If there’s a New York City advisor who knows the ins and outs of retirement, it’s Miguel Gonzalez. As a proud member of Jay Suites, he operates his business out of our Times Square location. Being the city’s go-to advisor for financial and retirement services, Miguel has a diverse portfolio and a decade of experience serving individuals of all demographics. We sat down and had a deep-seated interview with Miguel. And he shared with us his journey, offering priceless financial and retirement advice.
Q: Miguel, it’s a great pleasure to speak with you today! We appreciate your time and thank you in advance for sharing your knowledge with us. Let’s hop right into it. Tell us about your company, Cortburg Retirement Advisors.
A: The pleasure is mine. I’m happy to be here, thank you! Well, for starters, I’ve been a retirement planning specialist for over 20 years now. I started in 2000! Cortburg Retirement Advisors is a boutique wealth management firm located at Jay Suites in Midtown Manhattan. We help individuals and businesses plan and design retirement plans so they can retire, save money, and save on taxes.
Q: I notice that you also offer retirement services for the younger generations. Tell us why is it ideal to save for retirement early on?
A: When people in their twenties get their first job, they should seek advice from a trusted advisor on what they should do to begin planning for retirement. It’s important to start at that age because they have an advantage. In your 20s, you have so much time before retirement that the money will grow and compound over time. If you learn to budget in your twenties, you’ll be set for your 30s, 40s, and 50s. Of course, every age category has different challenges. In those later years, you have to juggle retirement planning with other expenses such as buying a house, etc. At that point, it gets more difficult.
Q: Please give us some Retirement Planning Dos and Don’ts!
- Do save for retirement! If you have a company that matches or provides a match, that’s even better. You don’t get the match if you don’t put in any money. So definitely take full advantage of the retirement plan from your employer.
- Diversify! By that, I mean don’t put all your money in one basket. If you have several types of investments, stocks, bonds, or cash, you can weather the storm a little bit better than if you don’t. Diversification is very important.
- Everyone likes to buy high and sell low. That’s emotional. When all is well and you hear about these amazing investment ideas, you want to jump on the bandwagon. I find that always finding the hot tickets and the hot stocks is not always the answer because this year’s winners are next year’s losers. So if you do so, you tend to end up behind the curve.
- Rebalancing is something people don’t do! Rebalancing is taking a little bit of the wins and redistributing it to the investments as lost money, in a sense. You’re buying low and trying to sell high.
- Another thing I don’t recommend is waiting to save for retirement until you’re in your 50s. Delaying your retirement fund is crucial. If you wait until 50- you only have 10-15 years left.
Q: You’ve been at Jay Suites for almost 10 years. Out of all of your NYC options, why did you choose us, and what sets us apart?
A: I looked at some of the other well-known office spaces and simply fell in love with Jay Suites. From the start, one of the features I loved about this office is that the doors for the office are frosted, which allows for privacy. I could have a client here or be looking at financial documents, so I hold the privacy factor in high regard. Furthermore, on the inside of the office, you can write on the frosted doors! So, I’m constantly writing on the wall of my office, and I truly love it because it allows me to put all of my thoughts together; it’s my thinking pad. The receptionists are outstanding, and the management does an amazing job hiring them. They are so nice and warm! They even get your mail for you.
Also, Jaysuites is not flooded with packages like other workspaces, making it much easier to run a business like mine here. Augustine, from environmental services, does an amazing job at keeping the building clean. The kitchen is always clean, and the floors sparkle. How can I forget about the conference rooms? They have so many conference rooms, so when I want a room, there’s always availability. In addition, they have whiteboards and phones, making me look like a Fortune 500 company. I’m not one, but it makes me and my business look good! I’m not going anywhere!
Q: I admire your wall; it’s filled with milestones, accomplishments, and degrees. I see you have a master’s in business administration. Now, some people in the business realm frown upon education because, as you know, “the best education is doing.” But with that aside, I would like to know what’s one key thing you learned obtaining your master’s in business.
A: That’s a great question, and I agree with that! A lot of book knowledge is flawed because you don’t have real work experience. But then, real work experience with no degree is also an issue! So I got my MBA from Columbia Business School, and what I learned from there was the art of working with others. We were a team of 116 students, and we were all from different walks of life. Some were consultants, bankers, in tech or etc. The way they did it was they put us into clusters. They made all the students take a test to decipher how they would pair us up and determine what kind of people we were. They would form groups consisting of an alpha, a leader, and a tech guy, or they’d put a mediator or throw someone from finance in there. I found that that activity helped me build my team. Instead of picking the same people, I ensure that each individual I hire fills areas where someone is weak. It makes a diversified team of professionals who think differently but work towards the same goal. The team comradery of Columbia taught me that via those personality exams.
Q: Is there a book that would you recommend for financial advice?
A: My favorite book for managing money would be How to Give Financial Advice to Couples by Kathleen Burns Kingsbury. Everyone tries to manage money on their own, but it can become a conflict when they get married. One is a spender, one is a saver, one wants to save for retirement, one wants to buy life insurance, one wants to buy real estate, and the other wants to leave money in savings. Couples tend to be opposites when it comes to managing finances. So you must deal with the other person and know how they deal with money. The book talks about how to have convos with your loved ones about money. I highly recommend it because having that convo early on is vital!
Hiring a retirement advisor is one of the wisest, overlooked things you can do yourself. Many people overlook the importance of this task and wait until they are closer to retirement to hire an advisor. Unfortunately, this can lead to many issues and concerns down the road. So if you’re interested in jumpstarting your retirement, contact Miguel today.