The financial services industry is well equipped to assist wealthy families and individuals with traditional financial concerns like tax reduction, investing, insurance, and estate planning.
But how do you address non-traditional concerns like these?
- No time to properly manage your family finances
- Lack of organization and control of your wealth
- Absence of a knowledgeable and objective sounding board
- General sense that you’re missing opportunities for improvement
In our experience non-traditional wealth management concerns like these are more prevalent and problematic than the traditional variety because it’s less apparent where to turn for relief. This causes concerns to fester, often for a naggingly long time. Financial peace of mind is not possible when non-traditional financial concerns go unaddressed.
Traditional Financial Advisors Aren’t the Solution
Seeking the help of a traditional financial services professional - investment advisor, accountant, or financial planner - to resolve non-traditional wealth management concerns may be disappointing for two main reasons. First, they don’t have the skills and experience to solve non-traditional problems. Second, they don’t have a way to get compensated for their time.
Most advisors who work with the affluent are compensated based on the amount of investments they manage and, since there is no investment management involved in most nontraditional tasks, compensation becomes an issue. Hence, many clients are left to resolve non-traditional concerns on their own. Even more likely, the problems linger with no resolution.
Learn from the Ultra-Wealthy
Many ultra-wealthy families and individuals ($100+ million net worth) resolve traditional and non-traditional financial concerns by maintaining a family office. A family office has a full-time staff dedicated to managing all aspects of family wealth. A family office either has the breadth of in-house expertise such that non-traditional issues rarely arise, or it will maintain a relationship with professionals charged with resolving any non-traditional financial concerns. However, a family office is not a realistic solution for most because of the high level of wealth required to justify the expense and complexity of maintaining a family office.
Help for the Wealthy
Relatively few financial advisors specialize in helping clients with non-traditional concerns. For a successful search, first focus on how advisors are compensated. You can choose an advisor who is paid by the hour, project, or a flat fee. Consider beginning your search at the Family Office Exchange (FOX). Most FOX members are multi-family offices, which are similar to the family offices referenced above, but they work with many families, not just one. While the services and personal attention are less than those offered by a full-blown family office, the cost is also less.
To learn more about how to find a wealth manager that is right for you, see our Definitive Guide to Finding your Ideal Wealth Manager.
Contrary to conventional wisdom, subtle and nagging concerns about your wealth -- such as lack of time for proper management, no sounding board for ideas and questions, and no one to coordinate your various advisors -- are the real reason you don’t feel as good as you would like about your wealth. Professional help is available, but you must be diligent in your search.