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The Financial Planning Process

A financial plan is designed to prepare you for the road ahead by putting you in the best financial position possible.  And, like any good plan, it should be a resource to guide you through all of life's expected and unexpected turns.  Your financial plan does not need to be complex or confusing, and in order to make this blueprint, we will build it together.

Introductory Meeting:

During our initial meeting, we will get to know you and discuss your financial objectives to determine what you want to accomplish.  Knowing where you want to go is an important decision to make before taking any steps to get there. Even if you do not know your final goal, we can help you find it and ultimately achieve it.  

Discovery:

Your current financial situation is the starting point to build a financial plan.  We will review your assets and financial statements to assess your current situation.  We will determine your net worth, discretionary cash flow, current asset allocation, risk exposure, tax situation and more. With this in mind, we will provide guidance on how to manage your money to pursue your short-term and long-term goals - all while protecting what you have, and those you care for.

Information Analysis:

Evaluating the big picture of your finances allows for a better understanding of how the different elements relate to one another.  Deeper analysis will help you visualize how different investment decisions may shape your future. 

This detailed analysis often reveals valuable information needed to solve particular problems and create financial opportunities. Our review may also raise important questions which we will discuss with you before we make recommendations.  We will then meet again to discuss a plan of action.

Implementation:

We will outline any immediate steps that need to be taken. If we have not found a targeted goal, we will work to create a plan to help maintain efficiency, until we have found what you are looking for. Once the details are agreed upon, your personalized financial plan will help you pursue your stated goals.

After implementation of our recommendations, we will have periodic review meetings with you.  This allows us to incorporate changes which may occur in your personal lives, financial situation or tax laws.

Ongoing Relationship:

The planning process is fluid and ongoing.  It is more than just gathering information, putting a plan in place and checking in now and again.  It is a continuous process of communication that builds trust and comfort with the strategy we build together. Our combined effort is an essential element in the success.

Once the plan has been put into action, your progress will be regularly monitored.  With each life event that occurs - the birth of a child, college education, purchasing a larger home, grandkids - we will discuss the answers to your questions, talk through options, and adjust the plan to ensure we remain focused on your goals and needs.

Our ongoing relationship will be founded on trust, open communication and a mutual desire for your success.  This can help you feel a greater sense of confidence in your future.  You will find this feeling to be one of the greatest rewards of financial planning.

Wealth Accumulation Planning

Our clients each have unique goals relating to preserving, increasing and diversifying their wealth. Our investment process is designed to assist our clients in developing investment objectives, and an investment philosophy, that is an integral part of their total financial planning goals.

Asset Allocation:

  • We counsel our clients on optimum combination and diversification of financial assets.

Professional Investment Management:

  • We fit carefully chosen professional investment managers and programs to the client`s predetermined investment plan. We can search for, select from, and monitor performance of the entire U.S. money manager universe.

Due Diligence:

  • Our products are subject to rigorous due diligence scrutiny before approved as client offerings.

Investment Tracking:

  • Our sophisticated tracking system perpetually monitors our client`s investment results.

Tax Advantage:

  • Whenever possible, we reduce or defer income tax exposure in our client`s portfolio through the use of specialized products and income tax reduction techniques.

Retirement Planning

Retirement for most people is a once-in-a-lifetime event.  The planning period is full of emotion, loaded with change and flush with critical financial decisions.  There are many intricate parts that must be woven together to create a new fabric for your lives.

Our challenge as financial professionals, is to weave a strong cloth that will withstand the test of time and circumstances.  You need it to last the rest of your lives. We can make sure it does. 

Business and Succession Planning

Business owners face unique issues.  We will work with you to face these together.

Common Concerns:

  • How can I phase out of my business without losing capital?
  • How do I transfer my business to my children?
  • How can I maintain income to my family from the business if I die or become disabled?
  • How can I be sure that the valuation will withstand an IRS estate tax audit?
  • Should I consider an ESOP?
  • How can I convert the non-liquid business asset into cash now or in the future?
  • Is my buy-sell agreement fair as to price, terms and funding?

We have strategies to answer these questions and many more. Plans are customized to the unique situations of each client with special attention paid to satisfying our client`s present needs and future plans while providing flexibility as circumstances change.

Wealth Transfer & Estate Planning

Estate Planning is one of the most important long range planning objectives an individual or family can undertake. Our approach is to coordinate business continuity planning with the disposition of our client`s other property.

Special attention is given to providing adequate income to dependent family members, providing for special distribution wishes including charitable bequests, and recommending professional management for property.

Since estate taxes create erosion of property values, our experience in designing or adapting innovative tools minimizes or eliminates the impact of estate taxes.

Our skilled staff of estate planning specialists provides specialized options to clients which assist in refining their own plan as well as coordinating the final plan with their other financial planning strategies.

Life Insurance and Disability Insurance Planning

Our first priority is helping you take care of yourself and your family. Together, we will develop strategies to protect you and your family from the known and unknown problems in today's world. These areas may include life insurance, disability insurance, or estate preservation with revocable and irrevocable trusts.


Stock Options

We provide evaluations of various executive compensation plans including stock option plans and the tax ramifications of each.  

Employee Benefit Planning

Employee benefit planning has become increasingly important to our corporate clients. With up to forty percent of payroll often allocated to benefits, it is vital that the benefit plan meets the specific needs of our client companies at a reasonable cost.

We evaluate existing programs and recommend maintaining, amending, or totally changing plans. Frequently, recommended plans are:

  • Tax Deductible Salary Continuation Plans.
  • Qualified Retirement Plans.
  • Non-Qualified Selective Incentive Plans.
  • Incentive Stock Options Plan.
  • 401(k) and Salary Saving Plans, Cafeteria Plans.
  • ESOP`s.
  • Compensation Planning.
  • Financial Planning for Key Employees.

We monitor employee benefits with respect to the financial parameters and objectives of our clients' companies.

Qualified Retirement Plans

We have been a leader in the custom design of pension and profit sharing plans. By using creative design strategies, we have been able to carve out significant dollars which are normally subject to taxation into these tax favored vehicles.

Qualified retirement plans have the following tax advantages:

  • Deposits are tax deductible.
  • Earnings and gains are exempt from current income tax.
  • Deposits allocated to individuals are not currently taxable.
  • There are favorable tax treatments upon distribution of plan assets.

Ongoing plan administration is a unique advantage we provide to our clients. No company remains static for very long. Plan contributions, design strategies, employee structure and corporate objectives make servicing of the plan a dynamic ongoing task.