ON INDEPENDENCE

When I decided to join the family firm about three years ago, I made my decision on two factors. Independence and ethics. 

 

As a child growing up in the home of a family that was always in the financial business, I learned more about it at a young age than I necessarily wanted to know. 

 

But three years into the job, I’d say those two factors are pretty relevant right now and no doubt will continue to be so. 

 

Independence 

 

Independence in the financial services business means the ability to choose the best products that you can find for your clients.  Even then, they are not always perfect, but over time we see that the choices we make have a real impact on people’s lives.  

 

I was reminded of the importance of that a month or so ago when I read the story of a real estate agent in Ontario who had not been able to make a go of things during these coronavirus times. 

 

She was forced to sell her home and cash out her mortgage early – to the tune of a $30,000 penalty. 

 

Now it’s fair to admit that financial services companies are in the business of making money.   But adding to a person’s troubles through penalties during a pandemic is in my mind uncalled for.   Was there a better product for the situation?  Likely.

 

I will not link to the article because I don’t want to bash a captive competitor.  But I will leave it with this. 

 

For every need, there is likely an optimal solution. There are several sub-optimal solutions, and no doubt there are things that won’t work at all.

 

We want to avoid those situations, which is why the products our firm chooses to suggest to our clients are thought through.  They are suggested in the best interest of our clients. Not our compensation. 

 

It’s one of the reasons our firm has been, for many years, placing our client investment business with no placement fee – so that 100% of our client’s money is invested and put to work right away.   That decision cost our firm significant revenue over the last decade. But it was the right thing to do for our clients. And the approach of always doing what is best for our clients is likely why we thrive with the abundance of unsolicited referrals, even in a pandemic.

 

As part of the next generation of Schneider Insurance, you have my commitment that we will maintain those two core anchors of independence and ethics over the next 30 years. 

 

Thanks so much. 

 

Cass Schneider
B.A. Business Administration
Licensed Advisor

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Schneider Content Team