Our primary job is to develop a plan for you and then make sure you’re making progress against that plan. We all have the same basic questions:
Am I on track?
How much should I be saving? Spending?
How much income will I have in retirement?
Am I going to run out of money?
We start by sitting down with you and having you walk us through your current situation. We’ll ask a multitude of questions to understand where you’re at and where you want to go. We can’t prescribe before we diagnose.
Once we have a good understanding of where you’re at, we’ll formulate a plan that will get you to where you want to go. Everyone is different, so no two plans are alike.
From there, the real work starts. Anyone can formulate a plan, but it takes work to actually get it done. Your plan—and progress against that plan—are monitored semiannually thereafter. As your life changes, so should your plan.
Once we’ve agreed on a plan to guide our progress, we’ll set up the accounts needed to implement the plan. If you have accounts scattered all over—old IRAs, 401(k)’s from a previous employer, etc—we will consolidate those accounts into a simple, consolidated portfolio. Your accounts will be held by an independent, 3rd-party custodian. We never take possession of your funds.
We’ll formulate an investment plan that makes sense for you and what you’re trying to achieve. Some clients need more money in stocks; others need more money in bonds; some need more real estate. We’ll tailor your portfolio to your set of needs. Need more income from your portfolio? We can set it up that way. Need more growth? We can go that direction too.
Our job is to manage your portfolio to get you to where you want to go. We design your portfolio with a long-term perspective, but we also monitor it in the short-term. We cannot guarantee protection from loss (frankly, no one can), but we can build features into the portfolio to insulate it as best we can against the regular, unforeseen shocks that occur regularly in the marketplace.
Our job is to turn your life savings into a life paycheck.
Of all the services we offer, this is the most intangible, yet also the most beneficial. This is the art of “seeing the big picture”. This is seeing the forest instead of the trees (trees being specific financial planning issues—funding retirement, education, estate planning, etc.).
Money, in and of itself, is just a tool—a means to an end. The “end” is how that money is used to improve your life and get you to where you want to go. When we walk through an initial conversation with a new client and ask them what’s important to them, rarely do we hear about growing a portfolio as big as possible.
Instead we hear about their families, helping those around them, engaging in a second career, giving their time and talents to those less fortunate, and generally speaking, working to make a difference in their world.
Money only comes into the discussion as a facilitator of these things. Financial security allows the people we work with to pursue their true passions. This is what wealth management is—being able to see the “big picture” and then structuring your affairs so you can do what you want, when you want, without having to worry about the money.