We are often asked about the services we offer, how we operate and what distinguishes us from other financial planners and investment advisors. Here are a few of our points of distinction:
- Fiduciary care. This means we put clients’ financial interests first, even ahead of our own business goals. As a Registered Investment Advisor firm (“RIA”), we have legal standards established by Congress, enforced by the SEC and reflected in the CFP® Board of Standards by which we abide. We must act as fiduciary in all aspects of our relationship with you.
- Independent - We work only for our clients and not for a brokerage firm or other financial services company. We sit on your side of the table helping you find the best solutions for your situation with no conflicts of interest.
- Fee-Only - An objective compensation structure. To help us maintain our fiduciary relationship, we are Fee-Only and do not accept any commissions for the solutions we recommend in managing your wealth. We have no sales quotas, hidden charges, referral fees or in-house products presenting conflicts of interest. We work only for you and get paid only by you, so we can provide you with independent, objective advice.
- Personalized service, long-term relationships. At Northstar you are more than an account number in a faceless conglomerate. We incorporate life planning into our financial planning process to help you lead the rich and meaningful life you envision by aligning your financial life plan with your resources, challenges and opportunities.
- Boutique-sized business. To maintain our boutique levels of service, we intentionally maintain a modest core of in-house professionals, augmented by a rich network of strategic alliances (estate planners, CPAs and others). This way, we can dedicate the lion’s share of our time to get to know you, remain in touch with you, and ensure that your financial goals are well-aligned with what is really important to you and your family.
- Disciplined investing. We apply academic principles to our investment management process so you can invest according to the evidence on what really works for investors, and avoid the tempting but distracting pitfalls. Our investment process is guided by goals-based planning, managing market risk through diversification and discipline; and minimizing costs. Learn more
- Applied investing. To build your portfolio according to these investment principles, we use low cost, no-load mutual funds available from fund managers Dimensional Fund Advisors, Vanguard and others.
- Independent safeguards. Your investment accounts are held in your name by an independent custodian (TD Ameritrade or Schwab). Northstar functions as your agent and advisor, while your account is held with a custodian. The custodian provides independent reporting, verification and insurance for your accounts.
- Experience. Northstar professionals have decades of combined experience in wealth management, life planning, transition planning, women and wealth, financial and tax planning, and business operations. We are CFP® professionals with additional individual credentials based on our areas of expertise. We’re passionate about applying our collective experience to benefit the select clients we are privileged to serve.