Broker Check

Resources/FAQs

  • How are you different than other advisors?

    Our advice is very holistic in nature, as our Team has both the financial experience and additionally, the focus on income planning in retirement. Many advisors talk about income and ask how much you will need in retirement, but rarely do they plan on how they are going to provide the income or where it will be coming from.

    Because of our experience and credentials, our team is uniquely qualified and directs all advice from the perspective of focusing on sustainable risk-conscious income for the rest of their lives – which usually conflicts with traditional advisors’ methods of dumping all your assets into fee-based platforms and automated monthly rebalances for withdrawals.

    We challenge the status quo because it must be challenged. We do not follow outdated and obsolete conventional financial wisdom because it will lead to failure as it does and has for most Americans.

  • Are you fee-based? What do you charge?

    Our practice is holistic in nature and involves many planning aspects. Compensation is earned in various capacities including: Financial Planning Consulting Fees, Investment Advisory Fees for Assets Under Management, and Commissions from investments and Insurance Products implemented in our plans.

    Every client is the different and therefore every client’s needs and strategy will be different as well. Fees on our fee-based Managed Opportunities platform will range from 0.6% to 1.5% (total per year) depending on the needs of the client, total assets under management with the firm and how active we will be managing the investments inside a portfolio.

  • Are you a fiduciary?

    Yes, both of our advisors on staff are Investment Advisor Representatives and therefore committed to always do what is in their client’s best interest and putting their clients’ interests first.

    Being a fiduciary, however, does not equate to conflict free compensation. In America today, we are all paid for the work we do and that does not create a conflict of interest but changing advice for compensation reasons or personal bias is what creates a conflict and that can exist in any model whether you are flat fee-based, asset fee-based, commission based or even salaried bankers as we saw with Wells Fargo in recent years.

    So how do you know if there is a conflict? Look at the plan and ask questions – does it accomplish your goals? Does it cover all the bases? Does it have contingency plans for the unexpected? Those are the important questions that must be answered. Build a relationship with an advisor you trust and do not be manipulated by the industry’s attempt to push you in one direction or the other.

  • What is the importance of being an Independent Advisor?

    The three main advantages of being an independent advisor over a captive broker/advisor, insurance agent are Investment Selection, Perspective, and Accessibility.

    Investment Selection - Most people do not realize that there is a rule in the financial services world that you cannot offer products outside your employer’s offerings. Meaning, as a client as a large brokerage house or captive insurer, you are not able to offer clients financial asset classes that are not offered through your employer, even if that may be the best option for the client. As independent advisors, we have access to the research and analysis from all the major institutions (Edward Jones, Fidelity, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Schwab, TD Ameritrade etc.) and look at their funds and make sure that we have the right options for our client’s vs what the broker dealer decides to offer.

    For example, we review statements for clients and prospects all the time. One of the things we notice is how it just happens to be that most of the main holdings in a portfolio are from the same institution on the statement letterhead, even in fee-based platforms.

    Perspective – Every institution has a different one and their analysts research with that perspective in mind such as time horizon for growth, track record, and performance history.

    For example, Fidelity analysts when publishing material on an investment look at its potential over the next 6-24 months versus an institution like Edward Jones which will look as much as 3-5 years down the road. When it comes to recommending a stock or fund to a client or establishing suitability it is important to understand that because their time horizon may be different.

    Accessibility - I think we can all agree that its unreasonable to think that any institution can be the best at everything, but it is also reasonable to think that when it comes to recommending products that different wall street giants have egos to attend to a lot of the time. As mentioned before, when you commit to just one of these, you will notice that they do not offer much of their competitors’ products or push as hard in a strategy session when they come up.

    As independent advisors, our clients do not have to have that seed of doubt in the back of their mind when they look at their statement wondering if their portfolio is the best products for them or if it is in the best interest of their broker dealer and that is the promise that we make to all our clients who work with us.

  • If I do not qualify for a specific strategy you recommend, is there alternatives?

    There are many strategies that we offer to help achieve each client’s unique needs and goals. Most clients will have something that will fit into their overall, ultimate plan.

  • Ok, I like what I am hearing, but you must be busy. How can you add me as a client and maintain the same level of service as you grow?

    We do run a busy nation-wide practice and it will only continue to grow. However, the practice is busy because the Team is successful in their work and clients recognize the value the Team brings. You, as a prospective client, should only want to work with a successful and growing advisory as there is usually a reason behind any advisor who is not. While Brian and Andrew are the lead advisors of the Firm, we have associates and back-end support that help with the daily activities and working with clients. We are committed to performing for our clients and will continue to build our Team as we continue to build our practice. We look forward to successfully growing alongside our clients.

  • There is a negative tone regarding Annuities, why do you use them?

    We challenge convention because it fails most Americans. The annuities of today are NOT the contracts of your parents and grandparents.

    For example, you no longer lose all your cash value if you die pre-maturely as there is a death benefit. We usually use no-fee products, so there are tremendous benefits available including tax free long-term care and safe growth for little to no fees, and certainly less than the annual money management fees charged by a money manager, in most cases where we would use such an asset class.

    New research from a Yale Finance professor was just published in January 2018 making the mathematically case for using indexed annuities in lieu of fixed income bonds, given the low-rate environment, which our practice would be happy to share with you. For these reasons and more, it is not appropriate to disregard this financial asset class for the reputation rumors of old.

  • What are the “downsides” of annuities?

    Depending on whether a client needs to emulate the pension they are no longer getting from corporate America through a lifetime, guaranteed income, or, if they do not have an income need, but simply want off the roller coaster of the market by protecting what they have built and earning safe returns going forward, the client must give something in return for meeting these goals in guaranteed contractual ways (based on the claims paying ability of the insurer). The price is usually somewhat reducing liquidity in the first seven to ten years.

    However, mathematically, by walking through your worst-case scenario, you can see how these products achieve major goals, which may not be otherwise achievable, and do it at extremely reasonable rates.

    Ask for your specific cost analysis while working through the process.

  • Isn’t Life Insurance just for the death benefit?

    Life insurance has been leveraged since very ancient times, where communities pooled resources for widows and children of wars. In America, life insurance has been protected in the tax code since its inception and is the most highly favored asset class under the tax code. By some, it is referred to as the ‘golden child’ of asset classes under the tax code.

    Because of this extremely favorable tax classification, life insurance has been leveraged by those in the know to build lifetime tax free access used as your own bank (liquid savings), college funding for children and grandchildren, housing funds, and full retirement replacement vehicles. The opportunities are endless, and the lifetime benefits are an incredible planning tool. Life, when used just for death planning, is sort of really missing the boat.

  • Is Life Insurance Expensive?

    This is a common misconception because when you utilize a permanent life policy that builds cash value, the premium can seem high. But, in most cases, once you realize that most of the cost is going to overfund the cash value, while a small percent is going to pay for the actual insurance, you will see that the cash value is really what you are funding and not the cost of the insurance itself. This can be misleading, so do not let this prevent you from leveraging this asset class without making sure you understand what is really happening within the policy.

  • What are your minimums to work with a client? It seems like you only work with wealthy people.

    Coming from large institutions which categorized clients based off assets alone, we do not believe in evaluating whether we should work with a client based off that one factor alone and believe that the idea “you don’t have enough money to be worth my time” is going to be the downfall of advisors in the industry. We believe that every millionaire was not at some point, and with the right guidance and savings strategies anyone can get there so we have set up our team, our process, and resources to accommodate any investor and or retiree regardless of the amount of money you have today.

    Although with higher asset levels come with more complex hurdles at times and require more complex strategies, we believe everyone deserves the ability to have a safe and secure retirement.

  • Can you help me with college savings for my kids?

    Yes, we love putting plans together for your children or grandchildren. When it comes to planning for college there are quite a few options to choose from which vary on benefits and limitations depending on where they would like to go to school and how much flexibility you want to have if they; get a full scholarship, go into the military, or decide not to attend at all. Based off your unique circumstances we can help you plan to provide the best education for the ones you love.

  • What is your process of taking on new clients?

    We meet potential clients in various ways. We work best with clients who believe as we believe and there must be a need or desire to work together. If you believe you have all your bases covered, then we hope you do. A second opinion is always best in those cases, however, as conventional advice continues to fail America in droves and droves.

    The first step is just a conversation to see if there is a mutual fit regarding needs and capabilities. From there, we map our specific goals by timeframe and develop a plan to address gaps and deficiencies. Once we have a high-level plan, a second meeting will determine if we mutually want to work together. For those we move forward with, the implementation phase will begin where the specifics of the plan will be spelled out explicitly and agreed upon, along with timeframes to properly set expectations.

  • I have major tax concerns for the future. How can I utilize your advanced tax savings strategies?

    For certain clients of high annual earnings, there are advanced tax strategies that may be applicable to legally reduce the current period tax due. Once you are a client, we will always look to see if you qualify for these strategies.

    We do not offer these tax strategies for non-clients as a separate, standalone service. They are offered only to existing clients.

  • Why does it seem like you do not like the market?

    We LOVE the market as it is the greatest wealth creator and supporter of American capitalism throughout the world. However, we understand that a client’s most vulnerable time for having short term market fluctuations create a lasting impact on the overall success of a retirement plan is the first 5-10 years once they transition from Accumulation to Distribution & Spending.

    By segmenting our income sources, using the “Income for Life” model, we create you an income plan which can identify and isolate your most vulnerable income sources and protect them from the risks of the market in the beginning years, while letting your long-term assets the time they need to grow and provide the income needed for your future years.

    Through the “Income for Life” model, we create a plan which will protect you from the three main risks during retirement: Timing risk, Inflation Risk, and Longevity Risk.