Making Cents: Helping Friends and Family

US Wealth Napolitano |

By: John P. Napolitano, CFP®, CPA, PFS, MST

During the past few weeks, you’ve had ample time to think about your friends and family. Mostly hoping and praying that they are able to endure this period of isolation and remain healthy, strong and positive.

Many people are stressing out about not seeing family, missing interaction of co-workers and wondering if their financial house is made of bricks or cards. And you know our feeling there. If their financial house is all about investing to the detriment of the other moving parts of financial life– I’d say the house is made of cards.
The next time a friend or relative that you care about is asking about your opinion of financial markets, or what your advisors are doing for you… pose a few questions of your own.

Ask them if their health care powers of attorney are current? Ask them if they are using current trusts?  Ask them if they’ve done any tax loss harvesting? Ask them if their children are adding to 401K’s now to take advantage of recent market declines? Ask them if their advisors tend to all of these other important matters with the same intensity and care that they allege for the portfolio?

Now more than ever, it is time to re-visit the entire financial house. Most people don’t realize just how important all of the moving parts to their financial lives– and that will never change. Typically it takes a catastrophic event, where you suddenly realize that you do not have your ducks in a row. 

Most holistic advisors are willing to help anyone that you care about with their financial questions and untended or unnoticed needs. A simple email or a conference call introduction is the best way to get them on the right path. Ironically, we frequently find that the more financially successful a family is, the more gaps they have. Having wealth is freeing, but so freeing that many ignore some of the basic needs that we all have. You don’t realize the things that money can’t buy until you need them. And by that time it is often too late.

Helping to get someone you love in the hands of a caring professional will also keep you out of the casual conversations that are meant to be serious and well thought out. It may also help train your loved one to take advice from knowledgeable, experienced professionals and to avoid hearsay or opinions based on fear or something that they “heard”.

Everyone needs to feel good about something. That feeling has been sidetracked by many in recent times. This could be your chance to do something that makes a few people feel good.

You can feel good about helping them. They can feel good about getting their entire financial house in order. And the professional advisor community can feel good that the pro-active and holistic service that the best firms deliver to their clients is recognized as a key ingredient of good financial health.


John P. Napolitano CFP®, CPA is CEO of US Wealth Management in Braintree, MA. Visit JohnPNapolitano on LinkedIn or The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. John Napolitano is a registered principal with and securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advice offered through US Financial Advisors, a Registered Investment Advisor. US Financial Advisors and US Wealth Management are separate entities from LPL Financial. He can be reached at 781-849-9200.  1-980134