Mark Brandon is the Managing Partner of First Sustainable (http://www.firstsustainable.com), a registered investment advisory catering to socially responsible investors. In addition to Socially Responsible Investing (SRI), he may opine on social venturing, microfinance, community investing, clean technology commercialization, sustainability public policy, green products, and, on occasion, University of Texas Longhorn sports.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

The Lowest Risk Entry Into Socially Responsible Investing


Imagine, if you will, retaining a contractor for your house. After you handing you an invoice, he says, "if you don't like what we did for you, don't bother paying." Your head would spin, right? What about a doctor who said: "If we don't cure your illness, it's on the house"?

That is the method by which we operate at First Sustainable. We recognize that people are always skeptical of financial recommendations, and financial plans. Well, on top of refusing any compensation from financial product sponsors, we have a guarantee just like the above scenarios. Let us work up a plan for you, and if you don't see the value in our service, don't pay us. The world does not need another person who is jaded about financial advisers.

Of course, I can tell you that in all the years I have worked on that principle, fewer than five have actually decided not to pay, and one was an old high school buddy. Yes, we're still friends.

Implementing a financial plan never gets easier as time goes by. Much like diet and exercise, it gets much harder and more important. Someone who starts at age 40 needs to contribute more than five times as much as the one who starts at age 22 just to have the same balance at 65.

I hope that this guarantee encourages one procrastinator to pick up the phone, and call us.

5 Comments:

Anonymous Kathryn Cramer said...

I have just made a post asking Paxworld to divest itself of Secure Computing (SCUR) primarily on the basis that SCUR is licensing Internet content restriction software to governments that do not respect freedom of speech and freedom of the press (notably Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and Qatar.

9:27 AM

 
Anonymous Anthony said...

As someone who is just getting my feet wet in the retirement planning pool (and quickly approaching 40) I think your money back guarantee idea is refreshing. Now if only those contractors and doctors would follow your lead.

2:13 PM

 
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