Financial planning that matches your ambition.

Our Process

We’re passionate about good financial advice. Helping you achieve and do more is what drives us.

How you earn, spend, and invest your income will determine your future lifestyle. We approach planning with a pragmatic, data-driven mindset using a fact-based process to determine the best path for you. It begins with an empathetic discovery session to help us understand your goals and give you a higher probability of success.

What to expect—
1. Intro Meeting

You’ll give us with a few details about your financial life so we can provide an initial assessment of how we can help. We get to know each other and answer your questions.

2. Onboarding

After determining if a relationship makes sense, we’ll welcome you into the Bull Oak family. It’s easy and painless. We take care of the details.

3. Discovery

We start with a mind-mapping session and throw everything on a whiteboard. We’ll dig into why you’ve worked hard for your money and what it’s all for.

4. Strategy & Design

We’ll create a plan to achieve your version of success. This is a jumping-off point. It’s not a document that collects dust—it’s a methodology.

5. Action

Bull Oak will continually oversee and optimize your finances. But beyond the work we do behind the scenes, we’ll also meet with you throughout the year.

Q1
Annual Meeting
Q2 – Q3
Accountability
Q4
Tax Planning
Investment Philosophy

When we invest, we focus on three principles: diversify efficiently, favor small value-based stocks, and systematically manage risk.

1. Diversify

Nobody can reasonably predict which individual security, sector, or asset class will outperform the others. The markets are very efficient. As such, it makes sense to diversify.

We diversify across asset classes, such as stocks, bonds, and alternatives: US Stocks, Developed Market Stocks, Emerging Market Stocks, US Government Bonds, International Government Bonds, Investment Grade Corporate Bonds, High Yield Bonds, Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities, Real Estate Investment Trusts, Cryptocurrencies, and more.

It is important to note that while we invest in emerging market stocks, we intentionally do not invest in Chinese or Russian stocks. For more on this decision and the reasons why, read on here.

Many investors make big bets, often without knowing it, typically on a particular company, country, or asset class. By diversifying properly, we help our clients avoid this mistake. We rely heavily on low-cost, passive ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) to accomplish this.

2. Small & Value

Small company stocks have been empirically proven to outperform large company stocks. This can be partially explained by risk – small companies are inherently riskier, so investors demand a premium for taking on this risk.

Value stocks have also been empirically proven to outperform growth stocks. We focus on broadly diversifying across cheaper companies with higher levels of profitability as they have a higher expected return than growth stocks, which are more expensive with lower levels of profitability.

 

3. Risk Management

To help keep clients from making the grave mistake of selling during periods of high volatility, we created the Risk Contribution Method. This methodology helps remove the natural human instinct of buying high and selling low (where we should be buying low and holding on for the long-term). It will instead underweight asset classes of high risk and overweight those of low risk.

While the sub-asset class levels (e.g. U.S. large-cap stocks) are largely efficient, the major asset classes are not. It is common for stocks to be at risk when an economic slowdown is imminent, whether that be a growth rate slowdown or an economic expansion. Sometimes, but not always, this coincides with periods of investor euphoria. In short, when stocks have had a good run and they are at their riskiest, we simply take some money “off the table.”

 

 

It is also common for stocks to be underpriced during periods of investor panic and economic contraction. After a stock market crash, we are able to take advantage of cheaper equity prices and buy at discount prices.

The Risk Contribution Method identifies these periods by carefully evaluating reliable forward-looking indicators. We then underweight those risk assets and overweight others to take advantage of these misaligned prices.

Common concerns we can help with:
  • How much wealth do I need to make work optional?
  • Am I using my income wisely?
  • Do I have the right mix of assets?
  • How can I lower my taxes?
  • Am I taking on too much risk? Not enough?
Our Fees

Our fee structure is designed to be fair and transparent. We aim for longterm relationships, so it’s essential you’re treated well and are happy. As an independent fee-only firm, we don’t accept commissions or kickbacks for any investment or planning recommendation we make.

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