October 2020 | Posted By John Reagan

Cheers Bar featured in “Cheers” TV show, Established in 1895, Boston, MA., New England, USA (Photo by: Joe Sohm/Visions of America/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Here at HIG, we are passionate about service and hospitality. What does this really mean to us? In this short post, I’ll share a couple of points on how we approach serving you. Since our founding 15 years ago, we have talked inside our walls about the magic combination of two places: Cheers and the Four Seasons. 

If you are under age 35, you might not be familiar with the fictional bar Cheers. For the rest of us, we know Cheers is the home away from home, where everyone knows your name. While we may not scream out your name when you walk through our doors like those famous Cheers regulars, we seek to create a welcoming space at HIG. Our goal is that everyone who walks through the door, from our favorite mail carrier (Saronda we’re talking to you) to our newest prospect, feels this intention. 

We also look to the Four Seasons approach, where any staff member is empowered to solve a client’s problem and even anticipate her needs. This means each one of us on the team takes personal responsibility for helping our clients. How does this change your experience? In short – we make it happen. Whatever you need. One recent example, my colleague Abby recently completed a last-minute, socially-distant emergency notarization for a client before their child left for college.

Now that you know more about our aim, we want you to hold us accountable. If you have any suggestions for us, let’s talk. You can book 15 minutes with me here.

 

October 2020 | Posted By Buddy Reisinger

With politics being everywhere in this heated time before the election, it’s natural to wonder, do politics belong in your financial plan? A recent article in the New York Times looks into just this question.

The key point: as an investor, your advisor’s views should have no part in your plan. At HIG, you and your personal wealth goals are what matter to us. If you want your politics to be a part of your future goals, we will help you decide how to do that. Our politics will not enter the picture. 

If you are not a client of ours, and are worried that your advisor’s political outlook is influencing their advice to you, here are some suggestions taken directly from NYT the piece: 

  • If you think politics factor into your adviser’s strategy for your nest egg, ask for explanations. A good retirement planner will be able to articulate how the actions taken by politicians can — and can’t — affect your portfolio.
  • When emotions are running high, resist the urge to dismiss your adviser on the spot — a knee-jerk reaction when it comes to your retirement security isn’t a great idea. Don’t do anything that’s not part of a long-term investing strategy.
  • Talk to your adviser about how specific economic policies affect your portfolio. Politics might be about people, but your investment decisions should be informed by the ramifications of, say, bond-buying or tax-code changes.
  • Try to keep an open mind. A different viewpoint from one you hold might give you valuable insight for your long-term savings goals.
  • If you want to integrate your political views more directly into your retirement planning, some advisers suggest working with someone who has knowledge and expertise in E.S.G. (environmental, social and governance) investing strategy.

At HIG, we have a single-minded focus on putting the odds of your long term success in your favor. And, as fiduciaries, we are legally bound to work in your best interest. Period. We are passionate about what you need from your plan to help you live the life you want, and give you peace of mind. 

So, our message during this period will sound familiar to our long-term followers: focus on what you can control, keep calm, and take the long view. Your nest egg and legacy will thank you.

Read the NYT piece here.

October 2020 | Posted By Rick Hill

We love images that show “the long view”. My daughter, Laura Hill, recently visited Sequoia National Park and took this image of another hiker as he soaked in the view from the top. Interested in having your photo featured in our newsletter? Follow us on Instagram and tag us in your posts to show how you envision the long view!

October 2020 | Posted By Abby Crimmins

One question we hear often is, how do I teach my kids about money?

We’ve shared our conversation with Marilyn Wechter about subtle ways to set our kids up for success with money and talked about how not to be a snowplow parent, but what about the nuts-and-bolts? How can we teach our kids the basics of saving, the power of compound interest, and how capital markets work? In other words, how do we make finance fun?

Recently, John and I had a crash course in teaching a trio of teenagers. We thought we’d share some valuable takeaways you can incorporate into your own “money talk” with your kids. 

The meeting’s highlight was “Roll with the Market”, a dice game that aimed to replicate the stock market. We also introduced them to our version of Finance 101: budgeting, savings, goals, credit cards, and Rick Hill’s favorite Rule of 72.

In “Roll with the Market”, the kids decided if their money was “in” or “out” through 10 rounds of dice rolls. The game gave the kids a taste of what it’s like to be invested in the stock market, simulating a rising or falling market’s emotional effects and changes to their investments. To our surprise and satisfaction, the three kids stayed in the market all 10 rounds, never once deciding to sit out (equivalent to going to all cash). Even at this young age, they were able to intuitively understand and take the long view!

Here are a couple of tips for keeping children engaged as they learn:

  • Use cold hard cash – Once we threw some cash on the table and got them involved in helping manage it, they were hooked. 
  • Gameify the essential topics – Making the lesson a game reframed their idea of money from obscure to practical and made it fun! They were also able to practice and absorb the lessons without just listening to us drone on. 
  • Make it relevant – We believe the real power of wealth lies in creating freedom and options to lead the life you choose. By asking a couple of pointed questions, we were able to help them understand that money can power their dreams, even now. The key was showing them money matters today – not just in the future. Each member of the family was totally engaged, asking great questions, participating in thoughtful conversation.

If the idea expressed here sounds good to you, let us take “the money talk” off your hands. Contact us about scheduling a family meeting. You never know what small spark will set off your child’s long-term success with money.

October 2020 | Posted By Nell Schiffer

We have talked in the past about how to keep your information safe online, but what about your kids’? In this era of Zoom classrooms, kids are more in charge of their cyber safety than ever before, and parents are sick of remembering and retrieving passwords. What’s the solution?  

Below we’ve distilled some wisdom shared recently in this Wall Street Journal article

  • Tell them why – Passwords stop others from using your computer or pretending to be you over the internet. 
  • Long is best, and silly beats the rest! – Use a silly sentence as a password. Silly sentences are easy to remember and hard to guess. What’s the silliest sentence you can think of? 
  • Secrecy and consequences – Only you know your secret code. If you lose or forget it you might not be able to play with your friends. Trusting an adult with your password is ok. 
  • No peeking – Passwords are secret. Before and while you enter your password, make sure no one is watching. 
  • Check for the little padlock – The little lock in the address bar shows you have a secure connection, and it’s safe to enter your password. 
October 2020 | Posted By Katie Ackerman

 

 

This month, John & Molly Reagan welcomed their fourth child, and first girl, Catherine Marie Reagan, into their family on October 3, 2020.  She was seven pounds, fifteen ounces and nineteen inches long. Congratulations John and Molly!

September 2020 | Posted By Scott Krajacic

Photo Credit: René DeAnda

Whether your political views are right, left, or somewhere in between, you should check out this video. Election years tend to heighten everyone’s anxiety. This video does a great job of helping us as investors understand what to do.

As changes to tax reform, foreign policy, and social issues loom, it’s totally natural to be tempted to make short-term portfolio changes to profit from the uncertainty, or to minimize losses. But, as we know, markets are extremely efficient at processing new information and adjusting prices based on future expectations, so research would tell us any fears or expectations about the results of the presidential election are already baked in.

So, what’s a savvy investor to do? Our friends at Dimensional Funds skillfully reframe the perspective provided by the regular media.

Going back to 1928, when Herbert Hoover was elected president over Al Smith, the S&P 500 has returned on average 11.3% during election years and 9.9% in the subsequent year. In fact, there have been only three presidents in history that have seen negative returns in the stock market over their presidential tenure: Herbert Hoover during the Wall Street Crash of 1929, Franklin Roosevelt during the Great Depression, and George W. Bush in the 2000s during a time known as the Lost Decade.

Our takeaway? Make sure your investment plan fits your goals and stick with it. No matter what the regular media is saying, the data shows whoever is in the White House is unlikely to negatively impact the long-term value of your nest egg.