Frequently Asked Questions

 


Are you a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®), and will I always work with a CFP® at Wharton Wealth Planning?

Yes. At Wharton Wealth Planning, LLC, you will receive the attention of an experienced, credentialed professional who is both a CFP® and MBA. Our financial planners are CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioners. CFP® professionals have met extensive training and experience requirements and take a holistic, personalized approach to bringing all the pieces of a client's financial life together.


What is your fee structure?

We can work with clients in four ways: (1) asset management on a continuous basis (2) flat-fee financial planning basis (3) one-time flat-fee investment portfolio review basis (4) hourly or project basis. We work with you to manage the complex and multiple facets of your wealth and to meet your specific financial goals.

Investment Management fees are computed at an annualized percentage of assets under management on a sliding scale as follows:  $500,000 to $999,999 - 1.00%; $1,000,000 to $2,999,999 - .90%; $3,000,000 to $4,999,999 - .80%; $5,000,000 and above - .70%. More information is available upon request.  As a fiduciary advisor, we have a straightforward and transparent fee structure with no hidden fees or agenda and no sales pressure.


What services do you provide for your clients?

Investment Management Services

Retirement Planning and Income Strategies

Comprehensive Financial Planning


Is your firm a fiduciary financial advisor?

Yes, we are a fiduciary financial advisor and planner. The way financial advisors are compensated can make a significant difference in the recommendations they make. We are not affiliated with any brokers, banks, or insurance companies, and work only for you under a straightforward and transparent fee structure. As a fiduciary, we are independent, objective, and commission-free. We believe that independent, fee-only advice yields the best financial solutions. A fiduciary standard obligates us to act in good faith and put your interests ahead of our own.


If I do not want a full financial plan can we still work together?

Yes, we offer investment consulting services to clients seeking investment advice on a noncontinuous basis. Under this arrangement, Wharton Wealth Planning will review the client’s investment return expectations, risk tolerance, time horizon, and income requirements to ensure they are aligned with his/her financial profile and objectives, and if deemed to be in the client’s best interest, WWP may recommend that the client reallocate his/her investments according to our asset allocation framework. 

As part of our process, we assess portfolios and make concrete suggestions on asset allocation, risk-reward ratios, tax efficiency and cost effectiveness. We help construct a recommended portfolio, consisting of individual stocks or bonds, exchange traded funds (“ETFs”), closed-end mutual funds, mutual funds and other securities or investments. We build a diversified, tax-efficient investment portfolio tailored to reflect clients' needs and goals. Every portfolio is also reviewed for individual investment criteria and risk tolerance.

WWP does not manage or exercise investment discretion or trading authority over these client portfolios.   Portfolio review fees are based on the size, number of holdings, type of holdings, and complexity of a portfolio.  The fixed fee for a portfolio review will start at $2,000 and depend on the complexity of a client’s situation.


What exactly is a fiduciary financial advisor and how does that differ from other advisors?

Advisors who possess a fiduciary duty to their clients are required to put their clients’ best interests above their own at all times. Many people are surprised to find out that this obligation isn’t required of all advisors. In fact, most advisors aren’t required to act as a fiduciary in all their interactions with a client. Advisors who are not fiduciaries often follow the suitability standard, but that only requires that they give clients advice deemed “suitable” for their situations, thus it offers fewer protections/safeguards to clients.

Fiduciary advisors are legally bound to not use a client’s assets for their own benefit. This relationship and standard of care serves to prevent situations where there are conflicts of interest. For example, a financial planner may encourage you to use certain investments because he or she could have a stake in them. Advisors may favor certain products because they can benefit from them. Fiduciary advisors have a duty to explain why they are making a decision and what you could gain or lose from it.

Only 2% of professionals in the U.S. that offer financial advice are fee-only advisors who follow a fiduciary standard, according to the Wall Street Journal.


How will reimbursement for the financial plan fee work if we choose to work with you on a continuous basis?

If you elect to use our investment management service within 12 months after the presentation of the financial plan, then the stand-alone financial plan fee paid will be deducted from the investment management fee.  


What is a fee-only financial advisor?

The basic concept around the term fee-only advisor is that this type of advisor only can receive compensation directly from the client for services provided.  In other words, fee-only advisors do not receive sales-related compensation from their employer or third parties (like fund companies). In this instance, fees can take the form of a flat rate, an hourly fee (or project-based fee), a subscription fee, or a percentage of assets under management.  

Wharton Wealth Planning does not make money on commissions or accept any type of third-party compensation for investment management products or services. All of our investment advice is exclusively designed to help maximize your portfolio. Fee-only advisors are motivated to build a long-term relationship of trust with you and not to make sales to earn bonuses.


What is your process to create a financial plan?

Our experienced financial consulting team can help you implement an investment and retirement plan that is specific to your cash-flow needs, family circumstances, investment goals, and financial and tax situations. We use a detailed discovery and analysis process to help create a plan and solutions that work best for you. Steps to create a plan include: (1) No-obligation Initial Meeting (2) Discovery (3) Evaluation of Strategy and Alternatives (4) Implementation and (5) Review.  One of our major objectives is to ensure that our clients' investments are optimized while reducing their overall tax burden.

We are comprehensive financial advisors (and planners) focusing on your entire financial plan. We leverage extensive professional experience, educational training, and relationships to help you achieve your unique goals and objectives. At Wharton Wealth Planning, LLC, you will receive the attention of an experienced, credentialed professional who is both a CFP® and MBA. We take a personalized approach to bringing all the pieces of a client's financial life together.  You can visit our website for articles, media mentions, and videos on a range of personal finance topics.


What does it mean to be an independent advisor?

As an independent Registered Investment Advisor firm, we are not tied to any particular investment products or family of funds. We select the products we believe are best for your long-term financial well-being. We use an independent third party to custody your assets for safety and security purposes. We have office locations in New York and Santa Fe (New Mexico).


Do you typically work on a virtual basis with clients?  If I am not located near your offices, can we still work together?

We can work with clients as a Virtual Financial Planner by using secure, on-line video conferencing technology and file sharing. Working with a Virtual Financial Advisor enables clients to meet with us when it is most convenient for them and minimizes travel time and paper waste. Digital financial planning also allows clients to select the best advisors for their specific needs and does not limit clients to working with someone based solely on shared geography. A hybrid approach also allows clients to work with us virtually for most or part of the time, while meeting face-to-face when desired. We can also work virtually on an hourly basis if that best suits the situation. We have office locations in New York and Santa Fe (N.M.) where we are always happy to meet to offer personalized financial planning.


What security measures does your firm take to safeguard clients?

We maintain physical, electronic and procedural safeguards and conduct ongoing reviews to protect personal information. Our financial planning software provider uses data security featuring 2048-bit asymmetric encryption and 256-bit symmetric encryption, so your personal information is very secure.

As a fiduciary, we always put our clients’ interests first. We adhere to the Fiduciary Standard, which consists of a duty of loyalty and care. More can be found on our privacy policy here.


Will I be able to view my accounts online whenever I want if I choose to work with you for investment management services?

Yes.  You will be able to view your account whenever you wish and you will receive quarterly statement and other performance updates throughout the year.  We use an independent third party to custody your assets for safety and security purposes. We personally oversee and guide you all the way on the account transition process from another advisor (custodian) to make sure it goes smoothly.


How do I get started?

Our process is to schedule a no-obligation thirty-minute initial meeting to review a client's current situation and goals. If you decide to proceed, simply upload a list of requested information and documents to a secure online portal using a checklist we will provide. When the plan is complete, we have a one- to two-hour conference to review the plan, including a list of areas of opportunity and concern as well as follow-up action steps we recommend.

Contact us if you have additional questions or would like to get started with a no-obligation consultation.


 

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