Fees

Overview of Fees

Financial Planning only

  • $150/month for ongoing planning
  • $100/hour for project based planning, such as developing a financial plan.

Investment Management only

  • 1.0% of Assets Under Management (AUM) for the first $360,000 of AUM
  • 0.5% for any AUM above $360,000

Wealth Management (both Financial Planning and Investment Management)

  • $150/month for financial planning
  • 0.5% investment management for any and all AUM

Fee Details

The remainder of this page describes how four different clients typically engage with our services.  Typically, a client asks us to prepare a financial plan, then transitions into an ongoing planning/investment management service.  Thus, we present fees and services as clients typically engage with us.

Snip from Mt Baker Wilderness Green Trails map.

Develop a Financial Plan

We believe that everyone should go through the process of developing a comprehensive financial plan.  Your financial life is complex – goals, cash flows, investments and taxes all interweave.  We help you prioritize the most important areas, then create a strategic plan to address them.

A comprehensive financial plan involves establishing your goals and values, organizing and analyzing your financial life, then determining how your finances are aligned with your goals/values.  Here are the pieces:

  • We meet to “Clarify and Organize.” We discuss your values, develop some goals, and organize your financial life.  This is one or two meetings, done in person or virtually (video chat).
  • We analyze the data, crunch some numbers, evaluate different scenarios, make recommendations, and prepare a readable, concise plan for your financial future.
  • We present the plan to you in plain English, with a one-page summary.
  • We develop an implementation plan with you (suggesting how you could carry out the recommendations).
  • We support the plan for 30 days after delivery, through email and phone contact.

Fee We charge a one-time fee to develop a Financial Plan.  Typically, the plan costs between $500 and $3000, depending on the scope of work.  Here are four example situations including estimated cost:

  1. Zoe is a teacher, and recently divorced. She needs to develop a plan under a new family structure.  She has kids, and is receiving child support.  Fee:  $600.
  2. Adeline and Bob are a working couple. Adeline is a teacher, Bob works for the state.  They have kids.  They want to figure out how to save for retirement and their kids’ college.  They want to examine their insurance and investment choices, and make sure they aren’t paying too much in taxes.   Fee:  $800.
  3. Chris and Diane are a working couple. Chris is a firefighter, Diane is self-employed.  They have kids, they own a rental property, they have a complex tax situation, and self-employed retirement plans to manage and organize.  Fee:  $1200.
  4. Ehrin and Fred own multiple businesses and rental properties. They have kids and a complex tax situation.  They have significant investment assets to analyze and make recommendations on.  Fee:  $2000.

Other project-based financial planning

We also do hourly financial planning.  Fee will depend on the work required and our hourly rate.  We always define the scope of work and anticipated fee in writing before beginning any work.

Ongoing Services

Mt. Baker wilderness area. Photo by John Chesbrough

After creating the plan, most clients continue with an ongoing planning service (either wealth management, financial planning only, or investment management only). There is value in ongoing planning.  Good financial management is about curating good financial habits.  Habits, or behaviors, are best addressed over time.  Additionally, planning needs change over time.  An ongoing planning relationship will encourage you to address your financial questions proactively rather than retroactively. We believe we do our best work, and provide the most value to a client in an ongoing relationship.  

Investment Management only

For some clients, we do investment management only.  Managing investments without knowing your larger financial context is a bit like driving with one eye closed.  A strategy to invest funds that will be needed to pay for college in five years is very different than a strategy to invest funds for retirement twenty years in the future.  Thus, we encourage all clients to engage in developing a financial plan. However, some clients prefer only investment management, and we offer this service.  We meet with you to determine some basic information about your needs for the assets (your goals and time frame).  In addition, we will talk about your tolerance and capacity to accept risk.  We develop an “Investment Policy Statement,” or IPS.  Once you have agreed to the IPS, we will invest and manage your portfolio.  We monitor your contributions and withdrawals (in particular, required limits such as maximum contributions and Required Minimum Distributions from retirement accounts).  We monitor your investment portfolio regularly, and make adjustments if necessary.  Every quarter, we will send you a report detailing the status of your investment accounts.

Fees Our fee structure is a tiered structure based on the Assets Under Management (AUM).  Fees are deducted from client accounts once per quarter.

Assets Under Management Annual fee
$0 – $360,000 1%
Above $360,000 $3,600 + 0.5% on assets above $360,000

Here is an example calculation for $500,000 AUM:  ($360,000 × 1%) + ($140,000 × 0.5%) = $4,300 per year.

Wealth Management

This service includes financial planning and investment management. Life changes, and so will your planning needs. Clients have access to their advisor in an ongoing way for individual needs. Throughout the year, we identify core areas in your financial life, and focus on planning in that area.  For example, we may determine that your goals and investment savings are the most critical areas.    Next we may target your cash flow or budget.   In addition, we tackle important planning issues as they are relevant to your life. For example:

  • Do you want to talk about and analyze a possible job change and the financial repercussions?
  • Did your job change, and do you need to make new choices about benefits and retirement strategies?
  • Are you considering a remodel, but want help analyzing loan options? Do you want ongoing assistance with your budget?
  • Are you considering a new investment opportunity (like a rental property), and want to examine the possible return on investment?
  • Are you thinking about shifting your business strategy, and want to do some planning around revenue, profitability and tax implications?

Fee The Annual Wealth Management fee is comprised of two components, financial planning and investment management. The fee components are billed separately to allow flexibility in how you pay. Our fee structure is presented in Table 1:

Table 1.  Our fee structure

Component Fee How the fee is paid
Financial Planning $150/month ($1,800/year spread into monthly payments) Direct payment via credit card or monthly bank debit.
Investment Management 0.5% of Assets Under Management (annual fee, paid quarterly) Fees may be deducted from your investment account(s) once per quarter, or paid directly, per client preference.

Table 2 shows example fees for the sample clients in Step 1.

Table 2.  Fee examples for the sample clients described in Step 1.

Client Information Component Total fee
Client Assets Under Management Financial Planning Investment Management (Annual)
Zoe $80,000 $150/month ($1800/year) $100/quarter ($400/year) $2,200
Adeline and Bob $40,000 $150/month ($1800/year) $50/quarter ($200/year) $2,000
Chris and Diane $180,000 $150/month ($1800/year) $225/quarter ($900/year) $2,700
Ehrin and Fred $400,000 $150/month ($1800/year) $500/quarter ($2000/year) $3,800

Alternate fee payment structure (less out-of-pocket cost).  Some clients prefer to pay more of their fee from their investment accounts than from cash flows.  Under this structure, the total fee would be the same, but the changes are:

  • Investment Management fee is 1% for the first $360,000 in Assets Under Management (AUM), and 0.5% above that.
  • The financial planning fee slides downward, from $1800/year with $0 AUM to $0/year for $360,000 AUM and above.

Table 3 illustrates how the sample clients from Table 2 would pay fees under the “Alternate fee payment” structure. To see fees for your particular situation, go to the bottom of this page, and enter the amount of assets you anticipate asking us to manage.

Table 3.  Fee examples under Alternate fee payment stucture

Client Information Component Total fee
Client Assets Under Management Financial Planning Investment Management (Annual)
Zoe $80,000 $1400/year ($117/month) $800/year ($200/quarter) $2,200
Adeline and Bob $40,000 $1600/year ($133/month) $400/year ($100/quarter) $2,000
Chris and Diane $180,000 $900/year ($75/month) $1800/year ($450/quarter) $2,700
Ehrin and Fred $400,000 $0/year ($0/month) $3800/year ($950/quarter) $3,800

To calculate how fees would be calculated for different account levels, enter the amount of assets you would like us to manage below.

You’ve arrived at the end of this page.  If you are looking for more information, you might want to check out: Our contact page to schedule a free consultation, or Our blog page which will give you a flavor for how we do things!