Our Clients

At Guerin Financial Services, our clients are not defined by age, assets, or geography. Instead, we select our clients based on two important traits: an understanding of the value of financial guidance, and a personality that fits well with our team. While this may be an unusual requirement, we’ve found that our close, personal relationships with each client dictate a synchronicity of ideas, values, and passion for success.

We invite you to read the following client snapshots to better understand whom we serve and how we counsel our clients toward better financial decisions.

  • Craig and Nina, both in their mid-60s, came to us seeking retirement advice…

Craig and Nina, in their mid-60s, came to us seeking retirement advice. They had done a good job of saving and investing during their earning years, but now they were starting to worry. Did they have enough saved to last their entire retirement? How could they set a budget that allowed them to relax and enjoy traveling without stressing about what they were spending on each trip? They had many questions, and every question was weighed down with worry and confusion.

We hit upon a critical moment when Craig asked whether he should take Social Security now or delay payments. I followed with a question: “If you take payments now, what would you want to do with the extra money?” Craig’s response: he would use it to pay off their mortgage. While it was not the answer I was hoping for, I wasn’t surprised. Many of our clients seem to overlook the opportunities their assets can offer. “What about travel?” I asked him. “Don’t you want to take advantage of the freedom you have now that you don’t have to work?” I could see the stress fall from their faces immediately. They had come in thinking they knew the “right” path to financial “success,” but they’d forgotten the reason they’d worked so hard and saved so much until this point in their lives.

After more discussion, we put together a plan that gave them a secure safety net for their retirement, prepared them for inevitable changes in their health, and gave them the peace of mind to truly enjoy their retirement without worrying about their finances when they take a trip or enjoy an elegant dinner. With their retirement income plan firmly in place, we make sure to meet at least every six months—even when there are no apparent changes—to be sure their plan is on track and there are no surprises down the road.

  • Dan and Paula were facing some major changes....

Dan and Paula were facing some major changes. After a successful career and many years in Southern California, Dan had been out of work for 18 months. He was at an age where finding a new position was extremely challenging, and facing en economy that made the challenge even harder. They came to us to discuss a potential move to Illinois—a change that would bring them closer to Dan’s daughter and their only grandchild and, they hoped, reduce their expenses enough to allow Dan to retire early and abandon the fruitless job search. And they wanted to make the move almost immediately.

The best decision Dan and Paula made was talking before they took the next step. We were able to help them locate a property near Dan’s daughter that fit their specifications. The new property was in a hot real estate market, requiring them to act quickly and finalize a purchase prior to selling their current home. By funding the purchase creatively using available assets from Dan’s IRA, we were able to facilitate the move. After their home in California sold, Dan was able to repay the IRA distribution within the 60-day penalty window, eliminating any taxes on the IRS distribution.

Once the move was complete and the dust had settled, we worked with Dan and Paula to determine where best to invest the remaining proceeds from the sale of their home, as well as develop a distribution schedule from their 401(k) and 403(b) plans that allowed them to maintain the lifestyle to which they were accustomed without worrying about the future. Now retired, Dan and Paula are enjoying their new home, their new neighborhood, and time with their daughter and grandson.

  • At 52, Curt was hitting the high point of his career...

At 52, Curt was hitting the high point of his career. He had just been offered a position as CEO of a large medical facility, and his package included a move from Washington to California. Having been on a corporate fast track since his 20s, he never had to worry about his income, but he’d also never had the time to focus on managing his finances—or his future. With so many financial puzzle pieces to consider, he knew it was time to hire a professional.

When Curt came to us for help, the first thing we did was evaluate the financial implications of his move. We examined the change in income, the taxation implications of moving from the low-tax state of Washington to the high-tax state of California, the cost of renting an apartment (his family planned to remain in their home in Washington), and other details of his offer. Through our detailed analysis, we found that, while the opportunity was a strong career move for Curt, there was no real financial advantage to making the change.

After we walked him through our findings, Curt was able to make an informed decision with his eyes wide open to the financial realities of the opportunity. In the end, he decided to take the job, basing his decision on the career value of the position itself, rather than what seemed an enticing salary hike that, ultimately, would put no more money in his pocket.

  • Judy came to us soon after her husband, Aaron, had succumbed to cancer. ..

Judy came to us soon after her husband, Aaron, had succumbed to cancer. Like many who find themselves widowed, Judy faced what felt like an overwhelming number of decisions. Her husband had always managed the finances. After his death, it was time for Judy to take the reigns.

To support her, we helped navigate the paperwork and many details involved with transferring the estate. And while Aaron had the foresight to take certain steps before his death to get their financial house in order, there were still many decisions to be made before Judy could feel in control of her finances and her future. Over the next few months, we worked with Judy to evaluate her current situation and talk her through the next steps. We adjusted her portfolio to reduce risk and volatility, and help minimize taxation. We restructured Aaron’s 401(k)—for which Judy was the beneficiary—to fit her new circumstances,redistributing the assets to significantly reduce the overweight in annuities. We reviewed Aaron’s will, insurance policies, and beneficiary statements to help ensure Judy was receiving every possible benefit. Lastly, we created a long-term financial plan for Judy so she knows what to expect moving forward, and that she is poised for a comfortable future.

I believe in a mindful approach to life. I practice yoga. I meditate. And I try to make choices th...