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Looking for examples of personal investment policy statements
Old 07-18-2016, 08:44 AM   #1
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Looking for examples of personal investment policy statements

I am the financial person in our marriage. My DW maintains her own checking and savings accounts and knows the outline of our investments, philosophy, etc. But she would be at a loss to manage our finances if I was out of the picture. I am trying to make it easy for her to get the help she needs if something were to happen to me. I'm writing a personal investment policy statement and including such topics as goals, philosophy, risk tolerance, where assets are located, withdrawal strategy, rebalancing, password location. What else should I include and or do? If you have similar documents you would be willing to share, please message me.
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Looking for examples of personal investment policy statements
Old 07-18-2016, 09:09 AM   #2
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Looking for examples of personal investment policy statements

I'm married to someone similarly intelligent and responsible but not interested in investing. I not sure if a policy statement would do it. In our case it would go into a trust my brother (a CPA) would manage. Could you develop a plan to gradually shift to a "set it and forget it" ETF mix with periodic rebalancing?

Our "in case I croak" document doesn't include passwords; some sites require you to change them anyway. I just included the firm name, account numbers, contact info and rough estimate of balances for each.
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Old 07-18-2016, 09:14 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by lem1955 View Post
I am the financial person in our marriage. My DW maintains her own checking and savings accounts and knows the outline of our investments, philosophy, etc. But she would be at a loss to manage our finances if I was out of the picture. I am trying to make it easy for her to get the help she needs if something were to happen to me. I'm writing a personal investment policy statement and including such topics as goals, philosophy, risk tolerance, where assets are located, withdrawal strategy, rebalancing, password location. What else should I include and or do? If you have similar documents you would be willing to share, please message me.
Don't have any suggestions on a "investment policy statement" but I used these spreadsheets to get everything organized in one place. Good luck!

How to Create an In-Case-of-Emergency Everything Document to Keep Your Loved Ones Informed if Worst Comes to Worst
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Old 07-18-2016, 11:40 AM   #4
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Christine over at Morningstar has written about this and has templates and suggestions. It might take some searching.
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Old 07-18-2016, 11:44 AM   #5
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See https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Inve...licy_statement

Ours covers target asset allocation, tax efficiency, core holdings for each asset class, rebalancing and withdrawal strategy and is two pages.
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Old 07-19-2016, 06:58 AM   #6
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My DW is a smart lawyer but doesn't have much interest in managing finances. I prepared an "if I kick" document that she and the kids can use to deal with the finances. I have two much detail in it to share but here is an outline of major topics:

Guaranteed Income Streams: covers pensions, SS and anticipated changes, and auto pay, and describes how this stacks up against essential expenses.

Source and location of funds: Describes our various accounts, pension management sites, social security, et all and where to find account numbers and passwords (located in an encrypted password safe on a local HD and in the cloud).

Allocations and where we keep various asset classes: this and the next section are the closest thing to a financial strategy. Explains division among taxable, tax-deferred, cash as I do it now.

Withdrawal and rebalance strategy: explains how and where I pull funds from accounts depending on market performance.

Taxes: explains how I use my pension withholding to cover all taxes avoiding quarterlies on DW's income stream, use of Turbo Tax, expected impact of RMDs.

Tracking in my spreadsheet and using Vanguard tools: describes how a spreadsheet I keep in Google Docs (DW has access) works and how I update it. Same for Vanguards portfolio tool. (I do not give such online tools access to accounts.)

Changes on death: explains what happens to guaranteed income stream on either or both of our deaths, beneficiaries, trust, etc.

Simplified process in the event of Don's death: Here is what I say in this section verbatim:
" Given our guaranteed income streams and the size of our portfolio, it is not critical to do all the BS I outline above. There are several possibilities to make things simpler. One would be to roll all of the TDs into Barb’s Vanguard account. That would be easy to manage but I like having at least two managing institutions to get funds from in case some glitch causes temporary problems accessing funds. If periodic re-balancing is burdensome just skip it for years at a time. The accounts will either begin to shift toward a heavier equity or bond tilt depending on market changes but neither will make a huge difference. Following the rules I set for withdrawal amounts is also not critical. It is primarily intended to help insure a large estate. If things get tight, Barb can increase the withdrawal % to 4% or even higher as she ages.

For taxes, I recommend going back to the accountant rather than trying to deal with Turbo Tax unless Toby or Jenn want to do it. Barb will need to set up an OPM online services account to manage withholding – I recommend continuing to use the OPM annuity for all Fed and DC withholding – it is simple."


Accounts to deal with: Lists accounts with phone numbers, URLs, account numbers but refers to the password safe for user IDs and passwords for online access.

This thing is a how to document not a financial plan with philosophy, objectives, etc. I prepared one of those when I retired (which also included some anticipated how to stuff like AA and SWR) and shared it with a fee only advisor to get a second opinion. But DW and the kids don't need that foo fooey stuff - too much like mission, vision, values junk at work. They need numbers and methods.
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Old 07-19-2016, 04:55 PM   #7
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Same issue here.
I sold one rental so far.
Planning to slowly moving stocks into low cost ETF's
Sitting with DW while she moves $$$ into a Vanguard account from a more costly low performing mutual fund.
I hope I live another 5 years, so I can get it all simplified and written down
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Old 07-19-2016, 05:04 PM   #8
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We did a simple Word doc with all the pertainent info. Pretty easy.
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Old 07-19-2016, 05:04 PM   #9
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I just keep the monthly (some quarterly) paper statements in a binder.
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Old 07-19-2016, 05:20 PM   #10
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I just keep the monthly (some quarterly) paper statements in a binder.
We just try and keep it digital so we can store in google docs for easy, multiple access. Passwords a coded for safety.
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Old 07-19-2016, 05:45 PM   #11
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We did a simple Word doc with all the pertainent info. Pretty easy.
I too put together a Word document, but with just enough detail added to help her in every category (e.g., where our money is, bills that must be paid such as property taxes, contacts to call, etc.). I think it might be what you would want to see. If you'd like a copy, PM me and I'll send it sans personal info.
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Old 07-19-2016, 06:18 PM   #12
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Eh. My gal does the tax collation and all kinds of Quicken reports and forces tracking the stocks daily. Only thing is she is too trusting - when we were getting together I told her money seemed to just be attracted to me and that it liked to stick. She took that as gospel, which meant much more work for me as I tried to keep the ruse running. She will be just fine - her investment policy might be "don't lose" - she is more conservative then me, but at this point can afford to be.
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Old 07-19-2016, 06:29 PM   #13
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Interesting. Our plan is to re-leverage our FA. They were pretty good, but I believed I could do better (simpler, no 1% fee each year, and I have an interest in this area.) My DW was fine with the decision, but we both agreed that if something were to happen to me, it would make the most sense for her to go back to the FA.
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Old 07-20-2016, 05:54 AM   #14
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Thank you all for your responses. I'm making good headway on my document and strategy.
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Old 07-20-2016, 06:50 AM   #15
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Although targeted at people a digit or three above us, I found a lot of useful information on strategy and family investment statements in this book very helpful: https://www.amazon.com/Strategy-Weal.../dp/0470823100
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Old 08-06-2016, 12:05 PM   #16
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Interesting. Our plan is to re-leverage our FA. They were pretty good, but I believed I could do better (simpler, no 1% fee each year, and I have an interest in this area.) My DW was fine with the decision, but we both agreed that if something were to happen to me, it would make the most sense for her to go back to the FA.

This is the reason I still have a FA. They charge 0.37%. They don't manage our entire portfolio which cuts the cost. DH has little interest in things outside his area of expertise.


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