I am always receiving e-mails soliciting my attendance at seminars on a myriad of topics related to the financial services industry. In early May, one solicitation really piqued my interest, not because I was going to attend, but rather it was the subject matter I found interesting, How Offering “High Touch” Bill Pay Services Can Help RIAs Differentiate. The invitation went on to say, the more value-added services you, the RIA, provide clients, the harder it is for them to replace you. Identifying a safe and secure bill pay service can solve a major pain point for ultra / high-net-worth (U/HNW) clients, further deepening the advisor-client relationship.
Why did this pique my interest? Having been a Trust Officer forever, we have always offered Bill Pay Services as part of our commitment to lifestyle management for our clients, especially to all of our Revocable Living Trust clients.
Every person’s situation is unique. Life’s progressive problems are not.
It seems as though many of life’s exciting “firsts” happen early on. First words. First steps. We learn from our mistakes and avoid touching a hot stove, and cherish the joy and novelty that accompanied every unique moment. As we collect more and more “firsts”, we know what to expect and how to prepare, and start to rely on our own experience more. We start to cherish the firsts of others, such as a child’s or grandchild’s first steps, but sometimes lose sight of all the firsts we still have ahead of us ourselves.
We never run out of “firsts” when it comes to life.
As we get older, there are all kinds of new “firsts” and the support and experience of others is as important as it’s ever been. Some of those firsts may be creaking in joints and learning one’s new limits, others may be cherishing the joy in grandchildren’s faces as their excitement seems everlasting at Disney World. In facing retirement, one needs to be able to create structured time as never before. One needs to plan for increasing costs of healthcare and be able to keep track of the financial management of the household when their memory isn’t quite what it used to be. One also needs to be willing to bring in support when appropriate, even if they feel they can do it all themselves.
Our living trust clients are most often retired or soon-to-be retired with this relationship spanning his or lifetime. We understand that every client’s journey is different, but we have experience to share, and offer lifestyle management services to help overcome some of the pitfalls associated with the difficult “firsts,” so that more focus can be placed on those one would cherish.
Lifestyle Management is going the “extra” mile, and surpassing expectations.
As trustee or co-trustee we can be empowered to take over everyday chores such as paying bills or assisting with tax preparation through a CPA firm; however, we are limited in the services we provide. When we can’t solve the problems, we like helping clients find someone who can.
Lifestyle management isn’t only understanding that transitions are going to be needed as we age, it’s about comfort. Knowing and understanding the options available, so you can want to make choices, instead of being forced to decide. Each client is going to have different comfort levels when they want or need additional care, and it’s pretty awkward facing these choices for the first time.
Some might think of us as a gateway toward solutions beyond the traditional trust services or a concierge for the unfamiliar services that have to do with retirement and aging. We address issues with our clients such as dealing with increasing healthcare costs or downsizing their living arrangements; we’ve come to know some of those solutions that can help in each area.
That means we could:
- Arrange for Long-Term Care Insurance when appropriate
- Arrange for Medical Reimbursement
- Arrange and monitor In-Home Care
- Arrange for Independent or Assisted Living Alternatives
- Arrange and help with the sale of a home when moving into an Independent or Assisted Living alternative
Our primary business is the financial health of our clients, but we care about their physical well-being and whether or not they are getting the care they require too. Thus, we gladly help our clients with lifestyle management services when appropriate.
Wishing you enjoyable summer months with family and friends,