Hourly Based Fee
Only Advice
Call today to arrange a meeting.
1 (902) 393-1248
P.O. Box 1201     Charlottetown, PE     C1A 7M8
T: (902) 393-1248 (direct)     CorkumFinancial@pei.sympatico.ca     www.CorkumFinancial.ca

My Fee Only Financial Planning and Tax Services

My Role

I offer individual financial planning services, and I offer group seminars.  For group seminars, I offer sessions on financial planning essentials to protect your income and assets; investment basics; retirement planning; seniors issues; tax tips and traps; and related financial issues.  For details and costs, for which there may be none for non-profit groups, please contact me directly.

For individual financial planning services, please continue reading.  (For my credentials and experience, see my Curriculum Vitae (a PDF file)).

My Service Approach

For my fee only financial planning assignments, I request individuals (or couples, when applicable) to complete a Financial Planning Questionnaire and bring it with them to our meeting. As part of the preparation, I ask you to write down all of your questions and issues in advance (more will likely arise during our meeting). This preparation allows me to come up to speed quickly on your family / financial position, and enables me to ensure I focus on your specific questions and objectives at the meeting. Of course, this also improves the efficiency and effectiveness of our meeting, and, hence, reduces the time and related fees. I also ask you to bring your most recent tax return, and any other information you think is relevant to your questions (e.g. your investment portfolio statements for income forecasts and risk advice, your Will for estate planning advice, pension estimates for retirement planning, employment information for severance advice, etc.).  As a reminder, all information is held in strict confidence within my office.

Time and Fees

While my rate is $195.00 plus taxes, the cost will depend on how long the assignment takes me.  There are three typical types of assignments that I encounter with respect to financial planning.   They are as follows:

1. Specific Issues 

Many individuals have certain aspects of their life that they wish to discuss. Typical questions relate to whether or not a person’s investment portfolio is properly designed for safety and income; tax issues related to disposal of property or transfer of assets to children, either during lifetime or through a Will; determining appropriate levels of life (or other) insurance; tax or investment advice related to receipt of an inheritance or retiring allowance; cash flow and tax issues related to marriage breakdown; management of debt, particularly when nearing retirement; advice related to the estate and final tax returns of a deceased parent; starting a new business; and overall tax planning, in addition to many other similar financial issues. If you have prepared in advance as requested, these types of meetings typically are well focused, and last about one to two hours. If you wish to have a written report, it usually takes me about an additional hour. My hourly rate is $195

5, plus applicable taxes.  During our meeting, I will also ask you to read and sign a short Disclosure Engagement Letter.

2. Detailed Budgeting and Retirement Calculations

Sometimes individuals have done their own budgeting and only wish a review of their calculations with advice on improvements. Often, I may be asked to provide a second opinion on a retirement plan that was done on a complimentary basis by a bank, insurance or brokerage firm. In such cases, this type of assignment is similar to the one above, and may only require a couple of hours. In other cases, a person needs assistance with determining their budget, planning for debt payments, forecasting their future cash flow and preparing the detailed calculations to assess whether their retirement plans are viable or not. This type of assignment can vary dramatically from a couple of hours to a full day, depending on the individual circumstances, and it is difficult to provide an estimate of cost.  For someone who knows their annual spending and sources of income, we can usually do a computer scenario and discuss planning in two to four hours.

3. Comprehensive Financial Planning

A comprehensive financial plan involves a review of many financial aspects of your life. We may be looking at your current cash flow situation, tax planning, investment portfolio analysis, insurance and other risk management considerations, planning for future education costs of your children, retirement planning and, finally, Wills and estate planning. We may be looking at various alternatives within each of these areas to ensure you select the appropriate approach for your particular circumstances, and we may be looking at modifications to your needs as time goes on to deal with future changes in your life. A comprehensive financial plan normally takes several meetings and several days, with a cost that can be as high as $2,000-$3,000. When evaluating your needs and the related costs, you need to think ahead and the impact on not only your future, but also that of your family. Will there be future financial benefits to you from a change in your financial management now? Sometimes there are non-financial issues to consider as well, such as sleeping well knowing that your financial future is secure. Unfortunately, too many people obtain financial advice on matters such as retirement and debt management when it is too late to make the necessary changes to continue their preferred lifestyle.

Making an Appointment

You may telephone me to set up a meeting at 902-393-1248. Note that I do have a busy schedule, but will return your call if I am not available when you telephone me (although it may be the following day). I am typically booking appointments two to four weeks into the future. I do offer counselling to clients outside of the province, but, of course, face to face is usually easier. In such cases, I have an introductory phone call, ask people to mail / email / fax their documents to me, including my questionnaire and a list of written questions and objectives. We then communicate by telephone for an interview, if a visit is not possible, after I review the paperwork and after obtaining any necessary additional information. If your issues are not urgent, we may be able to arrange a meeting during a visit to each other’s province in conjunction with some other travelling.

My Credentials, Limitations and Objectivity

I am an hourly-based fee-only financial planner. I have my CPA, CA credentials, as well as my financial planning, insurance and financial divorce counselling designations. However, please note that I am not licensed to provide individual investment recommendations, or to sell insurance products. I can work with you to discuss your overall investment portfolio design, risk balance and insurance needs, but cannot recommend, advise on or buy/sell individual securities or insurance policies. If you need assistance in these matters, I can work with you and your existing investment / insurance advisors or can refer you to licensed brokers; however, I do not have established referral agreements with any specific individuals, and receive no referral fees, commissions or other such payments for my services. In this way, I maintain my independence and credibility.  Know that there are individuals who do “fee only financial planning” but fee only may not be what you think it is.  “Fee only” may mean that the planner charges you a percentage fee based on the value of the investments that you hold with them.  In addition, there are those that charge you by the hour for advice, and then offer to sell you product as well from which they collect a commission.  Finally, there are those that charge hourly but get paid a referral fee from another sales representative to whom they recommend.  I suggest that you need to ask questions of all of us that claim to be financial planners to know if we are free from bias and have the appropriate education.

Remember – it is your money but there are lots of people who would like to have it.