Below are some of the most commonly asked questions we receive:
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Are you a fiduciary?
Yes, as a registered investment advisor (RIA), The Prudent Planner serves each of our clients in a fiduciary capacity. And unlike many firms and advisors you might come across, a fiduciary is required to operate with full transparency and avoid conflicts of interest.
Do you sell insurance?
Our advisors maintain their insurance license to be able to offer objective guidance regarding life insurance, long-term care strategies and annuities as part of the financial planning process. We do not sell insurance, nor do we receive commissions or any other compensation as a result of referrals to other professionals.
How do you work with clients remotely?
While our office is located in Salt Lake City, Utah, with the ability to scan documents, conduct phone and internet meetings via GoToMeeting, and provide clients with secure online access to our financial planning and investment services, we are able to have seamless interactions, as if we are sitting at the table together.
Who is your typical client?
Our typical client is an individual or couple, at or nearing retirement. Most have multiple financial goals and many anticipate having to create their own pension-like income for many years to come. As a registered investment advisor, we serve our clients in a fiduciary capacity, helping them to identify the goals they most value, understand trade-offs, and find the most suitable financial plan, investments and services for their needs. While our clients’ investable assets typically exceed $500,000 we are able to service clients at every asset level.
What is your financial planning process?
When developing your financial plan we focus on what is most important, your goals. Our web-based planning resources allow us to work collaboratively with you and you also have the ability to review and edit your plan at your convenience, instantly seeing how various decisions and trade-offs affect your results. Our goal is to present you with a range of possibilities to achieve your goals. We will show you before and after comparisons so you can see which financial planning decisions improve your outcomes. With a financial plan, you will not have to wonder if you are doing the right thing — you’ll know.
Do I have to move my investments for you to work with me?
When you hire us for financial planning services you are not required to move your investments to us. When we reach the investment planning portion of your financial plan we ask if you would like to learn more about our investment approach. At that point you have the opportunity to hire us to implement the investment portion of your plan.
Our investment services, especially for those at or nearing retirement, offer a compelling advantage and of course we hope you would be willing to take an open minded look.
If you prefer to manage your own investments we discuss how best we can provide investment recommendations that you can implement on your own.
What is your investment philosophy?
Investing does not have to be complicated, but it does involve trade-offs. There is no single investment that provides preservation, high current income, growth potential, and liquidity all at once. We believe its important for you to understand the trade-offs involved with your options. We use your financial plan to illustrate your options and to show you how certain investments and strategies will be best aligned to achieve your objectives.
When the objective is growth, we seek higher after-tax, after-fee returns by focusing on controllable factors, such as expenses, portfolio rebalancing, tax efficiency and goal tracking.
When it comes time for predictable income, asset protection & growth, we help secure your desired lifestyle by using a hybrid approach that combines the best of pension-like predictable income and the higher, long-term return potential of a traditional growth portfolio.
If you manage my investments where is my money held?
Our chosen custodians are Fidelity Investments and Betterment Investments.