When should I seek financial advice?
The best time to seek financial advice is - now. A financial planner can give valuable financial advice that can come in handy at major life stages of your life, such as:
- Your first job or changing your career direction
- Buying your first home
- Moving in together with your partner
- Establishing a business
- Preparing your business for investors or buyers
- Having your first child
- Educating your children or
- Planning for retirement
Sound financial advice will ensure your investments are optimally structured, you have the appropriate cover in place, your tax liabilities are managed effectively and you are using your superannuation strategically and smartly.
What do you charge for an initial consultation?
We don’t charge for the initial meeting (typically 60 minutes long) as it is primarily about ‘fact finding’, that is, getting to know each other, gaining a clear understanding of your goals and, of course, delving into your financials.
At the conclusion of our meeting, we have a clearer insight into your expectations and are in a better position to indicate whether we can meaningfully assist you. We may also shed light on what the next steps may be and include any costs going forward.
What should I bring along to my first meeting?
We recommend that you prepare by giving some thought to your financial goals and what you are hoping to achieve from the process. It can be a good idea for families, couples and partners to discuss this beforehand, although it isn’t mandatory.
It will help to have at hand any documents relating to your superannuation, investments, insurance policies, income and expense statements etc. - although we can also obtain this information at a later stage, if you prefer. Any information you can provide about your current financial situation can help us tailor our advice to meet your specific needs and circumstances.
What will the financial or retirement plan cost?
Your first meeting with us is at our cost and completely obligation-free so you can meet us and see whether we match your expectations. After our initial discussion, we will provide a quote for a concise, ‘to-the-point’ financial plan or Statement of Advice (SoA). This report details strategies that are tailored to meet your financial goals considering all aspects of your current situation.
If you are looking for advice on investments, superannuation or financial planning, our basic fee starts at $2,310, which can usually be paid from your superannuation fund rather than directly from your pocket. While this is a good ballpark figure to keep in mind, the fee for each case can differ significantly depending on what is involved. We can advise you of the fee for your case after our first meeting and before we start working together.
For risk insurance advice including personal income protection, life insurance, disability and trauma insurance as well as business insurance such as key person insurance or business succession planning advice - our costs are covered via a brokerage or commission built into the policy premium and paid by the insurer, so there is no additional fee payable by you. Naturally, full details of this will be disclosed to you when we provide advice.
What written advice do you provide?
Once you decide to proceed with us, we will prepare a written Statement of Advice (SoA). This report will incorporate details of your current financial position, your attitude towards investment risk, your financial goals as well as your lifestyle objectives. The SoA will also detail strategies on how to achieve your goals and objectives together with relevant supporting documentation.
Do you work with businesses as well as individuals?
Yes, at Oakmont we deal with individuals as well as businesses. We work with businesses in one of two ways. (1) Those businesses that are keen to offer our financial services and expertise to their key employees. These businesses see the productivity gains and reduction in employee turnover that comes from having a strong group fund, good risk protection insurance and their people in control of their personal finances. (2) In addition to this, we also provide advice to businesses on how to protect themselves including Business Succession planning and Key Person protection.
Do you receive commissions from investments that you recommend?
No, we do not receive commissions from investments that we recommend. We maintain our operations through the fees we receive from clients. All new clients pay a simple ‘one-off’ Statement of Advice fee (if applicable) plus a flat, dollar-based monthly fee for ongoing advice and support. The majority of our clients prefer to have this fee deducted from their investment account, but this is up to you.
Are you owned by a bank or some other financial institution?
No, we are not owned by a bank or any other financial institution. Since our origin back in 1984, Oakmont has always been a privately owned financial planning practice operating in Western Australia with no affiliations to any institution.
Am I obliged to proceed with your recommendations?
No. Whether you are an existing client or thinking about engaging us, you are never obligated to proceed with our advice.
Are you like stockbrokers?
Not at all. While we can easily buy and sell stocks on your behalf, as part of an overall portfolio, our clients are generally ‘long-term investors’ with little time for speculative trades or chopping and changing strategies.
Can you look after my superannuation fund and insurance policies?
Yes. We will examine your super (and insurance policies), and compare them with other available options, and if appropriate, recommend alternatives. However, please note that as we are not remunerated based on ‘funds under management’ we have no financial interest in shifting your funds from one company to another, unless you benefit from such a move.
What types of insurance services does Oakmont offer?
We provide advice on life, total permanent disablement, trauma, income protection, business insurance and Key Person cover.
Our advice includes recommendations on the appropriate types of cover, the appropriate levels of cover and the appropriate structure of cover. We also take into account the ways in which the costs of your cover can be reduced by using tax effective strategies.
Do I really need insurance?
In all our years of experience we have only come across a handful of clients who didn’t need insurance. In a nutshell, if you or someone close is likely to suffer financially if you die, become temporarily or permanently disabled or diagnosed with a major critical illness then you need to consider insurance.
Insurance is often something we don’t really think about until it is too late. Many of us assume that the level of insurance provided through our superannuation will be enough – but what happens if it is not? Wouldn’t you prefer to have the peace of mind that comes from knowing that should the worst happen, you and your family are provided for?
We will consult you on your personal insurance to help you understand more about what the various types of insurance covers are and how they are structured or best funded.
What insurance cover does my business need?
Each business faces unique and different risks and exposures, which is why it is critical to have your needs assessed and your insurance cover tailored specifically for these conditions.
Once one of our insurance experts has determined the type and level of coverage you require, we then obtain quotations from different insurers and underwriters, compare the policies and premiums, and recommend the most suitable insurance for your business.
Is there a minimum amount that I need to have in order to become a client of Oakmont?
No. Your level of income or assets is inconsequential. Our clients range in backgrounds, from sophisticated, high net-worth individuals seeking financial advice they can trust, to younger clients just starting out in life and looking to build a solid financial foundation.
Will you liaise with family members or business associates?
Yes, we encourage it. Ideally, it is useful for partners and family members to know who your financial advisers, accountants and lawyers may be. That said, unless you give us express approval to meet and/or discuss your affairs with other interested parties, your details will always remain private and confidential.
Can Oakmont assist with estate planning?
At Oakmont, we believe that estate planning is an important aspect of your financial plan and touches on the idea of appropriately distributing your wealth in a tax effective manner. After working hard all of your life to create the wealth you have, it is essential that your wealth transfers smoothly to your chosen beneficiaries.
Estate Planning involves managing the transition of wealth between generations. There are a number of important areas to consider and we can help you work through them.