Getting to Know You
Our first session gives us the opportunity to get to know each other. We do an assessment of where you are and where you want to be and ask you to complete a Client Profile so we can better understand your current financial situation, investment experience, and tolerance for risk. We listen to your concerns, ask lots of questions, and begin to formulate a strategy to address your goals and needs.
After an initial assessment, the next step is to do a deeper analysis of your finances, including investments, to determine what changes might be advisable. In some cases, the best approach might be to transfer all existing securities; in other cases, perhaps it makes sense to sell the current portfolio and transfer cash. We will advise you on what’s required to complete the transition. Our recommended custodian can accept most securities from other firms.
After investment accounts for you have been set up and assets are in place, we begin managing your accounts in accordance with our FSA Safety Net® system. Besides receiving monthly account statements from the custodian, you can expect to receive a variety of communications from us throughout the year, including:
- Quarterly portfolio appraisals
- Quarterly Financial Planning Newsletter
- Periodic market updates
- Periodic reviews of your accounts and planning goals
- Invitations to webinar presentations on topics of interest
Peace of Mind
Our goal in the final step of the investment-planning process is to hear you say confidently, “I’m glad I don’t have to worry about it anymore.” We will continue working closely with you to manage your accounts in an effort to make money during good cycles and preserve gains when price trends reverse. Our advisors will meet with you periodically to review your portfolio in light of your investment objectives and any changes in your financial situation.
The FSA management program uses a mix of no-load mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs), including bond, stock, international, specialty, and money market funds. We understand that when it comes to financial goals one size does not fit all; needs and expectations vary from person to person.
Factors we consider in designing an investment strategy include:
- Tolerance for loss
- Time horizon
- Need for income
- Income tax bracket
To tailor our approach and help you meet your specific financial goals, FSA has developed several investment strategies that are available based on your tolerance for risk and your investment objectives
We apply the FSA Safety Net® to every fund in each strategy.
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Frequently Asked Questions
We use a third-party custodian to hold all of our clients’ assets. As custodian of those assets, they hold securities and cash and facilitate trading activities. FSA has limited power of attorney which allows us to: 1) trade securities with discretion, 2) request the custodian send a check to a client directly or to a client’s bank, and 3) deduct a management fee based on the client contract. We have no other access or authority.
No. FSA is not affiliated with the custodian, nor are we compensated by that company in any way through fees, commissions, or incentives. In the spirit of full disclosure, our firm is supplied necessary software that allows our in-house portfolio management system to work efficiently with the custodian’s back-office operations and trading desks. The same software is available to all investment advisors that use them.
Yes. Online access is available to clients 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. You will also be able to get information on account activity and obtain documents and reports such as year-end tax information.
Statements from the custodian are provided on a monthly basis for all accounts. These statements show account balances, trades, and cash flows. Statements are available in paper as well as through email. In addition, FSA sends detailed reports quarterly as well as a year-end summary. FSA reports are available through our client portal, the “FSA Vault.”
Yes. The custodian will provide a form 1099 composite and year-end summary to each client with a taxable account. This is typically provided in February/March of the following year.
FSA complies with all privacy laws applicable to financial institutions. Each year our clients receive a privacy statement that outlines this responsibility in detail. Those standards are reviewed regularly to ensure they cover all forms of communication. Briefly, we will not release any information to any person who is not directly named on your account unless we have your permission to do so, with the exception of legal and regulatory authorities.
All professional investment management companies are required to register with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and/or the state(s) in which the firm conducts business activities. FSA is an SEC-registered advisory firm. In line with regulations, we provide clients and prospective clients with basic information about our advisory services and fees as explained in our Disclosure Brochure.
RIAs like us are in the business of investment management and are regulated by the Investment Advisors Act of 1940. Brokerage firms deal primarily in the sale and distribution of financial products and are regulated by the Securities Act of 1933 as well as other laws. As an RIA under the 1940 act, we have a higher level of fiduciary responsibility than brokerage firms do. We are required by law to work in our clients’ best interests. Our fees are based on assets under management (AUM) rather than the brokerage model that is tied to the sale and distribution of financial products.
All of our personnel are required to sign annually an ethics statement that outlines our ethical standards. Everyone at FSA adheres to that code as part of our daily operations.