This NY Times article – about estate planners who focus on a more holistic approach to planning than those who laser in almost exclusively on tax strategies and savings – really resonated with me.

I often describe my sweet spot as working with “Millionaire Next Door”-type families and helping provide a bridge between legal issues and family or emotional dynamics. These types of issues tend to pop up more frequently in blended families or high-net worth families.

I’ve read a number of books recently regarding multi-generational family wealth – and here are a couple of my favorites:

Strangers in Paradise by James Grubman.
Dr. Grubman, who I recently had the opportunity to speak with regarding financial literacy counseling for the child of a high-net worth investor, uses the metaphor of immigrants coming to the United States to draw parallels between the opportunities and pitfalls that can present themselves to families that rise from the middle class to achieve a higher level of financial success.

Raised Healthy, Wealthy and Wise by Coventry Edwards-Pitt presents an interesting perspective by highlighting anecdotes and introductions to adults who were raised in high-net worth households. The book describes how their parents seem to have avoided many of the stereotypically negative qualities that come with being the children of wealthy parents (e.g. “trust-fund babies”). Basically, the successful parents highlighted in the book use their resources to help their children but keep enough distance to allow the children to experience minor failures on their own.