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Old 08-28-2012, 08:00 PM   #21
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lack of control were our 3 big issues.
Which is exactly why we settled on the fee only style. I just wasn't comfortable giving someone access to our money.
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Old 08-28-2012, 08:09 PM   #22
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Years ago Vanguard would do a detailed financial plan including telephone consults for $100 depending on your assets . I had that done and it was well worth the money . I was newly widowed and while I had been investing for years there were some things I did not understand . My advisor was great . I have since had the free financial plan done by Vanguard and it was basically a sales pitch.
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Old 08-28-2012, 08:22 PM   #23
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David, I highly recommend Bill Schultheis.

About Bill | The Coffeehouse Investor
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Old 08-28-2012, 08:32 PM   #24
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There are no fee only financial advisers out here so I do it myself (no ultra low cost index funds either, but that's another issue).

Once or twice a year I let one the commission merchants who cold call me take me out for a coffee to discuss their my financial future and well being. Most of them manage to lose my interest before they've finished the second sentence.
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Old 08-29-2012, 08:06 AM   #25
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Started early on with an advisor. After ER decided that for $20,000 a year in fees ( a percentage of the portfolio) I would be much better off learning all I could about investing/finance/taxes and DIY. Figure I can make a lot of mistakes for that kind of money.

The clincher for me was when he wanted to do an analysis of our total net worth and wanted to include the value of our homes (in order to increase the fee) in the equation! I had to ask him 7 times "how much will that cost?" before he gave me a straight answer. See ya!
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Old 08-29-2012, 08:36 AM   #26
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I almost have one. I'm in the process of filling out a ton of paperwork to give to a NAPFA FEE-ONLY planner so she can tell us if we're on track, and I can really be in the Class of 2017. She's not cheap, but it's a heckuva lot cheaper than paying 1% of your portfolio each year to a regular planner. Just can't justify that. We interviewed three of the latter, and I just wasn't impressed.
I did the same about a year before I pulled the plug. I just wanted the warm and fuzzy reassurance of an independent professional that my projections were reasonable. Now I try to stay the course with my asset allocation, with no current plans for advisor intervention - but never say never.
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:16 PM   #27
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Back in the late 90's, I was in an insurance agency which was part of a large national chain and the parent company was adding a new product: "Financial planning." As I was talking with an agent, a phone call came in and the agent asked if I minded if he took the call, since he was alone in the office at the time. Of course, I said it was fine with me. After the initial telephone courtesy rituals were exchanged, he asked the caller what could he do for them? After listening for a few seconds, the agent said to the caller: " Why, of course, we offer many financial planning products!" And with that, the agent simply took a brochure out of a display rack and began reading directly from the brochure, indicating to me the agent had no personal knowledge of the financial services or products he was offering. As another poster suggested, financial planners may well be only salesmen and as such, their opinions are like "noses" and everyone has one.

My suggestion is to reflect on what your goals are, educate yourself on how to achieve those goals, and stay flexible.

Good luck.
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:15 PM   #28
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Fee only advisor who gives me access to the Dimensional Fund Advisor family of furds which are low expense ratio-no-load funds that offer some potential advantages over Vanguard Family of funds. Even when the fee is figured in.
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Old 08-31-2012, 02:12 AM   #29
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I do not have a financial planner. I am extremely conservative with my investments, only want CDs, muni bonds and have just begun this year to buy some annuities. I am not sure what a financial planner would do except he / she would find my investments patterns boring.
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Old 08-31-2012, 09:42 AM   #30
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Have used advice maybe 5 out of 30 yrs investing.
Never was that thrilled with it.
Now that I am getting close, am thinking it might not be a bad idea having a pro look things over. Mainly for future tax planning, 401k exception code 5329 line 2, Roth IRA 72t rules and whatever else I might have missed. Am also thinking it might be good for my better 1/2 to get the info on our situation from someone other than my self....
But am hard pressed to pull the trigger........ Not sure why? Maybe I am just too cheap...
Even though I am not looking for advice on where to invest it would be nice to have a pro look things over...
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Old 08-31-2012, 10:11 AM   #31
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I seek prostitutes for sex "education".

I seek financial planners for "investment education".

Same result; I get the "return" that I could accomplish on my own, with just a bit of knowledge.

...
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Old 08-31-2012, 02:54 PM   #32
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Like most things I'm a DIY guy. When it was time to build a house I took a lot of classes got my builders license and did it. With my investments I spend little time tinkering with my allocation and considerable time researching. With all this research I find that a simple index fund program with a comfortable asset allocation works best.
I can't see any situation where investing your time for your future wellbeing is better. (excercise is one that comes to mind)
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Old 08-31-2012, 03:38 PM   #33
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I do not have a financial planner. I am extremely conservative with my investments, only want CDs, muni bonds and have just begun this year to buy some annuities. I am not sure what a financial planner would do except he / she would find my investments patterns boring.
Not to pick on you, but boring would be the wrong judgement...I would expect they might find them dangerous. And this is exactly the sort of portfolio that perhaps you might want a professional to assess. NOT ONE WHO IS SELLING ANYTHING, a Fee only advisor.
I would expect them to point out that while this portfolio is low on risk for loss of prinicple, it is high on risk for loss of buying power- what if we ever have real inflation again? What protection does such a portfolio provide?
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Old 08-31-2012, 07:37 PM   #34
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What's the difference between a planner and an advisor? Thread title asks about planner but some have responded about advisor. Thanks.
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Old 08-31-2012, 08:09 PM   #35
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What's the difference between a planner and an advisor? Thread title asks about planner but some have responded about advisor. Thanks.
Its like the difference between a whore and a 'ho.
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Old 08-31-2012, 08:33 PM   #36
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I do not have a financial planner. I am extremely conservative with my investments, only want CDs, muni bonds and have just begun this year to buy some annuities. I am not sure what a financial planner would do except he / she would find my investments patterns boring.
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Not to pick on you, but boring would be the wrong judgement...I would expect they might find them dangerous. And this is exactly the sort of portfolio that perhaps you might want a professional to assess. NOT ONE WHO IS SELLING ANYTHING, a Fee only advisor.
I would expect them to point out that while this portfolio is low on risk for loss of prinicple, it is high on risk for loss of buying power- what if we ever have real inflation again? What protection does such a portfolio provide?
I've said it before, but I have to agree with urn2bfree. A portfolio of CDs and muni bonds isn't 'conservative', it carries a high degree of long term risk.

It may very well be low-volatility, but that is different from risk.

-ERD50
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Old 08-31-2012, 10:40 PM   #37
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I've said it before, but I have to agree with urn2bfree. A portfolio of CDs and muni bonds isn't 'conservative', it carries a high degree of long term risk.

It may very well be low-volatility, but that is different from risk.

-ERD50
Is it possible to have enough "excess" CDs and muni bonds to overcome the long term risk?

For example, would $15,000,000 in CDs and munis cover an inflation adjusted distribution of, say, $100,000/year over 35 or 40 years? This is kind of extreme, so pick your own numbers.

It may not be optimal, but I might take that deal if I was worth $15,000,000.

We don't know how much Obgyn has in CDs and munis, do we?
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Old 08-31-2012, 11:05 PM   #38
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Its like the difference between a whore and a 'ho.
In my experience, most people calling themselves "planners" are life insurance agents............
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Old 08-31-2012, 11:05 PM   #39
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Is it possible to have enough "excess" CDs and muni bonds to overcome the long term risk?

For example, would $15,000,000 in CDs and munis cover an inflation adjusted distribution of, say, $100,000/year over 35 or 40 years? This is kind of extreme, so pick your own numbers. ...
Sure, you can always cover it with more money. More money is always better than less money .

But if you had that same buffer in a 50/50 AA, the dips would not be so low in absolute terms, as you started with more. A 0% stock allocation took about 1.8x the portfolio of a 50/50 AA for the same historical success for a 40 year period. So what is the risk of a 1.8x 50/50 portfolio dropping back to 1x? Stocks would need to drop to 1/9th their starting value - an 89% drop (assuming the fixed allocations behaved the same for each).

There's nothing 'wrong' with wanting to stay 100% fixed, but one should realize it entails a different kind of risk, and needs a substantial buffer. And historically, if you add in the buffer, it isn't clear what you are protecting against.

-ERD50
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Old 09-01-2012, 11:44 AM   #40
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What's the difference between a planner and an advisor? Thread title asks about planner but some have responded about advisor. Thanks.

In my mind an advisor advises where and how to invest.
(for a %)
Where a planner looks at things I mentioned such as future Tax planning and how to avoid penalties when withdrawing early from things like 401k's, IRA's and pensions.
But I cant say for sure as I have never used one. If I did it would be pay as you go. Nothing tied to my personal investments.
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