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Looking For Change

September 25, 2013 — Leave a comment

Girl Holding PlantNo this isn’t the change that we continually hear discussed during elections….. This is the kind that is real, that really happens and makes a difference. The types of change that I look for are so BIG that it usually makes people stop and take notice, change directions and maybe even plan a new course for their lives.

Whenever people experience life changing events they will often times seek out someone like me, a Financial Consultant.  They are often seeking assistance in helping them to adapt their personal finances into this new way of life. Some of these most common life changing events that make people contact me are listed here:

Man holding stack of paperwork with hand on calculator with longWork Related

  • Loss of Job
  • Change in Benefits Programs
  • Awarded Stock Options
  • Received a Bonus or Pay Increase
  • Buying or Selling a Business


Family giving dog a bath.Family Related

  • Married
  • Divorced
  • Had a Child
  • Aging Parents
  • Health Change
  • Buying or Selling a Home

MC900438779Economic Related Change

  • Legal Changes
  • Stock Market Volatility
  • Estate Tax Changes
  • Real Estate Values Change

So I would ask you to assist me in being on the lookout for changes that occur in your friends lives. An introduction to someone who can help may be just what they needed.

cardThis is a guest post that adds value to one of my most popular posts ever, Tips For Preventing Identity Theft. It unfortunately is becoming all to common to hear about this happening. Allow me to introduce you to Valerie Cecil, a Research Assistant for, spends as much time traveling as she does writing. Follow her and the rest of the Guest Door group on Twitter: @guestdoor – be sure to say hello!


Whether you’re planning a business trip across the globe or traveling with your family on a much-needed vacation, identity theft is not just something you hear on TV or the Internet. It’s very real – and if you don’t take the proper precautions, it could ruin what should be a fun trip to a new destination.

According to an article in Technorati, more than 11.6 million Americans fell victim to identity theft during 2011, a 13 percent rise from the previous year. We’ve put together some quick tips to consider before you leave – and while you’re traveling – so the same thing doesn’t happen to you!

Read the full article by following this Link to Guest Door, The Smart Travelers Guide To Preventing Identity Theft


E-Mail me or tweet about any tips or your experiences with Identity Theft, include @toddburkhalter and a hashtag #ToddIDTheft


Tips for Preventing
Identity Theft

Identity theft is prevalent in today’s society. It is time consuming, expensive and one of the more frustrating things to experience. Below are some tips to that could help in preventing this from happening to you.


– Use your initials and last name when ordering printed checks. A check forger won’t know how you sign your checks, but your bank will.

– Do not have your home phone number or Social Security number printed on your checks. Use your work phone number. Use a post office box or work address instead of your home address.

– Order new checks from your bank and pick them up at the bank, rather than having them sent to your home mailbox.


Credit Cards

– When paying credit card bills, write only the last four digits of the account number in the check memo line.

– Do not sign the back of your credit card. Instead write, “Photo ID required.”

– Photocopy both sides of your driver’s license, credit cards and other important contents of your wallet. In the event it is stolen, you’ll know exactly what is missing.

– Keep a list of your credit card numbers and their toll-free customer service numbers so you can cancel cards quickly if lost or stolen. Keep the list in a safe place in your home, not in your wallet.


Social Security Number

– Do not carry your Social Security card in your wallet. Memorize the number and put the original card in a safe place.

– If you believe your Social Security number has been compromised, contact the Social Security Administration fraud line 800-269-0271.


PINs and Passwords

– Use different PINs for each debit and credit card. If you have too many to remember, consider reducing the number of cards you carry in your wallet.

– Do not use easily available information, like your birth date, phone number or part of your Social Security number, for PINS and passwords.

– Do not write your PIN on the back of the card or on anything else in your wallet.



Mail and Trash

– Shred any trash that may contain personal information, including charge receipts, credit applications, insurance forms, medical statements, checks and bank statements, expired credit and debit cards and direct mail credit offers.

– You can opt not to receive direct mail credit offers by calling 888-567-8688.

– Use post office collection boxes for outgoing mail, rather than your home mail box.


If your wallet is stolen, you should immediately:

– File a police report to document the theft and the wallet contents.

– Contact one of the national credit reporting organizations (listed below) to have a fraud alert placed on your name and Social Security number. The organization you contact is required to contact the
other two. If the thief’s purchases initiate a credit check, the credit reporting organization can alert the merchant. Placing a fraud alert entitles you to free copies of your credit reports.

  • Equifax 800-525-6285
  • Experian 888-397-3742
  • Trans Union 800-680-7289


– Close all accounts for missing credit cards. Check your credit reports for accounts opened fraudulently.

– File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, which maintains a database of identity theft cases, online at This database assists law enforcement agencies and helps the FTC learn more about identity theft.

– Notify your bank if your wallet contained a checkbook or debit/ATM cards.

Have you ever experienced identity theft? Would you agree that it is a pain that should be avoided if possible? If so, please forward this article to a friend.