Many people think all financial planners are “certified,” but this isn’t true. Just about anyone can use the term “financial planner” or “financial advisor.” These are generic terms with no precise industry definition. So how do you know you are working with a qualified professional? One way is to look for a professional designation.
Unlike licenses to sell products, professional designations are not required; they are voluntary. In other words, we have chosen to pursue these designations out of our passion to expand our skill sets, to further our professional knowledge, and to deepen our areas of expertise.
We also appreciate the opportunity to be active in our professional communities, engage with thought leaders in the industry, and stay current with new developments. We continue to uphold our designations because of our excitement for the work we do and our commitment to our clients.
Each of our advisors have pursued designations that correlate with our specific areas of focus.
The Chartered Financial Consultant designation
Addressing the long-standing fundamentals of financial planning, this certification forms a foundation for comprehensive yet personalized work with individuals. Study includes: the financial planning process, risk management, income tax strategies, retirement planning, investments, estate planning, and personalized financial planning strategies, including aiding divorcees, blended families, and LGBTQ families.
The CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation
One of the top certificates available in financial planning, this certification has been the “gold standard” for financial planners for over 30 years. CFP® professionals have met extensive training and experience requirements, including knowledge in the areas of: financial planning roles and responsibilities, planning for insurance needs, income taxation, retirement planning, investing principles, and estate planning strategies.
CFP® professionals take a holistic, personalized approach to bring all the pieces of your financial life together. They also commit to that require them to put their clients’ interests first.
The Certified Financial Transitionist ® designation
The CeFT is an advanced designation that requires prior training such as the CFP and experience with the technical side of financial planning. Achieving a CeFT designation requires that the advisor has an understanding of the stages of transition, how people behave during transition, and how to effectively address the emotions, relationships, and thought processes involved in chaotic life events. Tools and skills are developed to enable advisors to guide clients as they work through times when life is filled with uncertainty, to a successful “new normal.”
The Behavioral Financial Advisor designation
This designation enhances advisors’ client interactions and financial planning advice through a more thorough understanding of clients’ feelings, thoughts, and values that create the basis for their financial goals. A study of psychological explanations for economic behavior and hands-on practice of values-based conversations help advisors guide clients to better decisions in life and throughout the financial planning process.
Our designations are evidence of our professionalism, our desire for continuous improvement, and our commitment to providing our clients with the highest standard of financial services.
Find out more about professional designations, qualifications, and accreditation visit the FINRA website.
The first place to check out any investment firm is to take a peek at the firm’s ADV. This is a requirement by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and State regulators, and gives you plain facts about the firm.
Every investment advisor representative is also required to be registered with their respective state(s) and also has a personal form ADV2B on file. You can look up our info on the SEC website here: https://www.adviserinfo.sec.gov/
Or send us an email and we’ll happily send you a copy.
We provide personalized, confidential investment management to individuals, small businesses, trusts and estates, charitable organizations, pension and profit sharing plans, and 403(b)’s and ORP programs.
Account types include IRA’s, Roth IRA’s, SIMPLE IRA Plans, Individual and Joint Investment Accounts, Trust Accounts, 403(b) (ORP and TSA) accounts.
We also provide financial planning services with a structured, practical approach that help clients define and achieve their goals.
Our investment clients span a wide range of goals, ages, and assets. Most clients have assets over $250,000, but we can accommodate accounts starting at $10,000. Our happiest clients are those who value delegating the day-to-day investment management to us, so they may enjoy other areas of their lives.
Our financial planning clients span all life stages, from individuals who are just starting out, to retired couples who have accumulated substantial investments, to families who have inherited assets. There is no minimum asset requirement for financial planning.
As a Registered Investment Advisor firm, Shadowridge is a fiduciary — required by law and by our belief in the importance of honesty and ethical standards — to act in the best interest of our clients, putting client interests ahead of our own at all times. We are committed to the fiduciary aspect of the profession. Every decision is made with our clients’ interests in mind. You can read more about fiduciaries at Investopedia.
Not all financial firms are an Registered Investment Advisor (RIA). “RIAs have a fiduciary duty to their clients, which means they have a fundamental obligation to provide suitable investment advice and always act in their clients’ best interests.” – Investopedia.
Another way to operate as a financial firm is as a Broker-Dealer. By definition, broker-dealers do not have a fiduciary obligation to their clients.
We chose to become a RIA firm when we established Shadowridge in 2012 because we felt the RIA model was a more transparent, ethical way of doing business that better served our clients.
Shadowridge is a fee-based investment management firm. We do not sell fixed annuities, insurance, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, limited partnerships, or other commissioned products. Ryan and Phil do currently hold insurance licenses but neither actively sells insurance products.
Asset Management clients are charged a fee based on the assets under our management and the average daily balance of those assets. Our Asset Management Fee Schedule outlines these fees.
Financial Planning clients are either charged a flat fee based on the Financial Planning Package selected, or a fixed hourly rate based on time spent on a particular Financial Planning project. Fees are listed in our Financial Planning Fee Schedule.
Shadowridge has a Business Continuity Plan in place to facilitate a seamless transition should something happen to any of our advisors or money managers. Our custodians would continue to hold your funds. We work closely with a fellow like-minded firm which would step in and manage our clients’ accounts should we become unavailable (short term or long term). Our clients would have the choice of whether they wanted to continue to work with the new manager or move their assets.