CARLOS GARCIA believes there's an important conversation missing in most Latino households-- a conversation about saving for the future.
It's what led him to start Finhabits, the first bilingual financial advisor that offers Roth and Traditional IRAs as well as individual investment accounts. There are no hidden fees with Finhabits and users can get started with as little as $5 a week.
"I started Finhabits for people like me," said Garcia, founder and CEO of Finhabits. "We are Latinos and we learn about the importance of hard work at home. That's something our parents always talked about at the dinner table, but I don't think they really spoke to me about planning financially for the future, and in that case, that's something that I really missed."
Garcia said that most Latinos are taught to work hard to earn money, but many don't know how to build wealth.
"In most Latino households, we need to create that habit of saving for the future, in this case, your retirement," he said.
Finhabits, as its name implies, is meant to help families develop those long-term habits.
"What we're trying to do is help create the habit of investing and saving for retirement for people who have never had access to this type of product," said Garcia.
Finhabits works by allowing users to open an account online at Finhabits.com. Users will then answer a few questions and Finhabits will create a personalized portfolio for them. The portfolio is created based on the user's financial goal, such as a 3-year goal for a house down-payment or a 10-year goal to build a college fund.
Users will then need to link a bank account with their new Finhabits account and enable auto-deposits into the new account. The deposited funds are used in the stock and bond markets, where the money grows on interest.
While investments in the stock and bond markets always have a degree of risk, Finhabits diversifies its investments to minimize that risk. The firm then rebalances and reinvests the dividends automatically as needed.
"My goal with Finhabits is to make high-quality financial services accessible and approachable to anyone who wants to invest or save for retirement, regardless of their wealth, background or portfolio balance," Garcia said.
As for his own background, Garcia was raised in the Texas border town of El Paso, earned an engineering degree at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and spent about 15 years working on Wall Street, but he saw that there was a need for helping...