By Ryan on June 7th, 2017
Over recent months, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know Chase Moore, a financial advisor with Trilogy Financial. Aside from having a penchant for fine cocktails, we both share a passion for road biking. But when I learned that he used to work in the construction industry in southern Colorado, I knew Chase had an interesting story to tell…
[Chase] Yes, growing up, my Dad built custom timberframe and log homes in Southwestern Colorado and I was always running around job sites sweeping sawdust and learning from his example of how to work hard and to do the job right the first time. When I graduated from college and moved to Denver, the construction market was booming, and it was a great place to start my career as a project manager.
My entry into the financial world started when I became a client of Trilogy, the firm that I work for now. My wife and I didn’t have a lot of money left over at the end of the month, but we were motivated to get started early with a financial plan. Trilogy took our motivation seriously, and we got started with a debt repayment strategy and a meager savings plan. Over the course of 3 years, we saw progress in our savings and also became debt free!
Being a construction project manager in one of the hottest new housing markets in the country means two things; good money and loads of stress. The stress of the job was beginning to affect my personal life, and I knew that I needed to make a career change. Project management Is all about looking into the future and planning each step that is needed to accomplish a specific goal, ie: Knowing a solid foundation is needed before the walls can be built. I realized project management was very similar to being a financial planner and with my personal experience of having our lives changed by the financial planning at Trilogy, I wanted to be able to help with this important service for others. I reached out to my advisor and simply asked, “How do I become a financial planner like you?”
The most enjoyable aspect of my work with Trilogy is the mentorship based internal structure that we have. Transitioning from a career in construction management and into financial planning, I began a 12-month training program before I ever earned the right to begin taking on my first clients. The 12-month process was full of internal training & skills tests, sitting in on senior advisor’s client meetings, case planning and preparing paperwork. It was a full immersion into financial planning with the collective help of senior advisors.
Once I earned the right to begin taking on my own clients, I continued to work on a team of advisors to ensure that it’s not just my knowledge that is making a financial plan, but it’s a wealth of knowledge working together to ensure that we’re doing our best work for our clients. Constantly being challenged to grow, having access to my team, and being mentored by senior advisors to do my best work has been life changing!
The key to getting started is to create the habit of saving, regardless of the amount. Most guys tend to think, “I’ll start saving once I get this bonus…” or “I’ll make sure to transfer a few hundred bucks to savings at the end of the month.” A few months later, the bonus check got spent on a weekend trip to the mountains, and the few hundred bucks ended up becoming a sushi dinner with friends.
I’m more impressed with someone who saves $50 a month consistently than someone who saves $500 sporadically because of the habit that they’ve created. It can be life changing. Once the habit is in place, when the eventual raises and bonuses come, it’s a natural progression to increase the monthly savings amount.
If you’re someone who already has the savings habit down, now it’s time to ask; “What’s the money for?” It’s great to be sitting on a pile of cash or a healthy investment account, but finding a purpose for the money will help guide your steps for the coming 10 or 20 years. Once you know what the money is for, it will then guide your investment choices, savings rate, and account characteristics to ensure that you’re being most efficient when saving toward your priorities.
The first thing that you should look for in a financial advisor is whether they are a fiduciary or not. An advisor who is a fiduciary is legally obligated to act in their client’s best interests at all times. This is a crucial place to start when trying to find someone who is going to manage your hard earned dollars.
Once you’ve found your fiduciary, you need to establish the expectations of the relationship. Simple questions such as: “How often do we meet each year to review my accounts?”, or “What is your fee structure?” are all very important questions. It’s critically important to know what you’re getting into before you make your choice. At Trilogy Financial, I’ve made it a priority to be transparent and upfront with my clients about how we’re going to work together, what it costs, and exactly what to expect moving forward. By organizing all of my client’s assets into one, simple-to-use place, checking in with them on a quarterly basis, and consulting with them about non-investment concerns such as protection and estate planning, it’s my goal to provide the best planning relationship possible by putting my client’s interests first.
I would advise against making your choice of financial advisor based on the expected returns that they’re touting or if they have a magical product that will somehow solve your problem. Financial planning is about a long-term relationship that helps you make better financial decisions over time, not chasing returns or fancy products.
At the end of the day, it’s the long-term relationship with your advisor, not market performance or a fancy product, that will help you stay accountable to your goals and move closer toward your priorities.
For me, dressing well communicates a sense of responsibility and that I take my job seriously. Wearing a suit that fits, a freshly pressed shirt and accessories that compliment my style all communicate that the work I do for clients is important and I take my role in their life seriously. As a financial planner, it’s important to make a good first impression, but more importantly, to be meticulous in the financial planning that I do for my clients and I want that planning to be reflected in how I am dressed.
Advisory services provided by TrilogyCapital, Inc,. a Registered Investment Adviser. Separate advisory and securities services may be provided by National Planning Corporation (NPC), a SEC Registered Investment Adviser and broker-dealer. Member FINRA and SIPC. Certain registered representative with NPC are doing business under the name of Trilogy Financial. TrilogyCapital, Inc. and Trilogy Financial are affiliated by common ownership and are separate and unrelated to NPC. Please consult with your representative to confirm, on which company’s behalf services are being provided. The opinions voiced are for general information only. They are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual and do not constitute an endorsement by NPC. To determine which investments may be appropriate for you, consult with your financial professional. Please remember that investment decisions should be based on an individual’s goals, time horizon, and tolerance for risk.