Investment Strategy


Our experience helps investors participate in good markets and offers protection in bad markets

Income First Total Return Strategy ®

At Northstar, our goal is to help our clients build portfolios that will last their lifetimes.  That means we help clients both accumulate assets for retirement and have the ability to live off those assets during retirement.  To do this, we follow a strategy we call our Income First Total Return Strategy, which is designed to raise the odds clients can both accumulate and live off more wealth.

We operate as a Private Money Manager for individuals and families. As a Private Money Manager, instead of outsourcing the security selection and portfolio research to others, we still handcraft our portfolios. We focus the majority of our work around building our custom portfolio of individual stocks and bonds.  We think knowing what we own improves the quality of the portfolio and its ability to deliver the results our clients need.  Because we work with individuals and families, we also operate tax efficient portfolios.

At Northstar, our core mission is to take care of our clients through the full continuum of their financial lifecycle.  Because we work so closely with our clients, we know a great deal about them and their families, and we manage their money in the same way we manage money for our own families.

We believe our Income First Strategy® offers investors several advantages:

  • Higher probability of building both wealth and income
  • Less volatile composition of returns
  • Cash flow that can serve as additional savings or a source of distributions
  • More control over your investment results

We operate two portfolio strategies

An Accumulation and a Distribution Strategy. These two strategies reflect the two primary objectives for individual investors. Generally, investors want to accumulate wealth, and later they want to distribute the returns on that wealth to support their lifestyle choices.


Accumulation Strategy Portfolio:

  • Designed for investors who are still accumulating wealth
  • Offers greater income and price appreciation opportunities
  • Focuses on compounding cash flow and capital contributions

Distribution Strategy Portfolio:

  • Designed for investors who are distributing or living off their wealth
  • Offers more consistent income and price appreciation opportunities
  • Focuses on using cash flow to meet distribution goals


The primary differences between the two strategies are the amounts allocated to our stock and bond portfolios, and how we handle the cash flow within the strategies. While we have recommended allocations between our stock and bond portfolios for each strategy, we are also able to customize allocations for a client’s unique risk profile and objectives.



Two pie charts of stocks and bonds accumulation and distributions.