Here are a list of questions that you should ask a potential financial planner. These questions come from the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards and you can learn more at their website www.letsmakeaplan.org:
The short answer to this question is no, nobody stands to gain from the advice I provide, except for you, the client, and Ridgeview Financial Planning. You receive the advice, recommendations, ongoing portfolio management support, and the firm receives the fees you pay. There are no other sources of revenue for the firm. My loyalty is undivided. I work for you only.
Registered Investment Advisors are held to the highest legal standard, the "fiduciary" standard, requiring me to act in your best interests and disclose any conflicts of interest. Additionally, CFP® professionals agree to abide by a strict code of professional conduct and have an ethical obligation to put your needs above their own.
Typical clients are saving for their future, nearing retirement, or are actively living in retirement. They want an ongoing relationship with a financial planner and typically prefer this person or firm to handle planning and investment management. These clients pay an ongoing management fee because their service needs are ongoing.
Some clients want to manage their own investments but leverage my guidance on a regular basis. These clients pay an hourly fee and receive advice and recommendations on financial planning and investment management topics (social security benefit analysis and portfolio rebalancing, for example).
Ridgeview Financial Planning does not have a minimum asset level for new clients. A typical client has approximately $1mil in investible assets but I work with "smaller" clients all the time. One of my goals is to remain flexible and help as many people as possible. We can talk more about this and I can give you a recommendation during our Get Acquainted meeting.
For clients who need ongoing planning and portfolio management support, the fee structure works as follows:
1% per year on assets up to $1mil and .5% per year on assets above $1mil, billed quarterly in arrears, based on the assets under management at the end of each quarter. These fees will be deducted from client accounts by TD Ameritrade (the custodian). If the accounts are held at another brokerage firm, the clients will be billed direct.
For clients who want to manage their own portfolio and who prefer an hourly fee arrangement, the fee structure works as follows:
$200 per hour, billed in 30 minute increments, quoted in advance.
*** Clients have the option to pay all hourly or direct fees via credit card or check, just no cash