Standalone Financial Planning (SFP)
Standalone Financial Planning (SFP) is offered for those Clients who desire one-time planning at a fixed fee.
An SFP engagement can encompass all six key areas of financial planning, as needed by the Client.
The issues covered will be determined based on the particular goals and questions the Client would like addressed. The total fee will be determined prior to the beginning of the engagement and is based on the complexity of the Client’s situation, their individual goals and questions to be addressed, and the number of different financial planning topic areas their questions and goals pertain to (for a complete breakdown of fees, please see our Transparent Pricing page).
Generally speaking, we recommend a Standalone Financial Planning engagement as a base Retirement Planning module with add-on modules as the Client’s needs dictate.
Depending on the complexity of a Client’s situation, two to four meetings will be required (typically three – please see How We Meet With Clients) in order to adequately assess the Client’s situation and deliver the details of the analysis and recommendations to the Client.
The Financial Planning Modules
- Base Module:
- Add-on modules:
The Retirement Planning module is the foundation of the SFP engagement, and covers when you can retire, cash flow stages of retirement, what you need to do now to ensure you can retire at your target age, high-level tax planning advice, debt planning, Social Security/pension timing (and survivor options), a high-level review of account allocations and consolidations, and long-term projection through life expectancy.
This module requires a minimum of 10 hours of planning work time and 3 client meetings:
- Discovery Meeting (1 to 1.5 hours)
- Working Meeting (1.5 to 2 hours)
- Plan Presentation (1.5 to 2.25 hours )
This module addresses investment goal and gap analysis, risk/reward tradeoffs, risk management including modern portfolio and capital market theories, strategic asset allocation, portfolio stress-testing, and behavioral finance.
- Inventory of current investment accounts
- Investment primer education
- Risk tolerance assessment
- Comparison of RTQ to current allocation
- Consolidation options and recommendations
- Specific investment recommendations (post-consolidation)
- Cash reserve recommendations
- Contribution recommendations (pre-retirement)
- Withdrawal recommendations (post-retirement)
- Complexity Issues: more than 15 accounts, low basis positions, annuities, concentrated positions
Strategies to avoid (not evade) current taxes, projection of potential income, property, business and estate tax liabilities, and holistic tax management strategies. Reviewing and understanding your return, and how your choices can impact future years.
- Typical: 4 additional hours of planning time, including a tax-focused 1.5 hour client meeting
- Full analysis of current tax return
- Multi-year or alt scenarios for same year (“what if?”)
- Recommendations for tax efficiency
- Action items to implement recommended changes
Personal, property, casualty, and liability risk analysis and management. What risks are you exposed to that could sink your financial ship?
- Review current policies for appropriate coverage for your situation
- Make recommendations for changes to coverages, deductible amounts, optional riders
- Discuss the role your policies have in protecting your future
- Discuss whether flood, earthquake or wind insurance is needed
- Needs assessment (how much life ins do I need?)
- Options for coverage (what kind of life insurance is available for me?)
- Recommendations for group term, individual term and/or permanent policies
- Recommendations for existing permanent policies (whole life, universal life, variable life)
- What it covers, when it activates
- Differences between group policy (i.e. through employer) vs individual policy
- How much coverage is needed
- Evaluation of current group or individual policies
- Assessment of risk (will I likely incur long-term care expenses?)
- Cost of future care (in-home vs facility)
- Options for covering expenses (self-insure vs purchase insurance policy)
- How long-term care insurance works and what it costs
- Insurance options (LTC only or Hybrid plan)
- How to obtain a quote (without pressure from a sales agent)
- Evaluating quotes received and recommendations for policy
Living and loving legacies, challenges, projecting growth of estates, asset titling, trust, and charitable and intergenerational asset transfer techniques. How your estate passes is something in your control.
- If I die, what happens to my assets?
- Do I need a Trust? What are the pros and cons?
- What assets should be transferred to the Trust and how do I do that?
- Review of beneficiary designations for other accounts
- What does my Trust actually say? Should I update it?
- What other estate planning documents do I need? (will, power of attorney for finances, health-care proxy)
- How to talk to your family about your end-of-life choices (Five Wishes document included. Please note: we are unable to provide legal advice or draft legal documents)
Every Client is unique, with their own individual concerns. This module allows a Client to explore any areas of concern that fall outside the other modules. Typical areas of concern can include:
- Rental analysis – should I sell my house or convert it to a rental? Should I buy a rental property?
- Upsize/downsize home, purchase vacation home
- Refinance mortgage(s)
- Review of property settlement from divorce
- Update an existing retirement plan
- Implementation of plan recommendations
Your Financial Plan Documents
Your Financial Plan is not one single reference document, because good financial planning is never a one-size-fits-all endeavor. Your plan will be custom-crafted specifically for you, and you will be walking away with the physical fruits of all the hard work you and your planner put in. These deliverables include documents, spreadsheets, and video recordings of all meetings (please note: specific provided items are “as applicable” depending on which modules were required by the Client).
Typical documents for your Financial Plan can include (but are not limited to):
- Net Worth Statement
- Cash Flow stages
- Retirement baseline scenario reports
- Alternate scenario reports
- Pension estimate
- Social Security analysis
- Goals and Questions
- Observations & Recommendations
- Action Item list
- List of assumptions (with respect to retirement scenario)
- Meeting recordings
- Tax projections
- Insurance analysis
- Estate Illustration
- Risk Tolerance Questionnaire
PLEASE NOTE: for Standalone Financial Planning, any additional emails, phone calls or other follow up initiated by the Client will be billed for on an hourly basis and will not be included in the cost of the initial engagement. Such post-engagement requests or follow up will be billed at our rate in effect for our Focused Financial Advice. For extended support, please see our Ongoing Comprehensive Planning service.
- For our Standalone Financial Planning fee schedule, please see the Transparent Pricing page.
- Not sure which service is right for you? Download a PDF copy of our Services Explainer flowchart
Ready to move forward with your best life?
Contact us today to schedule a meeting .