Prospective Clients

Our First Meeting

Our first meeting is always complimentary. We use this time to assess your situation and learn more about you. We go over our process, our fees and how to proceed, should you engage us. In some cases, if we feel that we cannot bring value to the table, we will refer you to another financial advisor or planner who we think would better serve your needs.

What to bring

At the first meeting, we will not spend a great amount of time making recommendations. However, we will spend time learning about your situation, goals and needs. It is very important that you bring any documents that you think may help us. These documents may include:

 

-A completed net worth and/or cash flow statement

-Declaration pages from insurance policies (health, life, disability, property, etc.)

-Tax returns (previous year)

-Wills, trust documents, etc.

-Loan terms (maturity, interest rate, etc.)

-Investment, bank account statements, 401(k) statements (you should receive these quarterly at minimum)

 

Again, it is not a must to bring these documents. However, it may save you time and another appointment by bringing them in on the first meeting. Should we decide to work together, you will have everything there for us to get started on your plan.

Choosing a Financial Advisor

 

Choosing a financial planner is like choosing any other professional. You must do your homework and make sure the advisor’s personality is compatible with your own. His or her personal business philosophies should also be discussed to make sure they align with yours. Here are some questions to ask when choosing an advisor:

 

1. “What’s your professional and educational background?”
Don’t confuse this with experience, which many advisors will even do. The question is professional and educational background. How did they learn to be a financial planner? Did they read a book or get a formal education? Did they work in another profession before becoming a planner or is this what they have done their entire life?

 

2. “What’s your particular strength, your favorite area of personal finance, your investment philosophy?”
It’s important to know this. If your personal investment philosophy does not align, it could be a short relationship. Is their strength valuable to you as an investor or client?

 

3.  “Are you a registered investment advisor (RIA)?”
If so, ask for their Form ADV. This will tell you a lot about them. Part 1 discloses any lawsuits or arbitration proceedings the advisor has been involved in, as well as any disciplinary action against him or her by regulators. Part 2 discloses the advisor’s educational background, the type of services offered and how he or she is compensated. Registered independent advisors are required to provide part 2, but not part 1. It is a public document though, and you can obtain it from the SEC if the advisor chooses not to provide it. If they are an “registered investment advisor”, you can look them up on the SEC’s website.  RIA’s are fee-only and are not compensated by commissions.

 

4. “Are you registered with FINRA?”
Some advisors are dually registered with both the SEC and FINRA. However, most are only registered with FINRA. If so, they are paid primarily through commissions. You can look up an advisor on the FINRA website. Here, you will learn the advisor’s work history, broker/dealer affiliation and any client disputes, disciplinary or regulatory events. If there are any, the report will read, “Are there events disclosed about this broker? YES.  You must then click on Get Detailed Report to learn the details. This is a very handy tool to learn about your future advisor.

 

5. “How much experience do you have?”
Generally speaking, the more experience, the better. You probably do not want a rookie who will learn the trade on you!


6. “How do you charge?”
 If you have done your homework, you will already know this answer. Ask the question and get a fee schedule. Find out if there are any fixed fees for having an account or an IRA. These custodial fees are very common, but can vary greatly. Ask what percentage of the advisor’s income come from fees and commissions.

 

7. “Who is your broker-dealer?”
This is where your funds will be housed and the broker/dealer provides research, compliance, back office support, etc. So a reputable broker dealer is important.  Some independent RIAs will not have a broker/dealer.

 

8. Do you hold any professional designations?
This is important, as it displays the advisor’s commitment to their clients. Reputable designations are difficult to obtain and require additional continuing education. You will want an advisor who is constantly obtaining education. In our opinion, the two most recognized accreditations in the financial services industry are CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) and Personal Finance Specialist (PFS). For more information, please see www.cfp.net and www.aicpa.org

 

If you would like our answers to these questions, please give us a call for our self published document, or better yet set an appointment to meet with us and discuss these questions and more. 

 

**Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP(R), CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER(tm) and federally registered CFP (with flame design) in the U.S., which awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.

Our Advisors' Strengths

 

Confidentiality

Strict confidentiality is one of our highest priorities.  In this instance, one advantage over our larger competitors is our size.   We don’t have hundreds of employees with access to data and we don’t have a board of directors that reviews your financial statement every month.  Your data is shared among only those that must see it to do their job.  Furthermore, in order for us to share your data with anyone, you must sign a confidentiality waiver that we maintain on file.  This allows us to collaborate with your other professionals such as your attorney, CPA or trust officer.

 

Our Educated and Experienced Team

Chad has over fourteen years in the financial services industry and earned the prestigious certification of CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ in 2008.  His experience in up and down market conditions is of vital importance to his ability to work with his clients.  But maybe more importantly to his clients is Chad’s commitment to his education and that of his employees.  The CFP® certification is NOT required to be a financial planner, financial advisor or stock broker.  You must meet certain experience and education criteria to be considered to sit for the two day, ten hour examination and of those that do, less than half pass.  Once obtained, the coveted certification requires additional continuing education on an advanced level that many do not subject themselves to.  We think that this level of continuing education is a benefit to the clients of Davis Wealth Services and sets Chad a part from the majority of his competitors.

As Chad requires a lot of himself, he does so with those he works with as well.  To work at Davis Wealth Services, you must meet minimum education and experience requirements.  Most importantly our employees must have the right attitude and be focused on our client’s best interest above their own.   

 

Approach

Our approach is different from that of most financial advisors. We take a holistic approach to our clients’ financial lives. While you may want us to work on only one specific issue, given the chance, we will put all of the pieces together, making a complete plan with no financial gotchas to worry about later.

 

Confidence

We often find that our clients’ experience newfound confidence when we are finished with the initial plan. You will know that we have covered all of the bases and, not only will your money be working for you, but potential liabilities that could take it away have been addressed as well.

 

Size

Being small and based in a small town, our overhead is lower than most. We don’t have a high-rent office in a tall tower in a large city. We own a modest office building in Dyersburg, Tennessee. With that said, we believe our fees are modest when compared to other advisors’ fees.

 

Our Independence

Rather than work for a broker dealer like many of our competitors, we chose ours.  Being your own boss has its perks.  We don’t have a home office telling us what to “sell” our clients this month or to push proprietary investment products that fill the coffers of the firm rather than the client.  We work for ourselves as we are all employees of Davis Wealth Services.  This gives us complete autonomy to treat our clients as we would want to be treated – with respect and objectivity.

 

Our Broker Dealer

When choosing a broker-dealer, I must admit that I got lucky.  I visited many others, but when I walked into the home office of Raymond James in St. Petersburg Florida, something just seemed different.  First, Raymond James was founded in 1962 by Robert James.  Mr. James did something unthinkable back then (and in some advisor’s minds, unthinkable today), he used financial planning as the basis for working with his clients rather than the traditional “wire-house” model of transactions and sales.  As a CFP® Practitioner, committed to the financial planning process, I get it.  But beyond the firms humble beginnings, even though they are considered one of, if not the best independent broker dealers today, their employees are humble and eager to serve their customers, the financial advisor.  I instantly fell in love with this BD.  As for luck… after I joined, Raymond James consistently received high accolades in industry publications and surveys.  To learn more about their accolades, click here.

 

**Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP(R), CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER(tm) and federally registered CFP (with flame design) in the U.S., which awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.

 

Visit Raymond James

 

For those clients or prospective clients with over 1 million in investable assets for which we provide investment management services, we offer a “By Invitation Only” visit to the home office of Raymond James in St. Petersburg Florida.  This type of trip is unique in our industry as it would be almost impossible to meet the Chief Market Strategist, A fixed income manager with billions under management or even the President of the firm at other broker dealers.  However, Raymond James regularly makes their top talent available to their advisors and clients when duty calls.  Raymond James’ specialists are available for support as well. At the visitor’s request, there is even the offer of an art tour of the Southeast’s largest private art collection there on the RJ Campus.  If you meet the asset requirements and you have specialized planning needs, want to meet a particular management team member or would just like to visit the broker dealer that is custodian to your funds, we encourage you to take us up on the offer.

To learn more click here.