When should I seek the services of a professional advisor?
With many things in life, there are some which can be enjoyable and cost effective to do oneself, and there are others where you need the expertise, focus and resources of a professional. Much of this depends on the time and effort you want to commit. An advisor who provides financial planning and asset management can substantially improve your financial situation, save you time, and reduce your stress regarding your finances. Other indicators that an advisory relationship would benefit you include:
You have no source of unbiased advice on insurance, estate planning, education retirement
You do not have a clear picture of what it takes to achieve certain goals (e.g. retirement plans)
You are uncertain whether to take advantage of newer tax-sheltering plans (Roth IRAs, 529 plans, medical savings accounts, etc.)
You are a retiree needing to consider long-term care insurance, assess the lifestyle you can afford, or balance the earning power of assets with need for ongoing income
You are concerned whether your investments will sustain you through your lifespan
You feel as if you don't spend enough time researching and monitoring your investments
Your portfolio has no exposure to certain asset classes
Why should I use a 'fee-only' advisor?
Representatives of a Registered Investment Advisor have a fiduciary responsibility to act in their clients’ best interest. As a fee-only advisor, we do not accept any fees or compensation based on product sales. This means we will only advise on what is best for you. Fee-only advisors have fewer inherent conflicts of interest, and they generally provide more comprehensive advice, everything from insurance to retirement to purchasing automobiles. On the other hand, a "fee-based" advisor can accept commissions AND fees directly client accounts.
What is a fiduciary?
A fiduciary is a person who holds a legal or ethical relationship of trust. It is a commitment promising to put your best interests first, to act with the prudence, skill, care, diligence and good judgment of a professional; to not mislead you; and to provide conspicuous, full and fair disclosure of important facts. We avoid conflicts of interest and manage, in the client’s favor, any unavoidable conflicts.
Is Berkeley, Inc. a good fit for me?
As professionals we take a genuine, considered, and sustained interest in your financial well-being. If you understand and appreciate the benefits of working under such an approach, it is likely that we can work together to add value to your financial life.
Our clients range across the age and professional spectrum. The common denominator is that they are individuals who want to deliberately plan for their futures. We are not for everyone, and we determine in introductory meetings whether we can add substantial value to your current strategy and whether there is a good philosophical fit. If the answer to either of those questions is no, we will tell you candidly and, if appropriate, refer you to someone who might be a better fit.
While evaluating and working your planning we also strive to make the process easy and often with a good bit of humor. We strive to relieve the stress that can come from planning for future financial events and circumstances.
What is a CFP®?
CFP® stands for Certified Financial Planner and is recognized as the highest standard in personal financial planning. It represents a high level of professional education, examination of knowledge into a wide range of financial and legal topics, suitable, relevant experience, and holding oneself to a high ethical manner. As a CFP® one is obligated to provide clients with the "highest standard of care" possible.
What is a CFA?
CFA stands for Chartered Financial Analyst. The CFA charter is one of the most rigorous and respected designations in finance and considered by many to be the gold standard in the field of investment analysis. A CFA must have a solid base in a wide range of topics covering areas such as accounting, economics, ethics, money management, and security analysis. A candidate must have 4 years of relevant professional work experience before attaining this charter.
What are your fees?
For a financial plan, we charge a one-time fee, depending on the required detail of the plan. Usually this range is $2,000-$5,000 and the amount is agreed upon before the planning begins. We do not require a retainer and the fee is not due until the work is satisfactorily completed. We follow up, we answer questions now and in the future. If future maintenance is required it is billed as an hourly fee (typically billed at $200-300 /hr.).
Ongoing asset management is charged at a rate as follows:
Account SizeAnnual Fee Rate Up to $500,000 $2,500 or .90% whichever is greater Next $500,000 0.75% Next $1,000,000 0.60% Above $2,000,000 0.45%
Who does Berkeley, Inc use as a custodian for my assets?
If you work with us, we’ll help to establish and maintain your account(s) with discount brokers, which currently includes Charles Schwab or TD Ameritrade. These brokers provide a vast universe of investments, at very competitive costs. They provide daily data downloads so we can track all transactions in your accounts and their performance. After determining what’s most important to you, we recommend a custodian based on which one offers the best ease of use and cost-benefit for you. Then, we complete all of the paperwork and guide you through the process, start to finish. We also take on as much of the future paperwork as possible.
3778 Plantation River Drive Suite 102, Boise, ID 83703 | Telephone 208-853-6980 | Fax 208-853-6982