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Federal Employee Financial Planning: Financial Planner Compensation (EP62)

Have you ever wondered how your financial planner gets paid? In this episode, Michael, Tommy, John, and Ben tackle this question head-on, shedding light on the various compensation methods in the financial planning industry. They cut through the jargon to explain the surge in annual meetings and the strategic importance of mapping out financial goals at the beginning of the year. From explaining fee-only versus commission-based models to the significance of transparency in understanding your planner's payment structure, they will equip you with the knowledge you need to hire the right advisor.

At Masons & Associates, they prioritize excellence and aim to empower clients to demand the same. Listen in as they break down the fee-only approach, sharing their own payment methods and emphasizing the importance of informed decision-making. By the end of the episode, you'll not only understand the mechanics of financial planner compensation, but also feel more confident in choosing the right professional to guide your financial journey.

Listen to the full episode here:

What you will learn:

  • Why we have a surge of meetings once a year. (2:15)
  • What fee-only means. (6:00)
  • Why you should care how your financial planner gets paid. (9:30)
  • The difference between fee-only and commission-based. (12:45)
  • The importance of knowing what you’re getting. (15:00)
  • Why you must do your due diligence before hiring a financial planner. (22:00)
  • Why we work as a team for our clients. (25:30)

Ideas worth sharing:

  • “Don’t let the cost of a financial planner persuade you. Demand excellence from them and let that lead your decision.” - Mason & Associates
  • “The country has gotten to a point where we accept less than excellence, and we just want our clients to demand excellence from everyone.” - Mason & Associates
  • “We work as a team for our clients.” - Mason & Associates

Resources from this episode:


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Read the Transcript Below:

Congratulations for taking ownership of your financial plan by tuning into the Federal Employee Financial Planning Podcast, hosted by Mason & Associates, financial advisors with over three decades of experience serving you.

Tommy Blackburn: Welcome. Welcome to the Federal Employee Financial Planning Podcast. you got with you tonight, myself, Tommy Blackburn, CFP, CPA. And to my right, we've got John Mason, president of Mason & Associates, CFP, Ben Raikes, IRS enrolled agent, EA, and CFP, and of course the man, the myth, the legend, Mike Mason, CFP, and the chairman of Mason & Associates.

Thank you for being with us. Thank you for sticking with us. If you've been a listener through several episodes, if you're new to the show, we really hope you enjoyed this episode. Today on this show, we're going to talk about. I guess, we said we would start with fee-only versus kind of some other models of financial planning.

I think we're going to kind of morph that a little bit into really a financial planner and the different ways they get paid versus all the other methods out there. Because there's a lot of people that get paid different ways, and they're just not a financial planner, no matter what that model is. thank you again for being with us.

We also want to point out that our YouTube channel is it's live, it's active. We're releasing a lot of content over there. So if you like what you're hearing, please like this, share it with your friends, send us your comments to Mason FP. That's Mason Financial Plan or F is in financial and P is in planning And please listen to the YouTube videos as well and let us know what you think about that or follow those. I think we've got some shorter-form content over there some longer-form content as well. I believe we'll be over there. But anyway, fellas, how are we doing?

John Mason: Tommy, thank you for the intro. It's been a fun day. It's April, we've gotten through tax time. And I think in general, we're all really excited that we have strategic planning meeting season coming up. And for our audience, that's eight weeks where we’ll do somewhere in the neighborhood of 350 client meetings in eight weeks.

And as some in the industry have said is we hope to deliver massive value to each of those families during that eight-week period. And why do we do that? We want to have all of our clients, Mike, on the similar service calendar. We want to have those meetings done and accomplished early in the year so that we can review tax projections early, but most importantly, is we want to create more work for ourselves, and we want to create more work for the client, and by doing these meetings earlier in the year, we're able to have everybody on a similar service calendar, which I think is pretty great.

Michael Mason: It makes it really good. We talked in a previous episode about State taxes not being withheld, if you find that early in the year you can prevent a big scare, if you're not doing that meeting until November, oh you got 11 months to catch up on so. As we go into this, guys, John on the last episode we recorded–I won't get the terminology exact–but expect or demand excellence from the people you work with, and that's everyone, that's the mechanic that fixes your car, your financial planner, the person that does your taxes, demand excellence. As we're gonna do this show, we want to talk about what does it mean when somebody is a financial planner that's fee-only? What if they're not fee-only, are they commission or are they some kind of hybrid? But don't let the cost of the hiring of that professional dissuade you. Don't say, “Oh this one's one, and this one's one and a half.”

Let's understand. Are you getting excellence and understand what you're getting? So we're gonna talk about the different platforms, but let's also make sure you understand What kind of excellence you're buying into when you create a relationship with a financial planner.

John Mason: That's a good call back, Mike. And as you said demand excellence from everybody. I know at a conference we attended a few years back, the presenter was talking about five-star reviews, and like when did doing your job all of a sudden get you to a five-star review? You answered the phone and gave me a cheeseburger, you get five stars. You just did your job like that's one star because you were adequate.

We want to demand a five-star experience from the CPAs, the financial planners, the mechanic, and unfortunately, not to go deep in the weeds or take a dark turn here, the country has gotten to a point where we accept less than excellence. And we just want our podcast listeners, our clients to demand excellence from everybody.

Michael Mason: Everybody should treat you like Chick-fil-A does, huh?

John Mason: That's right. But Raising Cane's right across the street is taking some business because they have some good chicken. So, Ben, maybe you can tell us a little bit, I think for the audience, before we dive into the different models, right, so we have fee-only, we have a hybrid person or firm, and then we have commission-only, can you just maybe share with our audience what that is? How Mason & Associates has compensated where we fall in this.

Ben Raikes: So let's start with some definitions maybe of fee-only, the commission side, and then also that kind of hybrid. So in my mind, what fee-only means is that we only ever get paid directly from our clients.

So we typically charge a fee for the assets that we manage. And we pull that from the assets that we manage from our clients. We do not get specific commissions from using a American funds fund or a Vanguard fund or a Columbia, whatever it may be, we only get paid from our clients and we're not incentivized to use any other types of funds other than what's the very best for the client.

That is the model that Mason & Associates falls under. I've already touched on this a little bit, but the commission side, another way that advisors can get compensated is they get a commission. So they will recommend a product, maybe it's life insurance or long-term care insurance, maybe it's a specific type of mutual fund or ETF, and based on the type of recommendation that they make, they will make a commission on selling that product. The hybrid, John, that you mentioned is actually right in between those. So there's some people that get fees directly from their clients and also get commissions from the people for which they sell products to those clients. Again, Mason & Associates is fee-only and that's how we work with our clients.

John Mason: And further expanding on that, Ben, ‘cause I think you did a great job defining the three different options. Primarily we operate as an asset under-management firm, which just means that if the assets that we're managing for our clients goes up then we receive a pay raise.

If the assets go down like they did in 2022, then we receive a pay cut. So we think it's important that one, our interests are aligned with clients, right? So we're all in it together. Two, I think it's good to call out like we have on previous episodes that when we recommend doing things like Roth conversions or donor-advised funds or delaying social security, it's very counterproductive for us on a revenue standpoint, at least immediately because we're taking assets out of management, reducing our compensation, but doing what's the best for clients.

So I think it's just really good to hit on that. We do charge some like monthly fees too sometimes. So, for example, we can charge a one-time planning fee, which we do of 2,500 or if clients have maybe less than a typical asset under management of 700,000 or more, then we could potentially charge like a subscription planning fee.

So but primarily AUM-based, so I think it's good for our audience to know that too. And stealing a line from Ken Fisher, guys, “We do better when you do better.” I think that's very well said is that's kind of how we operate at Mason.

Michael Mason: You used AUM, that's Assets Under Management, and it's extremely important that you know that there's nothing hidden, there's nothing, no revenue we get other than what we get from you. There's times where folks call in to, and they're really nice folks, and they have a half a million dollars or 400,000, and we will send them to our friends who are also in the business and there's no kickback when that happens. We're just helping them get the kind of financial planning service they need.

Ben Raikes: So I think this begs the question we've, I think, clearly defined the different ways that advisors get paid and we've specifically said how we get paid. Tommy, why should any client care how their advisor gets paid? Does it really make a difference?

Tommy Blackburn: Yeah, well, I think it's all about conflicts of interest is at least a piece of that. We are only paid by our clients. Now we do, we've already acknowledged we have a conflict of interest in that we're paid on the assets, which means the investments that we manage for our clients. But we're very transparent about that, and we do things that are contrary to that compensation all the time like the Roth conversions that don't revise funds and things that lower the assets we're managing. All of this one comes back to we are held to what you may have heard batted around is a fiduciary standard. We are required to put our clients' interest ahead of our own. And we love working that way and there are different models. Some only charge a monthly subscription like John was saying. We can do that, but it's only getting paid by the client.

So it really aligns our interests. There's nobody else pushing us or incentivizing us to go in a different direction. That's why you should care. If somebody can only earn money by selling you an insurance product, I'm guessing you're going to see a lot of insurance products when you go and talk to that person.

Now we're not saying every insurance product is terrible, we're just saying it's probably not an advice relationship. That is a transaction relationship. Perhaps you will get a financial planner, chances are no, they're not incentivized to do that.

Michael Mason: Somebody once used the terminology, “If all you have is a hammer, everything you see is a nail,” which is kind of cool. But let me say this, I'm not going to suggest to you that the first 10 years of my career, I was a butthead because I was on commission. There is life insurance, especially term life insurance. It doesn't come off the shelf without the commission attached to it.

So you can't buy a term life insurance policy anywhere. I guess maybe a Federal Employees Group Life, but if you're buying your own policy, it's going to have a commission, and guess what? If you're 45 years old, you probably want your own 20-year term versus Federal Employees Group Life. Long-term care doesn't come off the shelf without the commission that's baked into it unless you buy, which you can't now, federal long-term care.

We left Equitable because Equitable said to us in 2000, “We like the amount of business you're doing in mutual funds and some annuities, but if you don't sell enough of this life insurance, then that promise of having health insurance through our company is going to go away.”

And that's when Ken and I said, “Well, so basically you're telling us that the client needs life insurance, and they need whole life insurance before they need the right product,” and that's when we left. So it's, again, commissions aren't bad but if all they can do is get you a product with commissions, then my question would be what happens to our relationship year two? Because you got the commission up front, year two through year 32.

John Mason: I guess the government has kind of already told us that they don't believe that anybody can be a fiduciary if they're commissioned only. I think we all believe that like in theory land, you could be a commissioned insurance agent or a commissioned person and hold yourself to a fiduciary standard even if nobody else does or even if nobody else will allow you to call yourself that, it's still, in theory world, possible for an insurance person to knock on your door, sit at your kitchen table and say, “You have an adequate amount of life insurance. This appointment’s over.” That is possible.

Michael Mason: You have an adequate amount, and it's in the right spot. There's nothing wrong with XYZ company.

John Mason: Right. Congratulations. You did wonderful. I'll be going now. Thanks for the cookie, and I will have a nice day. Like that is possible. It's also possible that they convince you to replace everything that you have.

So Ben asked a really good question, and it was like, if I remember correctly, “Why should people care?” And then I wrote down that contender verse pretender, and what I mean there is, and we talked about this in a previous episode, is if you know you are in a commission-based relationship, that's fine. Just disclose it that way so I know how you're talking to me.

Are you talking to me as somebody that's going to sell me windows or a life insurance policy, or are you pretending to be a trusted advisor? Are you pretending to be a fiduciary? Are you pretending to be somebody that's going to actually, do a comprehensive review of my finances, disguising it so that you can sell me something on the back end?

I think that's why consumers and our listeners should care is because they deserve to know in what way are we doing business and are you an agent of an insurance company where you represent the insurance company or are you my fiduciary where you represent me? And unfortunately, this industry has been backwards for a long time that it's kind of like this new thing, representing your client and doing what's best for them when we've been trying to do this for decades. It's kind of new in the industry and the government's trying to regulate that.

Michael Mason: And guys, what John just said was kind of a comparison to the commission world and the fee world, but I want to draw it back to the fee world as well.

You could have a fee-only that all they do is manage money, right? And you could have a fee-only that, like we are, that we handle the money management through a third-party, SEM, and we do the financial planning. And just know what you're getting is the point, absolutely know what you're getting.

John Mason: And to just clarify a little bit, so we manage assets, Mike, for our clients on a discretionary basis and we use SEM wealth management to help us manage those assets as well. But asset gatherers are no better than commissioned salespeople and unfortunately, there's been this huge wave in the industry and, Tommy and Ben, you may not have seen it as much as we did ‘cause we were at the BD but huge wave in the industry where everybody was like, “Oh my God, you mean I can just get paid every year and I don't have to do anything?”

So there was this huge wave in the commission industry where everybody started moving things to fee-based or asset-under-management models where they're not necessarily adding any value, they're just transitioning it from product A to product B so that they build up trailing revenue. And these folks maybe have too many clients, maybe aren't adding any value, only have annual compliance meetings, but they're earning 1% on an enormous number of clients and portfolio, and not delivering any value.

And they're charging it now an advice fee to not give advice. That's called reverse churning and that is almost as bad as or maybe even worse in some instances than somebody knocking on your door saying, “I'd like to at least be transparent and sell you some windows.”

Tommy Blackburn: So this brings us back, we've come full circle to the beginning of the episode where I say we're going to morph this into what's a financial planner versus a pretender, as you would say. And that's the issue. So we have fee-only, and it's kind of a shame because you have fee-only advisors who are truly just money managers held to a supposed fiduciary standard, but they're not really giving any advice, they're not doing anything other than managing a portfolio and collecting a fee.

It made me think, as we kind of rounded the corner here, a compliment that we get from clients frequently, we get a lot. One is, “You speak it in my language. I don't have to speak yours,” but this is, was in acknowledging the conflict of interest that we have and how we get paid.

But it brought back that we are indeed financial advisors doing what's right for our clients. And where I'm going is the example was client has a pension, offers a lump sum, interest rates have changed, that lump sum amount has now come down quite a bit, and as I was looking at it with the client I said, “I think we've gotten to a point where we're going to take the pension. I think that's the better thing for your financial plan versus taking the lump sum amount of cash that they would offer you and us investing it. Here's why this and that, and why I think it's best for your plan now.” And the client looked at me in the Zoom meeting.

He said, “Well, doesn't that affect your compensation? Doesn't that negatively affect your compensation to give me this recommendation?” I said, “I hadn't thought about that, Mr. Client, but you're absolutely correct. That does negatively impact our compensation, but that's okay because we have a relationship that we're very happy with and this is what we think is right for you.”

I think they really appreciated the transparency of–it was awesome to hear the client acknowledge that too of just saying, “I can see you're working against your own interest right now.”

John Mason: It's, Tommy, an amazing story, and you know all of us would love to have a little more assets under management and a little bit higher fee but not at the expense of damaging a relationship or causing harm or causing somebody's financial plan stress where it didn't need to have stress and I knew because you've been working that pension lump sum probably for three or four months. I think we knew this day was coming.

Tommy Blackburn: Oh yeah, we knew that one was coming, the story is making me think a little bit to a podcast we just recorded about something, it's the long-term thought of things, right? Like social security, we could have tax-free benefits and maybe in the short term we feel great but in the long term, we shot ourselves in the foot. You've got to keep what's good for everybody at heart and good things will come. Cast your bread upon the waters and it'll come back in club sandwiches.

Michael Mason: I love it. I love it, you know, better–we've just released a podcast on 2023 as a military survivor benefit open season. So you just talked about you didn't go out and spend $5,000 on radio for a month to turn around and tell this guy to take the pension.

But we just did that. We just spent $5,000 on radio to get the word out that this military open season could be the biggest opportunity of a lifetime. And if the client I'm thinking about takes it, that's going to pull 150 to 175,000 that could be managed or is being managed out to buy survivor benefits. So that's when you spend money to reduce your assets under management, that's a fiduciary.

John Mason: And excited about, I mean, that's the thing that's so crazy is we're excited about reducing our compensation going into 2024 because it will have meant that x number of clients have survivor benefits where they wouldn't have had it otherwise. And it's kind of, I don't know if disturbing is the right word, but like it is, it's like we're disturbing, like so happy about this

Michael Mason: And this is just, it's not off-subject, but did you see Jim Bales? Did you see his face light up during the radio show last week when that lady called in and said, “You mean when my father dies, and he's going to because of the cancer, that his 100,000-dollar retirement dies with it, and I can fix that? You're telling me I can fix that?”

If you didn't see it, 'cause I think you were on the same side as him, it was just heartwarming to me. And Jim's a financial planner and he helped us do this expense to give to the community and he just lit up 'cause he knew he just helped one person and he cast his bread upon the waters. We don't know when they're gonna come back in club sandwiches. We just know they will.

John Mason: His exact reaction was he held up his arms like a goalpost. Like we did it, touchdown like we did it, and for our audience, we do have it. This will air probably in the summer, this episode. There's a YouTube video of the radio show that we did with Sinclair Communications and James Bales. It's on our YouTube channel.

So, YouTube Mason and Associates, you can go back and you can hear that phone call and you can hear how maybe one of the best ways we could have spent, you know, Mason & Associates and Bales Revenue, is even just helping this one person was game changer for us. So fee-only, hybrid, commission-only, and we've talked about a variety of these already. Ben, I have a specific question for you because I think I've been very fortunate in that I grew up in the business with Mike and Ken, and they got to share with me the ins and outs of the insurance industry. I learned a lot from them and I will say my general theory on the world is that certified financial planners who are under age 40 do not know as much about life insurance as I do because they haven't had a mentor like Mike and Ken.

So I think the people out there that are working with certified financial planners, at least the younger ones, probably don't have as much insurance experience. Needless to say, what do you want to say about that? And then number two, as fiduciaries we still have to recognize when clients need insurance and we still need to recognize when clients need annuities as fee-only advisors or fee-only fiduciaries. How do we then step in and help in those situations?

Ben Raikes: I think to address the first part of your question is that we've talked about being a fee-only advisor versus being a advisor that collects commissions.

And I think it's easy for us as the under-40 crowd to say, “Hey, you know what? I get my gold star for the day because I'm a fee-only advisor and I went to Virginia Tech and I'm super smart and this is the way to do business.” It doesn't mean necessarily anything if you're a fee-only advisor, you can be a fee-only advisor and give really bad advice and you can also be a commission-based advisor and give fantastic advice.

Just within the walls of our own office here, Ken, Mike, John, you, you guys bring up topics and issues all the time about whole life insurance and universal life insurance and long-term care, products that you all are intimately familiar with that I'm like, “Oh man, what, why didn't I know that and why didn't I think of that first?”

So there's certainly a place where some of the younger guys coming up can learn from some of the older guys for sure. And then thinking about, I think the second piece of your question was how can we work to make sure those life insurance needs are filled if that's really not a place where we can get paid, I think we look at a group like low load insurance services, we look at some of the other brokers out there and what we can ask the client is, “Hey, what are your life insurance needs? What are your long-term care needs? What do you might need a disability insurance?” And then send them to a broker who will give them a whole host of policies that they can use and then they can pick the best one for them rather than us as the fiduciary not being able to sell that to them or as a commission-based agent that can only sell one or two of them and not 10 or 20 of the options.

Tommy Blackburn: I will say, John, as we take a walk in the past that you were asking Ben about. I remember Ben and I when we were at our previous firm together talking and saying some of these fee-only advisors have their noses up in the air and they're overlooking these other issues, so we didn't have Mike and Ken necessarily showing us all these things, but we were pretty able, easily to identify, there's people are just being money managers and they're missing these things.

They're overlooking it. I wanted to give a shout out too, to Ken, because recently, sure enough, I've had a few with long-term care insurance, and sometimes you hit the easy button, right? Like, I think sometimes folks come to me for tax things just because I can be an easier, quicker solution that surely anyone can solve themselves, but you hit the easy button.

And this one, I was like, I'm just going to go straight to Ken because he's probably seen this policy and sure enough, he's like, “Is it the 222 or the–” He's right. He's spouting off numbers. And sure enough, it was great. It's awesome to have that experience. And he was able to enlighten myself and the client, walk us through exactly what our options with those contracts were.

John Mason: We're a team, and I think for our listeners and for us to always remember, which I know we do, is we're a team and our clients, although they may have John or Mike or Ben or Tommy or Ken as the lead or their primary contact, clients are all benefiting from all five of our experience and they probably don't know how much we talk about them when we're not with them. They probably don't realize the amount of prep work and the amount of storytelling that goes around. And I'm thinking about one, and I won't even go there because it'll derail the story, but clients all benefit from each other. Joe, Susie, Sally, Bob, they all have their individual financial plans.

And when we talk about these folks at lunch and share our fun stories, that benefits people throughout the Mason & Associates, clients, people on this podcast, people on the radio show. It's been great. And Ben, we should also give a shout-out to LLIS because we did a long-term care episode and they helped us with that one.

So that was really cool. LLIS has already been on here. So we do recommend insurance products. We do help our clients get insurance products. We just send them to somebody else to do all the paperwork and sign the application. But effectively, we're able to facilitate that discussion and what that's done for Mason & Associates, I don't know if it's relevant for this podcast, but I want to say it, has really streamlined our business because we're not so busy meeting with insurance companies and doing insurance apps and having to have people on staff on our team to service all of these insurance company needs. It's allowing us to do more a better and higher level of financial planning because we are outsourcing the stuff that we didn't need that revenue. It's not that we believe the revenue is bad, we really–business model change in 2020 has led to such a better client experience.

And Mike, I think maybe you can just touch on this, you and Ken had a little bit of head trash as we were making this move because you had taken a lot of pride in being able to be the guy that does everything or can do everything for a client. And I don't think it's been as apparent as it is now, three years reflecting on this move, it was the best thing we ever did because we're providing more value to clients now that we're not providing them everything.

Michael Mason: Yeah, you teed it up well for me because as I'm thinking about Ben's response and then you tightened up a little bit of his response. When we do a financial plan for clients, we don't send them to LLIS and let them figure out what kind of policy they need we have a philosophy here, because 90 percent of our clients are federal employees, if you can afford to retire you can afford to die.

We need to get you to the point that you can afford to retire because your permanent insurance is going to be survivor benefits and your cash assets, so it's typically a 20-year term and we're even in a different space today than we've been because most of our clients are coming in at 55, 60 years old, and their insurance needs, life insurance needs have waned.

We just did a podcast on documents. We want the documents from their insurance so we know how to support it. But to the point, if it's term life insurance and we do a bunch of work to help them get a term life policy, and the premium's a thousand dollars a year and we get a five hundred dollar commission, that's lost money. So we found a better way. We found a better way to get you what you need, right? At a price we can afford which is no work at our end.

John Mason: So maybe I, guys, I think we're getting close to the end of this episode. I have just a couple more thoughts on fee-only, hybrid commission. I'll just say like my general closing action items or thoughts on this for the audience would just be know who you're working with and understand who you're working with. Maybe another pullback is demand excellence. And I just jotted down these two questions, and this is really for our audience to ponder. It's for people to ponder if they've already hired somebody is: is advice at the center of this relationship? Is advice at the center of the relationship or is advice ancillary to the relationship? And what I mean by that is if you have a money manager, they're only focusing on the portfolio and the advice is secondary.

If you have a commissioned person, they're selling a product and want to sell the product and the advice is likely necessary to get you to the point where you buy it. So although we are fee-only, I think all of our clients would agree that at the center of our relationship, where we're adding the value is on the advice side and we firmly believe that's where the advice piece should be is at the center of every relationship. How you fill the outside, how you manage the portfolio, how you acquire the insurance policies, that's all a separate question. But I think you can ask the big question is where is advice in this relationship? And if it's at the center, that's who you want to be working with.

Michael Mason: And I would say in my closing comments, don't be afraid to ask your current advisor how they're paid. Don't assume they're getting paid a certain way. They may not be getting paid. They may have got paid five years ago and they're waiting for something to happen so that they can get another commission in the future. But before you start a relationship, demand. How do you get paid? And if they say to you something like, “Well, the insurance company takes care of me.”

Well, tell me more. I want to know how you get paid, right? Maybe it's 7% upfront. Maybe it's 3% upfront and 1% ongoing. You should know how you're paying your profession.

Tommy Blackburn: I'll just dovetail on that. Well, I love demand excellence. We should do that. We should also probably be prepared to pay for excellence if we're going to demand excellence. So don't be shocked when you get a fee to get excellent service. Know how they get paid. And I'm thinking to like tax preparers, understand what you're paying for. If you're paying for an insurance product, that's probably all you're going to get. If you're paying for a tax return, you're not going to get tax advice. So, an advisor is billing you for their advice, and that's the critical piece that I would say here.

Ben Raikes: I'll be quick. I think Mike hit it really well earlier in this podcast that if you're a hammer, everything looks like a nail. And so if you're going to an advisor and all they want to do is sell you an insurance policy, that's probably all they can do. And they're not going to be able to give you advice about the many, many, many other aspects of your plan.

John Mason: Folks, this has been another episode of the Federal Employee Financial Planning Podcast. Thanks again for being with us. We hope this was valuable and we'd love to hear from you whether it's here, social media, our YouTube channel. Thank you for the five-star reviews. Thank you for sharing and helping grow this podcast. We're Mason & Associates,

The topics discussed on this podcast represent our best understanding of federal benefits and are for informational and educational purposes only, and should not be construed as investment, financial planning, or other professional advice.

We encourage you to consult with the office of personnel management and one or more professional advisors before taking any action based on the information presented.