Frequently Asked Questions
Do not worry about your financial security. Our team wants to spend time learning about your needs and reviewing your goals. Often times the answers are not complex, but developing a plan in key in bringing you peace of mind.
We are extremely different from other financial advisors in a number of very significant ways. They are:
Our Focus - Wealth management services are our primary business.
Comprehensive Planning - All of our work, including investment management, is driven by and integrated with each client’s financial goals and objectives.
Credentials - All of our professionals have advanced degrees in business and other professional certifications. (Certified Public Accountant, Personal Financial Specialist, Certified Financial Planner or Chartered Financial Analyst).
Experience - Our planning staff has over 50 years of consulting/advising experience serving a very sophisticated clientele. In addition, several of our planners have honed their skills by teaching financial planning and by taking leadership roles in the development of the profession.
HSC Wealth Advisors provides services on a fee-only basis. Our core service is Wealth Management. Wealth Management is investment management driven by financial planning. It is ONE SERVICE and is based on the complexity of your situation.
The frequency of meetings/conversations varies from client to client, according to individual preferences and circumstances. After completing our initial comprehensive financial planning effort, we maintain an ongoing dialogue with our clients on all aspects of their financial situation and decision-making needs. Each year we bring you in to review your situation, confirm you're still on track and answer any questions.
Your portfolio is reviewed as often as the market dictates. If the markets are experiencing movement, there will be analysis and action. We communicate with our wealth management clients during the year through our Quarterly Performance Reporting, Newsletter and to obtain your permission for taking actions outside of the Iinvestment Policy Statement (IPS).
1563 Crossings Centre Drive, Suite 100
Forest, VA 24551
Normal office hours: 9 am - 5 pm Monday - Fridays
Our office is usually closed on Federal Holidays when the New York Stock Exchange is closed.
We are normally not available for meetings -
- Tuesday mornings: we have internal administrative and staff meetings
- First two weeks of each quarter: we are compiling your quarterly reports and newsletter.
- Brian generally works Tuesday - Saturday and is not available on Mondays.
Any checks going into your investment accounts should always be made payable to the custodian - never HSC Wealth Advisors.
Can I give you a portion of my investments and keep another part myself or with another investment management firm to compare performance?
Generally no. Our philosophy regarding your portfolio is not one of a race or of comparison. Our long-term approach is based on broad diversification. Our philosophy in designing and managing your portfolio is so that you have a high probability of reasonable returns over a broad range of economic scenarios. We are not going to consistently be ahead of all markets.
You may retain some of your accounts at other brokerages and permit us to drive the broad allocation and management of the overall portfolio. But, we will charge more to do so.
I have stocks; since HSC Wealth Advisors specializes in mutual funds - will you automatically sell all of my stocks?
No. We look at your overall situation and design a portfolio based on your needs. Existing stocks can certainly be part of your portfolio. We will recommend which stocks to retain and which ones to sell.
A number of our clients have sizeable amounts of stock. Tax considerations (along with the quality of the company) always influence a decision to sell an investment - mutual fund or stock. A good stock is usually kept.
Your entire situation is considered in the fee structure. We do integrate those assets in your overall portfolio design and recommend which specific funds you should be investing in.
Absolutely. If you are interested in our services and proceeding to the next step, we are very pleased to provide specific individual client references.
Yes. We work with many clients located throughout the United States.
Although tax considerations permeate all of our analyses and recommendations, and although we have a great deal of individual tax experience, we do not directly prepare tax returns nor answer questions pertaining to specific tax preparation software. We routinely work with our clients' accountants to ensure a two-way exchange of information, facilitating the accountant's return preparation and an accurate view of our clients' tax situation. With our extensive experience and contacts, we can recommend tax preparers to clients who will benefit from this assistance.
Betting your money on one stock, one fund or one industry segment is the sure way to disaster.
We "sleep well at night" (SWAN) knowing that we did not try to guess or bet with YOUR MONEY. We believe this permits our clients to do the same - sleep well at night - again not worrying or fretting that we made the right "bet" with their money.
Broad diversification permits us to take advantage of "ups and downs" in the various market segments. All segments move up and down at varying times. We can frequently take advantage of segments when they're down by buying more and selling a portion of that segment when it is up. Our methodology provides the discipline to "buy low" and "sell high."
While this methodology rarely "leads all markets" - it typically does provide good returns and insulates your portfolio against deep drops that can affect one market segment.
I am comfortable investing in U.S. companies, but am less comfortable investing in international markets. Do you normally recommend international exposure?
Yes, we want our clients to take advantage of the growth opportunities outside our country. The United States' equity markets today represent far less than half of the world's total equity value. We believe that, by ignoring international markets, our clients would deprive themselves of the opportunity for substantially higher long-term returns than are available in the U.S. Additionally, by diversifying into foreign markets, investors will generally experience lower volatility for their portfolio, as a whole, over time. For these reasons, we design our client's portfolios with foreign equities consistent with their return objectives and tolerance for risk.
Buying specific mutual funds is merely one of the many services we provide. Our clients hire and retain us as advisors because of a coordinated matrix of services we provide. We serve our clients as comprehensive wealth managers, providing personal financial planning services, including the management of investment portfolios. Our clients receive many benefits.
Personal Financial Planning:
Expert recommendations and objective implementation to help clients achieve personal financial goals - i.e. financial independence, wealth transfer to family or charity, expansion of lifestyle, and many more.
- Financial Blueprint - An action plan optimizing cash management, debt, investment, insurance, employment benefit, and wealth transfer opportunities.
- Ongoing advice - we serve both as an initiator of planning opportunities and as a sounding board - about any matter in any personal financial area, such as:
- Cash & debt management
- Insurance planning
- Estate planning
- Income tax planning
- Employee benefits, stock options, restricted stock, deferred compensation
- "Personal CFO" providing immediate attention to various financial needs.
- The coordination of investment plans with financial planning objectives
- Determination of a strategic investment plan for target returns, tolerable risk, and expected outcomes based on what is necessary to meet crucial client goals and/or, beyond those, what is available to accomplish opportunistic objectives
- Dispassionate (but not cold hearted) portfolio management (instead of the "fear and greed" syndrome many clients describe experiencing when they "go it alone")
- Special access to institutionally priced mutual funds
- Ongoing monitoring of mutual funds and managers
- Well-considered, though generally infrequent, changes in mutual funds due to new opportunities uncovered by our on-going research
- Daily review of all transactions
- Consideration of income, gift, and estate tax implications of any portfolio actions
- Portfolio rebalancing to maintain the target asset allocation
- Year-end tax loss sales as appropriate and available
- Professional measurement and reporting of absolute and relative portfolio performance
- Quarterly Investment Review and Performance Reporting and ongoing consultation regarding market behavior
- Efficient coordination with tax preparers of information about capital gains/losses and taxable income for tax estimates
Please feel free to contact us by email or by phone. We look forward to discussing our services with you.