Frequently Asked Questions

Wondering how financial planning can help you? Here’s a list of frequently asked questions and answers.

1. Who Are Your Typical Clients?

Our typical clients can be separated into three groups:

  1. Clients Working Towards Retirement: these clients have a median age of 41, are working professionals, and usually have multiple financial goals that they would like to achieve such as planning for their children’s college, and maximizing retirement savings.
  1. Clients Getting Ready to Retire or Already Retired: these clients range in age from 55-70 years old. Their main financial concerns include gaining a better understanding of how much they can live on based on their retirement savings, establishing a sound estate plan for their next generation, and having an investment portfolio that is geared towards income protection and income generation.
  2. Clients Undergoing a Major Life Transition: these clients range in age and are currently experiencing life events that require rethinking their finances and financial strategy. Life changes include going through a divorce, the loss of a spouse, getting remarried, the birth of a child, receiving an inheritance, downsizing your life, and even moving to a different state or country for retirement.

2. How Do You Work With Clients?

Our financial planners work with clients in two different ways:

  • Financial Planning Clients: Some clients hire us to create or review their financial strategies on an annual basis or a one time basis. In this scenario you tell us what areas you would like us to review and we create a financial plan that meets your needs.

Find out more about our financial planning services

  • Investment Management Clients: Our wealth management clients hire us on an ongoing basis not only to create and review their financial plan, but also to implement the strategies we suggest. This service includes coordinating with their other financial professionals such as insurance agents, estate planning attorneys, and accountants, to help them implement their financial plan. Our wealth management clients also receive ongoing investment management and monitoring services as well as ongoing advice regarding their finances.

Find out more about our investment management services

3. What is Your Investment Philosophy?

We don’t believe anyone can consistently time or “beat” the market. Research has demonstrated time and time again that those who chase returns fare worse over the long run than those who develop a sound investment strategy and impose discipline over their investment decisions.

As such, our investment philosophy is one that believes in creating globally diversified portfolios taking into consideration market research, and taking advantage of potential market opportunities.

4. What Investment Products Do You Use?

In our client portfolios we primarily use exchange traded funds and no-load, institutional class mutual funds. Depending on the client’s needs we may also use individual stock and bonds.

5. How Do You Get Compensated?

Our company receives compensation from its clients in two forms:

  • Hourly or fee based for financial planning projects.
  • Percentage of assets for investment management clients

Cathy Pareto and Associates is a fee-only registered investment advisor. We do not receive compensation or commissions from third parties nor do we sell our clients any products.

6. What Are Your Hours of Operation?

Cathy Pareto and Associates is open Mondays – Fridays from 9:00 am -5:00 pm

7. What Are Your Fees?

Our fees depend on the type of client you are:

  • Financial planning clients are charged per project depending on the complexity of their needs. Visit our financial planning page for more details.
  • Investment management clients are charged on a quarterly basis a percent of assets under management. Visit our investment management page for more details.

For a copy of our firm’s disclosure statement (Form ADV), click here.

8. Why Should I Hire a Financial Planner?

Hiring a financial planner is a very personal decision that should not be made hastily. There are many reasons to hire a financial planner as there are many types of planners. Whether or not you should hire one really all depends on your needs, and your level of comfort and involvement regarding your finances.

Here are some of the reasons to consider:

  • You need someone to help you make sense of your finances and show you how your goals are impacted by your decisions.
  • You think you can do it yourself but you do not have the time or know how.
  • You need a sounding board to see if you may have missed something before making a major financial decision.
  • Your spouse is not currently involved in the financial planning process and you would like for them to have someone they can call in the event something happens to you.
  • You need a financial strategy that includes all of your goals.
  • You want someone you can call not just for your investments but to also guide you through financial decisions.
  • You need help getting your spouse involved, and on the same page regarding your finances.
  • You want someone to not only build a strategy but also help you implement it, and update it as need be.

9. What Can I Expect As a Client?

As a client you can expect to receive a more personal approach to your finances. Because we are an independent boutique firm you will always know who to contact when you have a question. You will never be, or feel like you are just another account.

Our team will help you build a financial strategy that includes your financial goals, and they will work with your other professionals such as accountants, insurance agents, and estate planning attorneys to help you implement your strategy.

As a client you can expect transparency, honesty, and knowledgeable advice.