Day-to-day our team is guided by the following principles to achieve
"Peace of Mind… One Family at a Time"
Superior client service and communication is the life blood of a good long term advisor-client relationship.
The foundation of our client relationships are built on trust, open communication, and a high level of proactive client service / contact. This is the area we believe to be the corner stone of our offering and sets us apart from the crowd.
Regular proactive contact is one of the keys to our success. We do not simply sit back and react to inbound calls from clients. Our clients need, and expect, more from us. We are regularly in touch with portfolio updates and adjustments to the plan when necessary. We also proactively inform clients about changes to laws / rules that will impact them.
We believe an educated client is more likely to "stay the course” during rough periods in the market where human nature/emotion can take over and lead to disastrous investment decisions. Our newsletter, seminars, conference calls, and review meetings are used to make clients feel more comfortable about sometimes complicated investment and financial planning topics.
We will spend most of our time initially listening in order to gain a complete understanding of the unique retirement, tax, and estate goals facing each family.
If necessary, we will employ the services of our in-house Wealth Group in areas such as tax, estate, succession, and insurance planning. We will then construct a written retirement plan using our Naviplan® software to chart the course towards achieving the goals identified. Finally, we will construct a personalized investment portfolio aimed at meeting these goals and explain the rationale behind our solution and investment selections.
Once the portfolio is in place we regularly monitor and adjust the portfolio when goals change and/or market conditions dictate.
Our approach can best be described as "conservative-growth”.
We believe the core of any investment portfolio should consist of high-quality securities. We believe that by limiting downside risk you get performance. Ultra-aggressive portfolios often blow up; ultra-conservative portfolios get eaten by taxes and inflation. We do not recommend highly speculative investments – those looking for "hot stock tips” will not make a good fit with our investment style.
The client’s time horizon, need for income, and risk profile will determine what weighting is appropriate for each security. Naturally, government guaranteed bonds tend to have a higher portfolio weighting for those approaching or in retirement.
Quality and Dividends
The importance of investing in quality companies is best felt during periods of weakness in the overall market. When the portfolio value fluctuates, investors sleep well knowing they still own financially sound businesses that have a market for their products and services.
Many high quality investments also pay regular dividends. A steady stream of income reduces risk and allows for patience while waiting for an investment to appreciate in value. An investment paying a 4% annual dividend provides a head start towards achieving the annual return goal – rather than relying solely on capital gains to produce the return.
Taxation – Tax Shelter Strategies
We believe tax efficiency is important in achieving success. With this in mind, we make every effort to invest in a tax friendly manner. This is accomplished both through the investments we select and proper planning.
That being said, it is important not to allow the "tax tail to wag the investment dog". An investment decision should be considered on its own merits - tax efficiency, while important, is secondary.
For example, investors can be tempted to hold onto an investment that has done well for fear of having to pay tax on a capital gain. If our research determines the investment has limited upside, it may make sense to take profits in spite of the tax owing. Ultimately capital gains tax is the best kind of tax an investor will ever pay. Logically, an investor should be happy to pay tax on a capital gain, rather than the alternative - owing no tax as a result of earning no return.
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