Formulating a plan to move forward
The Challenge: Our recently divorced client had to get up to speed with her independent finances and formulate a plan to move forward.
Through sound financial planning and active investment management, Heritage Capital helped this recently divorced client get back to feeling organized and on track to a sound financial future.
Maria came to us after a recommendation from her attorney. She had worked with a financial advisor together with her husband when she was still married. However, she didn’t like that this advisor never explained things fully to her and only called them after they called him. She was looking for someone who would be more proactive and also help her understand her investments better.
As a result of the divorce settlement, Maria was receiving monthly installments that would continue for several years. As a busy professional, she had little time to figure out how to best invest those proceeds, so she was depositing those in a savings account earning very little.
Strategy and Solution
When we first met with Maria, we started with the basics: building a financial plan that would help her define her goals. Then, we built a road map so she could achieve them. The planning process included a review of Maria’s income sources, inflation, taxes, rates of return, social security, life expectancy, retirement age, and several other factors.
In the meantime, we also helped her navigate the process of buying a home and getting a mortgage. We helped her work with a mortgage broker to find the loan with the best terms, saving her in overall interest payments. We also helped her come up with a plan for filing for social security so she could maximize that benefit.
We began putting her settlement proceeds to work as payments came in. We put that money into an account that we actively managed so that we could help her grow the money but downshift risk when warranted.
Her existing investments were primarily in her employer retirement account, a 401(k). She, like many people, had experienced gains that had her overinvested in US equities, so we rebalanced her accounts to get back to a less concentrated position.
Because we frequently work with those who are divorced or who have lost a spouse, we helped Maria get back to the point where she felt organized and confident again. Today, we continue to meet with her frequently and help her stay on track to achieve her goals and retire when she wants to.