Want to manage your own Couch Potato portfolio but need help getting started? Dan Bortolotti and PWL Capital’s Toronto team offer a unique service for do-it-yourself index investors. For a one-time fee we will:
- clarify your short-term and long-term financial goals
- determine an asset allocation based on your required rate of return and risk tolerance
- suggest the most tax-efficient accounts for your investments (RRSPs, TFSAs, non-registered, RESPs)
- assist you with the paperwork involved in opening new discount brokerage accounts and transferring funds from existing accounts
- design a custom ETF portfolio and assist you in making the necessary trades to implement it through your online brokerage
- show you how to avoid expensive currency conversion costs
- create custom spreadsheets you can use to rebalance and manage your portfolio
- provide you with a handbook of step-by-step instructions so you can succeed on your own
Our DIY service is available to investors across Canada, but it isn’t appropriate for everyone. The ideal client:
- is a committed index investor who is not interested in picking individual stocks or using other active strategies
- is engaged in the investing process and willing to spend time learning to manage their portfolio online. This includes owning a current version of Microsoft Excel and being comfortable using spreadsheets
- is in the accumulation stage of life—that is, building wealth rather than drawing it down in retirement
- has no more than $500,000 in investable assets. Investors with larger accounts should consider PWL Capital’s managed portfolio service
- has a relatively uncomplicated situation: business owners, US citizens, or others in special circumstances require planning outside the scope of this service
The cost for the service ranges from $3,000 to $5,000 (plus taxes) depending on the complexity of the client’s situation. The fee is payable in three installments. To learn more download our brochure or email Dan Bortolotti or call (416) 203-0067, x. 230.
Please note that due to high demand there is currently a waiting list for our DIY Service.
What our clients are saying
Why would a DIY investor pay for professional help when so much information is available online? We’ll let our clients answer that question:
“We received a large lump sum and were nervous about the investing decisions that lay ahead. We knew a low-cost, index-based ETF portfolio was the solution, but we remained apprehensive about managing our own investments. Dan and the PWL Capital team changed all that. As part of the DIY service, Dan worked closely with us to implement a portfolio that meets our needs and provided the guidance and tools we need to manage it going forward. We feel like a weight has been lifted. Dan is a real pro, and for us the service was worth every penny—and more.”
— Larry & Christine, Ontario
“The DIY service turned out to be even more than we were expecting. Dan helped us design a balanced and tax-friendly, low-fee portfolio of index investments, and guided us through the process of buying ETFs online, while also showing us some neat tricks for minimizing currency conversion costs. He also began the process with a thorough review of our whole financial situation in order to design a plan that was tailored to the broader context of our stage of life and personal goals. Throughout the process, Dan answered all our questions clearly and thoroughly, making sure that we understood all the details and the rationale for each decision, and giving us the confidence to continue on our own. We felt that, unlike previous investment advisors, Dan was only interested in what was in our best interest. In sum, we are very pleased with this service, and feel that it was well worth the price.”
— Rod & Myra Martin, London, Ont.
“With a lot of effort, frustration and time I could have implemented a similar portfolio myself. Instead, I took advantage of this inexpensive (relative to what I was paying each year for my investments) service. Dan’s team designed a custom portfolio for me, did all the paperwork to open the new accounts and transfer my funds, and walked me through the process of managing my portfolio. This is as complete a package as I can imagine and the best investment I have made. I am confident I can maintain this portfolio with the knowledge and tools they provided me. And, it was a pleasure working with Dan and Justin!”
— Matt Neima, London, Ont.
“We found the PWL investment process to be tremendously rewarding. You have made a complex, rather overwhelming process manageable. The format is excellent. We learned a great deal while being led by you through the options, and we feel much more confident about where we stand. We appreciated your timely attentiveness to our questions. You went above and beyond our expectations.”
— Al and Amy, Edmonton
“I knew moving from an actively managed portfolio to a Couch Potato portfolio would not be easy and that I would need some hand-holding. Dan, Justin and Shannon where right there when I needed them. This professional team of three handled all the paperwork involved with transferring and opening the new accounts, took care of the asset allocation and patiently answered all my questions. They were also very accommodating in scheduling conference calls around the three-hour difference between Vancouver and Toronto. I would highly recommend them for anyone too overwhelmed to enter the world of index investing by themselves.”
— Ron Kwan, Vancouver
“The paperwork needed for the transfers to the discount brokerage was massive, and there is no way I could have done it by myself, but with Shannon’s help it was a breeze. After that, Justin did the heavy lifting by assessing my current and projected net worth and building a well-chosen portfolio. Then he gave me some homework so I could learn to buy securities online, and even gave me an easy-to-navigate spreadsheet to rebalance the portfolio. Now I am in control of my own finances at last.”
— Claude Lagana, Calgary
“I was feeling overwhelmed and intimidated with the DIY process by the time I found Justin and Shannon. They broke the transition down into manageable chunks, provided frequent contact and encouragement, offered understandable explanations to all my questions, never made me feel pushed or hurried into anything, and left me feeling confident that I will be able to maintain my new portfolio on my own. Their service was invaluable to me.”
— Jerri Rue, Selkirk, Man.
“With knowledge and patience, Justin and Shannon helped me build a DIY portfolio that would have taken me years if I tried to learn it all on my own. After receiving their guidance, I finally feel like I have a clear direction for my portfolio and the knowledge to reach my goals.”
— Russ Dyck, Calgary
“When I decided to fully implement an indexed approach, I wanted some help getting started. With a background in fee-only financial planning, I could have done my own research, but I have enough experience in the industry to know what I don’t know, so I decided to draw on the expertise of PWL, recognized specialists in index investing. My experience with Justin and Shannon has been excellent: their suggestions helped me create a balanced portfolio of ETFs that meets my needs at very low cost. I would not hesitate to recommend their services.”
— Lynn Biscott, CFP, RFP, M.Ed., Fernwood Consulting Group Inc., Toronto
“Although Justin and I have never met in person, we’ve talked and emailed far more than I ever did with my old broker and have built a sound relationship of trust and mutual respect. Justin did exactly as promised: he helped us with the process of transferring our funds from a full-service broker to an online brokerage, worked closely with us to develop our asset allocation and rebalancing strategy and, most importantly, advised us of the ETFs and index funds that best suited our needs. He did all this while ensuring our funds were transferred in the most tax- and cost-effective manner possible.”
— Gord Kirk, Calgary
“Years ago I came across the Couch Potato strategy and learned what I could about index investing. But the DIY process was intimidating, so I failed to take action. Justin and Shannon helped me determine a reasonable asset allocation, advised on tax strategies and, of course, assisted with the choice of ETFs and fixed-income vehicles that suited us best. It was a bonus that Justin and Shannon turned out to be wonderful to work with.”
— Clete Purcell, Vancouver