Lake Tahoe Wealth Management provides solutions to small companies’ defined contribution retirement plans as a full fiduciary advisor through established partnerships with record keepers and third party administrators (TPAs) that are industry leaders in serving small to large plans. Our institutional team works with small businesses that are looking for expertise to:
- Help them choose a plan design that meets their goals and provides a valuable benefit to plan participants, given that 401(k) plans are the primary retirement wealth-building vehicle for employees
- Meet their investment fiduciary responsibilities, and remove investment liability
- Provide additional benefit to plan participants by improving retirement wealth outcomes and reducing overall plan costs, which can be high for small plans
We utilize behavioral finance methodologies to help participants with deferral and asset allocation decisions. We offer on-going investment monitoring and rebalancing, periodic participant education, and annual plan design reviews with employers to ensure plan operation and performance are in alignment with design goals.
We believe it is important to understand the markets we service in our retirement plan offerings, because delivering retirement solutions requires knowing the demographics of plan participants as well as plan sponsors/employers. This knowledge enables us to better service each plan, through customized participant education as well as unique advice to support plan sponsors with their plan design and on-going management responsibilities.
Our team stays current on shifting trends in the retirement industry as well as DOL regulatory changes, so that we may provide timely information to plan sponsors and participants. Recent industry trends in small company retirement plans points out significant challenges facing plan sponsors. We share our research results with sponsors on how other employers successfully address some of these issues. The primary solutions implemented by small plans include auto-enrollment, auto-escalation of deferrals (increasing deferrals with annual raises), hardship-based plan loans only to reduce risk of plan leakages due to overuse of loans, and re-enrollments with the goal of offering a qualified default investment alternative to participants that choose not to select an asset allocation.
We partner with plan sponsors as their plan investment fiduciary to minimize their liability exposure to regulatory requirements. Through periodic and annual review meetings with plan sponsors, we help identify potential red-flags. For the industries we serve, such as small manufacturing and professional services, low level of corporate matching, low employee participation, deferral re-distribution, plan service fees, investment policy documents and record keeping could be potential flags that may expose plans to audits. We offer sponsors tools to facilitate early identification and resolution of plan deficiencies.
Small employers want to attract and retain highly skilled employees, yet must compete with larger firms that are able to offer attractive compensation and retirement benefits. Our goal is to facilitate a successful implementation and management of defined contribution retirement plans for small companies to help meet their business goals and support employees with retirement readiness.