The Investment Selection Process
Every client meeting begins with a blank piece of paper on the pad – meaning that our job is first and foremost to listen to you and understand what you’re telling us. We do our due diligence. We will ask many questions – not to be intrusive, but so we can really understand.
We will give you a risk tolerance assessment using Riskalyze, which is a powerful software that generates a risk score for you. This gives us a good idea of how to allocate your funds among the various asset classes. Everyone is different – some people can tolerate very little investment risk, and are content to merely keep up with inflation. Others want big gains, and are able to tolerate a lot of market volatility for a (hopefully) higher return. Most people fall somewhere in the middle. In other words, what can you live with, and what would keep you up at night?
Other important considerations are these:
- Do you need an income from your investment? If so, how soon and for how long?
- What is the registration on the account? IRA or non-tax qualified?
- What are the tax implications of distributions?
- Do you have a lot of embedded long term capital gains in your current portfolio?
- What are your beneficiary or transfer arrangements?
Answering all of these questions, and many more, are part of the process.
Another way of saying this is that there are no off-the-rack suits available in our office – everything we do for you is custom tailoring.
The Ongoing Relationship
You can expect a transparent process from the beginning. We require at least an annual face-to-face review with each investment client – more depending upon account size. This doesn’t have to be in person. Technology allows for face-to-face meeting over Skype or Facetime. This is a terrific option in particular for our international clients or for those who don’t want to fight Miami traffic.
Meanwhile we are readily available via email and phone. It is our goal to be easily accessible to each client when questions come up. We enjoy being in frequent email and phone contact.
Your needs, attitudes, and perceptions change over the years. That is why it is crucial that together we monitor the progress of your financial plan, and revisit your objectives periodically. Ever heard of a man who left his IRA to his first wife? This is the importance of review – to make sure everything is as it should be. So what’s changed? A job move? Travel plans? Unexpected illness? Child getting married? Each of these can have a great impact on a client’s overall financial picture.
We provide many of our clients with a secure login to MoneyGuide Pro and Yodlee, which are robust financial planning and account aggregation software programs. Clients can sync their accounts from various institutions to see daily balances and spending patterns on one convenient page.