What We Do
Adding value to our clients' lives is our top priority. These case studies demonstrate how Eliot Rose Wealth Management professionals have addressed several common needs and challenges our clients have encountered.
The following case studies are based on actual Eliot Rose client experiences.
How Much is Enough?
We all like success stories. However, when it comes to our finances, most of us don’t take the time to define what success means. Without a clear understanding of your financial ability or lack thereof, it is difficult to make informed life decisions.
Our clients, husband, 53, and wife, 50, are married with financially independent adult children. They both enjoy work, but are concerned they will need to work longer than they wish.
They enjoy golfing and socializing with friends at their country club. However, the expense of the club keeps them up at night and they are concerned that this expense is simply above their means.
Another wish they have is to spend winters in Florida upon retirement, but believe this is just wishful thinking. With concerns adding up, they asked us to develop a financial plan to answer their questions.
During the financial planning process, we learned that they had more than enough assets to retire immediately while still fulfilling all their goals and wishes. We showed them that even if we entered a recession and the market pulled back that they would still be able to live the life they want without concessions.
Sometimes the smallest steps make the biggest difference. Had this couple assessed their financial situation sooner, they could have avoided all the stress and sleepless nights of thinking they needed to drastically alter their lifestyle.
At Eliot Rose Wealth Management, we guide our clients towards peace of mind by helping them clearly define their goals and design and implement a plan to help achieve them.
I’m 68 and Single, Now What?
For many families it is not uncommon for the husband to handle the family’s financial affairs. However, should the husband pass away, it can make the loss even more difficult for the surviving spouse.
Our client, a 68-year old retired woman, came to us after a difficult two years caring for her late husband. After his passing, she wanted to gain control of her financial situation and not be a liability on her four adult children.
We worked very closely with her and developed a comprehensive financial plan that clearly explained her financial life. We met with her regularly and explained where her assets were held, how they were managed, and made some adjustments to better suit her current situation. We explained what type of lifestyle she could afford and how long her assets would last.
We took the lead role of coordinating her financial plan with her other trusted advisors and involved one of her sons, at her request. At Eliot Rose Wealth Management, nothing is more fulfilling than helping a client regain control and power in difficult times.
Do I Need to Sell My Stocks?
Keeping up-to-date with financial markets and investment strategies is a wonderful thing. However, sometimes it can be difficult to filter the good advice from the bad.
Our clients, husband, 65, and wife, 65, have recently retired from their family-owned law practice of 35 years and wanted to assess their investment portfolios for their post-work life.
The husband reads magazines and books about the market and is an avid CNBC and Bloomberg enthusiast. He is very organized and maintains detailed spreadsheets of their cash flow, assets, and liabilities.
Upon retirement, he believes he needs to drastically reduce stock holdings and buy lower-risk bonds. During the financial planning process, we showed them that this would reduce the chances of funding their goals and, quite simply, be detrimental to their financial health.
Even though they had enough assets to go to an all bond portfolio and continue funding their lifestyle, we showed them that over the long-run they would miss out on millions of dollars of portfolio growth with minimal risk.
They were thankful to see a side-by-side comparison of multiple allocation scenarios and their long-term impact. In the end, they were relieved knowing they had made the smart informed decision to maintain some stock exposure and use that additive growth towards their charitable and estate planning wishes.
At Eliot Rose Wealth Management, we admire market enthusiasts and self-starters. Today, they are still active in the investment process, but now work with our team and continue to pursue financial freedom.
Is the S&P 500 All I Need?
When it comes to investments, most will talk about stocks like Apple or Facebook or indices like the S&P 500. These are some of the most publicized names in the business, but there is an entire opportunity set that is overlooked by many.
Our client, a 59-year old accountant, came to Eliot Rose looking to grow his portfolio. He is a successful entrepreneur and investor. He met with us to determine if he should just put all his assets in an S&P 500 Index Fund.
The S&P 500 is an index of the 500 largest U.S. companies. Each company is weighted by size and rebalanced quarterly. While the S&P 500 has had wonderful performance since The Great Recession, it comes with significant risks late in bull-market cycles.
When most invest in the S&P 500, they assume that they are getting broad diversification across 500 companies. However, the majority of the fund's exposure is only in the largest 50 companies. In fact, the smallest 125 companies only account for 5% of its weight.
Each quarter the index systematically buys companies that have done well (increased in size) and sells ones that have not (decreased in size). Through this process, you end up owning companies that have become overvalued and selling ones that have become undervalued. For more information, on the pitfalls of investing in the S&P 500, please see our blog article: Are Investors Paying Attention to the Wrong Fees?
At Eliot Rose Wealth Management, we helped our client develop a diversified portfolio including stocks and bonds while fulfilling his desire to partake in large stock exposure through a more suitable strategy than the S&P 500 index. He felt more confident about his portfolio after better understanding the mechanics of the index and alternative options.