At CapWealth Advisors, we divide generational planning into two fronts: the current generation and the future generation of wealth owners. First, we recognize the importance of educating younger generations to be good stewards of wealth. Second, we foster and promote cooperation within the current generation to establish strong financial communication for the next generation to mimic. If you have multi-generational goals, the best thing you can do is talk with your heirs about sound financial habits. We can provide the safe and structured framework for this.
In the financial world, we often discuss the “shirtsleeves-to-shirtsleeves in three generations” parable with families of wealth. The first generation is typically blue-collar workers, who save enough money for the next generation to lead a better life. The second generation goes to work in a suit and they teach their children to enjoy the fruits of their labor. Unfortunately, it is when the third generation receives their inheritance that things often go awry. This generation often squanders wealth, incurs debt, and has to go back to work in shirtsleeves jobs in order to make ends meet. In almost 90% of families, wealth is dissipated by the third generation. (Read President & COO Phoebe Venable’s Tennessean newspaper column on this subject here.)
In order to prevent the shirtsleeves-to-shirtsleeves parable, CapWealth believes that education is the best thing that we can pass to our heirs. We have found that discussing money across generations is a very difficult and sensitive subject for almost all families. We can facilitate this communication process as a first step toward ensuring your family’s wealth will enhance the lives of future generations and fight the typical traps that destroy wealth such as entitlement, spendthrift behaviors and unrealistic expectations. From money camps to individual and family sessions, we love giving children the means to become outstanding heirs. Learn more about our firm’s Generational Education program here.
If you are interested in beginning your family on this path, our President and COO, Phoebe Venable, CFA®, recommends reading the following books:
- Raising Financially Fit Kids by Joline Godfrey
- The Financially Intelligent Parent by Eileen and Jon Gallo
- Raising Money Smart Kids by Janet Bodnar
- The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Families by Stephen R. Covey