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Joshua Escalante Troesh

Investing, Small Business, Lifestage Based Planning
“Joshua Escalante Troesh is a tenured professor, financial adviser, and the owner of Purposeful Strategic Partners, a Registered Investment Advisory firm.”

Purposeful Strategic Partners

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I work with clients to help them live their great life, both now and in the future. Financial planning isn’t about sacrificing today for tomorrow; it’s about giving purpose to your money. I guide clients in exploring the lifestyle they want to achieve now, the goals they have for their future, and how best to use their financial resources to accomplish both. 

Throughout the planning process, the focus is on providing education and ensuring you understand how you’ll meet your goals and are comfortable with the plan. The goal isn’t to impress you with big words or confuse you into agreeing with a recommendation. The goal is to provide you with transparent advice without conflicts of interest.


I begin your planning process by understanding your life goals, and then develop recommendations to help you achieve them. Every plan and every recommendation is designed with one goal in mind: to get you to your goals.


Planning takes on an integrated approach, which considers your entire financial picture. Planning goes beyond investments and retirement to incorporate all of your goals and includes cash flow analysis, tax planning, college funding, risk management, career development, debt management, estate planning, and more.


As a Registered Investment Advisor, I chose to be held to the highest fiduciary standard in the industry. I am required to serve my clients' interests first in all aspects of planning and to fully disclose potential conflicts of interest. This isn't just a policy, it's a legal obligation.

As a fee-only financial planner, I only accept compensation directly from my clients for the advice I provide. No product sales. No commissions. No referral fees. No other hidden kickbacks. 


In addition to being a financial advisor, I’m also a tenured professor of Business at El Camino College in Los Angeles. I hold an MBA and recently passed the rigorous CFP® exam. I have also had a unique perspective on the last two market downturns, having been a Vice President at a credit union in 2008 and the Director of Marketing for an internet technology firm in 2000.

My journey to becoming a financial planner began with me rejecting being a financial planner. In the early- and mid-2000, a long-time friend of mine asked me to join him at Merrill Lynch as a financial advisor – I turned him down multiple times.

Shortly after the 2008 credit crisis, I began instructing college Personal Finance courses. Watching the incredible impact the course had on students' lives is what finally sparked an interest in joining the financial planning profession. But I wanted to join a profession, not an industry.

Teaching is a profession, because it is dedicated to improving the lives of the students, not enriching the professors. Sadly, what I saw in much of financial planning was an industry that created products and hired sales representatives to push the products. But I also saw a noble version of financial planning as a service profession where a trusted adviser helped guide clients toward their life goals.


MBA, Azusa Pacific University
Professional Financial Planner certificate, UCLA

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    Debt, Investing, IRAs, Stocks
What should my fiancé and I do with the extra $7,000 we make each month?
100% of people found this answer helpful

If this was the planner's only suggestion your gut was correct, you are probably not working with the correct adviser. It sounds like the planner is an investment-only person who doesn't work with clients in a comprehensive way. A planner should look beyond investments and look at your whole financial picture, you long-term, and short-term goals.

Although I don't have enough information to give you advice, here are some alternatives to consider regarding options for investing the money. These are just ideas to consider, and you will want to work with a comprehensive planner to determine which ones will be best based on your other life goals, tax situation (the Roth may not have been good tax advice depending on other factors), risk tolerances, and desired lifestyle. Keep in mind, I am focusing on how to make the money work for you as I believe that is what you are looking to learn. And these are only ideas, they may not be right for you and your fiancé.

I don't have any information about your portfolio's asset allocation, but it is usually a safe bet there is opportunity to invest some of your portfolio more aggressively. (I'm not talking about betting it all on Bitcoin) A good financial planner can look at your total financial picture and identify how much of your investment portfolio can be allocated toward higher risk, higher return investments. Investments in emerging market stocks, small-cap stocks, mid-grade bonds, or specific market sectors can all yield higher returns and are appropriate investments for a person of your age. The key question, of course, is how much to allocate toward these investments. 

If you want to swing for the fences, you can do that just make sure it is with 'extra' money. Let's assume out of the $7,000 you currently save, you only need $5,000 each month to save toward your goals. The extra $2,000 monthly can be invested for higher returns without endangering your retirement, emergency fund, or other financial goals. Investing in an ETF which invests in micro-cap stocks, high-yield bonds, distressed assets, frontier market stock, or other similar asset class. Just be sure you can afford to lose a significant portion of this money, as the higher returns come with a heightened risk of loss. 

If you have access to a High Deductible Health Plan, an HSA could be a way to boost your retirement savings. HSAs allow you to take a tax deduction now and also pay no taxes later when you withdraw the money for qualified medical expenses. As a result, they really are a tax-free investment account. The trick with HSAs is to have enough money to invest the maximium (nearly $7k per year in 2018) and also pay for all of your medical expenses from your paycheck so you don't touch the HSA money. This article explains the benefits of health savings accounts in more detail.

Make sure you understand the costs of the health plan you choose howeve, and that you like the plan doctors. A high dedutible health plan means you will be paying much more out of pocket for your medical expenses and you will want to undestand the worst-case scenario before making this decision.

Investing in Real Estate can provide a steady income from rent, capital appreciation from the value of the property, as well as providing for a nice home for you and your spouse. A duplex is a house with two living units, which is often the easiest way to enter into owning investment real estate. If you live in one of the units you know that 50% of your tenants will always pay on time. Then you only need to manage the other tenant. Keep in mind, real estate is very time consuming, and you will want to make sure you are comfortable with the lifestyle of a landlord. Collecting rent is fun, but getting a call at 2 a.m. because your tenant clogged the bathroom isn't fun. Still, if you make the purchase correctly you can have your tenants pay for a signficant portion of the mortgage and enjoy the appreciation of the house value. And rental income will naturally increase over time based on both inflation and paying down the mortgage.

You could also explore a Triplex (three units) or Quadplex (four units) but you will have more work with managing the tenants and dealing with problems. The advantage, however, is you are more likely to see possitive cash flow from day one. I would not recommend going larger than a quadplex as the laws for apartment complexes are much less landlord-friendly. Most states make the cut-off at 4 units in a building, so staying below your state's cut-off is usually advantagous for a new real estate investor.

If you or your fiancé have ever been interested in starting a business, now would be the time to start one. You have no kids, no debt, no mortgage, and strong incomes meaning you have the ability to bounce back quickly if the business doesn't work. A business is a high risk investment, but nothing generates wealth better than business ownership. Keep in mind, being an entrepreneur takes a special kind of mindset and carries with it significant stress. So while it can be a road to wealth, it can also cause financial and marital problems. I would not recommend this unless one of you already had a desire to be a business owner and have something you are passionate about.

This might seem strange as I was focusing on things which make you money, but a house can provide you with the opportunity to lock in your housing costs at today's prices. While the cost of a house will actually set you back a bit financially, over a twenty year period your incomes will increase significantly, but your mortgage will stay the same. While the rental rates are rising around you, your housing costs will have been locked in.


If you have any questions or want to explore things in more detail please feel free to ask.

May 2018
Do I have to buy treasury notes through a bank or brokerage firm?
100% of people found this answer helpful
May 2018
    Taxes, Income Tax, Tax Deductions / Credits
How much do foreign income and foreign income tax credit impact my tax return?
100% of people found this answer helpful
May 2018
    Career / Compensation, Debt, Financial Planning, Retirement, 401(k)
Which retirement plan should I choose- 403(b), 457(b), or 401(a)?
100% of people found this answer helpful
May 2018
Will paying off my credit card debt with a personal loan improve my credit score?
100% of people found this answer helpful
May 2018