Frequently Asked Questions
How do you differentiate between financial planners?
There are four key components to look at. Consider the planner’s pay structure. A retirement planner who earns money based on commission rather than a flat rate could have an incentive to steer you in a particular direction. Read the code of ethics that your financial planner adheres to. Look for the word “fee-only fiduciary” and language that requires planners to look after your best interests. You don’t want to confuse planners with stockbrokers who are not part of Registered Investment Advisory firms. RIAs are advocates for your personal planning and investments and do not sell financial products like a broker. Look for a firm that has an adviser on staff who is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional.
What is a fiduciary?
In short, this means the money managers have pledged to act in a client’s best interests at all times. Financial planner services and Investment professionals who aren’t fiduciaries are often held to a lesser standard, the so-called “suitability standard.” That means that anything they sell you merely has to be suitable for you, not necessarily ideal or in your best interest. This point is critical and should be a deal breaker if a prospective financial management planner is not a fee-only fiduciary, part of a Registered Investment Advisory firm (RIA), and does not have a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ on staff. As fee-only fiduciaries, we at Wealth Analytics have the legal as well as ethical responsibility to follow prudent investor practices as well as serve the client’s best interest.
Who is a typical Wealth Analytics client?
Since every situation is unique, there is no such thing as a typical client. However, many of our clients want to know if they are in a position to retire safely. They have created a successful business or career and they want to know if retirement is a realistic option. Typically, they would like both investment planning and financial planning services help.
How should I be investing my money?
At Wealth Analytics, our fee-only fiduciaries build globally diversified portfolios of stocks, bonds, commodities, and real estate. We focus on low-cost, broad diversification using both passive and active investment vehicles.
How much can I spend per month?
The answer to this question depends on a number of factors that our team of financial advisors identify during the course of our retirement planning sessions. We’ll help you get to a position where you can enjoy sustainable success in retirement and live comfortably according to the plan you have in place.
How do I make my money last?
This is a great question. Running out of money is the number one fear for retirees. To address this, our fee-only financial planners do a detailed study of a client’s financial resources including retirement income, assets, pensions, Social Security and possible inheritances. We then do the same study of all of your expenses. From here, we can create a financial model that tests the probability of success in retirement. Ultimately, we can determine the rate of return required on all assets for a client to live happily ever after. We then track investment performance (some other assumptions as well, including taxes, spending, etc.) to determine if a client is on track. Using this methodology with regular reviews allows us to help clients make adjustments throughout their life to protect against running out of money. If you are a business owner, we help with business succession planning to maintain income and minimize liabilities from the business after you retire.
How do I deal with market volatility?
Volatility is part of investing in the stock market. This is a fact you must know to be ready for the worst. It helps you prepare mentally. These events should not be a surprise, they should be expected. They are a normal part of investing. If so, you must have a strategy to deal with bear markets by talking to a fee only fiduciary financial planner.
Start by understanding the facts. Read our article entitled “Practical Thoughts on Bear Markets and Corrections” here.
How do I find an advisor?
Unfortunately, finding a good financial mentor can be challenging. Wall Street institutions spend millions of dollars to convince you that their brokers can help you navigate retirement successfully. We strongly suggest that you work with a fee-only fiduciary, Registered Investment Adviser (RIA), with a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional on staff. We believe it is important to understand the difference between these four qualifications of a fiduciary adviser and a stockbroker financial planner, cloaked, sales agent who provides advice in hopes of selling you variable annuities, high-cost investment management or other expensive diversions from your pocket to their bonus pools. Many traditional banks and brokerage firms may meet one of the requirements, or even two, however your advisers should meet all four.
Finding an advisor who can provide retirement planning services tailored to your needs and priorities may be the most important financial decision you will ever make. If you are retired or nearing retirement, let us personally invite you to contact Wealth Analytics for a free retirement readiness consultation to discuss your options.
Is Wealth Analytics different than the Wall Street firms I see advertising on TV?
Yes, Wealth Analytics is an independent fee-only fiduciary, Registered Investment Advisor (RIA). Our team of financial advisors do not sell products or collect commissions. Unlike stock brokers and insurance agents, we act as fiduciaries on behalf of our clients.
Can you work with my accountant, attorney or other advisors?
Yes, we are happy to work with your professional advisors. If you need to find a professional advisor or attorney, we are happy to refer you to one.
We have questions about Social Security and Pension Plans and have heard there are ways to maximize these benefits. Can you help with these issues? How about Medicare vs. HMO and supplemental plans?
Yes, we can provide answers to virtually all Social Security and Pension Plan questions. Health care choices are critical questions to answer, and we can educate you about your options. We do not sell insurance but we do have a network of people we can refer to for placement of the proper plan for your situation. You should also know that as fee-only fiduciary, we cannot compliantly receive any compensation from the referral source. We merely vet the providers to find people who can help our clients most effectively.
How To Begin?
We specialize in helping people create a plan and strategy for how and when they can retire