You're headquartered in Montana. Can you work with clients from other states?
Absolutely. With the aid of modern technology, we are able to effectively work with clients throughout the US.
How do you get paid?
We only get paid one way, and that’s a fee for services. For tax preparation, the fee is dependent on the complexity of the return being prepared. For investment management, in most cases the fee is based on a percentage of assets that we manage. It’s a fee arrangement that puts us both on the same side of the table. The better you do, the better we do.
Do you sell any investment products such as life insurance, mutual funds, or annuities?
No, we are fee-only advisors. We do not sell any products and therefore do not accept any commissions. We only recommend products that, where possible, are commission-free. Sometimes with life insurance it’s not possible to find a plan that does not pay an agent commission. However, even in those rare occasions, we will not receive a commission from the agent.
What is fee-only?
Fee-only means that an advisor's only compensation is the fee you agree to at the beginning of your relationship. The reason we are fee-only, and why you should always seek fee-only advice, is because it removes substantial bias and conflicts of interest. The only way we make more money is if you make more money. We have no financial incentive to recommend investments to you other than the best.
Can I pick one service, or are tax and investment services combined?
Though we do combine our tax and investment expertise, each service is separate. For example, if you need investment management but already have a tax preparer that you trust, we do not intend to come between you and your preparer. Just keep in mind, we need to see a copy of your tax return every year to help us make better investment recommendations for you, which is why many find it easier to also have us prepare their tax returns.
What makes your firm any different than all the rest?
We can’t speak for all the other firms, but here are some points that may set us apart:
I. We are a goals-based investment management/financial consulting firm. Meaning we customize our portfolios to match each client’s time frame, current or future income needs, tax brackets, risk tolerance, and capacity for risk.
II. We believe that “it’s not what you make, but what you make after taxes.” Our question has always been – how can you make wise investment decisions without a thorough knowledge of income and estate taxes? Our team's long-term experience with taxes solves that problem for our clients.
III. Our investment philosophy of globally diversified, low-cost index funds and ETF's sets us apart from many firms.
What if I decide to terminate our relationship; is there a surrender charge, or other type of fee?
We do not charge a fee to terminate our relationship. Remember, the only way we get paid is for providing services—no upfront commissions.
Are you fiducary?
Yes, we are fiduciary advisors, which means we must always put the needs and interests of our clients before our own. In our opinion, fiduciary is the bare minimum you should look for in an advisor.