We take our role as trusted advisor seriously. Our goal is to provide clients with clarity, to educate, and to make significant and tangible progress toward every client’s financial and life goals.
Merit Wealth Management is a fee-only, independent wealth management firm with clients across the country. The firm is located in the idyllic town of Bend, Oregon. We believe in the delivery of true wealth management to our clients through academic based investment strategies and comprehensive planning. We look to have a deep understanding of our client’s complete financial picture, from retirement planning to their philanthropic dreams.
Our principles and approach stand in sharp contrast to many in the financial services industry who prefer to play a rigged Wall Street game — often putting their own interests ahead of their clients’.
WE PROVIDE A FIDUCIARY STANDARD OF CARE TO ALL CLIENTS
In our relentless pursuit to be the most trusted independent private wealth management company, Merit adopts an approach that is uniquely different from much of the financial services industry. We know it is a road less traveled, but a path that will lead us to providing you with the most honest, independent and competent financial advice.
As fiduciaries we are legally obligated to act in our clients' best interest at all times. Most large brokerage firms and advisors do not have to legally act in their clients' best interest, so you have to ask the question; Do the recommendations most benefit you or them?
Our clients take solace in knowing that they need not question the integrity of our council.
OUR INTEGRATED TEAM-BASED APPROACH ENSURES COMPETENCE
We advise our clients on all facets of their financial lives, sensitive to how each piece affects the others. Our team of experts develops coordinated strategies that seek to provide optimal financial advantage. This coordinated approach eliminates the frustration and unpleasant surprises that often arise when trying to manage a loose network of unaffiliated advisors.
WE PROVIDE EVIDENCE BASED INVESTMENT STRATEGIES
To help you stay on course toward your loftiest dreams, we offer the compass of a solid investment strategy based on three key points. First, we have a strategy. Second, it’s a strategy based on reason and evidence guided by the durable science of capital markets. Third, it’s grounded in our fiduciary obligation to serve our clients’ highest financial interests.
Our investment philosophy is based off of academic evidence, not Wall Street forecasters or gurus. The basis for the principles found in our approach is a collection of the best evidence from the academic disciplines of economics and finance. Investment experts usually summarize this evidence as a body of knowledge called Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT).
Passive asset class investing and broad global diversification are rooted in MPT. Several leading financial economists, three of whom received the 1990 Nobel Prize for their contributions, conducted research resulting in its formulation, and our investment strategies are based on it.
INTEGRITY & ETHICS
Integrity and ethics is our first core value for two reasons. First, because your word is your reputation. That reputation is extremely hard to earn and very easy to lose—and at the end of the day it is all you have. Second, we will always follow through on our word. Or as the old saying goes “When you say you’re going to do something, do it.” Be a person of your word. We will strive to always do the right thing for our clients, team members and stakeholders —even when it hurts or is at our personal expense. In fact, the first rule of operation at Merit is the golden rule found in Matthew 7:12 "So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you..."
We work in the client services business, and the client is royalty. Everything we do is focused on making our clients’ lives easier, and good service is not good enough. “Good” and “Okay” are forgettable. That’s why we always strive for a +1 experience—that is, great service plus that something extra that goes above and beyond expectations. We will strive to be memorable any time we interact with clients. Merit operates as an ensemble practice. Meaning, we are a team of financial advisory professionals that relies on the team rather than an individual to service and manage client relationships. Because of this our collective behavior focuses on the team goal rather than individual agendas. Essentially, we spend more time saying “we” than we say “I.”
OPEN & HONEST COMMUNICATION
We will always strive to communicate openly, honestly and transparently with clients, the community and with each other. We will do this while maintaining a very high degree of confidentiality and discretion for our clients and in this respect, the goal is to communicate to fellow team members that they should not just sit on something that’s frustrating them or that’s become an obstacle to their work. We encourage communication that’s respectful and aware of other points of view.
Constant and never-ending innovation and improvement. Never settle! We will always ask ourselves and each other, “How can I do this better for the client and the firm? How can I be more efficient and get more done with less?” This is how we will show up each and every day.
We strive to think ahead of the right now and anticipate our clients’ needs before they express them. Our job is to stay ahead of the curve, to stay on top of trends, and to ensure that we’re always delivering the most effective solutions and services to the people we serve. That means research on the industry and marketplace, regular planning meetings as a team and and check-ins.
We believe it is critical to have intellectual curiosity and to be committed to lifelong learning. No matter how proficient anybody becomes in his or her respective role, there is always room to learn and improve. This learning can come from formal education, professional programs, or simply from being open to another way of viewing things. We encourage and set goals around self-learning.