Tag Archives: santa rosa fiduciary

Have You Talked to Your Kids About Money?

23 Feb
While many parents do, they don’t spend enough time talking about it, teaching it and modeling good behavior.
For example, I can’t tell you how many parents I’ve had a college talk with who refuse to share with their child how much this education is going to cost.  What a wasted learning opportunity.
Or the clients who refuse to share their own financial details with their adult children. If you can’t trust them, why are you leaving them any money?
My feeling is families should talk about money, young and old.  remove the veil.  Remove the awkwardness. It is just money, right?
If ever you’d feel it useful to have me along for such a talk, please let me know.  I’d be happy to facilitate a discussion for your family.  It would be good for all involved.

Keeping Wedding Costs Low

20 Feb

Many of you know that Sarah and I are planning our wedding. We’ve set a date, June 18, 2016.  Even picked a general area! North Lake Tahoe. But boy can planning a wedding get expensive!

I came across this article not too long ago and thought it might be helpful for those of you planning a wedding or with children or grand children who are.

Getting creative can truly help trim costs.

Do you have a way that you cut costs at your wedding?

The Cost of Health Care in Retirement

19 Feb

Many folks assume once they hit 65 years old, health care will be free. Or at least cheap.

Does $220,000 sound free or cheap to you? This is the figure that Fidelity’s research estimates a 65-year old couple will need to cover out-of-pocket health care costs!

This can vary wildly.  The above figure is an estimate for when a husband dies at 82 and the wife at 85.  What if you live longer?

This is why people need a plan in retirement. A plan for income, investments and health care, including long term care insurance.

If you or someone you know is interested in talking more about this, please give us a call!

Why Do I Coach

17 Feb

Maddie is now 13 and Patrick is 11.  It sure doesn’t seem as if that much time has passed since they came into my life.  But I can’t argue with a birth certificate.  Time is marching on!

Since their very youngest ages, I’ve coached both of them in various sports. Softball, baseball, soccer, and now lacrosse.  My parents set this example for me as a youngster. My mom volunteered as team mom and even league president.  My dad was always coaching or officiating. They always helped out. And now, so do I.

Coaching can be thankless sometimes.  When you get those parents we’ve all read about. the ones who seem to believe their $100 sign up fee buys them carte blanche to say whatever comes to mind, no matter how inane.  or the ones who live vicariously through their children’s athletics.  They can be a real pain. They can make you question coaching.

But mostly, parents are appreciative. Mostly, the kids give more to me than I give to them. I gain lessons patience when forcing myself to remember they need time to learn.  I discover again to watch my words and be sure they are understandable so they can better grasp a topic.  And, like a gardener who finally sees her harvest or a teacher whose student begins to excel, I receive a lot of satisfaction in seeing a child improve.  When a boy scores his first goal, the joy in his eyes is priceless. But my players learn more than just about their chosen sport.

They learn to be on time. They learn how they must come to practice and games with all of their gear and be prepared.  They learn they must work on skills outside of practice. They learn to set goals. They learn to take criticism. They learn to work harder than they thought they could. For the few short months they spend with me, they learn to become better people.

I coach to give back to our community.  But if I’m really being honest, coaching gives much back to me.  And that’s why I love it so much.


Do you love your job? Does it show?

9 Feb

Hope you all had a fun weekend!  We spent some time down in San Diego learning more about better business practices. We attended a conference for a few days that we truly loved.

In 2015, we are committed to helping serve you better. We are committed to being B Corp.  We are committed to working harder than we ever have to protect your finances in these most volatile times.  In the coming weeks, you’ll see more about what we just learned being put into practice.

For now, it is Monday!  Have a cup of coffee and enjoy the above video.  We love what we do – helping you protect your finances.  But I think the person in the cow suit here takes the cake when it comes to really getting into what one does for a living and loving his job!

Think of this cow’s enthusiasm as you start your week!

More Good Press For B Corps

6 Feb

This week’s theme has been about leadership, being bold, changing things up with new ideas.

Many of you know we are a Certified B Corporation.  This is sometimes something I think our company deserves more credit for being. But I understand why it flies under most people’s radar. it is a bit of a complicated philosophy.

Earlier this week, I wrote about a failure in leadership. I followed that post with a few posts about people making change.  Today, I share with you David Brooks’ NY Times op-ed piece on “How to Leave a Mark.”

Please, take a moment to read it.  Take a moment to discover more companies that are B Corps. If you can, support them.

What Goes Up, Must Come Down.

5 Feb

But is the opposite true, then? What comes down must go up? Do you wonder if rates will rise soon? Or how that even happens? Or what the outcomes might be?

This blog linked here is an interesting perspective from Forbes magazine writer Tim Worstall.

For anyone interested in the more technical side of economics, this is a good read and a very interesting proposal. The author asks “Will the Fed raise interest rates before they reverse QE? Or will they run down their balance sheet as a method of raising interest rates first?”

I’m for the prior over the latter but would love you thoughts.

Why Do We Love Financial Planning?

3 Feb

Yesterday I wrote about a fundamental lack of leadership in our world.  Well, I’m not just a complainer. I like to look at the issues we have and find ways to solve them.

There are examples of leadership in our world.  The president of Uruguay, Jose Mujica, comes to mind.  He has refused to repeat some of the many mistakes South American leaders have made over the last 50 years.  He has lead his small country to stability. Simply for being brave and different.

But we need leaders on the streets and in the halls of our companies and our governments and our non-profits.

I love this talk from Simon Sinek.  What, How, Why? This is the normal and basic approach.  But what if we flipped that sequence. Why, how, what? This applies to life in all ways- business, parenting, serving others.  If you have 20 minutes, please have a look.

Why, how, what.

Why do Sarah and I run a financial planning company?  Everything we do we believe in challenging the status quo. We believe in thinking differently.

The way we challenge the status quo is practicing as fiduciaries.  Is by ignoring trends and sticking to tried and true advice. By respecting our clients and their hard earned money. By actually placing a client’s interests ahead of our own, not just saying we do. Wouldn’t you like to work with a financial advisory firm like ours?

Where are the Leaders?

2 Feb

Not sure who said this but it applies very well across the globe today. “Leadership involves remembering past mistakes, an analysis of today’s achievements, and a well-grounded imagination in visualizing the problems of the future.”

Whether divisiveness in Europe, the Middle East or here at home what is needed is leadership.  We seem to be very good at recalling the mistakes and trying to place blame. But our current world leaders have no skill in analysis of today nor any imagination for a better future.

You know where else we lack leadership in this world? People’s money and savings. Whether it is a poorly constructed 401(k) at work or Wall Street’s continual refusal to do what is right by the American public due to their out-sized need for egregious profits, the industry of financial advice lacks solid leadership.

The quasi-regulators at the SEC and FINRA would rather focus on making sure this blog is written in an ‘approved’ manner than catch crooks like Clay Stephens or Bernie Madoff before they destroy the finances of so many. Why are they focused on the wrong places, time and again?

Advisers in Sonoma County and all over the country continue to legally sell awful equity indexed annuities, garbage private or ‘alternative’ investments, stuff people into insurance policies they don’t need and worse.  All because the regulators in power refuse to stiffen their backs to heavy industry lobbying.

Individuals far and wide continue to bank at major Wall Street corporations, continue to invest on the advice of major Wall Street corporations and continue to get fleeced by both.  Why? Why do folks do things against their self-interest?

Out here, in our humble Santa Rosa outpost, we keep swinging at the windmills.  We keep urging people to take responsibility with their money.  To find a financial adviser who is independent of Wall Street, someone they can trust will put the client’s interests before the advisor’s.

So, I commend you reading this. Many of you are our clients.  You’ve placed your trust in a firm that respects and appreciates you rather than sees you as an easy mark, a dollar sign, a chump. You are ‘shopping locally’ when you engage our firm.  You are telling Wall Street you’ve had enough. You are telling your government there is a better way to regulate the securities world. Thank you!

Share this with your friends. See if they are fed up with the misdirection, the half-truths, and the obvious skullduggery of the big guys on Wall Street.  Let’s go have coffee with someone you know who might be tired of all this.  Let’s keep swinging at windmills and see how many we can take down!

Weekly Market Update

21 Oct

Our blog today links to the most recent “Market Update” from the experts at Commonwealth Financial’s Investment Research team.  If you have any thoughts or questions, please feel free to give us a call.

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