1. What can Mosaic Fi help me with?
We provide financial planning and money management to help people plan for their short-term and longer-term goals and objectives. Most of us require guidance…for a few reasons:
- Financial education, particularly investing and planning, is rarely provided in our school systems.
- If our parents did not know much or plan well, chances are we did not learn much at home.
- The language used in the financial world can be confusing and off-putting.
- Readily available advice on the web is designed for the masses. An advisor will suggest what is best for you and your particular situation.
- An advisor can reduce stress, help you organize your financial life, and assist you in making sound financial decisions. They help take the “emotion” out of important decisions.
2. What time commitment is required from me?
Generally we have 2-3 in-depth conversations at the beginning of our relationship. The first meeting allows us to learn about each other. You can share your goals, concerns, and overall situation with us. It is also an opportunity for you to learn about what we can and will provide you, including services, fees, communication schedule, and our philosophy.
If you feel comfortable that Mosaic Fi is a match for you, then a deeper dive into facts and figures is required to start the financial planning process. We will ask you for bank, 401(k), investment account statements, tax returns, real estate statements, loan statements, estate planning documents, insurance policies, etc. The more information you can provide, the more we can help you.
After the plan is done, regular check-ins (often quarterly or semi-annually) are recommended for clients whose assets we manage. We also encourage clients to reach out to us whenever there is a change, a transition, or you just want to talk! We are here for you.
3. How does Mosaic Fi get paid?
As a fiduciary to all our clients, we believe fees must be transparent and easily quantifiable. An advisor should always be able to answer a question about their fees. There are two primary ways advisors get paid to manage money.
Fee only advisors like Mosaic Fi charge a percentage of the assets they ultimately end up managing. For instance, if you have $500,000 and the advisor charges 1%, you pay $5000 annually to the advisor for their services. This fee would include financial planning services, technology tools, and other services as part of their fee. Depending on the advisor’s fee structure, the percentage charged may decline based on how much money is being managed. Mosaic Fi primarily uses low cost mutual funds to populate your asset allocation. Those fees are incorporated into the purchase price of the shares. However, we can break down those fees so that you can easily see your investment costs.
Brokers (also may call themselves advisors) charge transaction fees and receive “trailers” from the funds they sell to their clients. It is generally advised to work with “fee only” advisors as their interests are aligned with yours (your money grows, so does their fee and vice versa) as well, as there is no conflict of interest since they are “product” neutral and receive no commissions from any financial institutions or mutual fund companies with whom they invest your assets.
In addition, there are fee only planners who charge a fee to do financial planning but do not manage your assets. Mosaic Fi provides fee only financial planning, too. Our planning fee may be credited towards a future investment management relationship if it is done within twelve months of the financial plan.
4. What are the benefits of having my investments managed?
Over 90% of investment returns are determined by the asset allocation. The asset allocation is the “mix” of investments and may include stocks, bonds, mutual funds, cash, private equity, real estate funds, etc.
Asset allocation is determined by an investor’s time-frame, appetite for risk (ability to withstand volatility), and need for income and tax considerations. Once we understand your financial goals and engage in financial planning, we will determine the asset allocation and select the appropriate investments we believe will be in your best interest. As a fee only advisor we are product neutral. We help clients by investing for maximum growth at a level of risk that is appropriate for them. In addition, the investment accounts are regularly monitored for re-balancing based on the performance of the markets. We also monitor our fund managers in the event there are big changes or significant underperformance.
5. What questions should I ask when interviewing Mosaic Fi?
- How do you get paid?
- What credentials have you earned?
- What is important to you?
- Describe a typical client?
- How do you make investment decisions?
6. Do you work with men?
Yes! We love men, have male clients, and work closely with the husbands, brothers, sons, fathers, uncles, and male friends of our female clients. We choose to position ourselves as women-friendly because we know that women:
- historically have not been properly served by our industry
- often shy away from money matters
- statistically outlive their male counterparts often feel more comfortable sharing their concerns with another woman
- appreciate partnerships
7. Does Mosaic Fi work with clients outside of Chicago?
Yes! We are fortunate to have clients all over the US as well as international clients. For periodic updates with our clients outside of Illinois we utilize Zoom to do conference calls and screen share meetings which can be easily scheduled in different time zones.