The personal finances of busy, affluent people are complicated — often more so than those of a small business. Paying the mortgage for the summer home in Maine, sending the monthly rent check to the daughter in college, remembering to send the estimated tax checks, paying the plumber who sent a second bill last week, dealing with the nanny tax issues — these are just some of the myriad things to remember every month.
You probably don’t cut your own grass, or change your own oil — why are you still paying your own bills? Often we hear that prospective clients are afraid of losing control of their finances. Our response to that is that by using our professional services you will enjoy much more control. Spend an hour or two looking at the big picture, rather than looking for stamps and envelopes. Our cash flow reports show you the big picture, allowing you to see for the first time where your money is really going.
HOW IT WORKS
- You send us the bills, statements, etc., in our postage-paid envelopes. (Once we are under way, we will arrange to change the addresses on most of them so they come directly to us).
- We review all invoices and bills prior to paying them.
- We make the payments: We can sign the checks for you under a limited power of attorney and make the payments directly using any of several on-line systems; or,
- If you wish, we return the checks to you to sign and mail. Stamps are on the envelopes, and everything is ready to drop in the mail. (This is in the event you opt out of having us sign the checks for you; the level of service you choose can always be changed later based on your needs).
- At the end of each month, we can post all the checks you have written from your personal account, as well as credit card charges, so that our reports include all activity for the month.
- We also prepare a schedule of payments for which there are not regular bills, such as estimated taxes and real estate taxes, or even a monthly rent check for a student away at college. We make these checks automatically before they are due.
- Each quarter, we send you a cash-flow report that summarizes your income and expenses for the period, to help you with your financial planning.
- At year-end, we prepare a detailed report listing all income and expenses, broken down by category (e.g. clothing, groceries, salary, charitable contributions, etc.) for you and your tax advisors.
Many families with family offices have found that turning the bill payment and bookkeeping chores over to our professionals is a very valuable change. In essence, we work as the “back office” for the family office. Our thirty-plus years of personal bookkeeping experience enables us to manage the process more efficiently, and often helps us to see potential problems that might slip by others.
Another very important aspect to this is that we can provide “a second set of eyes” on the books, through which pass considerable sums of money every year. By reconciling bank statements and coordinating closely with the family bankers and other advisors we can greatly improve the integrity of the family’s finances.
This brings many benefits to the families that it supports, including:
- Frees administrative and support personnel from dealing with the personal finances of their managers—often an uncomfortable situation for both the executive and the assistant. Our services assure that personal finances remain personal.
- Eliminates potential liability issues in the case of misuse of personal funds by administrative staff. The occasional check that is written in the office will be more carefully scrutinized than a stack of thirty or forty checks might be.
- Saves on operational costs. Because we handle everything in one centralized location, using highly computerized accounting systems with our own check printers, our work is very efficient. We provide postage-paid envelopes for sending documents, and are able to process transactions with any bank in the U.S.
- Provides better financial data and control, allowing families to manage their own finances more efficiently. We will coordinate with other financial services providers to consolidate reporting when needed.
- Makes other financial services—such as tax preparation, financial planning, estate planning, etc., more efficient and accurate. This enables families to meet their financial goals more effectively.
- We can provide bookkeeping for multiple family entities—trusts, family limited partnerships, investment companies, etc., and consolidate the information into one overall report for the family members and advisors.
Senior corporate executives work long hours and have heavy travel schedules, so our personal bookkeeping services are particularly helpful for them. We have been assisting CEOs and other senior executives since we started the business, and many have been with us for more than twenty years. Our services can also provide immediate benefits to the corporation – rather than deferred benefits which only appear when the executive retires. Our services can help executives be more productive, eliminating worries about personal finances while working, or on the road.
Personal finances are meant to be personal, not something that is taken care of at the office. We help make that happen by taking over those chores and letting our professionals manage the details. Then we send very accurate and useful cash flow reports to the executives.
Many benefits accrue to a corporation that encourages senior executives to turn their personal bookkeeping chores over to our professionals.
Among them are the following:
- Frees administrative and support personnel from dealing with the personal finances of their managers—often an uncomfortable situation for both the executive and the assistant. Our services ensure that personal finances remain personal.
- Eliminates potential liability issues in the case of misuse of personal funds by administrative staff—a not uncommon problem.
- Allows company personnel to concentrate on company business, saving eight to ten hours per month per executive—equivalent to one day per month.
- Frees the executive from financial worries while on company business, making him or her more productive.
- Provides much better financial data and control, allowing executives to manage their own finances the same way they manage their clients’ finances.
- Enables executives to take overseas assignments free from worry that their personal finances and control will suffer. We can handle all their U.S. financial affairs while they are overseas.
- Makes other financial services—tax preparation, financial planning, retirement planning, etc.—more efficient and accurate.
- The services can be provided regardless of where the executive is located. We are presently assisting clients in 22 states and 7 foreign countries.
Athletes & Entertainers
Professional athletes and, to some extent, entertainers, have a particularly unique financial need. Often, their earning potential peaks while they are relatively young, and this means that they must take special care of their financial resources.
We can work with athletes, entertainers and their representatives to establish “loan-out” or personal service corporations, and handle all the bookkeeping chores for them. Thus, our services benefit them in a number of ways.
Among them are the following:
- Frees managers and support personnel from dealing with the personal finances of their employers—often an uncomfortable situation for both the entertainer and the assistant. Our services assure that personal finances remain personal.
- Eliminates potential liability issues in the case of misuse of personal funds by administrative staff—not an uncommon problem.
- Allows managers and agents to concentrate on promoting the business, saving ten to twenty hours monthly—equivalent to one or two days per month.
- Frees the athlete or entertainer from financial worries while working and traveling, making him or her more effective.
- Provides much better financial data and control, allowing other financial advisors to work more effectively, and to plan and meet financial goals efficiently.
- Makes other financial services—tax preparation, financial planning, retirement planning, etc., more efficient and accurate.
- The services can be provided regardless of where the individual is located. We are presently assisting clients in 22 states and 7 foreign countries.
- Our fee is based on the work required, not on assets. As a result, we are assisting many entertainers for the same cost as any other business executive. This can save clients thousands of dollars annually.
- We have been providing personal bookkeeping services since 1987 and are about the only firm in the country specializing only in personal bookkeeping for affluent individuals.
Non-Resident Property Owners
Many of our clients reside abroad but own property in the United States. They turn to us for help with the ongoing bookkeeping requirements related to those properties, which are often apartments that are used when the clients travel to this country or, in some cases, are leased out.
We handle all the bill payment, real estate tax payments, and coordination with tax accountants, attorneys, etc. When the property is leased or rented, we can also receive the payments and make the deposits.
Many benefits flow from this service, including:
- Frees the owner from having to send documents, payments, and other paperwork back and forth from an overseas location to the U.S.
- Eliminates possible late payments, interest charges, and the shut-off of services resulting from non-receipt of bills or invoices.
- Keeps confidential financial information within this country.
- Ensures that the bank accounts are kept properly funded. We use an escrow bank account system which is funded by the owners, and for which bank statements are provided on a monthly basis, available to the owners.
- Provides much better financial data and control, allowing owners to understand exactly what the property is costing.
- Enables the owners to truly enjoy their properties without having to worry about the financial details related to ownership.
- Ensures that the real estate taxes are kept current. Failure to make timely tax payments results in costly interest charges and can even lead to more serious consequences such as tax liens, etc.
- The services can be provided regardless of where the owner is located. We are presently assisting clients in 22 states and 7 foreign countries.