How to Begin
How does the process work if you are interested in becoming a client, but you are not sure? Here are the basic steps that we take with all potential clients.
Step One: We meet, talk, and determine if this is the right fit for your needs. No question is inappropriate. We really want you to feel comfortable asking any question at all! (Click Here for a list of possible questions to ask financial advisors.) If you would like to speak to a current client or two to gain additional comfort, we can definitely give you a few names. If you would like some time to think about whether this is right for you, that is fine, too. If you would like to get together a few times in order to better assess if there is a fit, that is fine as well. There is never pressure to become a client. If we both decide to move forward, we would agree on the accounts and assets to be managed, and then we both sign the BTA Portfolio Management Agreement. (Click here to see sample Agreement.)
Step Two: We learn more about you, your money story, and your goals, through Questionnaires and discussions. (Click here to see Questionnaires.) We review your current financial picture and provide an overall assessment. We consolidate your accounts through simple transfers to TD Ameritrade, which is our preferred discount brokerage firm. Account transfers typically take one- two weeks.
Step Three: We develop a customized, written investment plan, called an Investment Policy Statement (IPS) (Click here to see Sample IPS), taking into consideration your responses to the Questionnaires, your investment style, your comfort level, and your future plans and goals. Once this is agreed upon, and your accounts are transferred, we can begin investing on your behalf.
Continuing Communication: We suggest quarterly meetings during the first year where we provide Portfolio Reporting (Click here for a sample Report), go over your account(s) with you, and provide education regarding investments and market activity. These meetings also reinforce our understanding of your long term goals and your risk tolerance, allowing us to tweak your investment plan if needed. We also send out regular blogs on topics of interest to our (mostly) female clients, translating current events from Wall Street-ese into language you can understand. After the first year, we offer quarterly meetings as desired, suggesting semi-annual meetings thereafter. Phone calls and emails are ongoing and as needed.
Other Services: Some of our clients need assistance in other financial areas such as retirement planning, insurance, social security strategies, divorce planning, maximizing external financial resources (pensions, etc.) with their personal investment portfolios, and budgeting, to name a few. These services may also be provided, sometimes at an additional cost depending on the scope of the project. We also provide a Second Opinion Investment Review, click here for more on this service.
Fee Schedule: Click here for our fee schedule.