Frequently Asked Questions
Trusting your investments to a qualified financial advisor who has your best interests at heart provides tremendous peace of mind. But finding the best advisor can be confusing. There are lots of financial services firms, so how do you know who is the best choice for you?
To help in your decision-making process, we want to share our answers to the questions most frequently asked by new clients. Our goal is to help you choose your financial advisor with confidence by giving clear and complete answers to the questions you may have.
An initial planning consultation is a way that both you and Buckhead Capital can determine if we are a good fit for each other. First, and most importantly, this conversation provides an opportunity for us to get to know each other personally. Second, we want to introduce you to Buckhead Capital and our approach to financial planning and investment management. Finally, we hope to gain an understanding of your prior investment experience, your current financial circumstances, and your expectations/goals for the future. You can share as much or as little information as you wish, though the more you share the more helpful we can be. Where it’s relevant, we’ll suggest ways in which we believe we can address your specific situation. We never charge you for an initial consultation.
Sometimes individuals want a financial plan but would rather execute the plan themselves. While we prefer clients to work with us on an ongoing basis, they are certainly not required to do so. In these circumstances, we will charge a nominal fee to offset the time spent formulating and presenting the plan. This fee varies depending on the complexity of the prospective client’s financial circumstances, but the amount will always be agreed upon prior to any official engagement.
Absolutely not. We always want strong, long-term relationships with our clients. We work to earn our clients’ trust not only at the outset of the relationship, but in everything we do in the years to come. However, if your circumstances change or you simply believe we are no longer a good fit, there is no barrier to terminating the relationship at any time.
Typically, our clients have investable assets of at least $1 million. However, we welcome the opportunity to work with individuals and families in the process of building significant wealth. For those in this “wealth-building” stage of their lives, we are happy to work through the initial consultation phase and determine whether they and Buckhead Capital are a mutually beneficial fit.
A registered investment advisor (RIA) is a person or firm, regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission, that advises individuals and their families on investments and manages their portfolios. The securities laws impose upon RIAs a fiduciary duty to their clients, which means they have a fundamental obligation to provide investment advice that is not just “suitable” but that they believe is in the best interest of their clients.
Some RIAs are compensated by commissions on products they provide to their clients. Buckhead Capital is a fee-only RIA, meaning that we are only compensated by our clients’ fees. As a result, we are not incentivized to recommend specific financial products or services and can focus on what’s best for the client’s situation.
For our individual clients, our maximum fee is 1% of the assets under management and is reduced on a tiered schedule based on additional assets managed. In other words, the greater the value of assets we manage, the lower the percentage fee you pay. This structure means that we do better when our clients do better. This investment management fee also covers a thorough initial financial plan and ongoing consultations and plan revisions for the life of our relationship.
No matter where your assets are currently held, the process to change custodians is quite simple. This transfer process typically takes a couple of weeks, during which time we will monitor the process and keep you informed.
Buckhead Capital focuses on both growing your assets and managing the risk to your assets. One of those risks is excessive concentration in specific companies or industries. To the extent your prior advisor’s investment philosophy differs from our own and you have significant gains, we will adjust your portfolio gradually over time. Specifically, we will work with you to develop a custom strategy for re-aligning your investments that takes into account the tax consequences of any action.
We believe in managing our clients’ assets to help them achieve their financial goals while taking no more risk than is necessary. We invest in individual stocks and bonds and manage the allocation between the two in response to changes in valuation and client risk profile. We thoroughly research the 35-50 equity securities in our portfolio, focusing on quality, growth, and valuation. The fixed income component of our portfolios consists of government securities and high quality corporate, municipal, and asset-backed securities. We strive to outperform through full market cycles and historically have provided superior returns in down-markets.
Your assets will be held by an independent custodian (typically Charles Schwab). These custodians are regulated by the SEC and are required to maintain the utmost level of security for your assets from all manner of potential threats. The contract you sign with Buckhead Capital will grant us the authority to buy and sell securities in your account(s), but we will not have the ability to move funds in or out of the account(s) without your express written permission.
Buckhead Capital takes great care in protecting client, and prospective client, non-public information. In accordance with SEC requirements, we have an extensive written policy for safeguarding confidential information. (This policy is available for your review upon request.) We work closely with a top local information technology firm to maintain our network security and update policies and procedures to protect our network from cybersecurity threats.
The Certified Financial Planner board awards the CFP® designation to those who demonstrate expertise in the areas of financial planning, taxes, insurance, estate planning, and retirement. Achievement of the CFP® designation requires a thorough program of study in these areas, a minimum of two years industry experience, a rigorous exam, and extensive ongoing continuing education. CFP® professionals are also held to a stringent set of practice standards and ethical guidelines – foremost of which is their fiduciary duty (they must act on behalf of their clients, always putting the client’s best interest ahead of their own).
The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®) designation is a globally recognized certification of investment skills and work experience. Candidates are required to pass three levels of rigorous exams covering accounting, economics, ethics, security analysis, portfolio management, and wealth planning. (The average candidate spends 300 hours studying for each exam.) In addition to passing these three exams, an individual must have four years of acceptable work experience and provide reference letters from colleagues and supervisors.
There is no simple answer to that question because we have the ability to serve a broad array of clients. That being said, there are a few client characteristics that we think contribute to a strong and productive relationship with Buckhead Capital.
Most importantly, our ideal client is an investor with a long-term outlook. We manage portfolios for growth over full market cycles. If you’re looking for a firm chasing the hottest new investment strategy every quarter, we are probably not a good fit.
Our ideal client is also comfortable with a goals-based approach to their finances. We provide the greatest value to clients who have clear financial goals (e.g., retirement, paying for your children’s education, purchasing a second home, leaving a legacy for your family, etc.). We’re even happy to help you clarify your goals so that we can leverage our resources and expertise to craft a strategy that provides the greatest probability of success.
Finally, an ideal client is one who values knowing what they own and welcomes direct communication with the people who make the investment decisions. We offer a level of transparency and accountability that is increasingly rare in the investment world and we love having clients who appreciate a strong, open relationship in the development of their financial plan and the management of their investments.
Yes. One of the greatest advantages of working with a smaller firm is the ability to communicate directly with your advisor. We provide quarterly written reports and typically have a formal meeting with our clients at least once a year, but you can choose the meeting frequency that best suits you. In any case, your advisor will always be available to take your call and answer your questions. In addition, we strive to keep our clients informed of market or other financial developments that may affect their finances.
In addition to quarterly reports from Buckhead Capital, you will be provided monthly statements from the custodian and you will also have online access to your account(s). You may also reach out to us at any time for information about your portfolio.
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