We Walked Away from the Big Box Brokerage Firm and We’re Loving It

Sustainvest clients

Mary and Elizabeth both live extremely busy lives. Their time to worry about which asset class or stock they are invested in is limited. Being in a same sex relationship for over 20 years has brought a somewhat additional complexity to their finances, but they have been able to save as much as possible and according to their financial plan, will be able to comfortably retire within the next five years. And why not. After both working in their same positions for most of their professional lives, maxing out into their 401k accounts has enabled them to be able to enjoy the fruits of their labor into their 50s.

Mary and Elizabeth

Being conscious about where they spend their money and saving as much as they could, this soon to be retired couple is able to kick their feet up and enjoy some travel adventures.


Age
65 and 61


Location
Santa Monica, CA


Milestones Achieved
Being able to kick back and enjoy the fruits of their labor and afford their love of international travel.


Invested For
Want to be overweight in companies that are addressing gender diversity and strong minority representation. Want a sound fixed income strategy that is free and clear of junk bonds, but also more heavily weighted in green bonds and community impact notes.


Invested In
Trust accounts, 401ks, and IRAs

Several years ago, when Mary and Elizabeth asked their advisor at a big box brokerage firm if they could be invested in line with their own personal values, they weren’t very excited with their answer. As Mary points out, “We had a rather good relationship with our advisor, but regardless of that, we were set on making sure our money was in line with sustainability and our values. And they couldn’t give us the answer we were looking for.” They asked around and were quickly transferring their accounts over to Charles Schwab with Sustainvest as their new advisor, making the process rather seamless. They both wished they had done it sooner.

On top of transferring in their existing accounts with two separate custodians, the couple is now in the process of having to roll over their employer retirement accounts into their IRAs being managed by Sustainvest. Their allocation has shifted considerably into a more risk averse asset class breakdown.

They were excited to get a financial plan done as well, as it gives them a strong idea as to how their spending lines up over the years against their income and assets. Sustainvest uses financial planning program MoneyGuidePro to help clients get an idea on how much they should be saving and what their spending looks like relative to their portfolio. With both a solid asset allocation that matches their timelines and lifestyle along with having annual reviews of a financial plan, they feel like the retired life may keep them busier then when they were working full-time.