Atlas has proudly joined the SmartVestor Program. We are happy to be helping Dave Ramsey Listeners with Retirement, College Savings and Goal Planning.
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The Ramsey approach involves seven small “Baby Steps” that will help lead you to your retirement goals.
Are You Ready to Take the Next Step?
As a Ramsey Trusted SmartVestor Pro Team we make the following Commitments:
- We Value Serving Over Selling
- We Have the Heart of a Teacher
- We Are Alongside You on Your Journey From Start to Finish
- We Are Completely In Line with The Ramsey Mission
- We Provide Top Notch Service. Every Time
- We Work Directly With the Ramsey Team To Make Sure We’re Meeting Their High Standards.
The Initial Appointment (Complimentary)
Our initial appointment with you is designed to help us gain a better understanding of your needs, goals and current situation. While we will share somethings about our firm, this appointment is about you and your needs.
This first appointment is always complimentary. It is at this point that we will explain the ways that we would be able to work with you and our next steps together.
Initial Planning and Information Gathering
Once we have agreed to work together, the fun part begins. We will begin gathering information from you to begin building. Some of this will be gathered through our secured file uplink system and other information will be entered by you into our Financial Planning Program.
Once we gather your information, we will begin to build your financial plan.
Our next step is to review the plan with you. The financial planning software that we use helps us determine the probability of success of your plan. We are shooting for at least an 85% probability of success. This will help you have confidence that if you follow the plan we put together, you have a significant chance of success.
Now that we have a plan the next step is to implement it.
At this point we begin to help you set up accounts and transfer any assets. Once we receive the assets into your accounts we will begin to implement the investment strategy that we agreed upon in our Plan Review.
At this point we will also help you get in place any needed insurance that we determined from the planning process and will be working with you and your attorney to update Estate Planning Documents.
Check-In and Follow Up
This is one of the most critical steps that we feel helps our clients early on. Typically within the first 60 days of becoming a client, our Client Success Manager will reach out to you to schedule a follow up meeting with you. The purpose of this meeting is to answer questions and ensure you are comfortable with your accounts.
It is at this time that we will set up our future meeting schedule. For most of our clients this is either Quarterly, Semi-Annually, or at a minimum Annually.
Dave Ramsey’s “Baby Steps”
Follow the proven plan that’s helped millions of people ditch debt and build wealth!
Baby Step 1: Save $1,000 for Your Starter Emergency Fund
In this first step, your goal is to save $1,000 as fast as you can. Your emergency fund will cover those unexpected life events you can’t plan for. And there are plenty of them. You don’t want to dig a deeper hole while you’re trying to work your way out of debt!
Baby Step 2: Pay Off All Debt (Except the House) Using the Debt Snowball
Next, it’s time to pay off the cars, the credit cards and the student loans. Start by listing all of your debts except for your mortgage. Put them in order by balance from smallest to largest—regardless of interest rate. Pay minimum payments on everything but the little one. Attack that one with a vengeance. Once it’s gone, take that payment and put it toward the second-smallest debt, making minimum payments on the rest. That’s what’s called the debt snowball method, and you’ll use it to knock out your debts one by one.
Baby Step 3: Save 3–6 Months of Expenses in a Fully Funded Emergency Fund
You’ve paid off your debt! Don’t slow down now. Take that money you were throwing at your debt and build a fully funded emergency fund that covers 3–6 months of your expenses. This will protect you against life’s bigger surprises, like the loss of a job or your car breaking down, without slipping back into debt.
Baby Step 4: Invest 15% of Your Household Income in Retirement
Now you can shift your focus off debts and what-ifs and start looking up the road. This is where you begin regularly investing 15% of your gross income for retirement. Because if you’re still working at 67, it should be because you want to, not because you have to. An investing pro can help you build a solid strategy.
Baby Step 5: Save for Your Children’s College Fund
By this step, you’ve paid off all debts (except the house) and started saving for retirement. Next, it’s time to save for your children’s college expenses (that is, if they make it through Algebra II and Chemistry unscathed). We recommend 529 college savings plans or ESAs (Education Savings Accounts).
Baby Step 6: Pay Off Your Home Early
Now, bring it all home. Baby Step 6 is the big dog! Your mortgage is the only thing between you and complete freedom from debt. Can you imagine your life with no house payment? Any extra money you can put toward your mortgage could save you tens (or even hundreds) of thousands of dollars in interest.
Baby Step 7: Build Wealth and Give
You know what people with no debt can do? Anything they want! The last step is the most fun. You can live and give like no one else. Keep building wealth and become outrageously generous, all while leaving an inheritance for your kids and their kids. Now that’s what we call leaving a legacy!