How can an advisor help investors reach their goals? Vanguard financial planner Kahlilah Dowe explains how she partners with clients to create a comprehensive financial plan. Watch the full replay »

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Notes:
  • All investing is subject to risk, including the possible loss of the money you invest. Be aware that fluctuations in the financial markets and other factors may cause declines in the value of your account. There is no guarantee that any particular asset allocation or mix of funds will meet your investment objectives or provide you with a given level of income. Diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss.
  • For more information about Vanguard funds or Vanguard ETFs, visit vanguard.com, or call 877-662-7447, to obtain a prospectus, or, if available, a summary prospectus. Investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses, and other important information are contained in the prospectus; read and consider it carefully before investing.
  • This webcast is for educational purposes only. We recommend that you consult a tax or financial advisor about your individual situation.
  • Advice services are provided by Vanguard Advisers, Inc., a registered investment advisor.
© 2016 The Vanguard Group, Inc. All rights reserved.  

TRANSCRIPT

Gary Gamma:Okay. Kahlilah, you’re in Personal Advisor Services, you can maybe toot your horn on this one. This question says, “You have talked about many strategies. Would a personal advisor develop an overall withdrawal plan including all of my investments, both Vanguard and other, and consider my Social Security income; also rebalancing as we withdraw; also reinvest strategy if I do not need the RMD?” So talk a little bit about some of those things.
Kahlilah Dowe: So we do pretty comprehensive financial planning. So we work with investors on a withdrawal strategy for the Vanguard as well as the non-Vanguard investments. Also rebalancing—I’m trying to remember everything that she gave there—but also the rebalancing. And when we think about the withdrawal strategy, we absolutely consider any income sources that you have, so pension, Social Security, and even, like I said, accounts that are outside of Vanguard. The rebalancing can be challenging though when you have assets in other locations. And I say that because when we are rebalancing the portfolio, we’re working within the portfolio that you have here at Vanguard. And so if you want to be diligent in rebalancing your overall portfolio, then you would have to do that in the other institutions. Gary Gamma: Right. And reinvestment strategy if she doesn’t need the RMD—obviously, that’s part of what we’re trying to do. Kahlilah Dowe: Right. So that’s part of it in terms of managing the withdrawals, but then also in just managing the overall portfolio because we’ll use that as an opportunity to fine-tune the asset allocation in many instances. Gary Gamma: Yeah, okay. Karen from New Jersey, writes, “Can and will Vanguard advisors help us manage our retirement accounts and rebalance our investment mixes over time? We’ve been burned by financial advisors who are more interested in selling products and looking out for their own interests rather than our interests. Or can we manage our long-term retirement accounts ourselves? What happens as we get older and perhaps more feeble?” So I think it’s important with that piece about feeling burned and trying to make sure that the advisor’s looking out for you. Kahlilah Dowe:Yeah, right. And, unfortunately, we see that too often as well. And oftentimes it’s when investors are transferring assets to Vanguard. So they’ll bring their portfolio here and consolidate. And the good thing is that it’s often because they trust us, and they like the reputation that we have. And the good thing is also that you have the option here at Vanguard where you can work with an advisor and have an investment professional help you in managing the portfolio, and you kind of have that one-on-one relationship. But you could also self-manage. And if you have a disciplined and prudent investment strategy and you’re comfortable doing that, that could work as well. One of the things that concerns me in that scenario where someone has been burned, unfortunately, and let’s say maybe has lost quite a bit or maybe paid quite a bit in fees, is what we see most often: They’ll say, “Well, I should manage it myself then.” So this terrible thing has happened to me, and in order to maybe make me feel better about that, I should manage it myself. And so it ends up, at times, being kind of more of an experiment where I’ll see if I can do better, or I’ll see if I can get back some of what I lost, which doesn’t always translate to the right investment strategy. And so, I would say I think the answer or the right next step, in addition to making sure that you’re at the right place and you’re investing in the right place, is to make sure that you’re using the right advisor—someone whose investment strategy aligns with your goals and your investment principles, that you’re keeping our costs low and that the portfolio was diversified, and that you trust who you’re working with. And we’ll certainly help with that. Gary Gamma:What about the “feeble” perspective? I’ve been blessed with parents who have maintained their wits about them well into their 80s, but do you ever talk to people that have that concern and maybe talk about having a trusted family member involved? Kahlilah Dowe: Yes. So sometimes I’ll work with a client who is maybe not at that point; but they maybe see themselves getting to the point where, let’s say, they don’t have the time to do it, they don’t feel as confident in their ability to do it on their own. And, sometimes, it’s the spouse that kind of pushes them to say, “Okay, I think we need to hire someone.” And it can be difficult. It can be a difficult change. If you’re used to managing your portfolio on your own, you’ve done it all your life, you’ve made great investment decisions, and now you’re getting to the point where, let’s say, you’re questioning what your next step is. Or maybe you don’t have the stomach for it or the same discipline that you were once able to execute. I think consulting with a professional is absolutely the right thing to do. And what we want to do, especially in those instances where it’s a difficult transition, is we want to partner with investors where you kind of handing it over may not be the best step for you at that time, but you can develop a partnership with an advisor where we’ll, of course, manage the portfolio for you, but you can be involved in terms of the direction of it. Important information All investing is subject to risk, including the possible loss of the money you invest. Be aware that fluctuations in the financial markets and other factors may cause declines in the value of your account. There is no guarantee that any particular asset allocation or mix of funds will meet your investment objectives or provide you with a given level of income. Diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. For more information about Vanguard funds or Vanguard ETFs, visit vanguard.com, or call 877-662-7447, to obtain a prospectus, or, if available, a summary prospectus. Investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses, and other important information are contained in the prospectus; read and consider it carefully before investing. This webcast is for educational purposes only. We recommend that you consult a tax or financial advisor about your individual situation. Advice services are provided by Vanguard Advisers, Inc., a registered investment advisor. © 2016 The Vanguard Group, Inc. All rights reserved.