Ask us anything
We’re authentic, thoughtful, straight-shooters.
Q. I like what I see but I need to do more due diligence. Do you have any privacy policies or information?
Q. What types of clients do you work with? Do you have a minimum requirement?
A. Great question. We typically work with people who have lots of moving parts in their financial life. We also focus specifically on empowering women and widows with their money. Our typical client has $500,000 or more in investable assets.
Q. Do you have an office location?
A. Yes. If you’re located in Massachusetts or the greater New England area, you can visit our Cornerstone Cottage in Kingston, MA (by appointment.) The Cornerstone Cottage is our unique office space, check out a video tour of the space here. We also service clients throughout the nation by leveraging the power of technology.
Q. What makes you different from a traditional firm?
A. Lots of people can manage your portfolio, but can they also help you create your life plan? WH Cornerstone approaches financial advising differently. We serve as your financial quarterback to advise, implement and continually manage all the moving parts in your life. We’re not just financial advisors, we’re teammates.
Q. How do I know you won’t take my money?
A. Lots of folks have expressed this concern since the Bernie Maddoff scandal. We use a third party custodian, Charles Schwab & Co, Inc., to custody all clients assets. You will always get statements directly from them about the activity on your account. We will provide you with a performance activity report. Also, we are never allowed to take money out of your account. We can request to have monies directed to your mailing address of record, or a bank or other investment account that you have a MoneyLink set up. Lastly, through Schwab Alliance, you have online and telephone access to your account.
Q. How do you get paid?
A. We are fee for service, which means we are paid solely by our clients for the investment services we provide rather than a commission or transaction fee from a third party.
Q. How do you make your investment decisions?
A. We do our own in-house research and leverage many well known, respected newsletters, money managers, and independent research companies. We often build portfolios with individual equities, Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and bond funds. We rarely, if ever, use Third Party Managers. We are always focused on liquidity and keeping costs low. That means we don’t like to tie up your money when we know that life is frequently changing. Our approach to investing is always to keep the big picture in mind while taking on short-range, actionable steps.
Q. Who will I deal with?
A. You will deal with a principal of our firm. That means, you’ll get immediate access to our knowledge, our time and answers to any concerns or questions you might have. Here’s who you won’t be dealing with: a Customer Service Rep d’jour on the other end of an 800#.
Q. What do I need to prepare or bring with me to meet with you?
A. Before you meet with us, we will have you fill out an online risk assessment with Riskalyze. Also we ask that you provide us with some personal and financial information in Advizr. We will also provide you with our Future Advantage Questionnaire™ to help you prepare for the questions we will review together. You are welcome to bring your questions too. Our initial meetings are anything but ordinary. It’s a chance for us to get to know you, where you’ve been on your financial (and personal) journey and where you want to go.
Q. I’m married. Does my spouse need to come to the meetings?
A. Yes. We like to meet with both spouses and have a relationship with both of you. Also, in order for you to have success in financial life planning we want to ensure that your goals, dreams and aspirations are aligned and that everyone is committed to the same future. As married business partners, we know first hand how important it is to have everyone on the same page.
Q. What makes a successful financial planning relationship?
A. We love that you are thinking about this! Here’s our version of an ideal financial planning relationship:
- We believe every great relationship has give and take. And the very best relationships start as a team. We’ll ask you to do some homework before we meet so we’re all prepared to dig in.
- At our meeting, we want you to be open and authentic about both your current financial situation and your dreams for the future.
- Ideally, you’ll tell us your financial goals and snapshots of financial decisions that played a role in their past. But you’ll also dream big with us and give us the ideal future where your financial goals and your personal goals are totally aligned.
- We are not able to read minds nor do we have a crystal ball so our best advice is based upon what information you share with us.
- Pragmatically, timely communication and feedback is essential to assisting clients move forward.
Q. I’ve heard about the Cornerstone Connector, what is that and where do I find it?
A. The Cornerstone Connector is our secure, easy-to-use online portal that gives our clients instant access to their financial holdings, performance and billing statements with easy to read graphs. Clients also have access to their online Schwab statements via Schwab Alliance. Click here for a video about logging onto the portal. Click here to watch the rest of our detailed tutorials for using the portal.
Still have a burning question?
Give us a call. We’d love to answer it for you.