Services for Families
Affluent families need a CFO to oversee key areas of their financial lives: risk management, financial planning, investment management, tax planning, legal coordination, banking advice and administrative services. As your family CFO, we provide financial peace of mind. Our first step is to listen and understand what wealth means to you and what you want to accomplish with it.
From loss of income to financial fraud to identity theft, life is full of risks. We work with you to identify the main challenges you might be subjected to. Then we will help you construct the appropriate insurance and security safety nets so you can rest assured that your risks are covered. And since we don't sell any products, you can be assured that the advice we offer is objective.
As an assurance that your asset accounts are exposed to minimium risk, we generally custody client assets with Schwab Institutional, the premier firm catering to the unique needs of affluent clients. In addition to its strong financial position and internal controls, Schwab offers a 100% guarantee against any unauthorized activity in your accounts.
Now our job is to help you with the next stage in your financial planning, whether that is saving for retirement, making gifts to family or helping to pay for educating your children and grandchildren.
We will work with you to fully assess where you currently stand financially, what your next steps are and what your realistic goals should be. And we’ll come along with you on your next financial quest, helping ensure you stay on track to meet your goals.
Smith & Howard Wealth Management customizes portfolios to reflect the goals of your family and your comfort level with various investments. We believe portfolios should be suited to your circumstances, not the other way around.
Broad diversification among multiple asset classes is the hallmark of our investment portfolios. We proactively allocate among those asset classes we believe have the best risk-adjusted return potential.
A key to future returns and risk control is recognizing undervalued asset classes, investing in them when they are out of favor, and trimming back when they are at high valuations. This philosophy is in direct contrast to the momentum approach followed by many investors of buying securities after they have already become popular and expensive.
In addition to diversification and our somewhat contrarian style, our investment approach emphasizes tax awareness and fee sensitivity. Addressing tax ramifications of investment decisions throughout the year provides a level of comfort and assurance for you that can be hard to find with large institutional investment firms.
Investment decisions are made by the owners of SHWM, not a "home office" on Wall Street, and are communicated with you in a timely, easy to understand way. What’s more, we do not sell products; therefore, portfolios are always managed with your best interests at heart.
Our leadership team includes a Certified Public Accountant with decades of tax experience in complex matters and Certified Financial Planners who walk you through the intricacies of tax-efficient ownership, taxable versus tax-exempt income, managing gains and losses as well as planning for and executing charitable giving plans.
A sensible, proactive approach to “April 15” is just one more aspect of your financial wellbeing that is a key part of serving as your family CFO.
That’s why we work closely with your attorney to make sure all the i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed on your affairs in a way that achieves your objectives in a legally sound and financially sensible way.
We can also work with your personal attorney (or work with you to engage one) to establish or revise your will, draw up trusts, powers of attorney and healthcare directives. As part of our family CFO approach, we keep these documents securely stored in an online portal that you may access whenever needed.
We are also experienced with helping our clients determine who could best serve as their designated trustee, executor or children’s guardian.
At your request, we work with you to ensure you are getting the most out of your banking relationships.
We can help you settle on a mortgage that works best for your situation and can offer advice on the pros and cons of paying off your mortgage.
All in all, we are here to give you objective, informed and personal advice on all of your financial needs, banking included, with that advice tailored to your personal financial situation.
While many of the financial decisions are ultimately yours, we will provide you with substantial information and recommendations to help you make decisions that are in your best interests.
Accessing information and advice in an immediate way is important to you. So we have made that process simple. Our secure client portal is available on-demand through our web site, accessible with your confidential log-in information. From this secure portal, you can look up annual capital gains and income, the status of investments and download and print documents you’ve provided us, such as wills and powers of attorney. If you need an updated financial overview, we are accessible and ready to provide it to you.
We work in a transparent fashion. All information we provide is net of fees, and accurate cost-basis accounting makes tax time easy. We can even research the unknown cost basis of prior purchases. And if anything isn’t completely clear or straightforward, call us. You will always speak with a team member who is familiar with your situation and can help immediately.