Elements®
Comprehensive Financial Planning

Elements® is a periodic table with 12 key indicators of financial health. This proprietary methodology is driven by industry-leading technology and gives our advisors a full view of your financial profile so they can make calculated decisions to optimize your growth.

Each block in the Elements® table gives a numerical answer to an important question about your financial stability. Included with every calculation is a benchmark statistic to show how your performance compares to a large sample of other dentists.

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Explore the Elements®

To learn how the Elements® function, click on one of the four main questions answered by the table or select an individual block for further explanation.

Elements® Related Resources

Explore educational content related to each Element in our periodic table of financial indicators

The #1 Reason You Should Have a Qualified Retirement Plan – Episode 233

From the alphabet soup of retirement plans—IRA, 401(k), Roth IRA, SEP, Simple IRA—which one is right for you?  On this...

Monthly Financial Elements® – Qualified Term (Qt)

Join Ryan Isaac for a discussion about Qualified Term (Qt), one of the key Elements® of an optimized financial plan.

Should you offer your team a retirement plan?

Should dentists set up matching retirement accounts for their employees? It’s a question dentists often ask. Reese Harper and Ryan...

How important are retirement plans?

In this video clip, Reese Harper and Ryan Isaac take a look at the benefits of qualified retirement plans. Hear...

The Difference Between Holistic Planning and Asset Management – Episode 222

Ever wondered how your money might be handled by a large asset management firm? It’s a Dentist Money™ Show first...

The 4 Ingredient Recipe to Optimal Wealth Building – Episode 185

What’s the ideal recipe to accumulate assets as you build for the future? On this episode of the Dentist Money™...

What Dentists Want to Know — Listener Q&A #8 – Episode 155

Individual stocks, do they have a place inside your investment portfolio? What’s on the mind of the Dentist Money™ Show...

Why a Cheap 401(k) Provider Will Eventually Cost You More – Episode 130

By ignoring your office retirement plan, are you making a seven-figure mistake? On this Dentist Money™ Show, Reese and Ryan...

2018 Q1 Market Review

Quarterly Market Review Q1 2018 from Reese Harper on Vimeo. Market volatility reappeared during the first quarter of 2018, following...

What Dentists Want to Know — Listener Q&A #3 – Episode 120

What’s on the minds of one Pedo and two GPs? Debt repayment, retirement plan consolidation, and equipment budgeting. And in...

A Rant to Make You Rethink Target Date Funds – Episode 118

Have you looked into target date funds as an investment option? A lot of dentists are drawn to this seemingly...

2017 Q4 Market Review

2017 ended on a positive note with new-home sales growth surging to a 25-year high as US consumer confidence hit...

Er [Equity Rate]

Helps us determine whether the client will experience too much volatility risk for their personal level of spending and age.

EQUITY INVESTMENTS


TOTAL INVESTMENTS

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Six Keys to Powerful Investment Portfolios – Episode 55

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Pr [Profitability Rate]

Measures how much money the practice owner keeps as a percentage of collections. This serves as an important indicator of business efficiency.

TOTAL PRACTICE-
RELATED INCOME


TOTAL COLLECTIONS

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Dentist Money: The Profitability Killer – Episode 8

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Ir [Insurance Rate]

Measures how much insurance a person has compared to how much they need based on annual spending and net worth. Coverage is evaluated for the following types of insurance: life, general disability, business overhead disability, buy-sell, key person, personal liability, and business liability.

INSURANCE
COVERAGE HELD


INSURANCE
COVERAGE REQUIRED

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How to Bullet Proof Yourself Against Litigation – Episode 18

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Sr [Savings Rate]

Indicates how much of a person’s income is being put away for future expenses, emergencies, and retirement.

ANNUAL SAVINGS


TOTAL
PERSONAL INCOME

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The Hidden Costs that Delay a Dentist’s Retirement – Episode 61

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Br [Burn Rate]

Helps us understand a client’s spending patterns and retirement preparedness.

ANNUAL PERSONAL
SPENDING


TOTAL PERSONAL
INCOME

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This is Why Dentists Spend Too Much Money – Episode 95

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Dr [Debt Rate]

Indicates whether a person is servicing too much or too little debt for their individual circumstances.

ANNUAL DEBT
PAYMENTS


TOTAL PERSONAL
INCOME

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How Fast Should You Pay Off Your Loans? – Episode 102

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Tr [Tax Rate]

Indicates whether tax liability could be reduced with better tax planning.

ANNUAL TOTAL TAXES


TOTAL PERSONAL
INCOME

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Dentist Money: Do You Have a Tax Strategy? – Episode 10

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Lt [Liquid Term]

Estimates the number of years a person could live on his/her cash or cash-like assets outside of a retirement plan. Lt also indicates the amount of after-tax money an individual can access if needed.

TOTAL LIQUID ASSETS


ANNUAL PERSONAL
SPENDING

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How Much Money Should You Keep in Your Bank Account? – Episode 17

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Qt [Qualified Term]

Estimates the number of years a dentist could live on the assets he/she has within qualified retirement plans (401k, IRA, etc.).

RETIREMENT ACCOUNTS


ANNUAL PERSONAL
SPENDING

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Everything You Need to Know About Retirement Plans – Episode 53

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Pt [Practice Term]

Estimates the number of years a person could live on his/her current practice equity. It also indicates how much of a person’s wealth is concentrated in the practice.

TOTAL PRACTICE EQUITY


ANNUAL PERSONAL
SPENDING

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How to Stop Your Practice from Bossing You Around – Episode 92

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Rt [Real Estate Term]

Estimates the number of years a person could live on his/her current real estate equity. It also indicates how much of a person’s wealth is concentrated in real estate.

TOTAL REAL
ESTATE EQUITY


ANNUAL PERSONAL
SPENDING

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The Truth About Real Estate Ownership – Episode 60

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Tt [Total Term]

Estimates the number of years a person could live on his or her current assets if they did not grow. This includes cash, investments, practice value, and real estate equity.

NET WORTH


ANNUAL PERSONAL
SPENDING

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How Successful Dentists Track Financial Progress – Episode 64

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How much wealth do I need to make work optional?

Tt (Total Term) is the crown jewel of the Elements® table because it indicates how long you could live on your current wealth if it did not grow. In other words, it provides a conservative estimate of how many years you could survive if you stopped working today. Tt is calculated by dividing net worth by annual personal spending. It is also a summation of the four blocks to its left which represent each asset type: Rt (Real Estate Term), Pt (Practice Term), Qt (Qualified Term), Lt (Liquid Term).

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There's Only One Number You Need to Predict Your Retirement

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Do I have the right mix of assets?

The four blocks to the left of Tt (Total Term) estimate how long you could live on your liquid assets, qualified retirement plans, practice equity, and real estate equity respectively. These represent the four asset types in a dentist’s portfolio, and when added together, they create your Tt. These four blocks also provide a clear view of your asset distribution to help you and your advisor understand if there’s an opportunity for better diversification.

Podcast #82
The Numbers Dentists Need to Know to Retire Better

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Am I using my income wisely?

The second row of the Elements® table calculates the percentage of your total income that goes toward savings (Savings Rate), spending (Burn Rate), Debt (Debt Rate), and Taxes (Tax Rate). These are the only four places your income can go and it’s important to keep them optimized to accelerate growth.

Podcast #95
This is Why Dentists Spend Too Much Money

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Am I taking the right amount of risk?

The top row of Elements® contains Er (Equity Rate), Pr (Profitability Rate), and Ir (Insurance Rate). These ratios indicate risk levels within your investment portfolio, business, and insurance profile respectively. The amount of risk you should take in each area will depend on a number of factors including your tolerance for risk, career phase, liquidity, and financial goals.

Podcast
How Much Insurance Does a Dentist Need? – Episode #100

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