Are You Being Held Hostage by Bad Advice?

Calgary Retirement Planning

On August 23rd, 1973 two machine-gun carrying criminals entered a bank in Stockholm, Sweden. Blasting their guns, one prison escapee named Jan-Erik Olsson announced to the terrified bank employees “The party has just begun!” The two bank robbers held four hostages, three women, and one man, for the next 131 hours. The hostages were strapped with dynamite and held in a bank vault until finally rescued on August 28th. 

After their rescue, the hostages exhibited a shocking attitude considering they had been threatened, abused, and even feared for their lives for over five days. In their media interviews, it was clear that they supported their captors and actually feared law enforcement personnel who came to their rescue. The hostages had begun to feel the captors were actually protecting them from the police. One woman later became engaged to one of the criminals and another developed a legal defence fund to aid in their criminal defence fees. Clearly, the hostages had “bonded” emotionally with their captors.

Are you emotionally and psychologically attached to an awful advisor? We see it all of the time. Clients come to us and pay us an hourly rate to go over their finances and to get some direction on their retirement planning. We show them that they are already paying between $10,000 - $20,000 each year for investment advice with their current advisor, yet they don't know how to leave. Are you getting ongoing investment advice? How about tax and estate planning? Are you getting help on what to do to prepare for taking retirement income from your portfolio? And, how about a return on your investments? Last year the TSX was up 20% and many people still lost money in their accounts. Did you? How could that happen? 

Your advisor is asleep at the wheel. He never looks at your accounts. Has no clue what to invest in or what asset mix you should be in now due to changing global economic conditions. He just puts your money in the "flavour of the week" fund that was being promoted the week you happened to first meet with him. It doesn't matter to him. He made all the commission upfront. This is why he never calls you or even returns your calls. But you can't leave. You won't leave. It'll kill him if we leave. He's a friend of the family. We have been there so long. He's a nice guy. It will be too uncomfortable. I think he is retiring soon, we'll just leave when the next person takes over. HELLO? What!? This is YOUR retirement nest egg you're talking about remember!

It's very sad and lately, we see it every week. We also wanted to be nice and never say anything negative about other advisors but we're seeing such atrocities that we just can't stay silent anymore. It's worse than we thought. This is an epidemic! There are so many bad advisors out there yet people stay with them. It's shocking to us. Your retirement security lies in their hands and you are allowing yourself to be victimized with your commitment to a barely-existent relationship. Instead of doing what is best for you and your future, you allow yourself to be held hostage to what is best for your advisor, or is it really due to your Canadian niceness? After all, you feel sorry for him. He has a medical condition and if you leave him, well, it may kill him. (He hasn't talked to you in 6 years so I doubt it.)

You know you need out. You know you're not getting the advice you need. We know it too. We see it. As you sit across the table from us at our office writing a cheque for the time you just spent with us. You feel like a two-timing cheating lover who has found comfort in the arms of another advisor. We both make sure no one knows about our meeting. It's our little secret. 

How do we feel? Like your mistress. But, we wait for you to see the light of day and fire his ass. We wait for the email or call from you declaring that you are leaving your elusive advisor and taking control of your retirement. 

Stop torturing yourself! It's time to do what's right for you and your future.


Our business is all about helping clients declutter their lives by first getting their total financial house in order and providing the clarity and confidence to start enjoying their retirement lifestyle.

You can learn more about our flat-fee planning process by clicking here.


Fee-only Retirement Income, Investment, & Tax Planning

Willis J Langford BA, MA, CFP

Nancy Langford CRS


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If you are nearing retirement, newly retired, or well into that stage of life and need some honest, reliable financial advice and tax planning services, I highly recommend Willis and Nancy Langford at Langford Financial. I have been working with them since the fall of 2020 and am really happy I made the switch.

I needed much better advice than I was getting from my new bank rep as I was actively preparing for retirement. I found Langford Financial online and booked a review meeting. I was happy that I was sent a complete list of all the information that would be needed prior to my initial meeting so I arrived prepared.

From that initial meeting, I decided to have Willis prepare a retirement plan for me. After we reviewed everything he had prepared, I felt much more confident in what was to come financially during retirement and how I could manage it. That's when I decided to transfer my investment portfolio from my bank to Langford Financial so they could manage it with and for me. I felt they really had my best interests at heart.

It was a pleasant surprise that their approach combined both income planning for retirement and tax planning for both the immediate future and well into retirement. This has proven to be very helpful as it has ended up saving me a lot of money (a lot!) by using credits that had been missed by the company I previously used to prepare my taxes.

I really like working with Willis and Nancy. They are very quick to answer any questions I have and can accommodate virtual or in-person meetings based on what is needed. They also produce a regular newsletter that I really enjoy. It has lots of tips in it and some very good in-depth information that helps me make better decisions---or at least ask better questions!

Moving to Langford Financial was a great decision for me. It has lead to better financial planning and decision-making and much greater peace of mind for me at this time of life.
Sharon Stroick
Full Service Client Since 2020

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