Defining Confidence™
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Frequently Asked Questions

What is your management fee?

The annual investment management fee for Portfolio Solutions® is 0.37% for the first $3 million of investment assets managed, and 0.20% for assets greater than $3 million. It is recommended that our clients have assets in excess of $1,000,000. A total relationship value below $1,000,000 is subject to a $925 minimum quarterly fee in lieu of the 0.37% annual management fee.

What is the minimum size relationship needed to get started?

A minimum relationship of $500,000 is required. There are no limits on the number of investment accounts or balances per account.

How can you charge such a low management fee?

Portfolio Solutions® is committed to charging you a fair price. A typical investment manager charges his/her clients fees of 1% per year on average. That’s much too high given technological advances in the investment management industry over the past 20 years. High investment manager fees persist because the public doesn’t know that a low-cost solution has been available for more than a decade at Portfolio Solutions®.

Will I have an advisor assigned to me?

Yes. Every client at Portfolio Solutions® has a dedicated Investment Specialist who will monitor your specific individual goals and objectives and work with you to align them with your investment strategy.

Are you a financial planner?

Portfolio Solutions® is an investment management firm. We are not “traditional” financial planners. However, as part of developing your ConfidenceMap™, we will discuss financial planning-related topics.

How quickly can you start managing my investments?

The process to start managing your investments can vary, depending on your availability to talk with an Investment Specialist to develop your ConfidenceMap™. For a motivated investor, the process may take as little as 10 business days.

Am I involved in the day-to-day portfolio decisions?

Each portfolio follows an investment strategy that is decided and approved by you in advance and is outlined in your ConfidenceMap™. You are hiring Portfolio Solutions® to monitor and manage your accounts, according to your ConfidenceMap™. As such, you will not be hassled by us seeking permission to perform routine management and monitoring. If you have questions about your account(s), simply contact us by phone or e-mail.

What is index investing?

Index investing is based on the concept of capturing stock and bond market returns at the lowest possible cost in order to obtain the highest probability of meeting your long-term financial goals. Index investors generate better returns than the majority of market timing and stock picking investors by using diversified, low-cost, tax-efficient asset classes that provide the returns of the markets. The more you pay for investment advice and products, the lower your expected return.

Do you publish the past performance of your strategies?

As fiduciaries, Portfolio Solutions® adheres to the strictest performance reporting standards. Each client receives a personal quarterly performance report that compares your returns to applicable benchmarks, as defined in your ConfidenceMap™.

Where is my money held?

All client accounts are held by a qualified independent custodian, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (Schwab). Portfolio Solutions® has selected this custodian because of its commitment to client service, low costs, security and a dedication to operational efficiency.

Does anyone at Portfolio Solutions® have access to my money?

No. Portfolio Solutions® employees do not have access to your money. Your money is held in an account in your name by Schwab. Portfolio Solutions® only has limited authorization to trade securities with discretion and deduct our quarterly management fee from the account under management. We have no other access or authority to your account(s).

What is a ConfidenceMap™?

Our proprietary approach to providing you with investment management starts with a ConfidenceMap™ — a roadmap that will provide you with the highest probability of meeting your long-term financial goals. The ConfidenceMap™ is comprised of a Plan and a Portfolio. A Plan is developed after in-depth conversations about many important financial aspects of your life that will impact your investment approach. This information is then used to develop your Portfolio, which details your investment strategies.

FAQs About Account Operations

Is Charles Schwab the only custodian available to Clients?

Yes. They act as a custodian of all our Clients’ assets, which means they hold securities and cash and facilitate trading activities. Portfolio Solutions® has selected Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. as custodian because of their commitment to client service, low trading cost, and a dedication to operational efficiency. Our management fees are kept low because of the operational efficiency created by having only one custodian.

Is Portfolio Solutions affiliated with Charles Schwab?

No. Portfolio Solutions® is not affiliated with Charles Schwab & Co., Inc., nor are we compensated by that company in any way through fees, commission, or incentives. In the spirit of full disclosure, our firm is supplied necessary software that allows our in-house portfolio management system to work efficiently and cleanly with Schwab’s back-office operations and trading desks. This software is available to all investment advisors.

Do I have to go to a Charles Schwab office to open an account?

No. There is no reason to visit a Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (Schwab) office.  We will assist you in opening a Schwab account and we will send you all the necessary Schwab paperwork . If there is a Schwab office nearby, you may go there to deposit checks rather than mailing money to Schwab. That would reduce the time it takes to put checks into your account.

Will I have internet access to my account?

Yes. Free internet access is available to Clients through a special Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. website 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. The website also is the source for immediate information on account activity and provides you with many reports including year-end tax information.

How often do I receive statements and reports?

Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. sends monthly statements to all clients for all accounts. These statements show account balances, trades, cash flows, and unrealized gains. Statements are available in paper as well as through email. In addition, Portfolio Solutions® will send a detailed performance report each quarter that compares your portfolio’s performance to a series of relevant market index benchmarks. We urge you to compare your monthly statements from Schwab with the quarterly statements we send you.

Will I receive reports that will help with tax preparation?

At the end of each year, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. will send a Form 1099 to each client that has a taxable account. Included in your Form 1099 will be a realized gain/loss report that will assist you in preparing your annual tax return.