How do we tie it all together?

“We think we’ve saved enough. Our investment accounts are spread out among several different brokerage firms and we also have a few 401k accounts from past employers. We realize that we may be not managing our accounts well, but we just don’t have time to figure out a plan. We need help.”

– David and Jennifer

Getting to know David and Jennifer – we heard their concerns.

David and Jennifer had raised and educated their two children and were looking forward to enjoying their retirement years together. They realized they hadn’t spent much time managing their retirement accounts and they knew they needed to start pulling everything together so they could have a better understanding of what their retirement lifestyle would look like.

David loved his job and wanted to continue to work but needed reassurance that if he had to stop working they would be okay financially. While Jennifer worked part-time and managed the household bills, David managed their investment accounts. Jennifer wanted to make sure she was going to be secure if something happened to David. She didn’t want to be a burden to their children. They knew it was time for them to get their affairs in order.

Together we crafted a plan – we organized, then optimized their financial lives.

We organized: The team at Brilliant Advice began by learning about David and Jennifer’s assets and liabilities. We then created a personal net worth statement. Next we conducted a complete review of their employer benefits, life insurance needs, retirement accounts and taxable investments. We analyzed their Social Security filing options and discussed their future Medicare costs.

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We found ways to consolidate their retirement accounts by rolling over their eligible 401k accounts into IRAs, giving them better investment options and reducing investment duplication. By identifying lower cost investments we were able to minimize the fees they were paying which allowed them to keep more of the money they worked so hard to save.

We reviewed their tax returns and devised a tax loss harvesting strategy to minimize their taxes.

We discovered that their account beneficiaries were not consistent with their wills and estate documents and made the appropriate updates. Their estate documents had been created when their children were young and needed to be revised. We worked with their attorney to update their documents to reflect their current situation.

We optimized: By using an intuitive method of assessing their risk tolerance, David and Jennifer determined the amount of investment volatility they could live with to sleep at night. They learned what portfolio “Speed Limit” they desired – minimizing the risk that they might one day abandon their plan at the worst possible time.

We showed them that by consolidating and coordinating their accounts they could reduce costs and improve the diversification of their portfolio. This allowed us to include investments that they previously did not have access to, and it made their portfolio better positioned to weather market volatility.

Once we consolidated their accounts and lowered the fees they were paying, we worked with them on a comprehensive financial plan and investment strategy that showed them the income stream they could expect to receive during their retirement years.

We put their money into action – giving them a plan that makes sense.

We designed a portfolio plan focused on earning the investment returns David and Jennifer need to achieve their retirement lifestyle goals, while making sure we adhered to their desired portfolio Speed Limit.

“We didn’t realize how much risk we were taking with our retirement savings and how much duplication we had in our investments. We were leaving a lot of money on the table. Now we have a way to measure and track the risk we are taking across all of our accounts. And, for the first time, we have peace of mind knowing that we are on track to achieve our retirement lifestyle.”David and Jennifer

We reduced their exposure to the areas in the market that were expensive and offered low future returns, and we increased their investments in other areas that offered higher return opportunities.

We committed to actively rebalancing their accounts to ensure their portfolio stays within its Speed Limit target.

David and Jennifer confidently live their lives – their affairs are in order.

We guided David and Jennifer through our comprehensive process and now they are confidently living their lives knowing that they have a cohesive plan.

David and Jennifer meet with us regularly to talk about the changes in their lives so that we can update their financial plan and review their progress towards their retirement goals.

David sees that he has the flexibility to continue working, or that he can retire now if that feels right. Jennifer knows that she will be financially secure since they have a plan that addresses their most significant risks.

Most importantly, we put a plan in place that gives them the security to know they can achieve the retirement lifestyle that they have worked so hard to achieve.

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We’ve worked too hard to mess things up now.

We’ve done well saving for retirement but what happens if market returns are lower than expected? Will we have enough to maintain our lifestyle? Will we have to work longer?
James & Mary’s story…


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How do we know who to trust?

We’ve built our business and worked hard. How do we get our money to work as hard as we have? There are so many different types of advisors, how do we know they are looking out for us?
Mike & Kimberly’s story…


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Can we do it all?

Everyone depends on us – our children and our parents. We want to make sure our family is provided for but we also need to make sure we have enough as we age. How will the choices we make today impact our future?
Tony & Jackie’s story…



These case studies are hypothetical in nature, for illustrative purposes only, and should not be considered investment advice. The information is intended to illustrate services available at Brilliant Advice, and is not intended as a testimonial or endorsement of Brilliant Advice, as an investment advisor. These case studies do not necessarily represent the experiences of other clients, do not reflect actual investment results, nor is a guarantee of future results. The investment strategies discussed are not appropriate for every investor and take into consideration a client’s investment objectives and financial needs. Clients should review with Brilliant Advice the terms, conditions and risks involved with specific services and products.