At Emerald Retirement Planning, we take pride in our transparency. Our goal for our clients is to help them strategize and grow their assets to a point where the money lasts throughout retirement, or longer. Such a goal may seem unreachable at times, but we routinely demonstrate that through our guidance, along with your patience, discipline, and faith in the future, we can make it a reality.
I’m Nick Hernandez, a registered representative and a strong advocate of Dave Ramsey's practical, common sense, behavior-based philosophy. I have worked with several financial advisors at other companies, and everyone does things differently. I’ve been with Emerald for only six months, yet can candidly say the way we do things here just makes sense. From our focus on planning and on the coordination of a family's resources, to our straight-forward investment philosophy, everything just makes sense. So why doesn't it make sense everywhere else? Why do other companies make things needlessly complicated? I wish I knew. What I will say is that there’s a lot that goes into managing your finances, and therefore your life. That’s why we need all the facts and details to confidently help you plan for your future. But once we have those details, our job from that point forward is to help simplify, not further complicate, your already complex life.
Part of our simplification process is to focus on the core fundamental issues that govern our clients' long-term success. Here is a preview of a few of them:
PROTECTION OF PURCHASING POWER. The real enemy we face when saving for retirement is not our regular expenses, new tax laws, or your kids asking for some seed money for a business start-up; it is inflation. At an average of 3% annually, your dollars are losing value as the cost of living endlessly rises. If you have $100 in the bank, in just over 20 years, inflation will have effectively halved the purchasing power of that money. Therefore, it is essential to grow your assets, over time, at a rate higher than inflation. This concept persists even into retirement!
GROWTH THROUGH OWNERSHIP. We believe the most effective and reliable way to grow your assets over time is through equity investing. Investing in equities is essentially the purchase of a small stake of ownership in a large number of company, generally through mutual funds or exchange traded funds. If history is any guide (and it's the only guide we have), companies in aggregate always find a way, over time, to earn a profit and to grow. It is popular to label this as 'greed,' but that misses the essential nature of publicly traded companies. Rather, profit and growth are the mandate of a publicly traded company, and the mandate is from us, its owners. If a company does not profit and grow, no one will wish to own it and it will cease to exist. And the valuable goods or services it produced will cease to exist. Likewise, the converse it also true - through profit and growth, the value continues and expands. This is the essence of innovism and of free trade.
OWN PERMANENTLY. No one knows exactly when the prices of the great companies of the US and the world will go up in value. Nor when they will go down. Provided we are diversified across different market segments, we will never be overexposed to any one company, sector, style, size, or region. Over the span of decades, we will receive the blended average return of the global equity market, which has historically been about 10%. The longer the timeline, the closer to this benchmark the returns have been. The specific choice of which funds matters far less than our broader decision to own companies instead of something else (such as cash, bonds, precious metals, hog futures, or more recently, anything that exist only in cyberspace!)
GOALS DRIVE THE PLAN AND THE PLAN DRIVES THE INVESTING. While investing is the means by which we grow our assets, it is secondary always to the ultimate need of the money, which is to fund our long-term lifestyle and legacy goals. Our priority, therefore, is in the creation and ongoing maintenance of your comprehensive written financial plan, which maps out the most effective way for you to achieve your goals, whatever they may be.
THE FIRST STEP. Financial planning is a lifelong commitment and dealing with it entirely on your own can be daunting and confusing. We are in this business because we love to help people like you obtain financial independence. We offer an initial call and meeting at no cost and with no further obligation. Especially at times like this, when uncertainty in the world may seem at an apex, I think you deserve to hear an objective second opinion from a friend you can trust. I’m hoping you’ll know us to be that friend.
-Written by Nicholas Hernandez