Frequently Asked Questions

We understand that navigating the world of financial planning can often be a complex and overwhelming process. That's why we've compiled some of the most frequently asked questions about the financial industry to help clarify some of the complexities you may encounter and how we can assist you in achieving financial well-being.

Questions about Finovo

Our process begins with a no-obligation introductory call to discuss your needs and concerns. If we agree to move forward, we’ll proceed through various phases such as Discovery, Strategy Formation, and Implementation. Unlike many in the industry who focus on selling financial products, we focus on comprehensive financial planning.

Finovo specializes in ongoing financial planning, tailored specifically for busy professional couples. We offer a comprehensive range of services that go beyond traditional financial planning. Our services include initial comprehensive financial plans, ongoing financial planning, and one-off meetings for specific financial inquiries. We aim to simplify your financial life, from helping you understand and prioritize your goals to providing actionable recommendations. Our focus is on continuous, long-term financial well-being rather than short-term gains.

Getting started is easy. Simply book a complimentary introductory call with us to discuss your financial goals and concerns. From there, we can determine if Finovo is the right fit for you.

At Finovo, we specialize in financial planning tailored to busy, professional couples, both married and unmarried, with or without children. Our expertise lies in understanding the unique financial challenges and opportunities that dual-income households face. Whether it’s optimizing your tax situation, handling windfalls, or helping you save for multiple financial goals simultaneously, we have the experience and tools to help you succeed.

At Finovo, we operate on two-year financial planning cycles that include quarterly check-ins. This approach allows us to cover all areas of your financial life comprehensively, without overwhelming you with tasks. Additionally, these frequent touchpoints enable us to adapt your plan to life’s inevitable changes. At a minimum, we recommend one in-depth annual meeting to review your long-term goals and make any necessary adjustments to your financial plan.

Tax planning is a crucial aspect of financial planning, as nearly every financial decision has tax implications. While we are not tax preparation experts, we collaborate with Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) to ensure that your taxes are accurately filed in line with your ongoing financial planning services.

At Finovo, we believe that financial well-being should be accessible to everyone, regardless of their current financial status. Therefore, we do not have a minimum investment or asset requirement. Our goal is to provide comprehensive, tailored financial planning that fits your unique situation and helps you achieve your specific goals.

No, we do not sell any financial products (insurance or investments). Our business model is transparent, focused solely on providing financial advice for a fee.

We believe in maintaining a diversified portfolio of low-cost, broad market-based index funds that encompass global stocks and bonds, rather than attempting to pick individual stocks. We will consider your existing holdings of individual stocks but do not typically recommend new individual stock purchases. Depending on your preference, we can offer high-level investment recommendations for you to manage your investments independently or connect you with trusted industry partners to oversee your investment accounts, which we can monitor.

Your data’s safety and security are our utmost priorities. We avoid sending sensitive information via email and encourage clients to do the same. To enhance security, we use an online portal for transmitting and receiving sensitive information and documents, which we consider more secure than email. Our operations are primarily web-based, and we employ strong security measures, including dual-factor authentication (preferably app-based over SMS), strong passwords for all applications, and encrypted firm hardware.

Yes, we are committed to upholding the highest ethical and fiduciary standards in the financial industry, both as a Certified Financial Planning Professionals and as a members of FPAC, we are held to the highest ethical and fiduciary standards. 

Here is the Fiduciary Pledge Russ has taken as a proud Founding Member of the Financial Planning Association of Canada:

“I pledge to act as a fiduciary in all my dealings with my clients. By making this pledge, I am promising:

  1. To put the needs of clients first, ahead of my needs or the needs of any other party.
  2. To work to help my clients achieve their goals and dreams by acting with the skill, care, prudence, diligence, loyalty and good judgement of a fiduciary, rooting my professional practice in evidence-based advice.
  3. To avoid and minimize conflicts of interest, and to manage and disclose those conflicts which cannot be avoided.
  4. To fully and transparently disclose all sources of my compensation in all of my dealings with clients.
  5. To uphold the code(s) of conduct of the issuing body of my financial planning designation, and to continuously work to improve my skills and practice, and the financial planning industry as a whole.
  6. To encourage other financial planners to uphold the standards and values embodied by this Association, and to aid this and subsequent generations of financial planners to fulfill on the Association’s vision for the financial planning industry.
  7. And to help to build awareness of the good that financial planners can do for their clients.”

Financial Industry Questions

Financial planning is about more than just managing money; it’s about aligning your financial decisions with your life goals. A qualified financial planner, like those at Finovo, can guide you through complex financial decisions, helping you avoid costly mistakes and ensure that your money works for you.

Our recommendations are not tied to any specific financial organization, bank or their products. We work closely with you to identify the options that best suit your needs. Our goal is to build strong, long-term relationships with a limited number of clients, and we’ve tailored our services with your interests in mind.

Financial planning helps you gain clarity about your current financial situation, identify your goals, and develop a roadmap to achieve them. It provides a structured approach to financial decision-making, helping you prioritize and allocate your resources effectively. A financial planner can offer insights, strategies, and personalized recommendations that optimize your financial resources and increase your chances of reaching your goals.

Unfortunately, the Canadian financial industry doesn’t have the best track history when it comes to hidden fees, commission structures, and incentivized sales bonus systems. At Finovo, we pride ourselves on complete transparency, so you know exactly what you’re paying for.

At Finovo, transparency is not just a buzzword; it’s a principle we live by. We provide a clear, upfront breakdown of our fee structure, so you always know what you’re paying for. Unlike many financial advisors who embed commissions and other hidden fees in their products, we are advice-only and fee-only. This means we have no hidden agendas or undisclosed fees. Our fiduciary responsibility ensures we put your best interests first, always.

An advice-only / fee-only financial planner like Finovo operates on a model that prioritizes your best interests. We charge a flat fee for our services, ensuring that our advice is unbiased and tailored specifically to your needs. In contrast, a commission-based (fee-based) advisor earns money through the sale of financial products, which can potentially create a conflict of interest. At Finovo, our fiduciary duty is to you, and you alone. We provide transparent, objective, and conflict-free advice to help you navigate your financial journey.

Absolutely. If you have concerns about your current financial advisor’s approach or the fees you’re being charged, we can provide a second opinion to help you see the full picture.

If you’re already working with a financial advisor, you might wonder how to evaluate their performance. Here are some essential questions to ask:

  1. How often do you review my financial plan?
  2. How are you compensated for your services? Can you provide a breakdown of the fees I pay?
  3. How do you integrate tax planning into my financial strategy?
  4. How do you tailor your advice to my specific life situation and goals?
  5. How do you stay updated with financial planning best practices?
  6. Are you a member of an organization that aims to raise the financial industry’s low bar of ethical and fiduciary standards, like FPAC?

If your current advisor struggles to answer these questions or avoids them altogether, it may be a red flag. At Finovo, we welcome these questions as they align with our transparent, client-first approach.