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Wisconsin Family

John Scherer is a regular guest on Madison's CW57 show 'Wisconsin Family'.


August 2016 - Working with Trinity Financial Planning


July 2016 - Financial Preparation When You Are Expecting a Baby


June 2016 - Financial Vacation Planning


May 27, 2016 - Advice for Graduates


April 15, 2016 - Understanding Life Insurance


March 4, 2016 - Things No One Tells You About Mortgages

February 5, 2016 - Market Trends


January 22, 2016 - Tips on how to hire a financial planner.


December 3, 2015 - Is now a good time to invest?


November 13, 2015 - Charitable giving


October 30, 2015 - Tax planning


September 25, 2015 - The basic building blocks of financial planning.


September 2, 2015 - Back to school tips on planning for college.


Talk of the Town

June 2015 - John Scherer appeared on Madison's CW57 show Talk of the Town to discuss Trinity Financial Planning and why getting financial advice that's comprehensive and from a fiduciary is so important.





Read Our Quotes In the News

"It takes a village of options to pay college tuition" 
REUTERS, April 7, 2016.  ..."it just becomes a line item in the budget,"...

"Reap the Rewards of a Roth IRA"
KIPLINGERS PERSONAL FINANCE, December 2015.  "Because you aren’t working full-time and have reduced income, you can convert a significant amount of money from your IRA at a low tax rate."

"4 Year-End Tax Strategies That Work"
SIGFIG BLOG, November  4, 2015.  "If you are in a low tax bracket, you should consider tax-gain harvesting."

"Protect Your Nest Egg: Rebalance Your 401(k) to Avoid Risk"
USA TODAY, August 6, 2015. “Rebalancing consistently to a planned allocation is the single biggest thing people can do to avoid getting burned by a market drop,'' Scherer says. "Following a disciplined rebalancing plan means consistently selling high and buying low, and while it means you never make a killing, you also never get killed."

"Should You Invest Your Retirement Savings in an Immediate Annuity?"
KIPLINGER'S PERSONAL FINANCE magazine, June 2015. "One strategy is to add up regular expenses, such as utilities and property taxes, subtract Social Security and other guaranteed sources of income, and buy an immediate annuity to fill the gap. Keep the rest of your savings in an investment portfolio that you can tap when you need the money for other, less-predictable costs, says John Scherer, a certified financial planner in Middleton, Wis."

"Does my teen really have to file taxes?"
CREDIT.COM, March 26, 2015.  "And even if W-2s weren't issued (as for babysitting), it's smart to keep -- or to begin to keep -- a record of earned income, Scherer said. Where the record of earnings can come in handy is with establishing a Roth IRA."

"NAPFA compensation committee member says AUM fees for cash raise conflicts"
INVESTMENT NEWS, January 29, 2015. “If I think it's appropriate for a client to hold cash or fixed income, I don't want them to question my judgment. Clients are certainly free to question my recommendations, but I don't want them questioning my motives.”

"5 Moves to Make Before January"
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: MARKET WATCH, December 13, 2013.  That’s not to say you should buy a Maserati just for the sake of doing so. “But if you’re going to do it anyway, you’re going to save a little bit in 2013.”

''Securing Guaranteed Retirement Income''
SMARTMONEY: August 13, 2010."Annuities’ drawbacks include a lack of inflation protection and a lack of flexibility if a retiree’s circumstances change dramatically due to illness or another major upheaval."

''Dodging Risk Early Is No Sure Thing''
SMARTMONEY, August 6, 2010. "Focusing on basic advice about overall asset allocation principles will be more helpful than trying to stay up to date on the latest “hot” investment strategy."

'When to Rebalance Your 401(k) Investments''
SMARTMONEY, July 23, 2010. "Using big market movements as a signal to rebalance comes with some risk. There is a tendency to try to time the market – selling out of equities when things get too scary and moving into them as market upswings reach their peak,"

''Repaying Social Security Can Be a Good Deal''
SMARTMONEY, July 16, 2010. "When it comes to Social Security benefits, there is such a thing as a do-over."

''VOICES: John Scherer, On Blogging''
WALL STREET JOURNAL, June 8, 2010. John Scherer, principal and founder of Trinity Financial Planning in Middleton, Wisc., blogs about financial planning at http://trinfin.blogspot.com/. He spoke with WSJ Financial Adviser about the value of client communication.

''House Call: To Buy or Not to Buy''
SMARTMONEY, March 22, 2010. "There are fewer than 40 days remaining until the federal home buyer tax credit expires. And home builders and realtors aren’t letting consumers forget it."

''Submerging Markets''
FINANCIAL PLANNING magazine, December 01, 2008 "John Scherer, founder of Trinity Financial Planning in Middleton, Wis., a member of the Alliance of Cambridge Advisors, typically allocates 10% of a client's equities to this asset class..."

''Pain on Every Street''
NBC 15 NEWS Madison, WI, October 6, 2008: John Scherer was interviewed by Chris Papst regarding the current stock market decline. John reassures viewers to not make any rash decisions and to have a financial plan.

''Protecting your Money: Financial Survival''
WKOW 27 NEWS Madison, WI, October 2, 2008: John Scherer was interviewed by Dan Cassuto regarding the current stock market decline.

''Loans Scarcer for Low Credit Scores; Tougher Standards May Result in Big Down Payment.''
MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, March 2008. - John Scherer offers some realistic advice to those interested in purchasing a home in 2008. This article is now featured in Custom Home Online.

''Working hard to get ahead: Planning for the future isn't just about money.''
CHICAGO TRIBUNE; Your Money, December 2007 - This article features sound advice from John Scherer about planning for you future and making the right decisions.

''Multicap Funds Offer Best of All Worlds''
SMARTMONEY, SEPTEMBER 2007 - John Scherer points out some of the shortfalls of multicap mutual funds in SmartMoney magazine's online Fund Screen column.

''Fighting For The Little Guy''
MADISON CAPITAL TIMES, JUNE 2007 - A profile of Bert Whitehead's book "Why Smart People Do Stupid Things With Money" includes quotes from John Scherer about fee-only financial planning.

''Time Horizon is Key for Asset Allocation''
CHICAGO TRIBUNE, FEBRUARY 2007 - John helps to analyze a reader's investment allocation as they look toward retirement in 'The Journey' feature of the February 18 Tribune.

''Even Reluctant Landlords Can Reap Tax Breaks''
CHICAGO TRIBUNE, FEBRUARY 2007 - In the February 11 Sunday business section, John talks about the importance of keeping good records when owning rental real estate.

''Retirement Savings: Five Tips to Catch Up''
BUSINESSWEEK.COM, JANUARY 2007 - Along with fellow Alliance of Cambridge Advisors Chip Simon and Ed Fulbright, John advises readers on how to make up for lost time in retirement planning.

''Don't Let Housing Haunt Your Retirement''
BUSINESSWEEK.COM, SEPTEMBER 2006 - John is quoted regarding the wisdom of not paying off a fixed mortgage early, even in retirement. Retirees need protection against inflation, and a fixed mortgage provides excellent protection against inflation.

''Pensions can be safe, even at bankrupt firms''
CHICAGO TRIBUNE, SEPTEMBER 2006 - This article addresses questions and concerns of pension plans. John discussed little-known facts regarding the access and mobility of your money within an established pension plan.

''Raiding a 401(k) to pay mortgage isn't wise move''
CHICAGO TRIBUNE, SEPTEMBER 2006 - Addressing a reader's concern with home mortgage payment, John points out the inflation-defense benefits of fixed mortage payments and recommends saving the 401k for retirement.

''Taking Chance on Dream Can Beat Waiting for Pension''
CHICAGO TRIBUNE, AUGUST 2006 - What should I do with my 401K money? Invest it in bonds? Stocks? John gives advice on this pressing pre-retirement concern.

''What to do Amid Uneasy Economy''
MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, JUNE 2006 - With interest rates rising and the stock markets tumbling, should individuals lighten up on bonds, change investments in the stock market, or even change their long-term financial goals? John helps address these investing concerns.

''Portfolio Doctor - When You Need a Slight Course Correction''
KIPLINGER'S PERSONAL FINANCE, FEBRUARY 2005 - Are you on track to achieve your goals despite employment setbacks? Does it make sense to refinance your home? John helps a Kiplinger reader address these issues in reference to the feeling of uneasiness that can come with significant life changes.

''Getting Insured''
BANKRATE.COM, JULY 2004 - The importance of life insurance and different options for obtaining a solid policy are recommend in this article. John address the option of professional organizations.

''10 Things Your Estate Planner Won't Tell You''
SMARTMONEY, APRIL 2001 - Did you know that estate attorneys can make more money in selling you life insurance than actually planning your estate? This fact is addressed by John and warning signs are given to avoid outrageous commission charges.


What does Trinity Financial Planning do?

We provide financial advice regarding taxes, investments, insurance, pensions, retirement, college education funding, estate planning and general financial matters. We also offer tax preparation and audit representation.

Does Trinity sell financial planning products, such as investments, insurance or tax shelters?

No. We are fee-only financial planning firm. If products are required to complete a financial plan, they are purchased by clients through outside sources. Trinity assists clients in purchasing investments and insurance in a manner that minimizes transaction costs, such as commissions. Many financial products can be purchased without paying any commissions.

What is Fee-Only Financial Planning?

There are three ways financial advisors get paid for their work: Commission-Only, Fee-Based, and Fee-Only.


  • Commission-only planners get paid solely by commissions generated when a client purchases or sells a product.
  • Fee-based planners get paid by a combination of commissions and fees.
  • Fee-only planners get paid solely by fees (no commissions accepted).


Trinity believes that there is a significant and inherent conflict of interest if an advisor stands to gain financially from the purchase of products the advisor has recommended to the client.

The financial success of a planning firm should not be based on the number of products a client purchases, but on the financial success of clients. This is why Trinity Financial Planning accepts no referral fees, commissions, or other reimbursements from the implementation of recommendations.

Being compensated by a predetermined client fee rather than commissions assures that the advice clients receive is unmitigated by the need for a planner to sell a product. The fee is often less than the sales load you would pay on just one mutual fund purchased through a commissioned broker. 

Why hire a financial advisor?

Individuals are increasingly in charge of their own financial futures. Most are aware that planning is critical, yet don't have the time or the expertise to develop a plan and make the needed financial decisions. While there is an abundance of financial information available in the internet and through the media, most people are not financial experts. Financial information is easily available, wisdom is not. 

At Trinity, we believe that good advisors can help clients on the two or three critical things they need to do each year to assure their financial independence.

Maybe you have consulted with a financial advisor in the past...

Perhaps you felt you were being asked to buy something you didn't fully understand.

Maybe you felt that products were recommended without consideration for your overall financial situation.

 Comprehensive, fee-only financial planning eliminates these concerns. You receive objective advice targeted to your needs and goals. 

If you do not sell any investment products, why is Trinity Financial Planning a Registered Investment Advisor?

A Registered Investment Advisor is any person who, for compensation, engages in the business of advising others, either directly or through publications or writings, as to the value of securities or as to the advisability of investing in, purchasing, or selling securities, or who, for compensation and as part of a regular business, issues or promulgates analyses or reports concerning securities to others for compensation.

 Any person or entity that holds itself out as a financial planner, and performs any of the duties described above, must be registered as a Registered Investment Advisor with their state or the Securities Exchange Commission.

Whom does Trinity Financial Planning serve?

We serve individuals and small business owners who desire to keep and utilize more of their income. 

Who can benefit from Trinity's services?

Anyone who has financial, tax, investment, or estate planning problems, or who wishes to plan prudently for his or her financial future can benefit. Furthermore, persons who desire a higher, more sophisticated level of financial planning services may find our program appealing and helpful.

How much money does someone need to benefit from Trinity's services? Are there minimum requirements to qualify as a client?

There is no minimum or maximum dollar requirement. We recognize that people of all means have financial planning needs and it is our goal to provide competent, unbiased financial advice to anyone who desires to improve their financial security.

What is a financial plan?

A financial plan is an in-depth review of your financial situation, taking into account your goals and objectives and focusing on income tax planning, asset management, estate planning, risk management, educational planning and retirement. The plan analyzes and recommends ways that you can achieve your financial goals and objectives.

How much does Trinity charge for holistic financial planning?

We work on a retainer basis with the financial planning fees determined by your income, assets and the complexity of the work.

Annual Holistic Financial Planning fees range from $3,500 to $35,000.  

Please request a copy of our current Form ADV, Part II for a detailed description of our retainer fees and services.

Is our fee tax deductible?

Yes. Section 212 of the Internal Revenue Code permits an itemized deduction for tax and/or investment advice in the miscellaneous section of Schedule A. This deduction is now subject to a 2% floor of adjusted gross income. If the client has a business, a deduction may be able to be taken on Schedule C.

Does Trinity Financial Planning only provide complete programs?

No. Although a complete program is most likely beneficial, we also offer a one-time "Financial Tune-Up" option - please visit Financial Tune Up page for more information.  We also provide investment-only advice to certain clients where appropriate.  Again, please request a copy of our current Form ADV, Part II for a detailed description of our retainer fees and services

Do you offer tax services?

Yes. We believe income taxes are the central focal point of most financial programs. Therefore, we offer personal income tax preparation service. Income tax preparation can be included in our Holistic Financial Planning Retainer agreement. 

Do you provide legal services?

No. Trinity will assist clients in retaining attorneys qualified in the areas which the client needs legal assistance and advice.

What kind of returns can I expect on my investments with advice from Trinity?

We do not guarantee investment performance in any way. Past performance is certainly no guarantee of future results. In fact, we believe that there are several factors more important to your financial future than rate of return, such as how much you pay in taxes, how much you save, how much consumer debt you carry, and so on.

What you can expect to get is returns which are appropriate for the level of risk you take and consistent with your financial needs.

Are you a member of a professional financial planning organization? 

Yes, the Alliance of Cambridge Advisors



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