With so much out of our control, it can be difficult to find the variables that are actually within our grasp. “That’s why it’s so critical to have a trusted investment advisor on your side,” says Jed.
“We can develop a financial plan and an investment strategy which we have confidence to stick with, in all market cycles (good and bad.)”
Jed notes that we can also choose to tune out the hype from the media and self-proclaimed financial gurus and, instead, choose to believe evidence-based strategies.
Construct a goals-based portfolio
At Rockwater Wealth Management, your first step to building a solid investment strategy is identifying your goals.
“We start with a discovery interview to determine WHY you are investing, and your specific goals,” says Jed. “Next, we create a plan paired with a strategy to make sure the plan stays on track, making course corrections as needed.”
Only then, Jed says, is his team able to make investment recommendations.
“Your WHY and your PLAN are infinitely more important than choosing between Investment A or Investment B.”
When working with Rockwater Wealth Management, you have a trusted team of advisors with a wealth of experience on your side to help you articulate and reach your goals, by allocating your assets appropriately, diversifying them globally, and rebalancing them regularly.
Smart asset allocation and diversification
While there’s no way to know for sure which of your investments will be top performers, the team at Rockwater Wealth Management aims to structure each portfolio to help withstand whatever the future might bring.
“Investment returns are not guaranteed, and past performance does not indicate future returns,” says Jed.
And while there are many possible outcomes to investments, which are difficult to predict, Jed says the key to investing well in an uncertain market is through proper asset allocation and diversification. By striving for lower overall volatility and the prospect of increased returns, you have the potential to yield positive, stable returns over the long term.
Why should you rebalance your portfolio?
“We regularly review our investors’ portfolios to ensure their investments reflect their goals and target asset allocation,” says Jed.
Rebalancing is simply the act of selling a little of the outperformers and buying a little of the underperformers to bring us back to our target asset allocation. In essence, it automates the process of buying low and selling high, thus taking emotions out of the decision-making process.
A regular rebalancing strategy helps to avoid emotional reactions to market volatility.
Stay the courseWhile you should practice tuning out the financial market ‘noise’ that urges us to act based on bear and bull markets, Jed says that you shouldn’t take a “set it and forget it” approach to your portfolio.
“That’s where we come in,” says Jed. “We’ll look for strategies to keep your costs low by minimizing your taxes and other expenses and add in shock absorbers while you’re approaching retirement for when, not if, the market goes down.”
What is a shock absorber?
As much as possible, you should try to protect yourself from having to sell when the markets are low. So, when you are three to five years away from retirement, or in retirement, Jed recommends putting three years of income in something that is less volatile. “We call this a shock absorber,” he says. “When we get together, if the markets are up, we top it back up to three years. If the markets are down, we don’t top it up and wait for the next meeting. Simple, right?”
This strategy helps to ‘stay the course’ during the inevitable times when things that we can’t control throw us a curveball.
TEXT SHELANNE AUGUSTINE | PHOTOS ANDREW FEARMAN | INFOGRAPHICS CARL RICHARDS, BEHAVIOUR GAP