Frequently Asked Questions

Cooper Lapman is a fee-only advisory firm, which means that we charge an annual fee for the personalized, holistic financial planning and investment management of our clients’ accounts. We receive no compensation or commissions from third parties, nor do we ever pay others to give us referrals.  Our continuing success depends entirely upon the quality of our advice, services rendered and the satisfaction of our clients. We work only in your best interests.


Our fee is based on the quarter-end market value of the assets we manage for you.  The basic fee schedule is as follows:  

$0 to $5,000,000
0.75%
$5,000,001 and above
0.65%

Once your initial plan is complete, we regularly meet with you to review and update your plan, assess your progress, and consider other actions that may be helpful for you. In addition, we provide “Concierge” Service regarding anything that touches your money.  Examples of things we consult on:

  • Gifting to family and charities
  • Investment opportunities you contemplate
  • Educational funding plans
  • Mortgages
  • Insurance
  • Financing
  • Social Security
  • Medicare
  • Retirement Plans
  • Required Minimum Distributions

We are available any time you have further questions or just need reassurance!

We have the capability to work with clients of various asset levels. In our complimentary discovery meeting, we outline the different ways that we can help clients.

A focus on "need vs greed"

In order to build the right portfolio for you, we start with a thorough analysis of your lifestyle, goals and individual objectives. What do you want and need for yourself, for your family, for charity? We then go through the following steps:

  • Determine risk tolerance
  • Understand short and long term cash flow needs and “Bucket” assets according to goals
  • Select asset mix that targets “needed” return at minimum risk
  • Diversify into Domestic Equity, Foreign Equity, and Fixed Income
  • Select low-cost, passive investments (Index Funds when appropriate) 
  • Minimize trading cost and dollar-cost average our investments
  • Invest with an awareness of tax consequences.

Whenever possible, we prefer to use passive, index strategies, rather than active ones. In simple terms, a passive/index strategy is one that owns essentially all the securities in a market or market segment, based on a weighting scheme such as company size, rather than emphasizing what the manager may think are the “best” stocks based on his/her investment approach.

At Cooper Lapman, we believe that it is extremely difficult for active portfolio managers to exceed market returns, net of fees, and we are not so arrogant as to believe that we will be the ones capable of consistently finding the outperformers! Perhaps, most important is the fact that passive funds are much less expensive than active funds, and one of the greatest risks to success in investing is the depletion of returns due to excessive fees.

Cooper Lapman never has actual custody — physical possession or access to your money. Client assets are held at Fidelity Investments in an account registered in your name. Clients are encouraged to engage Fidelity as custodian to retain their funds and securities and to direct Cooper Lapman to utilize Fidelity for your security transactions.

There are no legal, regulatory or disciplinary events involving Cooper Lapman or any of its persons. Cooper Lapman values the trust clients place in us. We encourage clients to perform the requisite due diligence on any advisor or service provider that the client engages. The backgrounds are on the Investment Adviser Public Disclosure website at www.adviserinfo.sec.gov by searching with the Advisor’s name or CRD# 149971.

Just contact us and we will walk you through the rest!

Once we know a little more about you, we can schedule a meeting to get further acquainted. Our introductory meeting will cover a range of items. We will tell you more about us and our methodology and ask about you and your current financial situation. To assist with this assessment, we recommend you gather a recent statement for each of your financial accounts, including: 

  • Bank accounts/CDs
  • Brokerage accounts
  • IRAs
  • Company sponsored retirement plans (401(k), 403(b), etc.)
  • Pension plan information/estimates
  • Stock options
  • 529 plans for college savings

There is no charge for this meeting. Your biggest investment at this stage of the process is the time it will take to gather together your personal account data and meet with us. We look forward to meeting you!