C-J Advisory, Inc. — Holistic Financial Planning

We are an independent financial services firm that, since 1980, has offered consultation and advice on all components of financial planning. We believe that an integrated (holistic) approach is the best way to assist our clients in realizing their financial and lifestyle goals (i.e., investments relate to cash flow, which relates to income taxes, and estate taxes, and insurance coverages, and home mortgage financing, and charitable gifting, and wealth creation, and career transitions, and retirement choices).

CJ Advisory Office

Contact Us

C-J Advisory, Inc.| 2060 The Alameda San Jose, CA 95126
Phone: (408)-345-2890 | Fax: (408) 345-2896



Our philosophy is to solve problems holistically and remove obstacles — while honoring the unique situation of each client. We do this by providing neutral, objective guidance and education for all types of financial decisions, as well as finding the most cost-effective way to implement those decisions.

Our philosophy is based on the belief that service is the highest form of human relationship. Hence, we are committed to providing a full range of high-quality financial planning services to individuals and corporations. The relationship formed with clients is strong and long-lasting. The partnership is based on trust.


  • Educate so that you can make informed choices.
  • Provide personal attention, mentoring, and support to keep you on track.
  • Save you time and hassle by handling all administrative details.
  • Find the most cost-effective way to implement your decisions.
  • Operate so as to earn your lifelong trust

The Ideal Client

  • Is committed (to their financial planning process)
  • Is a delegator (type of person who does not have the time, training or expertise to "do their own thing")
  • Has long term (big picture) perspective (i.e. understands wealth creation is a marathon, not a sprint)
  • Is ethical (appreciates honesty, integrity, transparency, and clear communication)
  • Is patient (understands research and administrative processes may take a few days)
  • Has a sense of humor
  • Is responsive (to CJA requests for information)
  • Has a willingness to have a trusting relationship
  • Is pleasant to deal with (positive attitude/demeanor)
  • Is open minded (willing to entertain new concepts and ideas)
  • Is cognizant of value of services provided (appreciates all the "extras")
  • Wants CJA to manage/oversee all assets (Client prefers only one Financial Advisor)
  • Is open to life planning (Life centered perspective and approach to Financial Planning)
  • Wants CJA as the coordinator of their financial team (CPA, Attorney, Bookkeeper)
  • Has assets minimum of $1 million (Minimum may be waived for referrals from existing clients, or friends of the firm)
(Click on a section below to expand information)


  • Cash Flow Analysis

    Being aware of your expenditures compared to your (after tax) income is critical to all other components of your financial life goals.
  • Debt Consolidation/Restructure Strategies

    There is good debt and bad debt. Good debt is using OPM ("other people's money" such as a loan from a bank) for a home mortgage. Bad debt is high interest rate credit cards.
  • Determine Realistic Financial Goals/Opportunities

    What do you really want? How willing are you to invest the time and money to make it happen?
  • Divorce-Related Issues

    Your personal path/journey may take a different direction than your spouse. Dividing your assets does not have to be a drama.
  • Parent/Dependent Care Guidance

    Whether the concern is your own long term health care, your parents', or your childrens', there are solutions.
  • Educational Workshops/Seminars/Webinars

    A good advisor spends the majority of her time providing financial education to clients and staff.
  • Strategies for Business Purchases and/or Big Ticket Items

    We start with basic discussion topics to crystallize the vision. Then the practical steps are revealed.
  • College Funding Planning

    There are strategies to create tax-free college funding accounts. The key is to begin funding the account as soon as possible. Even $100/month can be an excellent start.


  • Reviewing Wills and Trust Documents

    Helping clients develop an end-of-life plan (and instructions) in order to ease the process for beneficiaries to receive assets.
  • Re-registration of Assets when Estate Plan Changes

    If you establish a Revocable Living Trust but neglect to re-register your assets into the Trust, your beneficiaries will wind up in Probate Court, which the Trust was designed to prevent.
  • Provide "Final Instructions" worksheet

    Before you make your transition from this world to the next, it greatly helps your beneficiaries to know what you want while you still have capacity.
  • Charitable Gifting and Wealth Transfer Strategies

    If you want to share some of your wealth with causes, animals, the environment, or less fortunate humans, there are many tax-friendly ways to accomplish that.
  • Strategies for Reducing Estate (death) Taxes

    We start this discussion with you once your net worth starts to approach $4M (if single) and $7M (if married couple).
  • Education/Guidance Regarding Ethical Wills

    Living/Ethical Wills relay your values, your life experience, and your counsel to your loved ones.
  • Guidance/Handling of the Estate When Death Occurs

    This is a difficult time for families, so we step in (yes, we're grieving too) to assist and take care of the details in order to lessen your family's burden.


  • Explanation/Education regarding Income Tax Forms

    We make sure you understand (as much as you're willing to) income tax preparataion and filing so that you can fully take advantage of tax deductions and refunds.
  • Cost Basis Tracking

    This is critical to making decisions regarding which securities to sell, based on the amount of time held and on the amount of gain (profit) or loss (tax deduction).
  • Schedules B and D Sent to Client's Tax Preparer Quarterly

    Your taxable accounts are reviewed every quarter to determine if the portfolio activity should impact a quarterly tax payment.
  • Analyze Tax Returns for Possible Savings

    We serve as a "second set of eyes" to make sure your tax returns are accurate, especially as related to investment activity.
  • Income Tax Projections

    We look at your current income and deductions to strategize ways to mitigate current taxes and/or to create future tax-free income.
  • Income and Estate Tax Reduction Strategies

    We look at ways to preserve your assets for the benefit of your beneficiaries.
  • W-4 Optimization to Maximize Take Home Pay

    The goal is to arrive at April 15th at a "break even" point: you don't get a tax bill surprise, nor do you receive a large refund. Neither is good for your cash flow.


  • Required Minimum Distribution Calculations

    When you reach age 70 1/2, the law requires that you take out a minimum amount from your Traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA). If you don't, there is a 50% penalty...
  • Roth Recharacterization Calculations

    If a conversion was done (Traditional IRA transfer to Roth IRA) and it turns out (once your tax return is prepared the following April) that you didn't qualify (due to the earnings threshold), we need to "undo" the conversion (as if it never happened).
  • Formalize Goals, Create "What If.." Scenarios/Plans

    What are you saving money for? Do you have specific spending goals in addition to making sure you have enough money to get you through retirement?
  • Roth Conversion Analysis

    Analyzing the facts and circumstances of your situation to determine if you should pay taxes now, or later, on your Traditional IRA /401(k)/403(b).
  • Social Security Income Maximization

    Determines what age you (and your spouse) should begin taking the benefit, to maximize the amount you receive.


  • Portfolio Evaluation

    We assess both the performance of your current portfolios as well as appropriateness for your age and financial condition/situation.
  • Asset Allocation Recommendations

    Customized to your tax situation and risk tolerance with a goal of maximizing the growth of your investment portfolios.
  • Investment Research

    Includes quarterly assessment of the securities in your Target Model portfolios to determine if they are still the best choices in the allocation categories.
  • Third Party Investment Analysis

    In addition to our analysis, we also use the expertise of unbiased (money management firm) third parties in order to insure your investments are optimum.
  • Consolidate and Simplify Accounts

    We believe simple is better. Because of this, we aim to consolidate your investments in order to minimize fees while still maintaining a diversified portfolio.
  • Rebalance/Reposition Portfolios

    As domestic and foreign markets continuously change, we adjust the securities in your portfolios based on political and economic conditions around the world.
  • Shop CD Rates to Find the Best

    When Certificates of Deposit are an appropriate investment, we reach out to multiple banks to find the best yield offering at the strongest financial institution.


  • Purchase Financing Estimates

    Buying a home or rental property involves more than just the initial cost. We'll assess the long term viability of the potential purchase and how best to finance it.
  • Mortgage Refinancing Calculations

    This involves comparing your current mortgage loan to the current interest rates being offered to determine what would best serve you.
  • Reverse Mortgages

    If you meet the age criteria, and your home has substantial equity, this can be a way to eliminate your monthly mortgage payment and to provide tax-free income in retirement while still owning your home.
  • Home Equity Loans and Credit Lines

    These strategies offer tax-free cash without going through the process of refinancing.
  • Rental Property Assessment

    An assessment of whether the existing rental property is providing the rate of return and tax benefits you intended.
  • Buy vs. Rent Analysis

    We'll discuss with you the current real estate market to determine whether buying a house would be a better alternative to paying rent for your particular lifestyle and financial circumstances.


  • Policy Review

    We take an extensive look at all of your insurance policies, including disability insurance, medical insurance, long term health care insurance, and property and casualty insurance. We review your policies to ensure you have the appropriate coverage at the lowest premium cost.
  • Needs Analysis

    This is a discussion to determine how much insurance you actually need.
  • Insurance Policy Comparison Shopping

    We compare available policies from a variety of insurance carriers in order to find the least expensive company with the strongest financials.
  • Premium Payment Reminders

    If you choose, we'll follow up with you to make sure you don't miss a premium payment (which would cancel your current policy).


  • 401(k)/Employer Plan Investment Recommendations

    We'll make investment recommendations so your employer plan is both non-redundant and complementary with your investment portfolios.
  • Professional Employer Organization Recommendations

    This is for small business owners who would like to have a "back office in a box", rather than hiring individual firms or employees to do payroll, HR, Retirement Plans, etc.
  • Advice regarding RSUs (Restricted Stock Units) and ESPPs (Employee Stock Purchase Plans)

    We know that employer stock offerings can be confusing, so we help you understand what they are, how to manage them, what the tax impacts are, etc.
  • ESOP Exercise Optimization

    We provide education and advice.
  • Benefits Election Recommendations

    We analyze your current employer plan offerings to determine if your coverages are cost effective.
  • Job Change/Promotion Considerations

    We'll ask the Socratic questions to help you determine the best route for you and your family.


  • Statement of Net Worth (SNW)

    This is provided at every client meeting and is a comprehensive listing of all of your assets and all of your liabilities. We also maintain an SNW Addendum, which tracks every deposit, withdrawal, fee, and transfer into and out of your accounts.
  • Executive Summary of Meeting

    This documents our PRM (Progress Review Meeting) discussion topics, decisions, and action items.
  • Research for Unclaimed Client Assets

    We run the search prior to every meeting to see if we can find "lost" money for you.
  • Financial Action Plan

    The Advisor provides specific written recommendations for the purpose of meeting your short term and long term goals.
  • Meeting Agenda Topics

    This is sent to you ahead of time so you can add discussion topics to the upcoming Progress Review Meeting agenda.


  • Handling Special Requests

    We serve your financial life planning needs including, but not limited to, updating your Statement of Net Worth, wire transfers to banks and title companies, contacting transfer agents, coordinating meetings with other professionals, overnight express delivery of forms/checks, and determining the current market values of investment accounts.
  • Track Client Contact and All Correspondence

    All contact is documented so we can reference the content, date, and time, and not have to "remember".
  • Follow-up on "To-Do" Items

    Our lives get busy and good intentions get side-tracked, so we send you periodic reminders asking for the status on your "Things to Do" action items.
  • Set-up and Train Clients to Use Account Online Access

    As technology makes it easier and faster to access data, we provide "How To" instructions for you to follow.
  • Establish Automatic Distribution Plans

    When your salary ceases, your investment accounts are the source of your income. We set up automatic distributions from your portfolio accounts to your bank.
  • Monitoring Account Transfer Status

    We ensure that the transfers of accounts go through smoothly and successfully.
  • Prefill Forms to Save Time and for Convenience

    We know that you have a busy schedule, so we complete the forms you need to sign with the data we already have. Then you can simply review before signing.
  • Change of Address: Notify all interested Parties

    We make sure all third party firms know your new address so that you have one less item on your To Do list.
  • Draft Letters of Instructions for Specific Requests

    When specific letters needing technical jargon are required, we'll prepare them for your signature.
  • Establish Automatic Investment Plan

    An easy way to create wealth is to set up an automatic monthly deposit from your bank account to one or more of your investment accounts. We set this up for you.
  • Obtaining Statements from Other Financial Institutions

    There is a secure and electronic way to have your non-CJA accounts come to us so that we don't have to ask you for copies.
  • Notary Services

    We have a notary on staff.
  • Education Savings Account

    There are tax-free accounts that are designed to help you fund your child's college education.
  • Professional Referrals

    We have a variety of reputable local businesspeople who provide various services you might need: attorneys, tax preparers, elder care givers, mortgage brokers, property appraisals, pet sitters, bookkeepers, therapists, etc.

Veda Cassells-Jones, CFP®, founder and president of C-J Advisory, Inc., has been a financial planner since 1980. She is a:

  • CFP® (Certified Financial Planner)
  • AIF® (Acredited Investment Fiduciary)
  • CLTC (Certified, Long Term Care Insurance)
  • RIA (Registered Investment Advisor)
  • Life Insurance agent
  • Disability Insurance agent
  • Health Insurance agent
  • Investment manager
  • Retirement plan consultant

Veda works with individual clients, and acts as investment advisor to company Profit-Sharing Plans and Charitable Foundations.

She has been a guest speaker before Silicon Valley company meetings, Women in Business seminars, church groups, seniors organizations, and student workshops. She has been interviewed as a financial planning expert on television and radio, and for newspapers and magazines.

Veda has a B.A. in Sociology from Sonoma State University, and has completed graduate courses in Psychology and Counseling.


Q: What does "Holistic, Integrated Financial Planning" mean?

  • Another name for this is "Life Planning."

  • In addition to integrating all the financial components listed in the "What We Do" section, we assist clients in discovering what they really want from their lives, or for their future, or what their right and perfect (next) career might be, or what activity might bring the most emotional satisfaction, or what legacy they want to leave behind (in addition to money), or what values they hold; what learning experiences they've acquired that they want to share now and/or pass on to future generations.

  • Some other monikers that clients have used to describe what I do are: Life Coach, Guide.

Q: How are you different from a "regular" Financial Planner?

  • We address ALL components of the financial planning process, not just investment strategies. We are educators for those who want to learn about personal finance and pensions and taxes and investing etc. In our current world, we are bombarded with a constant stream of data, literally 24 hours per day.
  • Sooner or later, we realize that information is NOT knowledge, so we need someone whom we trust to translate, explain, advise, or implement.

Q: Why do I have to fill out a Cash Flow Statement?

  • It is critically important for both of us to know where your money goes after it comes into the house. It isn't about budgeting for the purpose of sacrificing now for a future lifestyle; it's not about judgment; it's about finding out if there is any cash left over after the living expenses are handled, and, if so, how much.
  • If there is, it then leads to these questions:

    • Is there enough to start funding an account for college expenses?
    • Enough to fully fund ALL retirement accounts you are eligible for (if becoming financially independent at an early age is a goal)?
    • Enough to pay for a proper estate plan?
    • Enough to set up and fund charitable activities?
    • Enough to buy a second home in Spain?
    • Enough to buy your first home here?

  • Cash Flow tracking is often the most difficult task for clients to do (because of all the emotional baggage tied to money and how we spend it). It is also the most liberating revelation when the project is done. It is an easy process when software (like Quicken) is utilized.

In summary:

    We help people use their money to make a life — rather than use their life to make money.

Contact Us

C-J Advisory, Inc.

2060 The Alameda
San Jose, CA 95126
(408) 345-2890
Fax: (408) 345-2896


    (Click for info)
  • Veda Cassells-Jones
  • Beth Doyle
  • Jennifer Kistner
  • Shirley Cook
  • Marina Widjaja
  • Cathy Martin
  • Jen Wong
  • Pat Graham
  • Laura Peak

Veda Cassells-Jones

Certified Financial Planner
Registered Investment Advisor
(408) 345-2890, Ext. 123