+ How much does it cost?
There are two fees to consider when engaging us. Firstly, an initial one-time plan fee and secondly an ongoing monitoring fee for the funds you invest through us. Your plan fee is charged at $200 per hour plus GST and estimated before work begins on your written plan. Most plans take between 5 and 10 hours to complete. This includes meeting time and communications between us to gather your information. Your ongoing monitoring fee is charged as a percentage of the capital sum you invest.
+ How do I know if your fees are reasonable?
That's a good question and one that should be asked by every investor considering engaging a financial adviser. Fees vary from adviser to adviser, but we think the following questions are good ones to help you compare costs between advisers.
|Question||Totara Wealth Management|
|How much do you charge for preparing a Financial Plan?||Plan fees are charged at $200 per hour plus GST. Plans typically take between 5 and 10 hours.|
|Do you charge an implementation fee?||No.|
|Do you use only active managed funds? Do you use passive funds and ETFs? Do you recommend direct shares and bonds?||We consider all types of tradeable investments. Our investment recommendations are based entirely on a client's circumstances, preferences and needs.|
|How does brokerage work?||Brokerage is always a cost when buying and selling listed shares and bonds. It is directly payable to the placing sharebroker. Sometimes advisers take a share of brokerage, we don’t. We only charge a monitoring fee and access the best rates we can for you.|
|Do you include a recommended portfolio's overall TER* in your written recommendations?||Yes. A TER (total expense ratio) is disclosed on every new portfolio recommendation. These are the underlying indirect costs charged by fund managers.|
|Who pays for your research?||We do not have any arrangements to get research in exchange for placing business. We pay our own way.|
|What is your policy on soft dollar commissions?||Totara Wealth has a strict policy on soft dollar commissions. Besides the occasional pen or bottle of wine we may receive from investment companies at Christmas, we refuse any offers for travel, conference registrations and research.|
|Does your company get a margin on the products you sell?||No, because we don’t take commissions or brokerage and only charge monitoring fees.|
+ What is the minimum amount for investment?
We don't have a hard and fast rule about minimum sums available for investment. Our advice is best suited to investors with more than $300,000 available for long-term investment but we are happy to discuss this if you’re accumulating long-term savings.
+ I want a monthly payment from my investments. Can this be done?
Yes. Many of our clients in retirement are invested to support a regular monthly withdrawal from their portfolio to supplement their household retirement income.
+ Are there exit costs?
No. If for any reason you want or need to cash up your investment portfolio, there is no associated exit fee.
+ Can I sell my investments at any time? Are my investments locked in?
We only recommend highly liquid and tradeable funds and securities. Investment sales can be made at any time at your instruction and sales proceeds are received typically within 5 to 7 business days.
+ How do I know you’re qualified and experienced?
Have a look at our OUR TEAM profiles. We are a highly qualified adviser team with over 40 years of combined experience providing financial planning, investment advice and UK Pension Transfer expertise in New Zealand.
+ Do you receive payments from other parties for selling their investments to clients?
No. Totara Wealth Management is built on the premise that the best financial advice is independent financial advice. For that reason, we have a strict policy not to accept any form of brokerage or commission from investment companies. We are not party to any contractual relationships requiring us to place investments, nor do we accept any "soft" commissions such as travel, conference registrations or research. We pay our own way.
+ What guarantees do I have?
There are no guarantees when investing in direct shares, bonds, managed funds or even term deposits. Investing fundamentals are based on getting a return for taking risk, as returns arise from the act of taking on risk. What we do guarantee however is investment portfolios that are diversified in many ways, suitable to your needs and circumstances, that minimise your overall risks depending on your required or expected long term rate of return.
+ What are the returns?
There is a reason why most investment materials contain the following phrase, 'past performance is not indicative of future results’. We cannot know what markets will bring tomorrow for our investors, nor accurately predict when a market correction will rear its ugly head, or how long a market boom will last. What we do know is that in the long-term, a diversified investment portfolio constructed for an investor based on their needs and risk profile has the highest likelihood of achieving expected returns in line with that risk profile.
+ What are the risks of investing?
Investors face a multitude of risks. Some key risks we aim to minimise through diversification are:
- market risk – when prices fluctuate in the short-term but become more predictable over the long-term
- currency risk – when returns are impacted by movements in the NZD
- default risk – when a company may not be able to repay interest or your principal on a bond, debenture or term deposit because the company fails
- interest rate risk – when your fixed interest investments are negatively impacted by a change in direction of interest rates
- geopolitical risk – when a political event in a country negatively impacts markets and therefore your investments
Risk is a necessary and inherent part of investing. The trick is to invest prudently, with sufficient diversification to minimise overall risk, and keep an eye on long-term return objectives. Setting aside short-term market trends in favour of staying the course over the long-term is the best way to achieve your long-term goals. Well known US manager Peter Lynch reminds investors, "You get recessions, you have stock market declines. If you don't understand that's going to happen, then you're not ready, you won't do well in markets." This highlights the importance of knowing that economies are cyclical, but markets have always shown that they will recover – in time.
+ What is the value of paying for advice?
All financial advisers charge fees – and the question is: Is advice worth the cost? You can plan and invest on your own, but evidence suggests that you’ll be further ahead with an adviser, even after you pay for their services. Two important studies conclude that investors who work with financial advisers have more wealth and investible assets, on average, than those who do not. Read the studies here (page 9) and here (page 14).