Thursday, July 20, 2017

Meet the Staff: Sarah Cornwall

What drew you to Origin SC originally? And how has the organization changed since?

I was looking to do service with Americorps VISTA and when Origin SC offered me a marketing position I jumped at the chance to be in a position that allowed me to be creative. 

From then to now SO MUCH has changed, as I’ve learned is common with nonprofits. Since I first started we’ve added and expanded programs, and it’s been exciting to see those programs develop and further serve our community. My favorite big change was rolling out an entire brand new website, I loved being able to see what that process was like, second would be our rebranding!

What has surprised you the most about working at Origin SC?

How big of an impact we make. From our Representative Payee, Conservator, and Homeless Prevention programs, to our Financial Education and Homeownership programs, it is truly wonderful how many individuals we help keep stable. I would of never known that these services were being provided in the community had I not been employed with Origin SC. Working for Origin SC also introduced me to other amazing nonprofits in the area and all they do to serve our community.

What is an experience that has really shaped who you are? 

I have so many, but I think my first life shaping experience was in high school doing a “Homestay” abroad program. Living with another family in a different country gave me new perspectives and set off a chain of decisions that has brought me to where and who I am today.

How has Origin SC helped you in your career development?

I would have never thought of entering into technology for my career, but that is the path I am currently on and it wouldn’t be so without Origin SC! They gave me the opportunity and challenge to take over their IT operations and I am so glad they did. 

What is the one thing in this world you are most proud of?

I think sticking on my current career path with technology; it’s a long and often confusing road. Narrowing down a specialty field and career in technology can be daunting. There is always learning to be done and it can feel overwhelming and unattainable on some days, but I’ve managed so far and I’m excited to see where this path will take me!

Robo-advisors: The Future of Investing

Studies show that more people are showing interest in beginning to save for retirement at a younger age. This is great, but many financial advisors refuse to meet with clients under a certain income level. Oftentimes, this income requirement is astronomical for the average worker. Some advisors require that clients have $50,000-$100,000 ready to invest before they will even speak to them.

Early investing is key for higher returns. But without the access to professional advice, many young investors have no idea where to begin. To solve this problem, robo-advisors were introduced in 2008. Robo-advisors are automated, online portfolio management services. They use computer algorithms to manage client investments and are much cheaper than a human financial advisor. Robo-advisors were initially created in response to the financial crisis of 2008 and to keep up with the movement toward online financial platforms. Robo-advisors can translate to higher net returns for beginner investors by automatically balancing portfolios and harvesting tax-loss. 

Some robo-advisors are totally automated, while some are partially managed by human advisors. There is a wide spectrum of human involvement between different investment companies—all at varying price points for the investor.

The first investment companies to roll out robo-advising software were Betterment and Wealthfront. Betterment has a management fee of 0.25% - 0.5% with no account minimum to begin. Wealthfront has lower management fees of 0% - 0.25% but requires a $500 account minimum to open.

In 2010, FutureAdvisor rolled out. FutureAdvisor links client’s investment and retirement accounts wherever they are and provides a free investment plan. This allows investors to use other servicers (where they did not receive complimentary financial advice) and does not require investors to move their assets. The catch? FutureAdvisor has higher end management fee of 0.5% and requires a minimum balance of $10,000 or more.

There are many pros to robo-advisors including low management fees, low balance minimums, nobel price-winning algorithms, and their ability to expand the investment market to those who might not otherwise be consider for financial advice. However, some cons of the technology include the inability to have face-to-face assurance when making financial decisions and less ability to have a more personalized plan.

Overall, robo-advisors can be a great option for those who want to begin investing, but aren’t sure how to begin. It is important to begin investing early and the fees and income requirements of some human advisors make that difficult. Contact Origin to begin your path to financial stability. We can help you lay the foundation to pay off debt, improve your credit, and set up your budget to be able to start down the investment path. Click here to learn more or call 843-735-7802.