Byron Hazley never felt he had a solid financial plan, but when his wife passed away, the 66-year-old healthcare management executive felt he could wait no more.
For years, the California resident had shelved the notion of taking a true assessment of his financial picture, mostly because he was busy with work and life. He wanted to believe there would always be time. Like many Americans, he had given his money to a friend who worked for one of the big-name wealth-management firms, but a voice in the back of his head kept whispering that something was not quite right.
Now an aging widower and single father, Byron decided to finally listen to his gut and get a truly independent assessment of his financial situation. Byron’s advisor, influenced by the philosophies and practices of his employer’s corporate culture, had invested over 65% of Byron’s portfolio in high-risk stocks. While Byron trusted his friend, whom he had met at church, he worried that any market crash would put him in danger, particularly if he ever needed to use the money in a down market.
Byron’s online research led him to join a financial education webinar taught by the Institute of Financial Wellness. To this day, he remembers it as “the most financially informative, educational experience I’ve ever had,” Byron says. “The webinar taught me critical fundamentals, which I was surprised that nobody had ever mentioned. I knew that time was not on my side, and I needed to take action to protect my most important assets: my financial well-being and my peace of mind.”
After the webinar, Byron received a free personalized report provided by the Institute of Financial
Wellness, shedding further light on significant opportunities and threats that his prior wealth-management firm had never mentioned. Empowered with this information, he selected an IFW financial professional, Evan Sussman, who applied a customized, strategic approach that would grow and protect his assets while leaving a legacy for his daughter.
In addition to safeguarding his financial future, the process just may have saved his life. A health screening required for the insurance program recommended by Evan revealed that Byron had prostate cancer and needed immediate surgery.
“The Institute of Financial Wellness may have saved my life,” Byron said. “It is only because of the process of working on my entire financial situation with the Institute of Financial Wellness that I am a cancer survivor.”
Today, Evan and the IFW team continue to monitor the process proactively and ensure that Byron has the necessary support to stay on track through the upcoming stages of his life.
“Finally, I feel well-prepared for the future and have peace of mind knowing that my daughter will be well taken care of, in the event anything happens to me,” Byron says.
Byron Hazley: At a Glance
The Problem: Byron gave a substantial amount of assets he had saved over the years to a friend he met at church who worked for a major national wealth-management firm. Influenced by the philosophies and practices of his employer’s corporate culture, his friend put the majority of Byron’s assets in high-risk stocks and neglected to suggest he consider any protection and distribution products. This was particularly dangerous, as Byron was exposed and vulnerable in the event he needed to draw from that money in a down market.
The Solution: The Institute of Financial Wellness put Byron on the path to “Get There” and achieve his best life by enabling him to select a more well-rounded financial professional who developed a customized solution, including wealth accumulation, distribution, and protection products.
The Outcome: Byron finally feels peace of mind knowing his future, and by extension his daughter’s future, is well-protected.
*Byron Hazley is an actual client referred by The Institute of Financial Wellness to his Financial Professional and was not paid any compensation for his interview or comments.