Frequently Asked Questions
How do we work together if we’re far apart?
I’m based in Fort Worth, Texas. But I walk life with clients in 19 states through advanced digital communication. Through years of developing the Retirement Answer Man platform, I’ve perfected the formula for interacting with people remotely. Specifically, I use:
Secure document transfer with advanced encryption technology so your life and financial data remain between you and me
Zoom video conferencing, which is good enough you’ll forget we’re not in the same room together.
On-demand decision analysis so you don’t have to make a big financial decision without input.
Online calendars for scheduling meetings so you don’t have to fight through a secretary or long email strings to schedule a moment of my time.
Same-day callbacks or email responses so you’ll be able to drop me a note whenever you’re thinking about it.
Extreme responsiveness to talk with you and guide your “little conversations” so you’re never left in the dark.
If I hire you, who will I work with?
The man you hear on the podcast, that fun-loving and friendly guy with 27 years of financial experience, is who you’ll work with. Because if you hire me, you’re hiring me, The Retirement Answer Man. You’ll work directly with me on all planning issues and investment management. From time to time, you’ll interact with the entire team.
What types of things do you give advice on?
I am a retirement specialist. My unique and comprehensive Retirement Standard of Care covers a lot of ground:
Cash flow planning
Net worth planning
Identifying risks to life and retirement and deciding whether or not to mitigate for them
And my service standard doesn’t just look at the hard stuff. I also want you to have a great life now and throughout your retirement. To live life on your own terms.
I help clients holistically define and find what means most to them.
Whether you realize it or not, the transition to retirement is a big one. I’ve helped countless people make the transition as seamless as possible to continue having mental and physical health, a great social life, and yes, even a rewarding work life through your golden years.
Why should I use you?
Retirement is all I think about. I’m a specialist. I’ve walked the journey with countless clients into retirement and learned a lot in my many years of helping people make that critical life transition.
Think about it this way: if you need heart surgery, are you going to seek out a good general practitioner or are you going to find a heart surgeon with a proven track record?
Most financial advisors are general practitioners when it comes to your retirement. I’m a heart surgeon who has specialized in retirement for 25 years. Making life better for clients in retirement is all work to I do. And that means, hopefully, a better life in retirement for you.
You say you’re a fiduciary, what does that mean?
Fiduciary is a fancy financial term that means I’ve got your back in retirement. In a literal way, I’m legally obligated and ethically bound to act in your best interests.
You pay me. No one else. I receive no commissions or compensation from an investment product we use.
If there is a potential conflict of interest between us, I’m required to disclose it.
Both emotionally and intellectually, you will feel more comfortable working with someone who has your best interests at heart.
As a fiduciary, I constantly have to justify my existence to you. If I’m not adding value to your retirement, you’ll know and can act accordingly.
What is your Retirement Standard of Care?
Glad you asked. Nobody else I’ve come across has built up a system that shows you whether or not you’re getting your money’s worth from your financial advisor.
My Retirement Standard of Care is a series of bullet points and checklists that show what we can and should be covering in our planning. It will be clear to you if we’re off-track in any given area so we can review, reprioritize and get back to the standard for the things that are most important to you.
These standards are things that most financial advisors don’t ever tell you they should be doing. But by providing you with my Retirement Standard of Care, I put my accountability in your hands and overtly hold myself to a higher ideal – yours.
What are your qualifications?
Certified Financial Planner, a designation that only about 20 percent of all financial advisors hold.
3 years teaching Retirement Planning and Employee Benefits portion of the CFP® certificate program at the University of Texas Arlington.
Certified Investment Management Analyst, an intensive certification through Wharton and the Investment Management Consultant Association. Only about 1 in 40 financial planners have this certification.
Certified Private Wealth Advisor, an extra-intensive designation through the Booth School at the University of Chicago and the Investment Management Consultant Association possessed by a 0.4 percent of all U.S. financial planners.
Retirement is my craft and focus. All I talk about and think about. You can’t fake 3.5 years of podcast episodes speaking only about one subject.
How will my investments be managed?
We use a Fixed and Flexible investment process designed specifically for managing investments during retirement. Retirement presents all new challenges in managing your assets. Generating income and growing assets paying special attention to managing risk is a delicate balance.
Where would my assets be held?
The majority of our client assets are held at LPL Financial, one of the leading financial services companies and the largest independent broker/dealer in the nation*. LPL Financial understands that providing Americans with unbiased investment advice is critical to their financial security. Because the firm has no proprietary products to sell, LPL Financial advisors can provide truly objective, conflict-free advice and investment recommendations.For more information about LPL Financial, visit www.lpl.com.
Clients who prefer to hold assets elsewhere have the option of Charles Schwab (www.schwab.com). During our initial conversations, we can determine the best custodian for your situation based on your risk profile and financial objectives.
*As reported in Financial Planning magazine 1996-2013, based on total revenues.