stock market dice

Content provided by Sadie Brewer, CLS Marketing Communications Specialist

The past two months have been a blur. I literally couldn’t tell you what I did yesterday, let alone a few days ago. At some point in May, I could find the exact dates but it’s really not that important. I sold my car, sold my house, and bought a new house – all by myself. Well, my husband helped a little. These were all pre-planned events; however, the lightning speed at which it all happened, was a bit shocking – to say the least.

Late one Sunday night, I got ambitious and put our house and my car up for sale on a few free for sale by owner sites. By Thursday, my car was sold. The following Sunday, we had two good bids on our house, so it too was sold. And Monday, I found out that a house we had our eyes on for the past year was going to go on the market. That’s about the time it starts to get foggy. Without going into all the details, I can tell you that we are now in our new home, unorganized and still a bit frazzled, but we are there. And in retrospect, it wasn’t that bad. But I can tell you this, it is something that I hope to NEVER go through again. In truth, I could never have done it without the help of my husband, so when I refer to what “I” did, it should be “we.” This was definitely a two person project.

When we started the process of selling our home, we thought we would save a bunch of money and do it ourselves instead of pay realtor fees. Then, when we found out our current house was going to go up for sale, we jumped on that to cut the realtor costs on that house as well. That’s when it turned into A LOT. Stress. Worry. Emotion. I have a newfound respect for real estate agents and the work that they do on behalf of their clients. There were many times that I wished we had a middle man to deal with the negotiations, the absolutely “will not do that” and the absolutely “must do that” scenarios, and all the other issues that came up during the process.

Which leads me to my point…I’ve been in the financial industry for five years but I don’t think the true benefits of using financial professionals has ever hit home quite so hard. I see a strong parallel between my experience selling and buying by myself, to investors attempting to self-manage their money, investments, account, and their futures!! It’s do-able…if they have the time, energy, knowledge, experience, resource, and the list goes on. My little real estate adventure required all of these things, but differs majorly from individuals managing their own accounts – my project was temporary, over in less than two months. Managing personal investments is a lifelong commitment, which most people just cannot commit to. Many try to forgo the minimal advisory fees, missing out on the advantages of experience, knowledge, time, teams of people monitoring accounts and portfolios, this list goes on as well. In the long run, I just don’t think it’s worth losing all those pros when you weight the cons, which can include the potential to alter your entire way of life, and long-term life goals.