Top Questions

Who are your typical clients?

Our clients are predominantly individuals and families who have or are accumulating the level of wealth that benefits from a professional partner. As our business has grown, our client base has expanded so that about one third are institutions, primarily nonprofit organizations such as foundations, endowments, as well as corporate retirement plans. We have found that our investment philosophy and approach is appropriate to both personal investors as well as non-profit organizations because both maintain a long-term perspective and are interested in preserving a legacy.

What should you look for when selecting an advisor?
  1. Is the advisor operating as a fiduciary?
  2. Who will be managing your investments and what are their qualifications? Does the firm have an investment process that drives investment decisions?
  3. How are they compensated? Is the compensation fee-only or commission-based?
  4. Does the advisor have experience with client situations similar to yours?
  5. How often will you be able to meet with your advisor? What reports will you receive or have access to through an online portal
  6. Who has custody of your assets?

 

Once you find a few firms that may be a good match for you, we suggest that you schedule time for an in-depth interview, either by phone or in person, to ensure that you feel comfortable with the investment advisor. For more insight on this topic, we invite you to read our blog post here: https://lgam.com/blog/guide-to-hiring-an-advisor/

Why is being a fiduciary important?

Simply put, being a fiduciary means acting in our clients’ best interests all the time, in all recommendations and decisions, and doing so as our highest priority. Litman Gregory has always acted as a fiduciary advisor and always will – upholding this standard is one of the reasons we have put in place an ongoing succession plan and ownership structure to enable us to remain independent and committed to our clients forever.

Will my Litman Gregory team support me throughout my investment lifetime and into the next generation?

Of course. Our firm has been built to help clients over the long term, and we have already been operating for three decades with many multigenerational clients. To ensure that we can maintain long, successful relationships, we:

  • Limit the number of clients managed by each advisor
  • Offer ownership incentives to retain talent and limit team turnover
  • Pay competitively and actively develop long-term career paths for our team
  • Invest in a healthy and vibrant corporate culture
  • Align our financial success with that of our clients by earning fees based on assets under management rather than commissions
If I become a client, what happens next?

At this point you most certainly have met many of the people who will be working on your team. Once you partner with us, we’ll start with an official kickoff meeting where we will ask you many questions to learn more about your goals and specific circumstances. That’s critical before we can create a customized action plan.

Why do you work with institutional investors?

We have found our investment philosophy and approach to be especially appropriate for nonprofit organizations as we combine the role of an investment consultant and an investment manager to provide an integrated approach to managing and meeting return objectives. We find that the work we do with institutional clients has a way of benefiting all our clients because of the research and rigor required by those organizations.

Do you provide custodial services? (How do I know my money is safe?)

We believe that our clients are best served through independent advice provided without the conflicts of interest of custody and pricing of investments. Therefore, we partner with respected organizations, such as Charles Schwab & Company and Fidelity Brokerage Services, LLC, who provide the custodial services for the majority of our clients’ assets. We then implement our investment management services through a Limited Power of Attorney arrangement. This arms-length relationship provides an important additional layer of security and service to our clients.

How large is Litman Gregory and who owns the firm?

We currently have 14 principals and approximately 50 employees, with over $7 billion in assets under management. The firm is owned and operated by its principals. For employees who are not principals, we have established a profit-sharing pool that provides incentives to help retain our key talent.

How is Litman Gregory paid?

As an independent registered investment advisor, we have a fiduciary duty to always act in your best interest. We earn a fee for managing your assets, not for investing in particular products. This eliminates conflicts of interest, ensuring that every investment we select for your portfolio is based on your needs, not because we are compensated for recommending it. Our fees are based on assets under management and typically range from 0.3% to 1.0%. Our fee percentage decreases as the asset level increases. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you want to discuss this further.

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