Boelman Shaw takes a disciplined, thoughtful, and personal approach to financial management. Acting as trusted fiduciaries rather than commissioned brokers, we develop prudent, risk-conscious investment strategies designed to best meet each client’s individual needs and goals. We integrate tax planning into our financial service offerings, enabling us to gain a more comprehensive view of a client’s outlook and develop a more effective plan for long-term growth.
At Boelman Shaw, we view your financial plan through four main windows: investments, retirement planning, estate planning, and risk management. When you work with us, we’ll discuss each of these areas with you in detail to ensure we’re developing a complete strategy to accomplish all of your financial goals.
At Boelman Shaw, we take a personalized approach to financial service. Each new client relationship begins with an introductory meeting, where we get to know each other, discuss your needs, and go over the services we can provide. If we find that we’re a good fit for each other, then we’ll ask you to gather some information for us to analyze so we can make initial recommendations. At the presentation meeting, we’ll review our analysis with you and discuss the attainability of your stated goals. If appropriate, we’ll make recommendations for improving your chances of success, and when our plan is finalized, we’ll host an onboarding meeting and begin implementation.
With your financial plan in place, we’ll continue to schedule meetings quarterly, semi-annually, or annually to provide updates, review progress, and make strategic adjustments to your financial plan.
A variety of factors play into the suitability and effectiveness of an investment plan. Boelman Shaw can help make sure that your investments are efficient, diversified, and in line with your goals and appetite for risk.
If you have a 401(k) with your employer and leave your job before you retire, you need to decide what to do with your retirement plan. You may be able to keep it where it is, but you won’t be able to contribute to it anymore, and your ability to make withdrawals may be limited. You could also cash it out, but this comes with costly penalties if you haven’t reached retirement age (59 ½ for 401(k) plans). Rolling the funds into another retirement plan, either a new 401(k) or an IRA, is a popular option.
Into a new 401(k)
If you go to work for a new employer who offers 401(k) benefits, you may be able to roll your old 401(k) immediately into the new one, allowing you to continue to take advantage of the simplicity of automatic payroll deductions and a plan administrator to manage your investments as well as employer contributions, if available. Rolling at least a portion of your old 401(k) into a new one allows you to keep making tax-free contributions up to the 401(k) annual limit, which is significantly higher than the limit on IRA contributions.
Into an IRA
An IRA gives you more control over the costs of your investments and, in most cases, a wider range of investment options than a 401(k). Not everyone can contribute to an IRA, however, as various income restrictions apply. If you are eligible for an IRA, it can allow you the freedom to manage your investments the way you like within a tax-advantaged retirement savings account.
Like a 401(k), traditional IRA funds are contributed tax free and grow tax deferred. Withdrawals, which can be taken without penalty beginning at age 59 ½, are then taxed as ordinary income. Generally speaking, this is most beneficial for workers who are currently in higher income tax brackets than they expect to be when they begin taking distributions, since contributions reduce taxable income in the year they’re made.
Instead of allowing an income tax deduction for contributions, a Roth IRA provides tax-free income in retirement. It also gives you more flexibility in making withdrawals: you can withdraw principal from a Roth IRA at any time and for any reason, and you don’t have to take required minimum distributions as with a 401(k) or traditional IRA. Withdrawals of earnings on your contributions, however, may be subject to income tax and penalties if made before you turn 59 ½ or before the account has been open for five years.
IRAs that are inherited from someone else have traditionally been subject to complicated tax laws, and the 2019 Setting Every Community Up For Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act has created additional complexity, particularly for non-spouse heirs. If you inherit any IRA, it’s important to work with a professional who knows how to navigate the complex rules that surround them to avoid penalties.
You have several options when it comes to saving for your children’s education. Boelman Shaw can help you determine what type of accounts could be most beneficial for your family and select investments to help them grow. The tax advantages offered by 529 plans and Coverdell Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) make them popular choices.
529 plans are among the most common ways to save for college. They are typically sponsored by states, but you can choose which state’s plan to invest in. Contributions are often deductible from state income tax, and both earnings and qualified withdrawals are tax free. Withdrawals for non-qualified expenses, however, are taxable as income and incur a 10% penalty.
Coverdell Education Savings Accounts
A Coverdell ESA provides greater flexibility by allowing families to use more of the funds for K-12 education and by providing a wider range of investment options. Earnings accumulate tax free and withdrawals for qualified expenses are not taxed. However, Coverdell ESA funds must be withdrawn by the time the beneficiary reaches age 30.
The experts at Boelman Shaw can help you select tax-efficient investments that fit your needs and goals. We take a personal approach, gaining an understanding of why you’re investing so we can best advise you on where and how much to invest. We’ll also make sure your assets are appropriately diversified, eliminate hidden costs, and assess the amount of risk in your portfolio. As fiduciaries, we always put our clients’ financial interests first when recommending investments.
A comfortable retirement requires planning. Boelman Shaw can help you clarify your retirement vision and design a strategy to realize it. First, we’ll look at where you are now, help you set realistic goals for the future, and create projections for achieving them. Next, we’ll develop a tax-efficient strategy to replace your income in retirement. We’ll track the progress of your investments and make adjustments when needed to keep you on the path to the future you envisioned.
While estate planning is critical to those who have a large amount of assets, it isn’t only for the wealthy. Basic estate planning tools allow people of all income levels to determine what happens to their assets after they die and limit any tax burden on their loved ones.
A will is an essential estate planning document that can save your family a great deal of stress. A will helps to streamline the probate process while helping to ensure that your property is distributed as you wish. If you have minor children, then a will is necessary for you to direct who should care for them if you were to die before they reach adulthood. Beyond these basic functions, a will can also be a foundation for a larger estate planning strategy that works to minimize the amount of tax your loved ones will have to pay on their inheritance.
Trusts are not just for the wealthy. A revocable living trust is a common estate planning document that specifies how your property should be distributed, and it can also allow your family to avoid the cost and stress of probate. You can change a revocable trust at any time during your life, but it doesn’t confer tax benefits. An irrevocable trust, on the other hand, cannot be changed without permission of its beneficiaries and removes the assets it contains from the grantor’s taxable estate, making it useful primarily for those with larger estates.
Boelman Shaw can help you set up the estate planning documents you need and coordinate with your attorney to ensure that all pieces of your estate plan are working together.
Life insurance is an important tool for managing financial risk. Not only can it protect your loved ones from hardship resulting from the loss of your income, but it can also provide added financial security during your lifetime. There are several different types of life insurance, and it’s important to choose a policy that addresses the specific risks that you and your family face.
The two main types of life insurance are term and permanent insurance. Term life is the least expensive option. It remains in effect for a set period of years, providing a payout only if the insured passes away during the policy term. Term insurance is popular among young families who are facing certain costs for a limited period of time, such as paying off their mortgage and raising children, and need an affordable life insurance policy to cover them.
Permanent life insurance not only provides a death benefit but also allocates a portion of monthly premium payments to a savings or investment account. In this way, permanent life insurance policies build cash value that you can access during your lifetime or use to increase the death benefit amount.
In addition to a life insurance policy’s basic provisions, a number of riders are typically available for additional cost. Riders can serve a variety of functions. For example, a rider can allow you to skip premium payments if you’re disabled or access a portion of the death benefit if you become chronically or terminally ill. The professionals at Boelman Shaw can help you assess the risks in your life and find an insurance plan to match.