Don't Click Here
Far away in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead.Louisa May Alcott
You just couldn’t help yourself, could you? You just had to “click here” even though it said not to. That’s okay, though – everybody “clicks here.” This is one of the rare occasions when letting your curiosity get the best of you is actually a good thing.
This little exercise in behavioral psychology has practical application in your financial life. Have you ever had a situation where, in spite of your best intentions, you couldn’t help but to “click here” and then found yourself derailed? Sure, we all have. That’s human nature. The interesting thing about human nature is that it’s incredibly predictable. There are reasons why people have a difficult time saving for retirement or college even when they know it’s the right thing to do. There are reasons why we don’t eat healthy, don’t exercise regularly, don’t spend an appropriate amount of time on our financial affairs … all the while knowing that we are hurting ourselves by not doing so. Wouldn’t it be helpful to know why we oftentimes fail in some of the most important areas of our lives?
People don’t take opportunities because the timing is bad, the financial side unsecure. Too many people are overanalyzing. Sometimes you just have to go for it.Michelle Zatly
Understanding Women as Financial Decision Makers
Traditional financial planners oftentimes fail to realize that life doesn’t exist on perfect, 8 ½” x 10” sheets of paper. No matter how many pretty charts and snazzy graphs you see, it doesn’t translate into results. So let’s stop talking about how to create the life of your dreams and start living it instead. It’s time to take action.
Our approach places you, not your money, in the proper place of prominence – at the top. All conversations begin with your life-long goals, dreams, and ambitions. With your values as our guide, we then approach the various areas of your financial life – investments, tax planning, estate planning, banking, and insurance – seeking out the best solutions to meet your unique needs. This isn’t just about your money. It is about you and the people you love.
While the world of finance is complex, that doesn’t mean it has to be complicated. Instead of explaining to you how the clock is made, we tell you what time it is. We provide education at a level that meets your specific needs, not to make ourselves sound smart. With us serving as the hub (CFO) of your education and research efforts, we will be your guide in developing your “Uniquely YoursSM” wealth management plan. We speak to you in terms that you understand. We help you make consistently smart financial decisions. We help you focus on the most important things in your life right now without sacrificing your financial future. We simplify your life. At the end of the day, you want to:
- be able to consistently make smart financial decisions that are in alignment with the most important things in your life
- do so without spending an inordinate amount of time on it
- do so in a cost effective manner partnering with someone you know, like, and trust
The Women We Serve
- You’ve worked incredibly hard to become a leader. Your career success has brought you financial success thus far, but retirement is fast approaching. You want to ensure that your hard work will pay off in the years to come so that you can enjoy the fruits of your labor.
- You are the family matriarch who will be faced with life changes in the future. Your children and grandchildren will look to you in times of change to make the right decisions, thereby ensuring your legacy will live on.
- You must ensure that the financial decisions you made in the past will continue to support you in the future.
- Your financial goal is to be able to maintain the lifestyle you’ve been accustomed to, and to be in a position to help the individuals and causes you care about most.
Emerging Career Woman
- You are young in your career and must establish a solid financial plan to ensure that your hard work will lead you to your life’s dreams.
- You are an entrepreneur that has invested an immense amount of time, money, and effort into making your business dreams a reality. You are your business and you are unique. Financial planning for you is a blurred line intertwining your business and personal dreams. Proper financial planning for women entrepreneurs is daunting but vital to your success.
- You understand that in the end, having lived a fulfilled life is more than just having a large bank account- it is about the experiences you are able to have as a result of being financially secure.
- You cannot afford to make crucial mistakes that will cost you time and money.
- Your financial goal is to create and live the life of your dreams.
- You are the center of your family and all eyes look to you in times of need. You are the life line for many in their time of need – your children, your spouse, your parents, your friends.
- Your time is precious and must be carefully distributed amongst people, activities, and organizations. Financial matters have taken a backseat for now, yet again.
- You are the primary decision maker for your family. You are under a great deal of pressure to make the best financial decisions possible. Financial planning for families means carving out a unique path to ensure you make the best choices for you and your loved ones.
- Your dream is to create memories of happiness and time spent with the ones you love, and you hope that your finances support you when that time comes.
Woman in Transition
Life has been good to you, but you know that change is inevitable. All great things come to an end- whether by choice or by force. A career change, retirement, divorce, death, the selling of a business… these are all changes that are on the horizon. All of these situations are emotionally-charged life changes that carry the burden of having to assimilate to a new financial life. You must arm yourself with people who care about who you are, where you are in your financial life, and where you hope to be in the future.
You have a crucial decision to make… do you try to figure everything out on your own and hope you make all the right decisions, or do you find a trusted partner who will walk arm and arm with you and ensure that your best days are yet to come?
A career change at any age can be either a terrifying or liberating experience. Often both emotions and everything in-between will surface at some point or another. At first, many women feel liberated and are driven to make positive changes in their life with a new company and new promises for their financial future. But then the reality of enormous decisions comes to light…
- What do you do with your old 401(k)?
- What insurance plans fit your needs now and in the future?
- Does your retirement plan hold up to this new career move?
- How will this new position affect your tax situation?
These questions are vital to your success, and will determine whether your lifelong dreams can become a reality.
You have worked so hard for many years to get to this point. You have successfully established yourself financially. Many years ago you created a retirement plan to ensure that you can maintain your current lifestyle in the glory years. And now the time to retire is fast approaching. Now you begin questioning whether you will outlive your money, or will your money outlive you. You worry about things like the increased costs in healthcare. You worry about your loved ones, and wonder if you will actually be able to help them as you originally planned. You realize that the decisions you made long ago may not support the changes that have occurred since then.
You are at a pivotal point in which you need comprehensive support from a financial advisor who will reevaluate your retirement decisions, ensuring that you can maintain your lifestyle and achieve your dreams… because, in fact, your retirement should be the happiest time in your life. You deserve to reap the benefits of what your hard work has sewn.
No one really “plans” for divorce. Finding yourself in a divorce situation is not easy from any angle. Your world gets flipped upside-down whether you’re financially ready or not. You must ensure that you’ve made, or will make, the best decisions for your individual financial future. Divorce rates are at an all-time high, you don’t need us to tell you that. Furthermore, the divorce rate among older women is on the rise at an alarming rate. Regardless of your age or how long you’ve been married, you’ve invested time and money into a relationship that is over. Now what?
If you are on the verge of divorce the best time to hire a financial planner is at the same time, if not before, you hire a divorce attorney. You must ensure that you have someone who can guide you in all aspects of your future- financial and otherwise- in order to ensure a proper and fair settlement is made. The financial repercussions of poor planning can have a terrible impact on your future… you only have one shot at getting it right. We make sure you are prepared for the potential challenges that single life will bring. Living the single life after divorce is much more expensive than women realize… your retirement plans, your lifestyle, your family’s future are all in jeopardy. We walk with you, talk with you, and are by your side during this emotional and crucial time in your life.
The death of a spouse/partner is usually a sudden event that you can never be fully prepared for, regardless of how well prepared you feel you are. There is great emotional turmoil and heartache that lingers… the sense of loss is evident. In addition to the loss that is felt, there is also a fear for the future. It is normal for a widow to experience a sense of financial fear after the initial sadness and grief have subsided. If you played an active role in the family finances you begin to wonder if the two of you planned properly. If you entrusted your husband with making the financial decisions you now find yourself having to learn about the world of finances for the first time in a long time, or perhaps ever. You find yourself asking and wondering:
- Will I have enough to live on?
- Will I have to get a job or delay my retirement?
- Will I be able to live the lifestyle that I’m accustomed to?
- Will I be able to financially provide for my children/grandchildren and the causes I cherish as I had planned?
- Did we make the best financial decisions possible? If not, what can I do now to change that? If so, do I have to make changes for my new “individual” financial future?
These are all real questions. You built a life together and had dreams that you shared. Part of his dream was to take care of you, not leave you asking questions and worrying about your financial future. Allow us to free you from that burden. We will give you peace of mind, knowing you are financially secure and able to focus on the things that really matter to you. He would have wanted it that way.
Selling/Sold a Business
You’ve spent years building your business into the success that it is today. You have poured blood, sweat and tears into it but now it’s time to let go. The rush of emotions is extreme to say the least. There are feelings of happiness, sadness, relief, and anxiety. Happiness and relief knowing that you have accomplished your professional goal in life…becoming a successful business woman. Sadness because the business is a large part of who you are, how you identify yourself, and a key measure of your achievements. Anxiety, wondering how you’re going to live without that paycheck, what you will do with the profits, and if you can maintain your lifestyle.
Preparing for the sale of a business is an extensive and complicated process that must be put on the right path from day one. From the moment you decide that it is time to sell, you must be sure you have a knowledgeable and experienced team to lead you in the right direction. In fact, this team should be in place long before you decide that it time to sell. So many questions arise, and only with the help of professionals can you rest assured you are doing the right thing, at the right time, and with the right people.
With the support of their ‘Expert Team’ of industry professionals, Ed and Melana will help you get your business in a great position to be sold- think valuations, taxes, buyers, and the like. And then after the sale, they will help you make the best financial decisions to recreate your paycheck, minimize taxes, properly invest your profits, and plan for your future. No one knows what the future will bring, but it is our duty to make sure you are making the best decisions during and after these transitions in your life.
She is your wife, your partner, your best friend, your everything. You are her rock, her protector, her everything. You have built a life together. You’ve been there for her through thick and thin, the good times and the bad. Being a responsible spouse/partner, you have promised to do whatever you can to protect her future. You have successfully managed your financial affairs thus far, but you know, realistically, that you won’t be there one day. The fact of the matter is that she will probably outlive you. Unfortunately, unless you have thoroughly educated her in your personal financial matters and the financial world at large, she won’t be prepared for what lies ahead.
It is estimated that 75% of women will have to handle their financial affairs on their own at some point in their life… usually later in life. Transitions like these are tricky as your spouse/partner not only wants competence, she also wants someone she can connect with. Establishing this relationship before that fateful day is crucial to ensuring that her financial transition isn’t one filled with fear and anxiety.
Burning River Advisory Group is committed to being the pre-eminent financial services firm for women leaders and their families.
Contact us and see for yourselves the difference that comes from working with a firm that truly understands the needs of women.
2237 Crocker Road, Ste 150
Westlake, Ohio 44145