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How to pivot to charitable conversations

Wednesday, June 16, 2021 - 15:52

One thing that tops Nancy Hansen’s enthusiasm for helping clients with charitable plans is her surprise that other financial professionals aren’t doing so.

“When it’s embedded in everything you do, you can’t believe others are missing the boat by not having charitable conversations,” she says. Nancy provides the following advice for new clients and current clients on how to start the charitable planning discussions.

Be “non-evasive” with new clients
Nancy uses what she calls a “non-evasive approach” with every new client. “I tell them about Action teams and ask where they give their time,” she says. “Then I promise to make a note in their file where they volunteer and that I’ll help them figure out how to include those organizations in their planning. With that simple conversation, you find out all you need for future reference.”

Find guaranteed income for retirees
Nancy is also doing her part to spread the word through joint field work, coaching other financial advisors and helping them start charitable conversations with current clients. Nancy shares how she finds natural pivots to charitable planning during discussions on retirement, investments, risk management, what-if questions and more.

“We FPs gravitate toward guaranteed income for soon-to-be or currently retired clients, whether it’s VAs or dividends from bonds. Gift annuities and CRUTS (charitable remainder unitrusts) from Thrivent Charitable also add wonderful income solutions,” she says.

For example, Nancy recently helped a widow whose annual income from CDs has plummeted with low interest rates. The client established a gift annuity with about one-third of her CD holdings. She will receive guaranteed income during her lifetime, and remaining funds will go to charities she designates.

“Gift annuities are safe, and they can open the door to more complicated cases,” she says.

Creative solution for complex assets
It’s common for retirees to need an income stream from appreciated assets, such as stocks and real estate, and want to minimize taxes too. “They worry about the markets, and they wonder if they should sell the asset or leave it for their kids,” she says.

One case involved a farming couple whose adult children had no plans to take over the operation. Nancy partnered with Thrivent Charitable to recommend that they establish a CRUT using just a portion of their land. The clients were thrilled to retain some crop land for renting, and they were relieved to stay out of the market at their age.

“It put their mind at ease and made them better clients because they know I’m not just looking at investment returns,” she says.

Contact our team of gift planners to discuss unique solutions for your clients. Email us or call 800-365-4172 to get started.