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Just returned from another of those "free steak dinner" seminars; the guy advocates a propriety fund with a 2.75% annual (plus his own 1% override), non-traded REITS (similar fee structure) and annuities. I mean, geeze, he's almost at 4% out of the box! Gotta pay for those steaks somehow, I guess. ;)
I've received a lot of those invitations. But I've always thrown them away. I always supposed that they took your contact information and then harassed you like crazy. I really don't want to get on their email or phone list.

Anyone who has to sell their services via these bribes is either so new that they have no client base or so bad that no one will refer them. I confess, I've never been to one of these dinners though, having the impression they were more about selling you annuities than developing a long term investing relationship with you. We found our FP via referral from two neighbors who had been using him for several years, and were very happy with the results from the changes he had made to their portfolios. He takes new clients by referral only, way too busy to do the rubber chicken dinners.

I know how to invest, started well before joining TMF in '99, but don't want the hassle of doing it anymore, or the fights with DH that resulted from our very different risk tolerances. I of course still keep track of what's going on and make sure that we are getting acceptable returns net of fees for the current market, and still have about 1/3 of our assets that I manage. It's not a perfect relationship with the FP... what relationship ever is... and I wish he were more willing or capable of thinking outside the box. Now sometimes I have two people to convince that a strategy I want is a better way to go, but at least he usually catches on faster and helps me to convince DH. And the perks and convenience he provides for no additional fee are pretty darned nice. He's already working with our 19 year old, who has gotten the savings/investing bug by watching his Roth jump up in value. It's smart as heck on his part, developing his next generation of clients while putting a non-financial hook in current clients.

So yes, somethings are worth paying for, and happily for the past three years he's earned the extra money to pay for himself.
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