Our independence means that we can offer you unbiased investment advice, free from third-party influence. We work with you to select the custodians, investment firms, banks and insurance companies best suited to achieve your goals, based on your needs and your preferences.
Choosing the right professional to help you and your family with your financial needs can be a daunting task, there are a myriad of choices both large and small.
When thinking about these choices, consider the following:
Many financial professionals are employees of the investment firms, banks or insurance companies for whom they work. Employees of large firms will have additional considerations and constraints when working with clients that can frame and limit the types of advice, solutions and products offered to you. It's common to find insurance companies heavily recommending insurance and annuities as solutions, while investment companies might encourage new issuance of structured products or complex investments. Banks might prefer trust, lending and deposit solutions while other firms might recommend non-traded real-estate and other more exotic investments. Advisers of financial companies tend to recommend what their company offers and they tend to not recommend what their company doesn't offer. Working with an independent, self employed adviser can provide unbiased advice.
We've all had the experience of going to the local grocery store and finding a favorite item is no longer on the shelf. The grocer chooses which items to offer, based on a number of factors, including what is most profitable and what puts their house brands in the best competitive position. But shelf space isn't a challenge unique to grocery stores, financial firms have shelves too- you just can't see them. In fact, every financial firm drives profit from the specific products available to their advisers on the firm's "platform". Companies regularly exclude products that don't "pay to play" or only offer more expensive share classes of popular investments. Even the best intentioned adviser can only offer you what's available on their company's platform. Working with an independent adviser who is not limited by a proprietary platform provides you with a broader choice of investments at better prices.
Innovation in financial technology, or Fin-tech is changing the landscape of financial services in amazing ways at a blistering pace. In years past, only the largest financial companies could deploy the best technology to their financial professionals in service of their clients. This had always been an advantage of the large banks, insurance companies and investment firms, but now the size and complexity of these large firms has made adopting new technology slow and cumbersome. New and innovative technologies are quickly leap-frogging older approaches to how firms solve the complexities of investing, planning and risk. Digital tools now allow clients unprecedented access to deep financial analysis and reporting as well as enhanced risk and planning tools; but the largest firms face challenges integrating these new tools into their proprietary platforms. Most large firms are slower to adopt and integrate the newest tools available in Fin-tech. Working with an independent adviser who is not constrained by old, proprietary technology platforms means having access to current tools that bring innovative and timely technology to your financial planning and investing.
Did you know that many advisers are contractually prohibited from moving with their clients to another company? Most large financial firms require their advisers to sign non-competition agreements and further tie large sums of deferred compensation to staying and even retiring at their firm. As the client, you always have the choice to change your financial adviser; however, an adviser under contract that contacts a former client can face stiff legal troubles as well as significant financial loss. Choosing a financial adviser that's captive means that your adviser may not be able to change to a different company in the future, even if it's the right thing for you. Working with an independent adviser means your adviser is always free to partner with the companies best positioned to help you.