Finding Peace and Contentment In Your Financial Life: With Hays Latimer
Hays Latimer, a Senior Lead Advisor for OneAscent Wealth, has been serving clients for over 17 years. Here he shares some of his story and some of the timeless financial advice that can help you on your financial journey.
Do you need guidance in your financial strategy? Schedule a consultation today!
My Journey Into Financial Advising
I graduated from Auburn University in 2003 with a business degree concentrating in marketing. After graduating, I ended up in Nashville, working in sales for a national phone company. I had a great first week but eventually felt that it wasn’t a good long-term fit for me.
Shortly after, I moved to Birmingham for a fresh start and to be closer to my now wife. I was offered an interview to be an advisor at a financial firm. I was excited about the prospect of financial services and joined the team in March of 2005.
How I Came to Join the OneAscent Team
I worked for two years as a new advisor, where I received excellent training. However, I started to feel that the way we were bringing on new clients to bring in income was an unsustainable way to build a business. I loved what I did, especially the relationship-building aspect of the business, but I knew there had to be a better way.
In late 2006 a fellow advisor connected me to Harry Pearson, who owned his own franchise. Harry noticed that my skill set was consistent with what he needed and that I would be a great fit for his team. We also connected on a personal level very quickly. I saw how he cared for his clients and intentionally built and grew his business.
I joined Harry in 2007 when there were just three of us and have been here ever since. Working with Harry allowed me to work with clients who had more complex needs. I gained confidence and expertise in communicating with these families. Harry was a great example of the type of advisor I wanted to be, and I still use what I learned then to serve my clients today.
My Passion for Building Deeper Client Relationships
When I think about what motivates me and I think first about the client meetings that lead to deeper, more authentic conversations. When I meet with new clients, especially those who have worked with advisors in the past, I always ask about their experiences.
Many clients end up telling me that their advisors did well enough with their money management and investment performance. Still they never felt like their advisor got to the level that they understood their family, values, and desires. I believe our commitment to truly knowing and understanding our clients is why many have been with us for over 20 years.
How an Advisor Can Add Value to Your Financial Plan
There are many reasons that someone may hire a financial advisor. Families may not want to spend the time and energy to get into the minutia of investments. Many clients are would be successful investors, but they would rather focus on the things they are passionate about.
Some clients’ financial circumstances reach a level of complexity they are not comfortable managing, such as with any significant life transition. They often have unlimited options, but limited resources. We help them determine the best path for their goals and desires.
We also have some client couples in which one spouse tends to make all the financial decisions. They are confident in their abilities, but want to ensure that their spouse is taken care of if they pass. We are a resource for any financial needs that may arise.
Advice When Looking for a Financial Advisor
Not everyone will be a good fit everywhere. It’s not just about choosing a good financial advisor, but one that also fits your needs. Most importantly, do you believe they are trustworthy and a person of high integrity? If you don’t, the rest won’t matter.
Rely on your gut feelings, but also ask yourself if you believe the advisor would be willing to tell you a hard truth if it’s what you needed to hear. Sometimes we must deliver bad news, and it’s important that the relationship is strong enough where we can be compassionate but honest, and the client can be receptive to the circumstances.
You also want an advisor who is a good communicator. It really doesn’t matter how smart or how good they are if they cannot communicate well. It might take some time to figure these things out, but a great way to learn more is by asking questions.
Timeless Financial Principles for Every Income Level
There are a few timeless financial principles that can be applied anywhere. They sound like common sense, but doing them consistently leads to success in the long term.
- Spend Less than You Earn – If you have a negative income every month, it will be impossible to reach any financial goals.
- Avoid the Use of Debt, When Possible – Mortgage payments are perfectly reasonable. Highly-avoidable debt, such as consistent credit card debt, can be a pitfall.
- Be a Generous Giver – This can feel counterintuitive but we have found that our most generous clients are the ones who are most financially content. They see money as a tool, not only for their own needs but to meet the needs of others.
- Plan for Financial Margin – Ensure you have a cushion in your monthly cash flow, so you are well-equipped to handle unexpected opportunities or expenses.
- Set Long-Term Goals – I firmly believe that as people we cannot focus on the long term if our financial house is not in order today.
Finding Peace and Contentment In Your Financial Life
At the end of the day, my hope is that every client who walks through our front door feels a greater sense of peace and contentment about where they are and what they have because they worked with us. It’s so encouraging for me to hear clients share how thrilled they are about the position they are in because of what we have done together.
If you are looking for more clarity, confidence, and contentment in your financial life, I would love to talk with you! Contact us here to learn more about how we can help you reach your financial goals.