My name is Phil Ratcliff and I am making this video to help potential clients understand what is different about rebel Financial. A lot of times it is very difficult to understand. There’s a lot of advisors that don’t understand what the difference is between someone that’s captive, between somebody that’s independent, between somebody that has actually opened their own investment advisor. So really, to me, the most important thing that makes us different than just about any other financial firm out there is that we are fiduciary to our clients all the time. Even some times in some circumstances when the law doesn’t require to us to be, I am telling you right now that we will always be a fiduciary for you.
What does that mean? That means that we do what’s right for our clients before it’s right for ourselves and our firms. And when we’re talking about your retirement, or your kid’s college, or protecting your estate, or your children, extended family, making sure you don’t run out of money, these are very important things. And I to have to be constantly surrounded by a marketplace that’s trying to sell you something that you don’t know if that’s in your best interest or they just make more money because they sell it etc., that’s why I believe this is very important.
So, again, that makes us very much different because a lot of companies spend a lot of their resources to make sure that they’re not fiduciaries. And we just stand up from day one and say we’re a fiduciary all the time.
The second thing is because of how we’re organized and that I’m small, that I don’t have to build this huge corporate structure of CEOs, CFOs, independent regions, and different sub-levels of offices and branches etc. We cut out a lot of the middle man and so we cut out potentially hundreds to thousands of people that were getting paid, like some of the bigger name broker dealers and investment firms. So in that respect, even though we are a smaller company, on average we lower the cost about 30% for our clients.
Then the next thing is with our company kind of goes along with being a fiduciary, is we’ve really lowered our conflicts of interest. We don’t represent one company or one investment firm. We don’t take money from the insurance providers or from this mutual fund companies. Generally, how we make our money is from you. So when you pay a fee on what you have under management with us, and we can keep that with TD Ameritrade, or Schwab, or Scottrade, a lot of employers at TIAA-CREF, or Fidelity, or Vanguard. So in that respect, we try to lower the potential of having a conflict of interest to where we would be representing someone else beyond you. So, to me, that’s very important.
Nobody could totally get rid of conflicts of interests. So beyond that, whenever we do have or I have them, I want to make sure that you understand them as well so that we are totally transparent. And even though I think that I’m doing the right thing, you’ll know that, “hey, under this scenario Phil makes or gets this”, “under this scenario he doesn’t.” So even though I may think that I’m being totally impartial, we can’t always control ourselves, we’re human beings. So that helps more people be involved in the decision process.
Then another important thing is that I have discretion over all my client accounts. And what that means is I can trade my client’s accounts however I want, whenever I want. Now I don’t do that. I’m not going to fundamentally change the somebody’s strategy. However, to make efficiency and optimization changes this is very important. It’s one thing that I always had a pet peeve about, working for a big broker dealer in the past was what if this fund manager changes and I don’t like it. Well, if I had to call 300 or 400 people and I only got a hold of someone one out of four or five times I call them, then how long is it going to take me to get permission from everybody and then to do it one at a time; I mean, anywhere from one to three months. That is not a sustainable business model and so it just doesn’t happen. Those things don’t happen.
And really, if you ask most people, “what’s a financial advisor do?” I would think that most people would think that that’s being done, and it almost never is. But I do, do that. Again, that comes back to the efficiency of why I can charge less.
Something that would have taken me three months: now say I want to get rid of a specific stock or say we did have a fund manager change and I wanted to change to a Vanguard fund that charges one third as less, I can pull that up in all my client accounts sell it, buy the new security, slam it back down to everybody’s account in 15 minutes. Three months to 15 minutes. That’s huge. And that’s just one example.
Then the last thing we work with a lot of the employers. Through our relationships with TIAA-CREF and Fidelity and Vanguard, we can work with a lot of the employers around the state primarily is where I work, but we could anywhere in the nation, with the hospitals or the universities. So in that respect, usually in the financial market, you really have to get to where you’re like 50 to 65 before you build up enough money to where you can get a decent price or even an advisor to pay attention to you at all. Whereas with these employer integrations we have the ability to manage a larger pot of money that our clients have, but is just locked up in the employer plan.
And this has many benefits, because those plans get managed, like IRAs and after-tax funds, which is much better. A lot of times once I’m installed in those then I end up being a consultant to the HR and to the plan sponsors and, to the investment providers. We have better investment options, we finds ways to cut costs, we find ways to improve enrollment into these things. It’s just a feedback system. So again, another reason that rebel is unique and adds value to our client base.
So I apologize if this video was so long. I wanted to take the time to put this content out there for those of you that wanted an understanding of why should I hire them versus going to this big firm out there or going to this person. So you have this information. We do hope that it helps.
I do hope that I will be able to help you towards a brighter financial future in the future. Thank you.