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Why We Moved: FAQs

Why We Moved: FAQs

December 23, 2019
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Why We Moved: FAQs

Thank you for your continued trust and confidence in the Gatewood Wealth Solutions team.  We know you have a choice and truly appreciate your continued relationship! 

Many of you have asked why we chose to change our broker dealer relationship to LPL Financial, especially given the more than 38-year relationship with Northwestern Mutual.  First and foremost, we made this change because we firmly believe this move is in our clients’ best interests.  The transition allows us to provide you a dynamic and comprehensive experience through enhanced technology, greater transparency, and the assurance that we will be here for the long run.

Below are answers to some of the frequently asked questions we are receiving from clients about the move.

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Partnership Strategy 

Why did you choose to make the switch to LPL?

The number one reason is that we believe the move is in our clients’ best interests. Other key benefits include: 

Improved Technology

  • The opportunity to choose our own technology partners and deliver a better digital experience.
  • Ability to offer you integrated, real-time access to your financial plans, scenario planning, performance reporting, transparency around benchmarking, and better tracking of financial goals and performance targets. 
  • You’ll also be able to more easily connect and coordinate with your GWS advisor and other professionals. 

Expanded Service Offerings

  • Greater flexibility over the portfolio management process in pursuit of better risk management, potential enhancement to excess returns, access to sleeve management, and alignment with our investment philosophy.
  • Add new service offerings, such as alternative investments and expanded consulting.
  • Incorporate potential future capabilities, such as tax planning.
  • Ability to convey timely relevant market commentary, planning strategies, educational material, and financial concepts unique to our firm through printed, electronic, audio, video, and social media venues.
  • Ability to work with second- and third-generation family members through digital investment and planning solutions designed to effectively connect and communicate key content to drive good financial behavior and better outcomes during the accumulation phase of life.

Growth Strategy

  • Ability to open offices in other cities where our clients live as well as in high growth regions.

Why LPL? What made it stand out from other custodians?

After much due diligence and research regarding optional broker dealers, our team selected LPL Financial. LPL is a leader in the retail financial advice market and the nation’s largest independent broker-dealer based on total revenues.* Its leadership is committed to providing innovative, customizable, integrated technology and robust resources to enhance our relationship with clients and support our vision. Partnering with LPL strengthens and elevates the services we provide to help guide you toward your family’s financial dreams.

LPL’s beliefs also align with ours—e.g., that objective financial guidance is a fundamental need for everyone. Partnering with LPL enables our team to focus on what we do best—creating the personal, long-term relationships that are the foundation for turning life’s aspirations into financial realities. 

This commitment to objective guidance aligns with our mission to share our experience with client families, helping them become and remain financially self-reliant, so they can give purpose to their money.  We believe that when we help families grow and maintain their wealth, we help society.

*Source: Financial Planning magazine, June 1996-2019. 

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Technology

How will the technology be different?

Keeping tabs on your financial life should be as easy as checking your smartphone. With a new mobile app that we are planning, you will be able to access your financial plan, investment performance and cash flow at any time from your mobile device or laptop. Plus, you can access your advisory team while on-the-go. The digital accessibility by no means replaces in-person meetings, but rather enhances them by offering you real-time updates. 

Rather than being limited to whatever technology Northwestern Mutual utilized, we are now able to choose dynamic and comprehensive technology partners to meet the changing needs and expectations of our clients with an exceptional digital experience.

What new planning technology will you use?

Another benefit you will receive from our move will be to reconfirm and refresh your family’s financial plan using our new planning software partner, eMoney.  eMoney is a leading comprehensive financial planning technology that is significantly more robust than our prior planning tool.

eMoney’s collaborative wealth management platform enables our team to work together more efficiently with you, your other professional advisors, and family members.  You have access anytime, anywhere, on any device. Rather than calling to learn where you stand regarding your financial plan, values will be automatically updated and available in real time.  You can do scenario planning, communicate with your advisory team on the go, and have better transparency and relevant tracking alerts. You will experience greater clarity progress towards your family’s wealth goals.

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Client Experience

Whom will I contact now that you have moved?

Your advisory team remains the same.  Your contacts are the same as before.  Titles have changed in order to comply with regulations under which the new custodian is governed, but team member roles remain the same.

What new resources will you have available that will better serve my family?

There are many new resources you will now have available.  To name a few:

  • Alternative Investments
  • Automated investment and planning solutions for second and third generation family members.
  • Access to institutional lending services through Goldman Sachs and other strategic partners.*

How will you recreate my strategic wealth plan and get me back on track?

You should have access to your family’s most recent financial planning documents to you and as stored in your electronic filing vault.  As soon as you forward this information to our team, we will update your financial plan on our new platform.

There will be a learning curve for our team. Gathering information to recreate the financial plans for all of our clients will also take time.  We truly appreciate your patience as we transition all clients to our new custodian.  

We are fully confident you will appreciate and value the expected improvements in your experience with Gatewood Wealth Solutions.

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Account Details

Will my fees be lower?

One of the reasons for our move was to find a custodian partner with whom we could achieve better pricing for our clients.  Trade costs are reduced from $15.00 to $4.95.  We simplified our advisory fee schedule to be easier to understand, more transparent, and industry competitive.  Many clients will experience lower fees.  NO client’s fees will increase.

Most importantly, new technology enables us to achieve operational efficiencies that afford us the ability to create this more competitive fee schedule while enhancing your experience with our team.

What happens with the insurance products I have with Northwestern Mutual?

Your Northwestern Mutual insurance products will remain and be serviced by a financial representative assigned by the Managing Partner.  We will continue to monitor these products as part of your financial plan but will now coordinate policy servicing with the assigned financial representative at Northwestern Mutual, contacting Northwestern Mutual direct, or working through the Northwestern Mutual online service portal with you.

Northwestern Mutual is an excellent insurance company with a long track record.  We expect to maintain these coverages.  Should circumstances change in the future such that considering alternative risk products or cancelling the coverage is in your best interest, we will evaluate your options at that time. 

A sound financial plan must first insure against what can go wrong in order to have the luxury of investing for what can go right. 

Will there be any hidden costs to my family?

No!  We will refund any account transfer fees that may be charged by Northwestern Mutual.

I have automatic payments or retirement distributions each month.  How will these be handled in the future?

We will coordinate any automated payments or retirement distributions the same as we did previously.  Once your accounts are transitioned to LPL, we will review the accounts to re-establish your automated payments or retirement distributions.

We will continue to monitor your “cash hub” to assure adequate sums in order to help avoid liquidating investments at the wrong time and potentially seize opportunities during down markets.

Our goal is to make this transition as easy and quickly as possible so as not to interrupt your cash flow requirements and financial planning needs.

Will there be any changes to how my money is managed?

We plan to continue using our advisors’ proprietary model portfolio strategies when managing your investments through LPL’s Model Wealth Portfolio platform. One of the reasons for moving to LPL is the enhanced ability to make changes to our “rules-based” portfolio management process.

Through state-of-the-art performance tracking and benchmarking technology, you will experience greater detail, more accuracy, and better transparency regarding your investments.  Performance tracking that was not previously available for certain accounts not held with us will now be possible.

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The Future of GWS

Who now owns the firm Gatewood Wealth Solutions?

Over the last 10 years, our team has worked to intentionally build the firm to support future generations.  To assure this continuity, our founder, John Gatewood, has given ownership to four firm principals:

  • Aaron Tuttle, CFA®, CFP®, CLU®, ChFC® - Chief Investment Officer & Chief Operations Officer
  • Brian McGeehon, CFA®, CLU® - Chief Financial Officer & Lead Advisor
  • Christina Shockley, JD, CFP® - Chief Planning Officer & Lead Advisor
  • Daniel Goeddel, MBA - Chief Development Officer & Senior Financial Planning Coordinator

John Gatewood will continue as Chief Executive Officer to help guide these highly dedicated professionals as they embark on this new phase of our firm’s life.  

I noticed the firm’s name changed to Gatewood Wealth Solutions.   What was the reason for the change?

A hallmark of our culture is “solutions, not answers”.  Solutions better describes our work attitude when serving client families in a more comprehensive way, especially as they face increased complexity and more sophisticated needs in their financial lives.

Another reason for the name change was “brand confusion”.  Our prior affiliation often “framed our team” as “insurance only” or “insurance focused”. Our vision is to be at the crossroads where our clients’ lives intersect comprehensive financial planning and investment management, integrated enabling technology, and financial behavioral coaching.

Where is your office located?

Our new office is conveniently located at the southwest corner of Brentwood and Highway 64/40.  This strategic location means easier central access for clients.  Parking in Clayton was always a challenge. Our new space will have plenty of parking.  The office will be outfitted with state-of-the art communication, wiring, and video conferencing to fulfill our vision’s second pillar: integrated enabling technology.

The new office is being remodeled and ready for move in by early March 2020.  We will be in temporary space in Clayton until then.

Temporary Space                                           New Space

231 S. Bemiston, Suite 400                             1401 S. Brentwood Blvd., Suite 400

St. Louis, MO 63105                                        St. Louis, MO 63144

Our team looks forward to having you at our new space once completed!

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Next Steps

Will someone on your team help us get acquainted with the new app and online web portal?

Yes!  We will be sending you instructions on how to download the mobile app to access your accounts and financial planning tool. 

We will help you learn how to navigate the information when you meet with your advisory team to review your accounts once they arrive at LPL.  Anyone from our team is available to meet with you one-on-one for instruction. We also plan to hold a training seminar on navigating the planning tool and performance reporting sometime in the near future.

What is the process, and how long will it take to transfer my accounts to LPL?

Once you sign forms authorizing the transfer, account holdings should settle at LPL within five business days.  To make this easy for you, we will use eSignature documents through DocuSign whenever possible.

Once your investments settle here, we will review the accounts, make sure the holdings are up to model, then arrange a time for us to meet and review the accounts.

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If you have any questions in the meantime, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me directly at john.gatewood@gatewoodwealth.com or 314.924.5108. Our team is thrilled to bring this new level of service to you and our entire family of clients, and we look forward to embarking on this new journey with you.

Sincerely,

John Gatewood, CFP®, CLU®

Founder & Chief Executive Officer

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