I’m certainly not an investment guru, but I’m always interested in learning about investment services such as Rebalance IRA. Why? Let’s face it, picking and managing investments for an IRA, (or any retirement account) isn’t easy for the average Joe and it’s serious business. After all, these decisions impact you in your retirement years!
Wouldn’t you agree that it’s not typically a good idea to become a do-it-yourself investment manager unless you’re willing to take the time determine your all your long-term goals, evaluate your risk tolerance and certainly, make sure you’re investigating and making the right investments to support your plan?
This is where financial advisors enter the picture because they are professionals in helping people align investments with personal goals. Also, most people can’t handle the emotional side of investing and need a professional to calm their nerves and keep them on point when the going gets tough and there are downswings in the market.
My interest in Rebalance IRA grew more when I found out how transparent they are about fees and how they have positioned themselves as a service versus commission based organization. They also invest using lower cost Exchange Traded Funds or ETFs (more on that later) versus expensive mutual funds and have a solid foundation with highly experienced professionals.
What is Rebalance IRA?
So, what exactly is Rebalance IRA? Rebalance IRA is an investment firm focussed on helping people manage Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) using what they refer to as a passive investment strategy. In other words, their belief is to let the market work for you and therefore, not waste time or money trying to beat the market with a lot of short-term transactions.
You might have a opened a traditional IRA if you changed jobs and rolled over a 401K from your previous employer’s account. If you’ve been trying to manage the account yourself or haven’t been giving it the attention it needs, Rebalance IRA’s services may be of interest to you. That said, you may want to also consider them for a different perspective if you have a financial advisor managing your IRA for you.
There are numerous challenges people face once setting up IRA accounts. Without professional guidance, many people lack a long-term strategy based on their risk tolerance and goals. Most people don’t know where to invest their money and how to diversify it. And once the money is invested, the task of rebalancing and keeping their portfolio in order is forgotten or overwhelmingly set aside for another day.
Rebalance IRA’s services help people overcome all of these challenges. So, how do they do it? Their approach consists of 4 steps and is quite simple:
Rebalance IRA Approach
1. Advise – Once you request a free consultation, their initial step includes reviewing your current investment allocations, identifying any areas for improvement and recommending an ETF portfolio and long-term plan based on their investment methodology (more on that below).
2. Transform – In this step, Rebalance IRA helps you in selecting an investment platform. They partner with Fidelity and Schwab where your investments are managed. Note – Rebalance IRA states in their FAQs that they do not have a financial relationship with either of these financial institutions. Once you establish an account, it’s yours and you receive the statements directly from the financial institution.
3. Grow – Grow is where an advisor monitors your investments, rebalances your portfolio as needed and keeps you updated along the way. This is also where annual reviews are conducted that look at how your portfolio is doing and to make sure the chosen investment strategy is still in – line with your long-term goals.
4. Relax – Finally, Rebalance IRA states that this final step is simply letting the markets do their work over the long-term. And again, this is where most people fail when investing. They don’t relax and often look at their investments on a daily basis. Finally, with a market downturn, they panic sell low and force themselves into buying high as the market starts climb or even worse, after it’s returned. This is emotionally painful and an overall bad investment strategy that Rebalance IRA seeks to help people avoid.
Rebalance IRA Methodology
I’m not going to spell out all of the Rebalance IRA investment methodology details in this post because you can easily visit the Rebalance IRA investment methodology page on their website as well as schedule a free consultation with an advisor to ask all of your investing questions.
However, in a nutshell, Rebalance IRA seeks to help investors maximize returns while minimizing risk. For those of you who are familiar with basic investing principles, you accomplish this by diversifying investments across different investment classes (stocks, bonds, real estate, etc.) based on a number of factors including age, risk tolerance, investing goals, etc.
This is obviously a sound strategy, but what types of investments are chosen by the Rebalance IRA investors to accomplish this? They focus solely on using ETFs which are less expensive than mutual funds you’ll find many financial advisors using.
ETFs are basically a collection of stocks that follow an index such as the S&P 500. Investing professionals can’t earn fees from ETFs so they aren’t as commonly used by advisors. They can be purchased through a discount broker at low trading costs and don’t have the management fees that are typically associated with mutual funds.
Rebalance IRA Cost
Sounding good so far, right? So, what do the Rebalance IRA services cost you and why does Rebalance IRA beat the fees you might be paying a financial advisor?
The Rebalance IRA website states they “can save you on average 45% to 72% in annual fees.” They are very up front in that their advisory fees are .5% and you pay .2% in ETF fees. Keep this in mind – It’s commonly known that fee only advisors (not the commission based kind) charge 1% for their management fees.
Also, the Rebalance IRA website states the following about ETF fees:
“The average actively managed mutual fund charges an annual fee of 1.27%, while the average ETF charges just .2%.” “Mutual funds are six to 10 times more expenses than ETFs because they hire pros, who attempt to select a few stocks within the index that they believe beat the entire index.”
Overall, the specialty services of Rebalance IRA is a much cheaper option and saving you more money with investment management services means more money in your retirement years!
Okay, sound approach and investment methodology, cheaper investments, cheaper management fees, but does Rebalance IRA truly offer services backed by professionals with adequate experience to manage your IRA?
Who’s Behind Rebalance IRA?
Rebalance IRA has several top notch professionals in the industry at the helm, but most importantly to note their investment advisory board is highly accomplished.
Burton Malkiel is a senior economist at Princeton University and author of investing books and many investing pieces for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Financial Times. He’s also served on the board of such organizations as the Vanguard Group.
Dr. Charles Ellis has taught investment management courses at Yale and Harvard, has also sat on the board of the Vanguard group, Yale and Harvard business schools.
Finally Jay Vivian is the former Managing Director of IBM’s retirement funds and oversaw $135 billion in investments for more than 400,000 employees. He’s been quoted as an investment expert in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today and other well known publications.
These experienced and well respected individuals in the financial industry all believe people should invest for retirement using a low-cost, passive investing methodology that matches the market returns of the long-run versus short term strategies of trading lot’s of stocks to beat the market. And again, that is the emphasis behind the Rebalance IRA approach and investment methodology.
Read more about the Rebalance IRA Investment Advisory Board and team here.
How Do You Get Started?
There you have it. A run-down of Rebalance IRA from their service, to approach, methodology, cost and the people behind it. The services Rebalance IRA are offering makes a lot of sense in the cost savings and the passive investment strategy of long-term returns using lower cost ETFs.
They’ve made it easy to get started by providing the option to schedule a free consultation. There is absolutely no obligation other than a little bit of your time to let their professionals review your current portfolio and share any areas for improvement. Note: the minimum investment is $75,000. If you’re below, they recommend you continue saving and by purchasing a Vanguard LifeStrategy fund and reach out to them when you reach the minimum.
Ready to learn more? By clicking here, you can fill out a short form and schedule an appointment completely free of charge. It also provides you the opportunity to ask any questions you may have about their investment strategies, the team of advisors, their approach and more that this review or the website hasn’t answered for you.