1) ADAPT: Investing has changed dramatically with internet services and how financial tools have adjusted to meet the growing demand for safer ways to invest monies. Even the oldest establishments, insurance companies, have improved their products to help incorporate safer investment approaches.
More importantly, the old adages that set your expectations and are commonly used to drive your expectations for reasonable ROI – returns on your investment aren’t necessarily true. The internet and the easy access to information has educated many to the tactics of these financial firms, exposing how they have positioned themselves to make enormous amounts of money while doing little. In combination they promoted low performance and charged you a lot to hold your money.
- When many industry leading, Blue Chip, companies double their stock prices over a yearly period, how is it good investment performance to see your 401k grow 8%.?
- When ETFs match the Dow Jones, S&P 500, Nasdaq, Russel 2000, … indices performance, why are you only earning 8% from your broker?
Times have changed and so should you.
If this frustrates you, good. It’s time to learn that the banks, brokers, financial institutions make a lot of money on your money and they only pay you a fraction. You should expect equal performance to the indices because it takes no brain power to invest in them (ETFs).
- Note: If a broker charges you to manage your money, then they should perform better than the indices.
- For 2017, the Dow Jones improved from Jan 1 at 19,963 to Dec 31th at 25,295, or a 26% increase.
- If we look at the Dow Jones performance for 2016. Jan 1 at 16,346 to Dec 25th at 19,762, or a 20% increase.
How did you do in 2016 and 2017? Did you earn these levels of gains?
Surprised? You should be. To make matters worse, make money or NOT, you will be charged standard fees (1-2%*) on the largest amount the portfolio was measured at. So in the years your account loses money, you will pay more than 1-2%. And in the last big market correction, people actually paid over 2-4%
- *Note: fees will increase with more policies and funds in use within each account.
- Ex: Mutual Funds will be charged more for having both US Large Cap and the Retirement Year 2045 Funds in use.
- Ex: Stock portfolios are charged by size of account and for services like stock trades.
Basic Fees Example for account values at 1% and 2%:
ACCOUNT 1% 2%
- $100,000 $1,000 $2,000
- $250,000 $2,500 $5,000
- $500,000 $5,000 $10,000
- $1,000,000 $10,000 $20,000
Did you get your institution / broker value this year? How much are your fees when you add up the total charges over the life of your policy?
When you add up the fee cost across the entire life of the policy, you will question why you even got started. Especially when you track the average ROI – return on investment for such poor performing product(s).
2) What you should expect under advisement:
- Performance Guarantee: You should only pay fees for the years you make real money
- Performance should equal or beat market indices
3) Many people only have a 401k like option to save for retirement offered from the company they work for. How should you manage your 401k?
- Minimum investment should be equal to the company match policy
- Place all investment dollars into a single fund, this will ensure the lowest fee cost.
- Ex: US Large Cap
- If you own more than one 401k (Ex: Have one from another company), consolidate them all into one. Save money by only paying one fee.
- Note: Do not cash out the other account, transfer the funds.
- Have your new financial company move the monies for you.
The demands to get you to retirement are higher than ever. The tools available to you are better than ever, but you are not using them.
The simple fact that you will outlive your Great Grandparents by 10 years increases your retirement requirement exponentially. So.., what does that mean?
You need to start saving for retirement in your first job. In your 20’s, Yes. In your teens, Better. For the Millennial’s, I know that sounds crazy, especially when you are saddled with college debt and living with your parents. But it’s true.
For the rest, it’s not too late. Your plan needs to be more risky, focused and executed. You need to get educated and use the right approach.
Over the last five years, we’ve moved away from diversification and focused more on best in class. By doing this, companies like Netflix, Apple, Microsoft, FaceBook, AMD, NVIDIA, Home Depot, Amazon, Vocera and Boeing have taken our investors to massive returns. One original client over the last five years has seen over 17x gains. ***docnak advice.xls
So the old investment adage of double your money every 10 years is weak guidance. That kind of talk is outdated and used to protect the financial companies who want to charge you excessive fees while providing little.
- Note: Mutual Funds aren’t designed to work quickly. So why is this your only form of retirement savings?
- Active investment advisors rarely beet the market indices. So why pay for the service?
Investing and building a retirement nest egg is an art form, but it is not mysterious and only for those with money to burn. It’s about putting your money where there is clear excitement and growth potential. You can catch up, retire on time and on your terms.
The days of just hoping your money grows with the financial institutions is over. Take charge of your life and future, stop feeling helpless and follow some very reasonable and practical steps.
Your question is:
- How do I plan and get to a comfortable retirement?
The simple answer:
- Start saving early, make your money work for you. AND
- Protect yourself from life’s expensive shortcomings.
The way to get there:
- Leverage the right tools
The following categories speak to a range of products you must build into your plan. They are designed to build your wealth and protect you from the inevitable life and health issues. Learn about what is important and why. Make them part of your daily conscious and see how others around you are losing the battle to getting to retirement without them.
Life is full of traps and the lottery is not the answer to taking care of what is most important, loved and dependent on you.
1) Why you need it: Life is full of change and the unexpected. You cannot prepare for every curve sent your way, but you can setup insurance protections to shield you from the high personal expense and costs related to dealing with them.
Think about it this way. “No one has ever wished they had LESS insurance.” Even the government is aware of its necessity. This is why you get so many tax and ownership breaks for having it. Essentially, the government promotes it. Why? They know, life issues are expensive and if you go bankrupt for all the things insurance protects you for… you become a government burden.
2) HEALTH: Is required for everyone. You will get ill and healthcare is expensive.
Note: Prepare accordingly, because the cost of health insurance will continue to climb until the industry learns enough to define where the profitability line is. Historically, the industry primarily sold health insurance to the healthy. That made health insurance prematurely lower than it should be. Now that healthcare is no longer discriminatory, they must accommodate the costs of dealing with those with pre-determined conditions. Save money and prepare for continued cost increases for the next few years.
3) LTC – Long Term Care: Like Health, is a requirement for families. Anything related to healthcare is expensive. Having a Critical, Chronic or Terminal illness occur during your life is almost a certainty. You will probably deal with this later in life and thus, won’t have the time to pay these expenses over time.
Note: The Baby Boomers are in an epidemic of dealing with LTC today. Their kids are going broke and are consumed by the time necessary to care for their parent’s long term care burdens. You do not want to burden your family with this expense. When the time comes, they will ultimately have to deal with this themselves and their current issues are hard enough.
Save early and prepare for this condition.
4) LIFE: Life insurance is a must. This statement is true because the requirements of life have been raised and the old ways to get you to the end comfortably are no longer adequate. That is a loaded statement, but think of it this way:
- The first generations to make less than their parents has begun and this trend is expected to continue.
- Growing your money traditionally, owning a Home and a 401k, no longer have the growth potential alone, to get you to retirement.
So the oldest financial establishments have created the IUL – Index Universal Life product to help you get there. This product is tested, proven and the most popular tool to provide the smart investor, peace of mind.
Besides extreme wealth, what tool provides you these benefits?
- Provider Loss Protection
- Legacy and Estate Planning
- Tax Free Income
- Retirement Income
- LTC – Long Term Care
Imagine giving at least 2% and as much as 10% of your entire net worth away. All your hard work, decades of sweat equity – gone. That’s called PROBATE and this is the state managed process known to define your beneficiary wishes in your passing.
It’s not easy to define your wishes when you’re gone and sometimes your own family, business partners, neighbors and friends complicate the process.Without an Estate Trust defined, the state you live in will seize all your bank, financial and various holdings until they make a decision on your behalf.
Probate is probably the most expensive mistake you’ll ever make.
You need to estate plan early and update as you grow. There is a misconception about you having time or you don’t have enough value to worry about it. With few exceptions, everyone has an estate — even the young child with a custodial account in his name and the granddaughter who received a lovely piece of jewelry for her 16th birthday.
Bottom line: If you own something of value that you would pass on to someone else upon your death, you have an estate.
We have Los Angeles’s most recognized team of estate planners working to serve you. Their talent goes beyond just protecting what and who you care for. They will help you define and distribute your wishes to your legacy.
You don’t know what you don’t know. Estate planning provides you insight into the various legal options on how to protect what you worked so hard for. Keep and give to those you care for.
You ask us to protect and grow your wealth. Rest easy, Estate Planning is the fact your legacy is protected as well.
Broadly speaking, an estate plan encompasses the accumulation, conservation and distribution of an estate. A good plan will enhance and maintain the financial security of individuals and their families.
When you’re developing a plan for your estate, it’s important to understand your entire financial picture. That’s where we come in. Working with our tax and legal advisors, we will help coordinate your investment strategies to help ensure that your plan reflects your wishes for your legacy.
Complete the form to receive our estate planning guides, which include information about the importance of having certain estate documents, maintaining beneficiary designations, and organizing your financial documents.
Social Security benefits are one of the most important parts of any retirement portfolio. A poor claiming decision can cost tens-of-thousands of dollars, while making the right decision can contribute significantly to one’s financial security.
However, Social Security is a complex system. We provide the tools to help you make the best Social Security planning. Our reports present not only the optimal strategy, they also provide comparisons to other strategies that may work better when your entire financial situation is taken into consideration. Our reports also help you advise about little-known Social Security strategies such as “file and suspend” and the restricted application, “free spousal” strategy.
Your primary insurance amount, or PIA — the benefit you would get at full retirement age — determines the size of your monthly retirement check. According to the Social Security Administration’s website, the PIA is based on the Average Indexed Monthly Earnings, or AIME, as applied to an inflation-adjusted formula. The PIA is then adjusted for whether you take retirement before or after your normal retirement age — 66 for those now reaching retirement age, but gradually adjusted to age 67 for those born after 1960.
You can begin drawing reduced Social Security as early as 62. For every month you delay after reaching full retirement age, up to age 70, the monthly benefit increases.
According to a 2010 report of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, for someone with an AIME of $5,000 in 2010, the PIA would total $1,971.
In keeping with the original intent behind Social Security — a way to lift seniors out of poverty — lower-wage earners get a higher proportion of their earnings than higher-wage earners. The maximum monthly benefit that can be received in 2014 is $2,642 for a worker retiring at full retirement age.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Can You Help Me?
A. Yes. We know the challenges you face. Investing for Growing Wealth, Investing for Retirement, Getting out of Debt, Learning How to Save… is what we do everyday to anyone willing to help themselves.
Q. Can I get help with my credit card debts?
A. Absolutely. Clients can learn why and how they got into debt. Prevent it from every happening again and most importantly have a custom plan designed to effectively pay off their debt and get back on track financially. There are many programs to leverage, we will help define the right one for you.
Q. Is your advice worth paying for?
A. You don’t know what you don’t know. Expertise comes with experience, certifications and degrees. Our advice has value and so does fixing your situation. Our clients stay with us because we perform year after year. Most commonly, individuals seek advice for retirement planning. We do much more than grow your wealth. We provide peace of mind, life coach you when faced with challenges, help you make business decisions, purchase decisions, cost effectively define actions, protect you from others and yourself. The most expensive mistakes are driven from not knowing what you did not know.
Q. I am already in debt. How can I afford a financial
A. We help everyone. Lets work it out, depending on the help you are looking for, you could be looking at a fee only situation or commission based pricing. What goes around, comes around. Call us.
Market risk, or “principal risk” is the chance that a downturn (or a bad investment) reduces your wealth. It’s there for both stocks and bonds — when interest rates rise, bondholders will see the market value of their paper shrink — and for most people it’s a mystery.
Inflation or purchasing-power risk for most people is the “risk of avoiding risk” — the opposite end of the spectrum from market risk — the possibility that you are too conservative and your money can’t grow fast enough to keep pace with inflation.
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