Additional Educational Offerings & Seminars

Brett Danko has a proven track record of providing high impact, interactive presentations, seminars and keynote speeches for a wide variety of audiences. Brett’s expertise covers a broad range of current financial planning topics. His knowledge base and dynamic presentation style ensure that participants will find Brett’s offerings to be both educational and enjoyable. To learn more about some of the topics available for client events and/or financial advisor trainings, please click the titles below. For scheduling, pricing or additional topics, please contact Brett Danko, LLC at (609) 730-9222.

Brett Danko Seminars

The “New” Retirement

Retirement has evolved over the past 100 years.  As baby boomers reach the age of 65, these changes have accelerated further.   Now more than ever, it is imperative that individuals reaching age 60-65 have an actionable plan for their next 25-35 years of life.

This 1-2 hour client event or financial advisor training explores these changes and details anticipated future retirement trends.  Topics covered include:

  • “Working” in retirement
  • Starting a second career or working part-time
  • Pursuing personal interests / volunteer work
  • Planning for a longer life expectancy and the associated health care/living costs
  • Possible need for financial support of adult children and/or the retirees parents (negative inheritance)
  • Changes in Social Security and Medicare
  • Deciding on the legacy you wish to leave
  • Maintaining proper estate documents

Health Care Legislation, Medicare & Long Term Care

The health care reform law of 2010 has created a great deal of controversy and discussion.  While the new law deals effectively with certain issues within the health care industry, many other problems remain.  Despite these reforms, it is anticipated that only 50% of retirees’ health care costs will be covered.  As the baby boomer generation gets older, Medicare will not be able to meet the obligations it has promised its participants.

This 1-2hour financial advisor seminar or client event explores the various aspects of the new health care legislation as well as the challenges facing Medicare.  Topics to be covered include:

  • Overview of Health Care Reform Legislation including coverage and taxation
  • Non-political view of the pros and cons of Reform Legislation
  • Unintended consequences of the 2010 Health Care Legislation
  • Challenges facing the Medicare program and possible solutions
  • The financial impact of Medicare on younger generations
  • Lowering health care expenses through prevention and other types of insurance
  • Exploring Long Term Care (LTC) options to protect wealth

Creating Tax Efficient Investment Strategies

Given our current fiscal difficulties of the US government and its states and municipalities, we can expect more and more taxation to come our way in more complicated forms such as small excise, income and investment taxes and “surcharges” that add up over time.  In some states, investment income is already taxed at over 50% when all federal, state and local taxes are combined.  This means a 4% return on a taxable bond would leave you with LESS than 2% after taxes.

There is an old adage that rings truer and truer in today’s world:  “It doesn’t matter how much money you MAKE, it matters what you actually KEEP.”

This 1-2hour financial advisor seminar or client event explores the various aspects of the creating tax efficient portfolios.  Topics to be covered include:

  • Asset location – placing assets in the proper investment account (taxable vs. tax deferred)
  • Maximizing 401K deferrals (traditional/Roth) and possibly after tax contributions to the employer plan that will grow tax-deferred
  • Length of time in certain investments to capture long- term capital gains rates (over one year)
  • Investing is more tax efficient mutual funds and/or ETFs
  • Investing in Roth IRAs or Roth conversions that accrue tax deferred and are distributed tax FREE
  • Utilizing the 0% capital gains rate for qualified dividends and long-term capital gains for clients with income below approximately $95,000.
  • For high tax bracket clients, investing in muni bonds for tax free income
  • Utilization of annuities or life insurance as a way to generate tax-deferred investment returns
  • Utilization of hybrid/linked benefit for Long Term Care needs that produces a tax FREE benefit in the future

Navigating College Financing

Given the current economic environment, it is increasingly more difficult to adequately fund a child’s college education.  As this need is in the future, it is easy to delay dealing with the issue in favor of addressing today’s financial burdens.

This 1-2 hour client event or financial advisor training explores methods for planning where the child will go as well financing a child’s college education.  Topics covered will include:

  • Choosing the RIGHT college for the child by discussing various factors that way heavily on the decision such as student size, city vs. rural, choice of major, private vs. state and even geography
  • Developing and sticking to a savings plan
  • Obtaining government grants and student loans
  • Outright financial aid/grants from institutions of higher learning and/or private organizations
  • The role of 529s and Roth IRAs in paying for college and their impact on financial aid
  • Outright payment of tuition to the academic institution by grandparents, other relatives/ friends

Understanding Social Security & Various Collection Strategies


Social Security has been a bedrock of our social safety net for 80 years.  Social Security benefits and coverage have greatly expanded since the law was enacted in 1935.  However, a shrinking pool of workers will be paying for these expanded benefits for the baby boomers.

This 1-2 hour financial advisor seminar or client event focuses on the demographic changes over the past 80 years and their impact on the Social Security System.  Topics covered will include:

  • How are benefits calculated?
  • Why is the system running out of money?
  • Potential solutions and their impact on various age groups
  • Social Security as a piece of the Retirement Plan
  • Strategies for receiving benefits including the recent changes to certain strategies
  • The financial impact of Social Security spending on younger generations
  • The young workers perspective on, and possible alternatives to, Social Security

Behavioral Finance

Behavioral Finance is an important topic which underlies all of investing and financial planning.

Studies show that the vast majority of clients frequently make financial decisions that are not based on rational analysis or factual information.  Instead, they allow various biases to influence their decision making process.  Over time, these behavioral biases can greatly influence a person’s portfolio and their ability to meet their stated short-term and long-term financial goals.

This 1-2 hour seminar focuses on how to identify and address the common behavioral biases that can affect a person’s financial decision making.  Explored topics include:

  • Reasons why behavioral biases occur
  • Discussion of major types of biases such as anchoring, paralysis by analysis, mental accounting, over confidence, herd mentality and more
  • Examples of how individuals use these various types of biases in their decision making
  • Strategies for addressing and overcoming these behavioral biases

An open question and answer session will follow the formal presentation.

Raising Financially Aware Children & Grandchildren

Many young adults have serious issues dealing with money responsibly.

Studies show that the vast majority of parents do not teach their children the basics of personal finance because they don’t know how to do it or where to start. Those same studies also show that high schools and colleges do not teach financial awareness.

This 1-2 hour seminar focuses on how communication and education can help children and young adults have a responsible and healthy attitude about money, spending, saving and planning for the future. Explored topics include:

  • Understanding one’s personal relationship with money
  • Why we save and don’t save
  • The importance of cash flow management
  • The magic of compounding interest
  • Young adult-friendly, real-life teaching opportunities for parents
  • Ways financial advisors can shepherd their clients’ children’s financial growth

Women & Money/Men & Money

Yes, women and men definitely view money differently.

Studies show there is a behavioral side to money and investing and it is not equal across the sexes. For example, males and females spend the same amount of money, but how they go about their spending and what they choose to spend money on is very different.

On average, women retire with roughly 50% of the assets that men do at age 65 and receive less than 70% in Social Security benefits of their male counterparts. This disparity is further compounded due to the fact that women tend to live 3-5 years longer. These are just a few examples of facts that impact both sides financially and behaviorally.

This 1-2 hour seminar focuses on helping both men and women in understanding each gender’s perspective and how healthy and educated views can avoid common arguments and difficult financial times in retirement. Explored topics include:

  • Different ways men and women spend money
  • Dissimilar perspectives on how men and women view money
  • Divergent investment philosophies for men and women
  • Differences in risk tolerance with each gender
  • Financial retirement issues with each gender

Please note this seminar can be done as a "women only" or "men only" presentation or a combination of both, depending upon the targeted audience.

Maintaining Family Assets across Generations

Comprehensive asset management is NOT only gathering/managing assets among certain classes of investors, such as retirees, but also focusing on how to keep those assets under management in the event of the client’s death or incapacitation.

This 1-2 hour seminar focuses on working with clients and their adult children to address investments management and estate planning.

  • Understanding the complexity of different types of parent/child relationships and family dynamics
  • Helping the parent understand how the child’s involvement can benefit them while living and especially after the parent’s incapacitation or death
  • Ways to involve geographically dispersed families
  • Setting up a contingency plan so that the parents’ wishes will be carried out
  • Strategies for involving family members in asset management discussions
  • Discussing what/if any legacy the client wishes to leave and implementing that vision

Beliefs about Money

Many of us receive no formal education concerning money and therefore, never deal with the consequences of how it fits into our belief system. The two things parents rarely talk about are sex and money. At least with sex they were successful in having a child so they understand how that works. However, the majority of people are much less successful in navigating the field of personal finance and recognizing the power of their money beliefs.

This 1-2 hour seminar focuses on helping people of all backgrounds to understand their money beliefs and the influence of these beliefs on their daily lives. Explored topics include:

  • What is a belief? How do beliefs apply to wealth and success?
  • The learned conflict between money and spirituality as viewed by yourself and others
  • How to be successful and aligned with your values
  • Communicating to the next generation that success is not a negative, but rather a positive value
  • Money as a tool to live your values more fully

Please note this seminar is non-denominational and focuses on prevalent money beliefs and their significant impact.

Financial Advisor Best Practices

This one day seminar provides strategies to help financial advisors increase assets under management as well as increase referrals by providing better service to their clients.  Topics covered include:

  • Focusing on the big picture – implementing the correct planning techniques even if you do NOT receive compensation for them
  • Understanding clients want financial advisors to do more than just manage assets
  • Creating tax efficient investment portfolios
  • Understanding Medicare and Social Security
  • Roth conversions and recharacterizations   
  • NUA (Net Unrealized Appreciation)
  • Importance of Cash Flow Analysis
  • Gifting
  • Estate Planning
  • Getting the client’s children involved
  • Beneficiary designations (IRAs, life insurance, qualified plans, etc.)
  • Stretch IRA/Stretch 401K
  • The importance of insurance
  • College planning from both the financing and picking the right school for the child
  • Yearly monitoring of the client’s progress

<>This session is a free flow discussion between the facilitator and the participants.  The seminar is aimed at more experienced financial advisors that have a solid understanding of the business and are looking for ways to improve their relationships with clients and gain more referrals.


Retirement Boot Camp

This 1-2 day seminar allows participants (usually financial advisors) to understand the retirement planning challenges facing both older and younger clients. The seminar explores retirement planning vehicles and their various phase-outs, benefits and limitations. Strategies for discussing these vehicles with clients are also discussed. Various aspects of insurance are explored including health, life, disability and long term care insurance. Effective ways of dealing with income taxes in retirement as well as estate planning techniques are also discussed. Topics covered include:

  • Understanding the importance of budgeting/cash flow
  • The power of compounding interest
  • Various types of investments vehicles such as qualified plans, other retirement plans and IRAs
  • Linking health, life, disability and long term care insurance throughout retirement to protect the client
  • General overview of income tax issues that threaten retirees
  • Understanding and implementing estate planning strategies to maximize wealth preservation

Open question and answer periods are encouraged during the 2 day seminar as real-life scenarios are explored.