Whole financial health can involve construction, implementation, and review of plans that address a number of financial issues. From the initial data gathering and budget conversations, to periodic reviews, Carpenter Financial comprehensive plans are specifically tailored for each client. With that in mind, our plans normally involve all or most the areas shown below. While we believe that a comprehensive plan is best, we occasionally offer consultation on specific areas of financial health on an a la carte basis, by client request.
All good plans start with protection in mind. You really can’t evaluate how financially healthy you are without considering how insurance can protect you, your family, your wealth, and your assets. We are not an insurance company and do not pitch insurance products to our clients. We evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your current policies and create a blueprint for proper protection across these areas:
- Home and Auto
- Long-Term Care
Clearly, this is the focal point of most of the commercials you see on TV from big banks and brokerages. This is what pays the bills for advisors and brokers, which is why it receives so much attention. While we believe that investments are only one of many factors in whole financial wealth, there is no denying that no matter what your goals are, prudent investing will be a significant part of the plan. Carpenter Financial is not a broker nor do we receive commissions or sales fees for any investment we might suggest. We do not follow Wall Street but rather, we implement a scientific method of low cost investing which has, decade after decade, provided the proven best results for investors. When it comes to investing, we use science, not sales.
When and how do we want to retire? How much will we need? Will there be enough funds for us to do the things we want? What can we do now to help reach those goals?
Whether you are three years, or 30 years away from retirement, these are questions we all have to ask ourselves. As part of a comprehensive plan, we help you set and prioritize retirement goals and then describe, in plain English, the steps you can take to reach those goals. “How much to save?” is a question for your piggy bank. The better question is “How best to save?” Proper planning can get you there. Our Guidance + Your Discipline = A Successful Retirement.
In the famous words of Benjamin Franklin, “in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” But is it really as true now, as it was in 1789 when those words were first penned? When it comes to taxes, we don’t think so. There are a myriad of legitimate avenues available to defer, minimize, or avoid income and estate tax. Proper navigation of these avenues requires a mastery of tax law, and thorough understanding of each client’s financial situation. As licensed CFP® professionals and CPAs, our plans include savvy tax strategies tailored to your unique goals which, over time, maximize overall wealth.
As for the other half of Franklin’s certainties, we don’t run from the conversation, nor do we believe our clients should either. Proper estate planning requires diligent thought and implementation. The goals here include minimizing estate tax (if necessary), avoiding probate, protecting assets, administering the estate, and allocating assets among family and/or charity. While Carpenter Financial relies on its outside team of outstanding lawyers to implement estate planning instruments, we lead the discussion and coordinate the activity so the estate plan matches your goals and the overall financial plan.
During the comprehensive planning process, we often come upon special issues that require specific attention which may include:
- College tuition funding
- Family changes such as divorce, marriage and/or raising children
- Parents or children who have special needs or healthcare issues
- Mortgage refinancing or selling/renting your home
- Debt issues including credit repair or credit collection
- Inheritances from deceased relatives
- Career changes or continued education
- Starting a new business or selling an established one
- Establishing a family foundation or formal gifting strategy
- Tax audits or legal proceedings
- Large unplanned expenses
As CPAs and CFP® professionals, we have a well-rounded body of knowledge and experience to consult on these issues as needed. Additionally, we have a network of professionals to assist us in areas that fall outside our realms of expertise.
WHAT TO TAKE AWAY
When people are first introduced to proper financial planning, often times they are bit overwhelmed. Maybe they’ve already been discouraged by attempting to get consultation but have ended up across the desk from insurance advocates selling products or investment reps who really only want to manage their brokerage accounts. Carpenter Financial is a different kind of place. All we ask of you is that you be engaged with the process and interested in whole financial health. We can determine if our services are right for you and, if so, guide you step-by-step through the rest of the process. Having a quick conversation is the first step. It’s free and it’s yours.
If you have questions or would just like to start the conversation, please email or call us.
Carpenter Financial, Inc.firstname.lastname@example.org
225 W Washington, Suite 1120, Chicago, IL 60660