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We are an Independent, Fee-Only Firm with CFP Advisors Offering Financial Planning, Investment or Wealth Management Services

Sacramento, Santa Cruz, Los Gatos, Davis CA


Your Life, Your Future, In Balance

Services

The purpose of a financial plan is to help you to better understand where you are now and help you to reach your goals in the future. Your plan includes observations, analysis and recommendations to better balance current needs with future goals. Elements of your financial plan may include some or all of the following topics:

Current Financial Status

Together, we document your current net worth and your cash flow. We will check the state of your debts and the effectiveness of your income tax planning.

Estate Planning

Together, we will review your current estate documents to help establish that they are still relevant and complete. Then you can discuss our recommendations with your attorney. If you do not have these important documents we can refer you to a suitable attorney. 

Lifestyle & Asset Protection

We take an in-depth look into your insurance policies and offer recommendations so that you and your family are adequately protected against many perils. 

Advanced Planning

The latest advancements in technology have allowed us to use its projections to help you make the best financial decisions for retirement, funding education or other future goals.

Retirement Planning

The latest advancements in technology have allowed us to use its projections to help you make the best financial decisions for when to retire and how much you can comfortably spend each year during retirement.

Investment Review

An overall asset allocation analysis will be provided for your current investments to determine your risk tolerance. Thereafter, we will share a recommendation based on our investment philosophy.

Other Considerations

Any other issue or concern you have should be included in your plan such as stock options, RSUs, Charity or philanthropic desires, Annuity review etc.

The cost of the financial plan can vary based on the complexity and number of elements, but most often totals $2,000 to $5,000.

You may engage our ongoing investment management services for numerous reasons such as you don’t have the time, motivation, tools or knowledge to properly manage your own portfolios. Or because you worry that it may be hard to recover from a market downturn and prefer to have us “on board” to monitor and proactively make portfolio changes.

Our Process

Determine the appropriate level of risk for your portfolio and utilize appropriate asset allocations for the highest return given your level of risk

Complete the necessary paperwork to open new accounts, facilitate the transfer of assets and write an investment plan, expressed in your Investment Policy Statement (IPS)

Select specific investments utilizing a multi-step screening process based on Generally Accepted Investment Principles and Evidence Based Investing

Construct and maintain a tax efficient portfolio across all accounts as well as complete the buys and sells of investments in the managed accounts

Regularly monitor your portfolio and implement changes as needed based on your Investment Policy Statement (IPS)


The cost of this service is a an annual retainer amount billed on a quarterly basis, which is determined by the complexity of your situation, the amount of time expected to be needed, the number of accounts, the size of the accounts and the value provided to you. The minimum retainer is $300 a quarter.

Our wealth management service is a consultative process meant to aide you in meeting your present and future goals by providing ongoing financial and investment advice in conjunction with your tax, insurance and legal advisors. Know that professional, ongoing, objective, fiduciary advice is the best way to achieve your goals in life.

  • Assistance with your initial financial plan implementation
  • Coordination amongst your other advisory teams, which might include tax, insurance, and legal professionals
  • Quarterly investment performance reporting
  • Unlimited meetings, phone calls and emails during the year
  • Periodic updates of your financial plan – “How you are doing relative to your goals over time”

The cost of this service is a fixed annual retainer billed on a quarterly basis, which is determined by the complexity of your situation, the amount of time expected over the year, the number of accounts, the size of the accounts and the value provided to you. The minimum retainer is $1,250 a quarter.

Helping you balance your present needs with future goals to create financial peace of mind

Working Together

Step 1

We invite you to review our website to better understand what we do and how we do it

Step 2

Call the office location most convenient for you and have a short, exploratory phone conversation with one of our team members to determine if our working together will be a good fit.

Step 3

Schedule a free, introductory “Get Acquainted” meeting to determine how our team can best help you and discuss the associated cost.

Step 4

Provide some information ahead of time to make our first official meeting efficient. Complete a financial fitness survey to identify primary topics. 

Families

Couples

Individuals

Most of our clients are educated, happy and know that they do not know everything about planning and investment management. We work with individuals, couples and families. Clients range in age from 30 to well into their 80’s. Many are working, some are about to retire and some are already retired. Each age group has special concerns and specific objectives.

Objective Advice Focused on Achieving Your Goals

Your investments should provide you with the best probability to meet your financial goals. Our investment approach is designed to offer highly diversified, tax efficient and low-cost portfolio management. Through Evidence Based Investing, we are able to give advice that is carefully researched and easy to understand. We believe you should be a part of the investing process and not an outside observer to the management of your portfolio. With our transparent investing strategies, having an Investment Policy Statement and with our ongoing reporting, you will be aware of where you are at and monitor the progress towards your goals.

At Chamberlain Financial Planning and Wealth Management, we work with you on a team basis to help you to balance your current needs with your future goals, and achieve financial peace of mind. 

Still not sure if we are a good fit? Give us a call at 800-347-1340 to learn more.

If you would desire the following in your new advisor, we may well be a good fit to work together.YesNo
CFP® professional
Fiduciary standard of care
Advisor average 20 years of experience
Comprehensive financial planning and asset management
Straight forward communication and easy to understand

Working together to craft unique and individualized financial solutions

Where do you need help?

Why Work With Us

Advisor Qualifications

Every one of our advisors hold the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP) qualification. The CFP® mark is the gold standard in the financial advisory community based on education, testing, experience, and that we are held to a rigorous ethical standard.

Fiduciary

We abide by the fiduciary standard. Meaning we always keep your best interests at the foremost of our thinking. This is much different than 95% of other firms that sell products or insurance. Our firm is “fee-only” in that we are not paid anywhere other than directly from you, our client.

Experience

Each of our advisors average over 20 years of experience working with clients just like you. We strive to help you make better decisions so that you and your family can live a full and happy life.

Technology

Our firm utilizes state-of-the-art technologies to analyze, monitor and report on your portfolio and your financial plan. In addition, our technology communicates more efficient updates on the status of your financial plan and your investments.


Great financial planning is an evolving process, not a singular event

Mike Chamberlain Photo

Mike Chamberlain

CFP® AIF®
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Mike Chamberlain CFP AIF financial planner in Santa Cruz, Sacramento, and Los Gatos California

Mike Chamberlain

CFP® AIF®


I have been helping people to make better financial decisions to improve their lives since the 1980’s. Chamberlain Financial Planning was established in 2007 to assist people on a fee-only basis, which means that we do not sell investments or insurance, unlike 95% of other firms.

My education includes both bachelor’s and doctorate degrees from the University of California, Berkeley. Accredited Investment Fiduciary course work was from The Center for Fiduciary Studies at the University of Pittsburgh and CFP® course work was from Boston University.

I live in Santa Cruz with my life partner, Patty. But most of my family reside in Sacramento including my daughter Cathi, her husband and three kids, my two brothers and parents. In 2009, I opened a branch office in Sacramento so that I could visit with my family more frequently. My son Mitch lives in Austin Texas with his wife and two little girls.

Sailing is one of my life’s passions. It is a great way to get in touch with nature and I am fortunate enough to have a sailboat at the Santa Cruz harbor.

Eugene K. Hsu, CFP®, CFS®, AIF®  Photo

Eugene K. Hsu, CFP®, CFS®, AIF®

Certified Financial Planner™
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Eugene K. Hsu, CFP AIF financial planner in Santa Cruz, Sacramento, and Los Gatos California

Eugene K. Hsu

Certified Financial Planner™


Making a positive difference in people’s lives by helping them feel confident about their finances is very important for me. When a client has a financial plan, it empowers them to focus on the things that they really care about. Helping clients develop their own plan gives me a strong sense of professional satisfaction and have been doing so for over 19 years.

I live in Davis with my lovely wife Gabriela and our son Liam. They are a constant reminder of what really matters, and they give me a wonderful sense of purpose in my life.

Making a difference in my community is also very important. I volunteer at Liam’s school and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu classes. Being a member of the Yolo Lodge has also helped connect with our local community. Supporting the Relay for Life is a great way we support friends, clients, family members and so many others who are cancer survivors. I am also grateful for the opportunity to be a Shriner in supporting and promoting the Shriners Hospital, which is an incredible resource for families with children suffering from complex medical needs.

My Bachelor’s degree is from the University of California, Davis in International Relations and minor in Managerial Economics. I completed my Accredited Investment Fiduciary® course work from Fi360 Global Fiduciary Insights. My Certified Financial Planner™ course work from the University of California, Davis Extension; and my Certified Fund Specialist® designation from the Institute of Business and Finance.

Gary Cohen Photo

Gary Cohen

CFP®
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Gary Cohen CFP financial planner in Santa Cruz, Sacramento, and Los Gatos California

Gary Cohen

CFP®


In 2009, after 29 years as an electrical engineer, I made a career change to help people improve their financial lives rather than working on computers. It has been a great change!

My education includes CFP® course work from the University of California at Santa Cruz. I have a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from MIT and a master’s degree in computer engineering from Stanford.

Portfolio design, rebalancing clients’ portfolios, performance reporting, investment selection and completing clients' sells and buys occupies a major part of my time at the office.

I live in Sunnyvale with my wife Debbie and our two cats. Our son graduated from UCSD and our daughter is just about to graduate from UCSB.

My outside interests are traveling, bicycling and playing volleyball; surprisingly I still can jump after playing for 30 years.

Nikolara Jansons Photo

Nikolara Jansons

Financial Assistant
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Nikolara Jansons

Financial Assistant


I hold degrees in urban planning, urban studies and economics from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa, SFSU and Carbillo. I consistently use my education while working on client files, spreadsheets, social media postings and website management.

I love living, working and volunteering in my hometown of Santa Cruz, California. I currently serve on the board of directors for Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks and the downtown library advisory commission.

As a lifelong, passionate gardener, I enjoy getting out in the garden every chance I get. In addition, I am an active transportation advocate, enjoying the sidewalks and bike paths of Santa Cruz.

Wendy Scrimsher Photo

Wendy Scrimsher

Client Service Administration
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Wendy Scrimsher Client Service Administration for Chamberlain Financial Planning and Wealth Management

Wendy Scrimsher

Client Service Administrator


I joined Chamberlain Financial Planning and Wealth Management in 2012, bringing 20 years of customer service experience with me. I earned associate degrees in both accounting and business administration.

My main responsibilities are managing our database and communicating with clients. I enjoy keeping the office running smoothly and clients happy.

I live in Aromas with my daughter and I have been a Girl Scout leader for four years. I also work closely with the Aromas 4-H to support the Aromas youth and community.

Balancing current needs with your dreams

Let us be your guide

Resources

To make our first meeting most efficient we need some basic information about you and your situation. Please provide the information via one of the three methods:

  1. Questionnaire 
  2. Financial Fitness Survey
  3. The purpose of this survey is to identify those areas where you have concerns and point out where you would benefit from getting some professional assistance.

    Download the form that is appropriate for you (pre-retirement or in retirement), complete it, then schedule your complimentary “Get Acquainted” meeting to discuss it. If you’re married, your spouse should also fill out a copy of the survey, but don’t peek over each other's shoulders while completing it, your individual opinions are important.

    Financial Fitness Survey Pre-Retirement
    Download a copy of the survey

    Financial Security Survey In Retirement
    Download a copy of the survey

  4. Inventory Task- who does what
Are you a fiduciary?

Yes, we choose to be held to the fiduciary standard. Being a fiduciary means that we are required to place our client’s interests above our own. In fact, 95%+ of other firms do not place their client’s interests above their own at all times.

We take the fiduciary standard seriously. We do not receive outside commissions or payments. Our only form of payment come from our clients.

What is fee-only financial planning?

Fee-only financial planning means we are paid exclusively by our clients. We do not receive any external commissions, referral fees or kickbacks of any kind. This allows us to focus only on what’s in our client’s best interest.

What are your fees?

Financial Planning

The cost of financial planning can vary based on the complexity and number of elements, but most often ranges between $2,000 to $4,000.

Investment Management

The cost of the investment management is a fixed retainer amount billed on a quarterly basis, which is determined by the complexity of your situation, the amount of time expected to be needed, the number of accounts, the size of the accounts and the value provided to you. Our services are most appropriate for those with $100,000 to $500,000 of investments in their portfolio. The minimum retainer is $300 a quarter.

Wealth Management

The cost of wealth management is a fixed annual retainer billed on a quarterly basis, which is determined by the complexity of your situation, the amount of time expected over the year, the number of accounts, the size of the accounts and the value provided to you. Our services are most appropriate for those with at least $500,000 of investments in their portfolio. The minimum retainer is $1,250 a quarter.

What is your investment approach and philosophy?

Our approach to investing is that your investment portfolio should be based on your goals, should be tax efficient, be low cost and easy for you to understand.

Our investing philosophy is based on academic research of market theory that was the basis for several Nobel Prizes in Economics, as well as decades of financial data.

Who does what when it comes to investing?

There are three distinct phases of successful investing: the Design of the investment plan, the Implementation of the plan and the Perpetuation of the plan. This third phase is the ongoing process of monitoring the allocation and investments as well as making changes as needed over time.

There are five methods or options for completing these three phases. The most appropriate method for you should be based on what you are willing and capable of doing and what areas you may need some help. The five options include:

  1. Invest on your own without professional assistance.
  2. As-needed professional help. The professional develops your plan, you implement the recommendations and then return for additional help over time, as is needed.
  3. A collaborative, co-managed approach. Professional develops the plan, both implement the plan, professional proactively monitors and reports. Joint decisions.
  4. Engage an investment manager who makes unilateral decisions.
  5. Use the services of a salesperson that gets paid commissions.

Please click on the link below:

Investing Options You Decide

Print out the form, complete the worksheet and bring it with you to our Get Acquainted meeting.

What types of investments does your advice cover?

We provide advice for all types of securities, including mutual funds, stocks (as they relate to your portfolio holdings), bonds, ETFs, bank deposits and annuities. We also provide guidance on 401(k), 403(b) and other retirement programs. If it has to do with money and finances, we can provide counseling, guidance and/or resources for you.

If you develop a financial plan for me, am I obligated to comply with the recommendations?

Absolutely not. Our recommendations are exactly that. They are offered to meet your needs and objectives, but you are under no obligation to act on them. In today’s competitive market, it makes sense to shop around for the best available product or service. For instance, if we believe you have a need for life insurance, we will suggest the type of policy, which riders and what amounts may be best for you. It is totally your decision to acquire more coverage or not. At your request, we can direct you to several companies that can provide a quality product at competitive prices. The same applies to estate lawyers, accountants, money managers and mortgage brokers. We will recommend a name or two, but it’s entirely up to you to decide whether or not to pursue our recommendation.

What is your investment philosophy?

As financial planners and investment consultants, we believe in the following fundamental principals with regard to designing an investment portfolio and making specific recommendations. We believe the purpose of a client’s investment portfolio is to fund current and/or future financial objectives. That the design of the portfolio must take into account the client’s financial objectives, tolerance for risk, needs for current income or liquidity, and special considerations such as income tax and estate taxes. The important thing that we want to stress is that no one can predict the future. Investment and economic “experts” provided with the same information often come to different conclusions. We do not suggest that we can, or that any of the money managers that we recommend, will make the correct decision all of the time. We also believe the appropriate allocation of investment assets for your goals and risk tolerance is the most important component in developing an investment portfolio. We believe that having a diversified, well-balanced portfolio, following long-term buy-and-hold strategies, with low costs will increase the likelihood that you will achieve your long-term financial objectives.

Are the fees you charge tax deductible?

Yes. Section 212 of the Internal Revenue Code permits an itemized deduction for tax and/or investment advice in the miscellaneous section of Schedule A. It is subject to a 2% floor of the adjusted gross income on a personal tax return.

Once my financial plan is completed, will our relationship end?

The actual “engagement of specific services” may end at the conclusion of the financial plan but many of our clients choose to continue to work with us via our investment management or wealth management services. Because financial planning is a process and not an event, we offer periodic reviews as requested for those clients that opted not to engage our wealth mangement.

We believe in placing our clients’ best interests first. Therefore, we commit to the following five fiduciary principles:

  1. We will always put our clients’ best interests first.
  2. We will act with prudence; that is, with the skill, care, diligence and good judgement of a professional.
  3. We will not mislead clients, and will provide conspicuous, full and fair disclosure of all important facts.
  4. We will avoid conflicts of interest.
  5. We will full disclose and fairly manage, in our client’s favor, any unavoidable conflicts.

Please download the Engagement Agreement below. This file is a PDF and can be saved to your computer. Please print the document, make notes on it or circle areas you have questions about and we can review these at the “Get Acquainted” meeting.

Download a PDF of the Client Service Agreement

Evidence Based Investing

Evidence-Based Investing:

You Deserve The Better Way to Invest

Evidence-Based Investing (“EBI”) is not a topic that is well known to many investors. And of those who have heard of it, only a few understand it.

EBI is patterned along the lines of Evidence-Based Medicine, which is designed to optimize decision-making for patient care. Stressing the use of evidence from well-designed and accepted research has shown to lead to a better patient outcome.

According to the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine at the UK’s University of Oxford, “Evidence-Based Medicine is the conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients.” That approach to informed decision-making has spread to other fields, such as investing.

EBI is then the conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the implementation and management of an investor’s portfolio. This would be a major change for many investors who have been using a conventional investing methodology.

Why is this important? Perhaps reviewing the history of investing will provide a broader perspective.

The History of Investing

The first instance of investing was the purchase of land, which was farmed for personal use. Later, it was investing in your own small business. Put another way, you were investing in yourself. Later, with stocks, investing allowed diversification by buying into an ownership position of other person’s business. Or with bonds, investing was done by loaning others money by purchasing their debt.

In order to better know which stock or bond to buy, an investor would go to a “broker-dealer.” The broker-dealer would provide a recommendation and then complete the transaction, of course, for a commission.

In time, mutual funds were developed, where the fund manager would decide (based on his or her “expertise”) what to buy and sell within the mutual fund. Since their inception, broker-dealers have loved the concept of the mutual funds. They require only a little bit of homework on the part of the sales person (since the fund manager already did most of it) and they generally drew a big commission. In fact, many broker-dealers started their own mutual funds. In this way, they not only received the commissions on the sale but they also captured a share of the management fee, as well.

The strategy of the mutual fund managers was to buy and sell stocks and bonds with some frequency to “beat the market.” This approach often caused high trading costs, was not tax efficient and was expensive due to the hiring of “experts” to predict what to buy and sell. This active management style seldom beat their benchmarks over time but it did allow many financial services companies to get rich.

The “under performance of the benchmarks” and associated high costs led to the development of index funds, most notably by Vanguard. An index fund holds the stock of those companies listed within that index and in their predetermined percentage.

For example, the Dow Jones Index Fund would hold the 30 stocks that comprise the Dow Jones Industrial Average and in the percentage as indicated by the index. These index funds were not designed to beat the market but rather to capture the returns that the market provided while keeping costs low.

While index funds are good, there are some specific shortcomings. The biggest problem occurs when the index is reconfigured. Then, all of the financial services companies that offer that specific index fund will have to sell the same stocks on the same day and then they must all buy the same incoming stock. That results in a depressed stock price (of the stock sold) and an inflated stock price (of the stock bought), which may or may not be warranted.

The above snapshot would be described as “conventional investing.” Most financial services companies and their employees operate under this approach and are governed by the “suitability standard.” This allows the companies to put their interests (i.e. their products and associated fees) ahead of what is really in your best interest.

There is a better way than the conventional approach and it is EBI!

Evidence-Based Investing

To start, we know what does not work well with conventional investing:

The well-founded evidence which we know does work includes:

This “Best Evidence” for proper investing emanates from academia and professors such as Harry Markowitz* at City University, New York, Myron Scholes* and William F. Sharpe* at Stanford, Robert C Merton* of MIT and Harvard, Merton Miller* and Eugene Fama* of the University of Chicago, Kenneth French of Dartmouth College, as well as others. (* designates the Nobel Prize in Economics)

As you might expect, the concept of “Best Evidence” is not one disseminated by the financial services companies such Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley or Fidelity. Nor does it come from insurance companies or others that sell a product.

“Best Evidence” is also not a topic found in articles published by Money Magazine or Kiplinger’s. And it won’t come in the form of advice from television’s Jim Cramer or any of his kind. Of course not; those are all intended to maximize advertising dollars and “Best Evidence” simply does not bring in advertising money.

If you want to improve your outcome when investing for a successful future, you may need to change your investing approach. Switch from the conventional investing methodology (often filled with conflicts of interest) to one that is truly in your best interest, the Evidence-Based Investing approach!

Young Professionals

Financial Planning for Young Professionals

As a young professional, at the beginning of your career, you have a unique opportunity to create a stable financial foundation on which to build your financial life. The money traits, savings, and spending habits that you adopt now will shape your financial future, all the way into retirement and beyond.

The financial issues you face as a young professional are far different than those of an individual getting closer to retirement age. However, there is little in the way of sound written advice on the financial issues you might need to consider, so we’ve written an eBook that covers most common financial planning topics.

Our free eBook contains eight chapters that cover: Managing Current Spending, Debt Management, Investing and Investments, Retirement Planning, Estate Planning, Insurance, Employee Stock Programs, and Topics for Young Families. Each chapter introduces the topic, defines the important aspects for young professionals, and provides general recommendations on how to handle common decisions and problems.

Our goal is for you to have enough knowledge and education to begin to make better financial decisions and to learn to balance current needs with future goals. Later, as your assets grow and especially as financial matters become more complex, professional help may very well be needed but for now, with this basic understanding, you can create a good foundation for your financial future.

 

Click here to download the free eBook “Financial Planning For Young Professionals.”

Widows and Widowers

Securing your Financial Well-Being Workbook for Widows and Widowers

The death of your spouse or partner is one of the most difficult challenges of your life. No matter if you are a widow or widower you will be required to make a series of decisions to try to regain balance in your life.

There have been numerous books written to help you cope with your grief, emotions and social adjustments. There does not seem to be a concise “how to” workbook that outlines what needs to be done to help you keep track of your progress in making the necessary changes.

As a financial planner and advisor, I would not attempt to address the necessary steps to regain your emotional, social or physical well-being but we have drafted a workbook for those that have lost their partner/spouse to help you to regain your “financial well-being”.

There are two goals for this workbook. The first is to provide a structure or methodology so that you can regain your financial well-being and have financial peace of mind. The second is to help you to avoid making poor financial decisions, which can occur without having a good understanding of your current financial situation and what you will need in your future.

Hopefully this will help guide you though a process to better understand what needs to be done now as a result of your loss, help guide you to “getting it done” and lead to a better understanding of where you currently are at from a financial standpoint and how to best secure your future financial well-being.

 

Click here to download the free workbook “Securing My Financial Well-Being.”

Proper Estate Planning

Proper Estate Planning Documents

Every adult with any kind of asset needs the protection provided by proper estate planning documents. The best and “safest” place (to ensure that your plans are adhered to exactly) to obtain these documents is from an estate planning attorney who can provide you with appropriate and sound legal advice.

For individuals turning 18, and with no dependents, no real estate and very little in the way of assets, the purchase of estate planning documents can be expensive. Still, having estate planning documents is in your best interests and the best interests of your future heirs.

The following websites provide standardized estate planning documents for residents of California. Residents of other states might find similar websites, appropriate for where he or she lives.

If you choose not to use an Estate Planning Attorney, please follow the relevant instructions for the proper completion of the following documents. Once complete, be sure to sign the documents in front of a notary and then provide a copy of the documents to those individuals named within.

 

Power of Attorney – Allows control of your financial matters if you cannot.

Advanced Healthcare Directive – Allows others to make healthcare decision if you cannot.

Will – Passes your assets on your death.

HIPAA Release – Authorization for health information release.


Digital Estate Planning

Getting Your Digital Estate in Order

Digital Estate Planning is a proactive process designed to help manage your digital assets upon your incapacity or death. With many bank, brokerage, credit card, bill pay sites and other types of accounts going online (and in some cases, only allowing online access) digital estate planning has become an increasingly important part of traditional estate planning.

It is important that for all of your accounts, which have online access and passwords, that you also have offline documentation which you keep in a known location. That will allow your trustees, designated Power-of-Attorneys or executor’s access to these accounts as and when needed. It is recommended that this documentation be stored in a secure location, preferably near or with your other estate planning documents and that they be updated regularly. 

To help you gather all your account information in one place download our Digital Estate Planning form (a fillable PDF). You’ll want to update the information whenever you open, modify or close an online account.

Emergency ID Card

Emergency ID

If you are unconscious and cannot express your health-care wishes, the quality of your care could be impacted. Medical personnel need to know who to contact and how to contact them as fast as possible.

Below is a link to an “Emergency ID card” that you can complete, print out and carry with you so hospital personnel may quickly contact the appropriate people to act on your behalf.

The card is offered in a fillable PDF format designed for you to complete on your computer. The alternative is to print out the blank document and complete it by hand.

Do your friends and family a favor and send links to this site so they too will be better equipped in a medical emergency as well.

If you would like other useful information you may wish to subscribe to our blog “Money Matters“.

 

Download a PDF of the Emergency ID Information Card

Further Reading

Just Give Me the Answer$: Expert Advisers
Address Your Most Pressing Financial Questions
By Sheryl Garrett, CFP®, with Marie Swift and The Garrett Planning Network, Inc

Hiring a financial planner is often something people associate with the wealthy. But according to financial guru Sheryl Garrett, everyone should be able to work with a financial professional and take control of his or her financial fitness. In Just Give Me the Answer$: Expert Advisers Address Your Most Pressing Financial Questions, Sheryl Garrett along with Marie Swift and Members of The Garrett Planning Network have provided the answers to the most pressing financial questions consumers ask as they pass through various life stages. Sprinkled with real-life stories and specific examples, Just Give Me the Answer$ is a one-stop resource for anyone looking to get – and keep — their financial house in order.

 

Money Without Matrimony 
By Sheryl Garrett, CFP®, and Debra A. Neiman, CFP®, MBA

This book provides financial planning tools and strategies that enable unmarried couples to solve the financial, legal, and discriminatory dilemmas inherent in their living situation. The authors take a real-world approach to the issues, providing specific advice and direction for the more than 5 million couples across the unmarried spectrum. It is an invaluable guide for anyone, of any age, who is unmarried and lives with or is considering living with a partner.

 

Conscious Finance 
By Rick Kahler, CFP®, and Kathleen Fox

This book will help you discover your unconscious money beliefs and break their power, transforming the role of money in your life. It will give you practical, down-to-earth guidance along a new path to help you achieve fulfillment and prosperity far deeper than just financial success.

 

The Number: A Completely Different Way to Think about the Rest of Your Life 
By Lee Eisenberg

“The Number” is the amount of money you need to have socked away in order to be confident that your post retirement life will meet your expectations. Everyone’s Number is different – and while it is important to save enough to last – Eisenberg says Americans need to also determine how they want the rest of their life to look. “It’s not just ‘how much’ but ‘what for’” he says. He provides a charmingly written consideration of an aging generation’s retirement worries and of the investment business designed to profit from them. Heartfelt discussions of goals, health and health care, “downshifting” to enjoy life while spending less money and the meaning of post retirement life pepper its pages. His perceptive analysis of real and fictional people’s financial hopes and strategies will inspire readers to reconsider their Numbers and their methods for investing. Sheryl Garrett, founder of the Garrett Planning Network, George Kinder, co-founder of the Kinder Institute of Life Planning, and many other leading financial planners are profiled in the book. Eisenberg provides additional thoughts on his web-log (www.thenumberbook.com).

 

Zero Debt 
By Lynette Khalfani

If you want to be debt-free and achieve financial freedom, you need an action plan to guide you. This book is your step-by-step plan and it’s simple and easy to understand.

 

The Prosperity for Life Financial Organizer 
By Suzanne Fails, CPA, CFP®

This easy-to-use financial planning tool contains checklists and worksheets to help you accumulate and store vital personal and financial information. Each section has reminders and ideas about important financial planning tasks. Now you can experience peace of mind knowing that your crucial information is organized and at your fingertips.

 

Ten Weeks to Financial Awakening: A Guidebook to the Creation of Your Own Financial Plan Using Quicken Software 
By Paul Lemon

This isn’t really a book, it’s a complete financial planning program that will help you organize and control your finances and take control of your financial life. This book guides you step-by-step to developing your own financial plan.

 

The Ultimate Credit Handbook: How to Cut Your Debt and Have a Lifetime of Great Credit 
By Gerri Detweiler

A former director of Bankcard Holders of America, Gerri Detweiler draws on her years of expertise in counseling consumers with credit problems to write the definitive handbook on how to have more credit, get out of debt and live a lifetime of financial stability and prosperity.

 

College Money Handbook 
By Petersons

This book is an annually updated reference guide to more than 1,600 individual colleges’ student financial aid appropriations. It is designed to help prospective undergraduate students and their families discover what they might look for in financial aid from particular institutions, aid them in making comparisons between institutions and help them make decisions related to financial aid. The front matter provides a concise overview of the student financial aid system.

 

Suddenly Single: Money Skills for Divorcees and Widows 
By Kerry Hannon

This book provides divorced or widowed women with essential information that can transform their lives. The book should be viewed as an essential survival kit for all suddenly singles.

 

The Budget Kit 
By Judy Lawrence

This book has a simple, no-nonsense approach to understanding and managing one’s financial life. The recommendations and examples are superb, and the “big picture” is communicated effectively. The book is a complete kit by itself, and the associated Web site offers more outstanding advice and useful tools.

 

Does Your Broker Owe You Money 
By Daniel R. Solin, Esq.

This book discusses how investors can avoid being victimized by brokers and how to get their money back if they incurred losses on account of broker misconduct. An excellent primer for those wanting to get “the inside skinny” of the brokerage business. Shows investors the various forms of broker fraud, and helps them determine if they have a claim. Gives you the tools to assess if you have a claim and advises you on what your next steps should be.

 

You Don’t Have to Be Rich: Comfort, Happiness and Financial Security on Your Own Terms 
By Jean Chatzky

Chatzky, who is with NBC’s Today Show and Money Magazine, creates an insightful book that shows can show you how to make financial decisions to make you truly happy no matter your financial means. Practical advice. Highly inspiring.

 

The Richest Man in Babylon 
By George Clason

A collection of parables written in the 1920s, this book is a timeless, inspirational work. Great advice on the subject of thrift, financial planning and personal wealth, that is just as sound today, as it was 80 years ago.

 

Your Money or Your Life: Transforming Your Relationship With Money and Achieving Financial Independence 
By Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin

This is a best-selling book on how to get control of your money and your life. The authors help you take a look at how you handle your money, and whether it is a reflection of your values.

 

The Millionaire Next Door 
By Thomas Stanley and William Danko

Contrary to what many may believe, most millionaires are not flashy. This book gives you a good look at the profile of a typical millionaire, how they got there, and how you can learn from their habits. Who knows, you might even become the next Millionaire Next Door.

 

Saving Money: An Easy, Smart Guide to Saving Money 
By Barbara Loos

Formerly published under the title I Haven’t Saved a Dime, Now What?!, this book has been repackaged, and sold under the Barnes & Noble Basics label. It is designed to walk you through the often puzzling and worry-producing world of money.

 

Seven Stages of Money Maturity: Understanding the Spirit and
Value of Money in Your Life
By George Kinder, CFP®

This is a book that searches for the spiritual meaning in wealth, and tells the stories of three composite characters throughout the book. You learn how to evolve through the seven stages (innocence, pain, knowledge, understanding, vigor, vision, and aloha) necessary to achieve financial and emotional security. Named as “one of the most influential people in the financial planning industry” (Investment Advisor magazine, June 2003), George is the founder of The Kinder Institute of Life Planning, a personal empowerment and training organization that offers the highly-acclaimed Seven Stages of Money Management Workshop.

 

Serious Money, Straight Talk about Investing for Retirement 
By Rick Ferri, CFA

Serious Money explains why stockbrokers, investment firms, financial consultants and the mass media do not always have your best interests at heart. In this hard-hitting book, author Richard Ferri takes the investment industry to task for spending too much effort on selling and too little on meeting the needs of serious investors.

 

Who Gets Grandma’s Yellow Pie Plate? 
By Marlene Stum

This is a sensible, down to earth guide on how to handle the distribution of family items from one generation to the next. The goal is to have the process be a celebration of the deceased person’s life, rather than allowing emotions to harm or destroy family relationships.

 

A Random Walk Down Wall Street: The Best Investment Advice for the New Century 
By Burton Malkiel

This is an investment classic, originally published in 1973. It has just been updated, and now takes into account the dot-com meltdown. Among other topics, Malkiel gives an entertaining history of past market bubbles, and explains why it’s not worth trying to beat the market. There is also a life-cycle guide to investing in the market.

Helpful Links

Financial Planning & Personal Finance

  • NerdWallet – Financial advice and financial product recommendations.
  • Forbes – Fee-Only Planner Blog
  • Yahoo Finance – Financial news and commentary on U.S. and world markets, plus investment, loan and insurance centers.
  • Your Credit Score – Use this from My FICO to find out what your credit score might be.
  • Money Central - Investor quotes, charts, news and a variety of financial planning information.

Professional Organizations

  • The Garrett Planning Network, INC. – Nationwide network of professional fee-only financial advisors, dedicated to serving people from all walks of life on an hourly, as-needed basis, founded by Sheryl Garrett, CFP®, author of “Just Give Me the Answer$” and one of the Top 25 Most Influential People in Financial Planning.
  • National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) – Information about NAPFA and fee-only financial planners, including why choose a fee-only financial advisor.
  • Certified Financial Planner (CFP) Board of Standards - Information about Certified Financial Planner (CFP) licensees and the financial planning profession, including what it takes to become a CFP and tips on how to select a financial advisor.
  • Financial Planning Association (FPA) - Membership organization for the financial planning community. Members include individuals and companies who have contributed to building the financial planning profession and all those who champion the financial planning process. The website provides a search engine for CFP practitioners in your area.

Governmental Sites

  • California Franchise Tax Board – Portal for California tax forms and information for individuals and businesses.
  • Social Security Administration – News and how-to information on tax withholding, obtaining a replacement card or Statement of Earnings and Benefits, etc.
  • Medicare – Learn about eligibility and benefits, billing, compare health-care options, download Medicare forms, and locate participating providers by geographic area.
  • Internal Revenue Service – Tax forms, publications and information.

College, Education & Financial Aid

Market News

  • CNBC – Market commentary plus the latest business headlines from CNBC / MSNBC / Wall Street Journal.
  • Wall Street Journal – Interactive edition. All the news of the WSJ plus 24-hour-a-day updates.

Mutual Funds

  • Morningstar Online – Primary provider of mutual fund research. Market reports and investor information. Your first second opinion.
  • Mutual Fund Investors Center – Educational center with planning tools and mutual fund tracking features.

Low Cost Custodial Accounts

Bank Account Rate Comparison

  • Depositaccounts.com - Tracks current interest rates at thousands of banks and credit unions to allow you to easily compare rates between banks.


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