How do I set up an account with your firm?
We try to make this process very easy for you. The first step is an initial meeting in which we get to know you, and review your goals. We ask you to complete a confidential questionnaire in advance. We will then determine the best mix of investments for your situation and prepare the documents. If you're transferring assets, such as an IRA, we take care of all the paperwork for you.
What is the minimum to open an account?
The minimum to open an account is $100,000. We've set this minimum in order to establish a properly diversified portfolio for you.
Can you manage my IRA even if it's with another company?
Yes, we manage many IRA accounts. We would prepare the necessary paperwork for your signature so that we can do a direct transfer of assets from your present custodian to your new one.
Can you manage my 401(k) or 403(b) at work?
Yes, in some cases we can manage a client's 401(k) or 403(b) account. It all depends on how your plan administrator at work set up the plan.
Can I still set up an account with you even if I don't live in your area?
That's no problem at all. Many of our clients live in different parts of the country. You still get all the benefits of our services via the telephone, fax, regular mail or e-mail.
Does Retirement Planning Solutions hold my money in custody?
Retirement Planning Solutions never holds client assets. Registered Investment Advisers are actually prohibited by law from taking custody of your assets. It is therefore necessary to utilize a third party custodian. We have an agreement with T D Ameritrade discount brokerage to provide custody, record keeping, and reporting services for our clients. Accounts are titled in the client's name, and disbursements from that account may only be made to the client at their address of record or the client's bank account. If the client authorizes, the custodian may deduct our fee directly from the account. The custodian will also provide the client with confirmations of each purchase, sale, or disbursement, a monthly statement, and consolidated tax reporting at year-end.
Note: We are not employees of the custodian, and receive no compensation from them for placing trades through them. We are free to select any discount brokerage house to provide custody for client accounts. It is our belief that T D Ameritrade offers the most complete service with the lowest costs.
In addition, TD Ameritrade maintains a combined SIPC and commercial insurance of $150,000,000 per customer against loss shares or failure of the brokerage.
How often do you review my investments?
We internally monitor accounts on a weekly and monthly basis. Then depending upon the client’s directive, we will meet on a quarterly, semi-annual or annual basis. We will meet in person or by telephone to review your account and your circumstances. However, we don't have to wait for a regular review in order to make changes. We can best help you if you let us know right away about any major changes in your life that might affect your needs. Examples are marriage, divorce, a change or loss of your job, a major change in your health or a major new financial obligation that you may have encountered.
Can I get my money out quickly in case of an emergency?
Yes, we can usually transfer money into your bank account within 24-48 hours. However, we recommend that you maintain a separate emergency fund, so that you don't have to unexpectedly sell long-term investments.
Do you contact me ahead of time before you make changes to my investments?
No, we make trades in each account according to the discipline on which we have agreed when we set up your account. When we are trading, our job is to get it done in a timely fashion, and we would not be able to do so if we consulted with clients ahead of time.
What if I depend on monthly income from my investments? Can this arrangement be set up?
Yes we can, and in most cases there will be no cost to you for this service.
How often will I receive a statement of my account?
You will receive a statement each month from our custodian, T D Ameritrade.
Can I view my account on-line?
Yes. Your account can be viewed right on our web site since we have a link to T D Ameritrade
How do I pay for your services?
Each quarter we have our management fee taken directly from your account. This way you never have to write us a check for our services.
How much do you charge for your services?
Our fees are based on a percentage of your account balance, and they are graduated depending on the size of your account. The following rates are quoted as annual percentages, so ¼ of the annual fee will be billed quarterly.
Account Size Annual Fee
$2,000,001 plus 0.50%
When you work with Retirement Planning Solutions, you will receive the following advantages:
· Full time commitment to managing your money
· Higher expected returns while taking less risk
· 100% objective in our financial guidance
· Access to institutional index funds
· Free advice on other assets
· Advice for family members
Can I pay you an hourly fee if I choose to manage my own portfolio, or if I don't meet the minimum dollar requirements?
This is certainly an option. We will consult with you about your needs and recommend a portfolio of no-load mutual funds that you can buy and manage on your own. You will be required to complete a questionnaire in advance. The charge is approximately $175 per hour and typically takes between 4 - 10 hours depending upon your financial complexity.
This consultation is offered on a one-time basis for the purpose of building a model portfolio that would be self-managed.
How do our fees differ from the majority of other financial advisors?
Most brokerage firms charge commissions on the products they sell. Under that scenario, your broker would get paid all of their fees up front, even before they invested a dime of your money. With them getting paid up front, one has to ask, how much incentive do they really have to make your account grow on a long term basis, and how closely are they going to watch your account?
With Retirement Planning Solutions, we charge NO commissions or up front money and we monitor your account continually. We charge only a small management fee. This means we get paid on the value of your account and it’s performance. Hence, we have every incentive to make your account grow.
Are the fees I pay to you deductible on my tax return?
In some cases, our fees are deductible. However, we are not tax professionals, so you should see your tax advisor for details.