Whether you’re planning for retirement, funding a child’s education, or simply ensuring you’ll be protected if something goes wrong, we can help you organize your finances to meet your life goals. We work together in an environment of trust and confidentiality to create meaningful, and ongoing, alignment between your goals and your resources. We can help you build confidence by knowing where you are financially, where you’re heading, and how you’re going to get there.
Analyzing your finances through the lens of your life goals can reveal strengths, weaknesses, and competing priorities. It may uncover opportunities to more purposefully allocate your resources, highlight tax-planning strategies, reveal insurance inefficiencies, as well as, considerations for your investment architecture, cash flow organization, estate planning, and more.
Together, we’ll craft a comprehensive plan for your financial life and then make sure it’s not left to chance or endangered by procrastination. We’ll leverage our expertise in investment management, planning, and insurance while coordinating with accountants, attorneys, and human resource representatives to ensure complete implementation. Your planning will also require that you take action. We’ll help you follow through with timely coaching and encouragement.
As our work meets its objectives, the payoff is real. A well-executed financial plan will provide meaningful peace of mind. As does the knowledge that we’ll be in touch, like clockwork, when it’s time to track progress, rebalance portfolios, and respond to changes in the market. As your life changes, we’ll ensure your plan evolves with you. In the end, we’ll help you manage your finances, so you’re free to live your life.
A sliding-scale fee is debited directly from investment accounts managed by Boston Standard. Managed assets do not include your current 401(k), 529 plans, etc., though we do provide actionable advice to coordinate these portfolios with your investment plan. For clients with less than $1.75M of managed assets, a $600 retainer is also due annually.
Assets Under Management
Asset Based Fee
*Retainer is $1,000 – $7,500 in the first year.
Our first step is to get to know you better – your values and priorities, how your finances are currently organized, and each financial goal that you’re pursuing. We’ll share with you how we work with clients, explain our investment philosophy, compensation structure, and answer any questions you may have.
Following our initial meeting, we’ll ask you to gather the details on your current investments, taxes, insurance policies, employer benefits, estate documents, pay stubs, and expenses. We’ll work with you to quantify your financial goals, time horizons, and gauge your comfort level with market volatility relative to each of your goals.
We then analyze your information against benchmarks provided by the Financial Planning Board of Standards, and calculate the likelihood of success for each of your goals utilizing comprehensive financial planning software. We present these findings to you along with detailed written advice encompassing all aspects of your financial organization. We review each recommendation, listen to your feedback, and customize your financial game plan accordingly.
Once we have a target financial organization and investment architecture that reflects your needs and desires, we help you take action. This includes direct action in our areas of expertise like portfolio management and insurance, as well as step-by-step instructions for coordination with professionals like your tax preparer, estate planning attorney, human resources representative, and retirement plan administrator.
Review & Rebalance
Life changes and so do the investment markets. In addition to having an open door policy throughout the year, we also maintain a systematic process whereby your financial situation is reviewed regularly, including goal projections, year-over-year net worth, investment performance, market commentary and portfolio rebalancing. At each review, we provide updated written recommendations to keep finances expertly coordinated with your life goals. This ongoing communication and systematic reevaluation gives your finances the best opportunity to reach their potential.
Time Horizon & Risk Tolerance Suitability
The time frame in which the beneficial use of capital is anticipated, along with the value fluctuation deemed tolerable to the investor, combine to form a basis of how capital should be invested, if at all. Once the decision to invest is made, the asset classes chosen and their relative weightings define more than any other factor the investment’s potential for return.
Understanding the inherent limitations of attempting to forecast which of the global economies (or companies within those economies) will generate the greatest future returns, a prudent portfolio includes broad diversification across the spectrum of industry, asset type, and geographic region. As a result, our clients benefit from global economic growth, no matter the corner of the world from which it comes.
Boston Standard does not chase returns, nor do we chase the managers who chase returns. As a result, our investors save significant capital while enjoying the benefits of high quality, low cost, and deeply diversified investments that meet the requirements of prudent portfolio design. The only costs associated with the investments under our care are 1) our flat percent fee charged for the management of your account; 2) the expense ratio of the underlying investments; and 3) the trading costs of buying and selling securities within an account. This compensation structure eliminates conflicts of interest and directly aligns our compensation with portfolio success.
Invested capital that is exposed to annual taxation requires specific treatment to minimize the tax liability its growth can create. Selecting investments with low rates of internal turnover, minimal realization of pass-through income, and an ability to generate embedded (instead of realized) gains are among the hallmarks of tax-efficient investing. Additionally, we review each portfolio for tax-saving transactions at least annually and report them to our client or tax preparer.
Warren Buffett is famous for saying, “Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful.” Few maxims have better served savvy investors and none better captures the intrinsic benefit of employing an unemotional and systematic structure for the rebalancing of invested assets. Few active processes can better serve a portfolio’s ability to achieve target returns without exposing the investor to more (or less) risk than is required.
To assist this process, we maintain insurance licenses for life, disability, and long-term care insurance. Our access to this marketplace helps us to effectively project the cost of coverage and accurately incorporate insurance planning into our financial plans.
Our licenses also permit us to process insurance applications directly for clients who want that help. We do this to help clients navigate what can be a lengthy and frustrating underwriting process. However, when assisting in this capacity, our firm is paid a commission. And while these payments have never amounted to even 3% of our firm’s annual revenue, we recognize the importance of highlighting this compensation.