I am a people pleaser and sometimes it gets me burned, but the rewards are worth it. Over my career, I have made some great relationships, seen my passion grow each year and loved working and helping people make the most out of their professional life while maximising the impact for their clients.  So, when it comes to business, my secret sauce is to give great value for money – I like to add “bells and whistles” which I can for no extra cost.  After all who would not like an AMG package with a new Mercedes Benz if it was for free.

Take for example the release of the LightYear Docs investment strategy – both the Fund and also the Member directed investment strategy.  Both started as basic investment strategies that I wrote from the ground up and instead of our normal $99 pricing I felt that with the aggressive ATO blitz that it was better to keep a lower price to protect Trustees and their advisers – so we went with a $49 per investment strategy pricing.

But then the “bells and whistles” came in response to suggestions and ideas from our users including:

  1. What if we have an earlier strategy that is not up to scratch? My suggestion was to include a deed of ratification and rectification in the investment strategy to replace earlier investment strategies (as an aside normal legal fees for this auto-inclusion in the LightYear Docs investment strategy would be approximately $750);
  2. Can I customise the investment objective? We already provide a strong investment objective (the goal that the investment strategy is shooting for) but we built it so that you can insert your own objective – after all goals have to be flexible;
  3. What about crypto, gold and currency trading? We have a customisable asset class that can be used for anything not in our top eight asset classes;
  4. What about a derivatives statement for LRBAS and options? The SIS Regulations require a Derivatives statement for options, futures and LRBAs so check a button in the investment strategy and presto it appears:
  5. What if the Fund holds more than 50% in Property? Well check a button and identify what type of property the Fund invests in: residential, commercial, industrial or rural and additional diversification paragraphs plus an extensive RBA research report for property are added into the strategy document;
  6. The Commissioner says that the investment strategy needs to take into cash flow considerations for pensions and borrowing costs? That’s right SIS Reg 4.09 requires the trustee to consider cash flow and liabilities and in our investment strategy check the pension or borrowing box and both LRBA borrowings and pension cash commitments can appear in the investment strategy.

All of these are strategy automations – you start with a base and build to make it the best it can be – our software is quick, effective and intuitive.  We often get asked for a draft of the investment strategy but really there are more than 1M permutations so how do you work that one out.  I prefer to let someone try it and keep it for themselves as a gift from us to show it’s true worth.  Now when building all the additional features I felt that we could not charge anything more than our standard $49 fee because they are really compliance add-ons to ensure that our investment strategy is the best in Australia and by far the most value.

But it does not stop there.  All of our documents are strategic and fine-tuned to automation and your suggestions.  Look at our latest release “The Moat” where you can do sophisticated Succession and Estate planning for a client quickly (in less than an hour) and for only $450 – a task it would take weeks if handed to a legal firm and more than $6,000 in legal fees.  Our goal was to automate it, make your job easier, let you specialise as a Succession and Estate Planning specialist, give the client amazing value and bank for their buck and you charge $5,000 for the Moat package which includes:

  • state selected EPOAs
  • an upgrade of a SMSF’s trust deed and corporate trustee to cover specialist SMSF estate planning strategies and conventions;
  • a SMSF Will with six features not covered in the heavily challenged BDBNs; and
  • plus a Will with in-built testamentary, super proceeds and Life tenant trusts.

Do the maths on that one and then we have another 6 great automations, plus some exciting new automations planned in the asset protection space plus Leading Member documents to limit a family’s wealth to bloodline and much more.

And automation does make a huge difference.  I was completing a NSW Fixed Unit Trust for an advising client the other day and inserting all the parties, checking it, getting the singing and witness boxes right and ensuring the formatting was perfect took me over three hours – with phone call interruptions.  After that I put it up on our platform (ready for release next week) and it took me four minutes – the power of strategy automation is amazing.

But it is not just in LightYear Docs where we strive to give the best value but we carry that theme to I Love SMSF and the SMSF Training Group.  In March 2020 we are going to hold Australia’s first ever accreditation for ILS Succession and Estate Planning specialists.  The cost is only $595 for two days of personal tuition by me, five case studies, marketing ideas, client communications tools and much more.  With 12 CPD hours this can be compared to the SMSF Association where a two and a half day conference a month earlier will set you back $2,850.  Or around Australia strategy day in October where the registration was $195 again compared to a whole range of other conferences at $500 or more for the day.

In addition we have 14 separate modules covering a wide range of SMSF topics and strategies at the SMSF training group with full access to the course and modules just $595 or $79 per topic.  Plus there is our video of Grant’s big SMSF Strategy and Estate Planning day from October which is just $99.  I could go on but you get the idea – we are lean and mean and produce the highest quality product for the lowest price – anywhere.

So with 2020 upon us it is time to set some goals for next year.  For me personally I know that SMSFs are $760Bn and will hit the $800Bn mark next year plus there is over $2 trillion in estate assets passing in the next 15 years and more than 1M Australians expected to be diagnosed with dementia in the next 10 years so all I can see is an opportunity to open new avenues of specialist consulting and revenues for all of those advisers that use us.  Now not everyone gets it at first, just the same way they did not recognise the revolution the Apple iPhone brought to the world in 2007 but that is fine.  Some people move fast and smart, others take a while and some retire.  That’s life.

If you need anything further contact me:  grant@ilovesmsf.com or 0418 735 491.