Financial Literacy

A Gateway to financial planning Tech tolls can open doors for new investors

A recent financial industry trend has been to introduce technological tools designed to automate the wealth management process. These tools, called “robo-advisors,” could become a gateway to financial planning for consumers who have yet to take their first steps toward planning for their financial future.

“Truth is, many consumers may spend more time planning vacations and weekends than planning for retirement or business transitions. There lies an opportunity for the industry,” said Norm R. Lemus, CPWA®, CRPC®, CEPA senior vice president at UBS Financial Services Inc. “If robo-advisors cause a consumer to start thinking about retirement, that’s a good thing. Robos could be great for consumers or for advisors if they jump-start the planning conversation.”

Lemus takes a “less is more” approach to financial planning, serving select investors and entrepreneurs with a high-touch business model. This service model allows Lemus to develop strong relationships with clients, and to understand their unique financial situations, he said.

norm600x400“I believe the most critical part of our job is to truly know our client; if we don't know them at a deep level, we can't help them,” Lemus told “Advisors Magazine” during a recent interview. “We try to make our clients feel comfortable having conversations with us that would otherwise be uncomfortable. More often than not, the numbers and terminology are not what makes a client uncomfortable. Rather, there is always something deeper which is the issue at hand. Our goal is to understand the issues all the way to the emotion of it, and educate them in simple terms with as little jargon as possible to promote positive action.”

Robo-advisors may draw new investors into the industry, but a skilled financial planner remains essential. Many clients, even those who have achieved great success in their professional fields, may struggle with financial literacy and can feel overwhelmed by the proliferation of products and the number of decisions that need to be made. Lemus works with these investors to help develop a tailored solution built around their financial goals.

“The only way we feel we can do that is to get to know our client and all that is important to them,” he said. “We need to have a deep understanding of their important values, goals, relationships and interests. We must understand both their financial and nonfinancial assets, the depth of their existing trusted advisor relationships, and the process they use to manage their finances.”

A strong client-advisor relationship allows for effective communication and in-depth planning. Lemus works closely with clients to help them navigate their retirement plan and preserve their assets Lemus works to educate his clients to help them avoid mistakes that cost not just money, but family stability.

“This is not a money industry, it is an industry about people. We must remember wealth extends beyond investments,” Lemus said. “We need to address wealth along with the opportunities and concerns it brings. It requires conversations that go deeper and get to the heart of what really matters.”

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Norman Lemus is a Financial Advisor with UBS Financial Services Inc., 2555 E. Camelback RD Suite 600, Phoenix, AZ 85016. Any information presented is general in nature and not intended to provide individually tailored investment advice. Investing involves risks and there is always the potential of losing money when you invest. The views expressed herein are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect the views of UBS Financial Services Inc. UBS Financial Service Inc. offers both investment advisory and brokerage services, which are separate and distinct and differ in material ways. For more information regarding the distinctions and the different laws and contracts that govern, please visit UBS Financial Services Inc. is a subsidiary of UBS AG. Member FINRA/SIPC.


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