Must I have a trust to use your investment management services?
Many of our clients choose trust arrangements because of the unique advantages they offer. But no, you’re not required to create a trust. If you prefer, you can put us to work on a less formal basis by opening an investment management account.
Aren’t trust services for the wealthy?
Our clients don’t think so. Most of them are prudent investors but generally don’t consider themselves wealthy. We invite you to contact us. If our services aren’t right or you, we will help you choose a better alternative.
What are the advantages of a trust?
With a trust you can not only draw on our broad investment capabilities but also arrange to have us perform any number of special services, now or in the future. These personalized services could range from making payments of estimated taxes while you’re traveling abroad to providing full personal financial management in the event you suffer an incapacitating illness.
Also, you can name one or more beneficiaries to receive the assets of your trust at your death. These distributions avoid probate. Or, you can have your trust continue beyond your lifetime, serving as a source of continuing income and support for your spouse, a child or others whom you designate.
Is it difficult to set up a trust?
No. To employ us as your trustee requires only two steps. First, you deliver the money and/or securities that you wish to place in trust. Then, you give us written instructions in the form of a trust agreement. The agreement, drawn by your attorney, is signed by you (as creator of the trust) and by the trustee. That’s all there is to it.
Trusts of this type are often called living trusts or revocable trusts. That’s because the person who creates the trust reserves the right to cancel or revoke it.
If I create a trust, can I keep control?
Certainly. Many times, our clients act as their own trustee. The other ways to maintain control within the trust agreement are to make the following provisions:
- Allowing withdrawals or additions to be made at any time.
- As just mentioned, reserving the right to cancel the trust.
- Reserving the right to amend the trust.
Can I make the investment decisions?
If you wish. Most of our clients look to us for objective, unbiased portfolio supervision because they lack the time or specialized knowledge to do all the necessary homework themselves. However, you can delegate as much or as little investment responsibility as you want. After all, it’s your money.
Are your services expensive?
No. Our fees are competitive with those charged by investment advisory firms or by mutual funds.
My broker manages my money and doesn’t charge. How does he/she do that?
Transactional brokers are paid commissions for buying and selling securities in your account. Their income is dependent on your account being active. Most times you will not be able to see the fees generated by the trading.
Why should I pay you a fee to manage my money when a no-load mutual fund will do it for free?
All mutual funds charge fees (called expenses). These fees average about 1% per year. The client does not see these charges because they are deducted directly from the fund.
How much of a return will I get on my money?
That depends on your goals - income, growth, or a balance of the two. We work with our clients to establish a portfolio based on their individual needs. Over time, diversified portfolios of good quality stocks have produced higher returns than bonds. However, bonds provide a higher level of income.
Are your accounts insured by the FDIC?
Primarily, assets are invested in stocks, bonds or other income-producing assets. These investments are not bank deposits and are not covered under FDIC. Securities and other assets administered by our trust department are held separate from the bank’s own assets, under strict audit controls, and cannot be reached by the bank’s creditors. If you choose to invest in a bank Money Market Account or Certificate of Deposit (CD) as part of your portfolio, those investments would be covered by the FDIC up to the respective designated limits.