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What's Up Magazine

Q & A: Leading Business Professionals 2018

Feb 05, 2018 12:36PM
Q. What exactly is a Retirement Distribution Specialist?

A. Most people spend 25 years of the working life accumulating assets in their IRA’s, 401(k)’s, 403(b)’s, 457’s, ROTHs and Brokerage Accounts. This represents a distinct period in your financial life when you’re trying to accumulate wealth. As you’re getting in or near retirement, the accumulation phase becomes less important and you tend to focus more on preserving what you’ve worked so hard to accumulate and developing a strategy for the most efficient distribution for the next 25 years of your life. This requires careful planning and unique knowledge to not fall victim to the multiple dangers of the distribution phase such as longevity, inflation, taxes, market volatility, health risks and sequence of returns.This is what a Distribution Specialist does.

Brion Harris, Premier Planning Group

Q. How do I maximize returns on my personal or business checking account? 

A. When choosing a personal or business checking account, ask yourself two questions. First, what monthly fees does the bank charge? Second, will I earn interest? Once you’ve answered those questions, you can decide whether to go with a free checking account or an interest-bearing account. Free checking accounts have no minimum balance but don’t earn interest, while interest bearing accounts earn interest but have a minimum balance requirement. Both serve a unique purpose, depending on your priorities. If you have any questions, Severn Bank is glad to provide more information.

Jim Henstrand, Vice President, Branch Banking

Q. What are the benefits for business owners to work with a community bank?

A. There are many benefits for business owners working with a community bank such as Maryland Partners Bank! The decisions are all made locally, allowing for improved speed and quality of service delivery, and the bankers can understand and appreciate the unique challenges and opportunities of the Annapolis area. Our goal at Maryland Partners Bank is to develop lasting relationships with our customers and act in partnership with them to meet their individual needs now and in the future. We look forward to working with you soon!

J.D. Zachry,
Market Executive, SVP, Maryland Partners Bank

Q. Is the way retirees should invest to protect their portfolios changing?

A. Yes. Things are always evolving. Music has gone from vinyl to cassette to CDs to MP3 players to Digital Streaming. The telephone has gone from rotary to push-button to cordless to cell phone to smartphone. Investing has evolved as well from stocks to mutual funds to separately managed accounts to custom portfolio construction and diversification. The problem is many retirees portfolios look like vinyl or the rotary phone. Being diversified today means more than just stocks, bonds and cash. To protect your money in today’s global economy you need to be diversified by company, by product, by tax benefit, by asset class and with real assets vs. paper assets. This strategy is called Advance and Protect.

Brion Harris, Premier Planning Group

Q. What market trends are you keeping an eye on for 2018?

A. The last few years have been characterized by extremely low volatility which is just a capital markets term for uncertainty. This seems out of sync with the perceived level of political and social volatility. We expect these two will at some point cease to diverge and start to converge. When this convergence begins, there will be opportunities for those that see it and act.

Carl and Carlos Sera, Sera Capital

Q. How do I get started with investing and planning for retirement?

A. Getting started understandably feels like a cumbersome and often overwhelming process. However, we help people begin this process every day. If retirement is 5 or 30 years away, we sit down with our clients to understand their goals and circumstances. This enables us to design and implement an investment plan centered around you and your needs.

Max Fryer,
Financial Advisor, Folger Nolan Fleming Douglas

Q. What would you say is the key strength of your agency?

A. As a three generation local family-run business my grandfather, mother and I have worked together to build an agency that provides the efficient, high-quality services for our clients that we would want and expect for ourselves. We focus on always providing our customers with excellent claims service and superior insurance products at competitive rates. When my Grandfather, Robert Van Schaik, founded the agency in 1964, he believed that if we excelled at the services we provided and went the extra mile for customers, the business would thrive—and it has.We absolutely credit our growth and success to the satisfaction of our loyal customers.

Brittyn Honeman, Schauber-Van Schaik Insurance