Tax-focused wealth management, deliberately unapologetic

 

Anyone can argue the best investments, the best funds, or even the best money managers, but no one can argue that taxes represent a primary, ever-present concern.  The quest for yield will always place second to tax efficiencies that maximize what you keep.

tax smart investment strategies

tax implications are in every financial decision

Your Needs, Our Focus

The U.S. Government Department of the Treasury has a web page that is referred to as the “MTS” (Monthly Treasury Statement). It contains a monthly summary of the U.S. Federal government’s receipts and outlays, as well as the resulting surpluses and deficits. You can pull and download a monthly, fiscal year or even 40-year ledger of revenues and expenses of the U. S. government.

We all benefit from tax revenues in many forms: education, healthcare, infrastructure, etc. At the same time, the one glaring fact within these reports is that the outflows are nearly twice of the inflows. Are there means by which the economy can turn this around? Of course. Can it be done quickly or painlessly? No. There are truly only two ways the government can reduce our deficit, cut spending or raise taxes. You can draw your own conclusions.

We believe that wealth management strategies to reduce taxes should always be a standard provision. This is why we direct our business practice towards the applicable legal, ethical and beneficial tax strategies that can reduce tax drag and enhance after-tax investment returns. There have been numerous legislative changes and financial vehicles in recent years that have enhanced tax efficiencies. We consider it our mission to implement tax planning tools for the benefit of our individual and business clients.

Our Philosophy

As fiduciaries, we place your needs and interests first. We take great care in the consideration of the various investment recommendations we make, professional partnerships we refer and the organizational relationships we foster. Unlike many other brokers and advisors we do not offer proprietary products, nor do we get compensated differently based on the type of solution that is best to implement your ideal strategy. These and countless other decisions are made in the way of maintaining the highest standard of service for our clients.

We measure success by the incremental wins made year by year and the long-term success of economic freedom in life’s journey, whether that journey is just beginning or enjoying a well-planned retirement. Our commitment to our clients is embodied in our guiding principles and proudly demonstrated in our professional, moral, and ethical actions.

Our Values

business ethics

Integrity

As your financial advocate, our professional duty is unscripted. We have no cookie-cutter, preset models or designs. Our engagement with you will be designed around your unique needs and goals. As  fiduciaries we are bound by law to always act in your best interest and to exercise the highest degree of care and good faith in the management and preservation of your assets.

Collaboration

Partnership

Our partnerships are established for the benefit of clients and often organically. Given that our primary focus is tax efficient strategies, we work closely with your CPA for the best possible outcomes. In many cases, we also find the need to make introductions to CPAs that we have vetted for their expertise and reputation. We take great care that every recommendation lives up to our standards and your needs.

Client best interests

Stewardship

We believe that earning trust is sacred. With that trust comes accountability. Any financial strategies considered require an organization and solution to execute your objectives. We scrutinize every implementation, including the companies and partners we have worked with in the past, to ensure that it represents your best choice. We also employ an investment philosophy that is backed by academic and scientifically validated investment principles and processes. Recognizing that a financial decision made today can have long-term significance, it is our duty to ensure that it is based on information that is sound and prudent.

financial guidance

Transparency

We are advice based, fee based and solution based. Holistic planning involves recommendations, investments and risk based considerations.  Whether you seek advice or a second opinion, we can meet just for that purpose. Financial planning is a flat fee, based on complexity. If your interests are tax-efficient investments, we can manage your portfolio. If you need to protect business or personal interests, we can find the best solutions. All of our fees and options are clearly reviewed in advance.

financial literacy

Assurance

The typical financial advisor model is that of fact gathering, options presented, and solution implemented. What is missing in this model is the ‘why’. We prefer to make you an active participant in the process to truly explain methodology and outline how the various options relate to your financial goals. Your decisions should indeed come from a place of trust, but also a clear understanding of the short and long-term implications as well as the inter-relational aspect to the overall financial plan.

fair impartial financial advice

Impartiality

We see the world of options when we consider viable wealth management tax strategies. As independent advisors we are not tied to any particular family of funds, investment products or money managers. We use independent third-party custodians for your assets for the purposes of safety and security, as this furthers our fiduciary duty. Since we have no ties or obligations to any given organization, we are free to appraise any and all the best options that suit your financial goals.

Our Process

l

Discovery

Our goal is to listen and learn

As human beings, emotions and biases weigh heavily into our decisions, even those of a financial nature. Where they serve you better is in forming your interests, values, goals, personal and professional relationships. These important details enable us to design financial solutions uniquely tailored to you.

Tax & Financial Planning

Designing your ideal future

Having a clear understanding of your objectives, we examine what is working and what may need to be restructured to meet your needs going forward. We evaluate your tax implications, discuss, consider and explain the strategies that would serve you best and together decide on the steps of your plan of action.

Tailored Tax-Smart Investment Plan

Implementation

After carefully examining your complete financial position, the appropriate strategies applicable as well as your personal and professional priorities, we deliver the step-by-step blueprint to best implement your tax-efficient customized plan designed to enhance after-tax outcomes and achieve your financial goals.

Progress Reviews

Strategies, performance and opportunities

Through scheduled quarterly status updates and annual reviews, we discuss strategy progress, portfolio performance as well as personal and professional life changes that have occurred to make any necessary modifications and explore potential financial opportunities.

As much as is stated above, what is not referenced are all of the details that occur prior to and throughout the process with regards to the coordination of professionals (CPAs, Attorneys, Real Estate Professionals, etc.) that often occurs as part of the process.

As with all the best working relationships, it must begin with an initial conversation. In this case, a complimentary consultation would help us understand what you wish to achieve and how it is that we can support your goals.

We must believe that there must be an alignment to both serve you in the best possible capacity as well as meeting expectations. Given that our business relationship will require in-depth details and likely span over time, we also need to ensure that you feel comfortable and wish to be guided by our efforts and coordination.

We look forward to a long and successful business relationship where together we embrace the challenges, uncover opportunities and build meaningful momentum towards your financial goals.

Our Services

Advice Based Service Model

We understand that there are circumstances where you are just looking for sound financial advice on achieving your goals and guidance in the implementation of that advice.  The need may involve a review for a second opinion, or in support of your own efforts in managing your money, it may be due to minimizing complications if you have multiple advisors or perhaps it could even represent an on-going, as needed, retainer structure for those instances that warrant scrutiny of a particular financial instrument, strategy or situation.

With this model, we act in a fiduciary capacity in the purest form and provide advice on an hourly basis. In this instance, we do not sell any financial products, capture assets or charge an ongoing management fee. This model is customary to many other fee for service professionals (physicians, lawyers, accountants, etc.) but less common in wealth management and financial planning. When you are seeking purely objective advice, this model is the contractual structure we maintain. Often this model of engagement will require that we review, research and/or confirm any number of details that you provide. Apart from our actual meeting to discuss your priorities and /or concerns, you will be provided a complete written summary of findings and if applicable, actionable recommendations.

Fee Based Service Model

In this more traditional model, we function as your of team of investment management professionals with various expertise ranging from research and selection of investment options to monitoring your assets, all of which are tailored to your overall objectives, in exchange for paying a management fee.  Based on the proven mechanics of modern portfolio theory, you are provided assistance with allocating risk, asset location, asset allocation, rebalancing of your portfolio and other personalized investment advice.

Professional asset management does not involve commissions on transactions and is instead a percentage of assets under management. Given that we maintain our fiduciary capacity to place your best interests first, we conduct thorough and accurate analysis in order to execute it in the most efficient and cost-effective manner possible. Thus, it is in our mutual best interest to see your portfolio grow.  Although growth alone is typically the measure of success with most firms, we only consider it a component of the equation. Most industry experts agree that tax drag can erode portfolio returns over time and it is for this reason that our focus is your after-tax return. For the purposes of a “big picture” view we also provide financial planning. Through our team of CFPs and CFAs we provide an understanding of how your individual financial decisions impact your overall financial success as well as options and alternatives tailored to your specific financial situation.

Our goal is earn our fee through prudent investment principles and maintaining tax efficiencies through active management. When we conduct annual reviews, we reach beyond financial and retirement plans statements to examine performance but also review how tax-efficiencies have benefited your personal financial well-being.

Solution Based Service Model

When an investment management firm states that they do not sell any products, they are acting in the purest form of the fiduciary standard. The problem with that model alone is that it requires that you seek another professional when you do have a specific solution/product need. If, as example, you had a need for life insurance, disability insurance or long-term care insurance, you have no idea if the insurance company you happen to choose will recommend a policy that pays a higher commission, that in reality may not be the best solution for you.  The individual insurance agent you could have happened to choose may have a tie to a specific carrier or even a requirement to maintain their contract by selling a certain amount of policies or revenue per year. Might they be inclined to recommend their company and not truly consider any others?

This is why we choose to have an open architecture, client focused business model. We do not have any ties to a company that “manufactures” product solutions. As an independent firm we also have no financial requirement to place business with any one organization. We are not incentivized to select the company we choose to recommend, but rather it is in our best interests to recommend the best solution to continue to foster the best long-term client relationship. If we ever have a situation that represents a conflict of interest, as fiduciaries we must and would clearly disclose such potential conflicts.

Investment advisory services:

  • Tax managed investments
  • Stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs
  • Asset allocation
  • Portfolio design & management
  • Foreign investments
  • Donor advised funds
  • Unit investment trusts
  • TIPS/ CPI/RPI swaps
  • Municipal bonds

 

  • Tax drag analysis
  • Tax loss harvesting
  • Distribution management
  • Capital gains reduction strategies
  • Opportunity zone funds
  • Separately managed accounts
  • Real estate investment trusts
  • Real estate/ 1031 exchanges

Investments

Business

  • Entity structures reviews
  • Partnership structures reviews
  • Business valuation coordination
  • Cash flow analysis
  • Tax efficiency analysis
  • Capital expenditure reviews
  • Expense reduction analysis
  • Private placement life insurance

Employer, Entrepreneur, Solopreneur advisory services:

  • Buy-sell agreements
  • Exit planning
  • Continuation planning
  • Key employee retention strategies
  • Small business retirement plans
  • SEP IRAs, Solo 401(k)
  • Risk management assessments
  • Employee benefit analysis

Retirement planning services:

  • Comprehensive financial planning
  • Tax planning
  • Traditional IRA, ROTH IRA, Self-directed IRA
  • ROTH conversions
  • Professionally managed 401(k), 403(b) and 457 options
  • Asset protection

Retirement

Retirement income planning services:

  • Distribution management
  • Maximizing tax brackets
  • Social security planning
  • Pension planning
  • Gifting strategies
  • Income annuities
  • RMD strategies

Personal and Coordinated Plannning Services:

  • Trust planning
  • Inheritance planning
  • Legacy planning
  • Financial restructure after divorce
  • Healthcare planning
  • College planning
  • Estate planning
  • Windfall planning
  • Charitable giving
  • Financial restructure after death of a spouse
  • Financial coordination for the care of a parent
  • Cash value life insurance
  • Deferred annuities

Drop us a line

Please let us know if you have any questions

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