressed herein are solely those of American Capital Planning, LLC, (“ACP”). Material presented is believed to be from reliable sources and we make no representations as to its accuracy or completeness. All information and ideas should be discussed in detail with your individual advisor prior to implementation. ACPC is a registered investment advisory firm in the state of Virginia. The authors, publisher, and host are not providing legal, accounting or specific advice concerning your situation. The presence of this web site on the Internet shall in no direct or indirect way be construed or interpreted as a solicitation to sell or offer to sell investment advisory services to any residents of any state other than the state of Virginia. (Registered Investment Advisors are legally empowered to provide investment advisory services only to residents of the states in which they are licensed.) Links to other sites endorsing any particular investment should not be construed to be a recommendation of that investment by ACP. For information pertaining to the registration status of ACP, please contact the United States Securities and Exchange Commission on their web site at www.adviserinfo.sec.gov.

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