Eric Kiste Financial Advisor

Eric Kirste

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Arlington Heights, IL

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"I strongly believe in tailoring my approach to meet each client's unique needs. This applies not only to the services I provide on an annual basis, but also to customizing fees based on the complexity of the work I do for them.”


Eric offers comprehensive financial planning services, dedicated to meeting the unique needs and goals of his clients. His Retirement Roadmap, a 3-step assessment, empowers individuals to secure their future. This roadmap provides actionable steps to enhance financial and retirement plans, minimize tax burdens, and envision an ideal lifestyle.


Eric offers holistic financial advising beyond just investments, focusing on a client's overall financial health. With expertise in tax planning, estate planning, and Social Security timing, he assesses individual circumstances to create a comprehensive financial plan. He also provides guidance on insurance and helps clients with cash flow budgeting and retirement planning. His approach involves a thorough understanding of each client's unique circumstances, ensuring optimal financial outcomes.

Client Range

Eric works with clients nationwide, addressing a wide range of issues faced by individuals in their 50s, 60s, and 70s. From tax planning to social security benefits, he provides tailored solutions to meet their unique needs. He also assists with life transitions and works with clients experiencing financial windfalls.

How did you become a financial advisor?

From a young age, I've been driven to pursue a career as a financial advisor. Seeing close friends and family struggle with poor financial guidance and retirement challenges made me realize the immense impact of competent advice. This realization fueled my passion, even during high school, when I actively sought opportunities to learn more about this industry. I would have lunch with advisors, eager to understand their methods, models, and client interactions. This pursuit continued throughout college, where I completed multiple internships with various advisors, engaging in diverse projects.

During my junior year of college, I made a decision that felt right - joining the advisor who resonated with me the most. With more than 23 years of industry expertise, I now find immense satisfaction in cultivating personal relationships with my clients. By understanding their financial goals and personal aspirations, I can provide guidance and foster genuine connections. It's not just about advising; it's about building long-lasting friendships and creating bonds that feel like family.

Is there a unique approach that sets you apart?

I believe that the industry is increasingly adopting a more holistic approach, which I wholeheartedly support. However, I do find that there's an abundance of one-size-fits-all approaches when it comes to working with clients. I strongly believe in tailoring my approach to meet each client's unique needs. This applies not only to the services I provide on an annual basis, ensuring efficiency on my end, but also to customizing fees based on the complexity of the work I do for them. By adopting a more personalized approach and fostering a fee structure that aligns with their specific circumstances, I can address the feedback I have received over the years from my experience working with large corporate clients and global private banks. Many have questioned the relevance of the existing fee structure and the necessity of certain check-ins or reviews that may not be applicable to their situation. I strive to make my services more customized and tailored to meet their individual needs.

What types of clients do you work with?

I work with clients across the nation, addressing a wide range of significant issues faced by individuals in their 50s, 60s, and 70s. This includes providing expertise in tax planning, wealth management, financial planning, estate planning, and optimizing social security benefits. Each client's situation is unique, requiring tailored solutions that align with their specific needs and goals.

However, it's important to note that not all clients fit into this category. I also serve as a transition specialist, assisting individuals who are undergoing significant life changes, such as transitioning into retirement, starting a nonprofit, embarking on their own business ventures or navigating the loss of a loved one. Additionally, I have experience working with clients who have experienced financial windfalls later in life.

My purpose is to understand what clients value most and help them make informed decisions on how to best utilize it. It's no longer solely about retirement; some individuals may have different aspirations and a desire to explore new opportunities. I take a personalized approach, offering guidance and carefully considering various options for their next chapter.


I deeply value the relationships I form with my clients. Beyond simply handling their financial matters like assets, loans, taxes, and cash flow, I strive to truly understand their goals, their families, and their legacies. Over time, many of these clients become more than just business partners; they become friends and even become part of my extended family. This aspect of my working relationships is truly exceptional. It allows me to connect with the people I serve on a personal level, gaining a profound understanding of their lives and aspirations.

What areas of expertise do you have?

Early on, it became apparent to me that there was a need beyond a sole focus on investments for a holistic approach to financial advising. While I still do investment planning I like to look at the bigger picture of a client's financial health. Over time, I have honed my expertise in tax planning, estate planning, Social Security timing, and a comprehensive assessment of individual circumstances—beyond just a client's portfolio. Tax considerations play a significant role in a portfolio, but other aspects come into play as well.

While I provide guidance on various types of insurance, such as life, long-term care, and disability, I emphasize the importance of consulting an insurance professional once we identify areas for improvement. This process involves working closely with my clients on an annual basis, reviewing their property and casualty insurance. Cash flow budgeting and income distribution represent critical aspects that are often overlooked. Transitioning from asset accumulation to de-cumulation requires careful consideration of creating a retirement paycheck. Determining the optimal amount and method to withdraw funds, considering their financial plan, cost efficiency, and tax implications, is pivotal. This process involves a comprehensive analysis and exploration of the most suitable accounts and vehicles. It is not a mere exercise of throwing numbers around—it requires a thorough understanding of each individual's unique circumstances.

Working with Savvy

Savvy embraces an innovative approach to our industry. Savvy thinks differently about the industry which has brought a new level of innovation, regardless of our clients' age. Whether they are in their twenties, thirties, or eighties, Savvy values the importance of trying something new in an ever-evolving industry. I truly appreciate the touch of innovation that has been infused into my work.

What types of strategies do you usually help clients with?

There are numerous types of strategies to consider depending on the clients, but recently I did a financial plan for a couple in their early to mid-sixties who plan to retire within the next one to two years. This is a great example because retirement planning can happen at any point, it’s never too late or too early to plan for retirement. It was crucial to have a conversation with them before their retirement, as it gives us time to make necessary adjustments. During a comprehensive review of their situation, I discovered many areas that needed attention.

Firstly, their home insurance coverage was inadequate, especially considering the possibility of natural disasters causing significant damage. They had recently completed a major remodel, which their insurance didn't account for. Additionally, they didn't have sufficient umbrella insurance to protect them.

I also delved into their tax returns and found opportunities for optimization. Although they were generous in their charitable contributions, we helped them establish a more efficient and strategic approach to maximize the impact of their donations. Furthermore, I realized their estate plan didn't align with their desired legacy goals of leaving money to both charities and their children.

In terms of investments, the couple was overly aggressive and concerned about the level of risk they were taking. Through a thorough financial and retirement plan, I was able to provide them with a sense of security by reducing their overall risk exposure. We also made adjustments to their investment portfolio to enhance tax efficiency, incorporating direct indexing.

Lastly, I assisted them in determining the optimal time to begin taking Social Security benefits and developed a tax-efficient income distribution plan for their retirement years.

While this is just a glimpse into the services I provided, it showcases my commitment to addressing their specific needs and goals.

The above scenario is hypothetical and is intended to illustrate the general advisory experience provided by Eric Kirste. The above scenario is not representative of an actual client experience or specific client situation or specific advice provided by the advisor.

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