What makes you
different than other financial planners?
Focused Up Financial is a firm that is solely fee-only and a fiduciary, which means we work only for you. We are not driven to sell products, because there are no products to sell. Our main goal is to care about you. Many times, in the financial industry, people can feel like a small fish in a big pond. At Focused Up Financial no matter how many assets you have we will give you focused, personalized care.
Our approach is different too. Rather than starting with your financial goals, we first focus on you to get a good understanding of who you are and how you view your finances. We want to ensure that your finances are giving you the most satisfaction out of life.
Because we are CPAs, we are also able to integrate tax planning and preparation into our planning and services. We have a complete view of your financial picture so that we can help save you the most money at tax time.
What is a Fiduciary?
A fiduciary is bound ethically to serve in the clients’ best interests. We are fiduciaries and always place our clients’ goals ahead of our own. We are proud of our belief and wouldn’t have it any other way!
In order to be a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) we are required to take fiduciary oaths, in which we must act as a fiduciary when we represent our clients.
What does fee-only mean?
Fee-only means that we do not sell any products. We do not receive any commission. The only way we are compensated is through the fees we charge directly to our clients. We are not compensated by any third parties. This ensures that we are working for our clients -- and only for our clients -- at all times.
Who do you serve?
The short answer
We serve everyone. We want to help everyone, in all walks of life. Our primary goal is to care about our clients, as we feel all financial planners should.
The not-so-short answer
Our primary focus is pre-retirees and retirees who want to be tax efficient and have a passion for personal development. What does this mean?
From the tax perspective: Being CPAs, we understand Uncle Sam's "share" will be one of the biggest expenses you have in retirement, proper planning can greatly reduce that burden.
From the personal development perspective: If you are someone who loves reading books such as The 7 Effective Habits for Highly Efficient People or Think and Grow Rich. If you are someone who dreams big and always wants to try to become a better person, welcome! If you are constantly asking if there is more, then you are in good company. We want to help you achieve success at your finances and also achieve your dreams. Retirement is a journey, and we want to help you successfully navigate the retirement waters.
We also work with entrepreneurs, particularly psychologists, social workers and those in the life and business coaching industry. We recognize that you are busy developing and running your business, helping people become the best they can be. Why not have someone help you focus on the financial aspects, so you can continue to focus on your business?
Do I have to live in Chicagoland to sign up?
Nope. We work with people across Chicago and across the nation. Technology allows us to work with you wherever you may be.
Is there an account minimum?
Nope. We designed this firm for everyone. Whether you have $5 or $50 million we will treat you with the same amount of personalized care. There is a minimum fee of $400/month, so depending on your circumstances, it may or may not make sense.
Why is the firm called Focused Up Financial?
Focused Up Financial has a three-pronged meaning:
The uptrend of clients’ lives: We want to be always looking up when it comes to your future. The past is the past. There is no changing it. However, the future is full of opportunity to achieve, thrive, and be the best you can be. We are always “focused up” on the future.
The uptrend of the market: Historically, the market trends up over time. According to historical records, the average annual return for the S&P 500 (from 1928 through 2020) is approximately 10%. Remember this isn’t straight up (the market has down years like 2008-09), but the long-term trend is “focused up".
Focused up toward God: We believe that we are all placed on the Earth for a short time. In that time, we are called to develop innate good within ourselves. We focus our lives on being a good steward of our talents and have “focused up” our lives toward God. As Bob Dylan puts it, “You’re gonna have to serve somebody".