Imagine for a moment, the generous gesture of two grandparents who decide to systematically invest to help supplement their grandchild's education fund, without recognizing that by doing so, they may be damaging their own ability to retire in several years.
Or, picture the thoughtful actions of a successful, retired business owner, who, in an effort to fund what she believes will be a large estate tax bill that will be due at her death, decides to purchase an insurance policy to fund those taxes, but doesn't realize the implications of how the ownership and beneficiary designation on the policy she purchases might actually increase the very tax she is hoping to offset.
Or, simply imagine most Americans as they near retirement laboring over the most commonly asked question facing most of us, which is "given all that I've saved and using the strategies I've been employing, when I retire, will my assets last beyond my life expectancy". In a perfect scenario, the question might continue with, "what legacy will I leave when I'm gone".
The answers to these questions are based on a variety of sources of data, countless assumptions, and a multitude of moving parts. Often the task of uniting all the data, options, ideas and strategies is so daunting that even the most diligent individuals give up at precisely the moment they need financial planning the most.
At Marciano Wealth Advisors we believe that no financial decision occurs in a vacuum and that any decision made might alter the desired outcome of other components of a client's financial plan.
To ensure that every action taken is respectful of the other components of a client's goals, we offer our clients a fee based financial planning process that computerizes, calculates, depicts various alternatives, and presents back to our client in written form, a dynamic, living blue print of their financial goals. The plan is saved electronically and is revisited on a regular basis so that any new decision can be incorporated into the plan and evaluated carefully.
By creating this plan and coordinating the clients' efforts with those of all of the client's advisors, be they tax professionals, legal experts, or their wealth advisor, we help to create a desired outcome that is thoughtful and respectful of all our client's goals.
Our Fee-Based Financial Planning Process works as follows:
One or more meetings and many conversations are dedicated to obtaining both quantitative and qualitative information from our clients. This information will often include personal and family data such as names, ages, special circumstances, and any earmarked assets or provisions for each family member. It will also include investment statements, 401(k) balances, employer benefits, insurance policy information, and existing legal documents (to be reviewed at the client's discretion by outside legal professionals).
As importantly, a client will be asked questions that are qualitative in nature. These questions might revolve around specific philanthropic goals that a client has, a cause or charity that is significant to them, a college or university that is significant to the client, or simply, what legacy or "footprint" they hope to leave behind.
Although many clients choose to comprehensively depict their planning, it is often important that a client prioritizes what goals either have greater significance to them and their family or those that require more immediate attention. In many cases, resources are finite and therefore, thought is given to the priority of the many goals a client might have.
Behind the scenes, the staff of Marciano Wealth Advisors will be actively inputting data into our secure, confidential, planning software systems. An ongoing dialog continues between our staff, the planner, and the client, as well as the client's other advisors, as necessary. Various output information is reviewed and backtested for reliability and various alternative strategies are reviewed.
Meetings take place with the client so that the output can be reviewed and discussed, various alternative strategies can be explored, action steps can be considered and prioritized, future meeting dates can be established and accountability checklists can be agreed upon.
The action steps agreed upon, with specific accountability of each step determined, are now executed and are monitored to completion.
On a systematic basis (no less than annually) any new information is gathered and reflected in the financial plan which has been established. Over time, as goals change and resources are redirected, the plan is adapted.