How Do Certificates of Investment Work?
Stadia Capital specializes in fixed income. Our Certificates of Investment are structured like a certificate of deposit that a bank or credit union offers, except with better interest rates. You select your preferred investment term (12, 24, 36, or 48 months), and receive monthly interest via check or direct deposit. Like a CD, you receive your entire principal back at maturity.
This Seems Too Good to Be True. How Can You Offer Higher Interest Rates than Most Banks and Make Money?
We are not a bank, although our business model is somewhat similar. Protecting our client’s capital investment is our number one priority.
When you deposit funds with a bank, you are essentially lending them money at a stated interest rate. The bank then invests those funds into different financial products and services, usually home mortgages, home equity lines of credit, land and construction financing, personal and business loans, and other securities. The difference between what the bank pays you for your deposits (“cost of funds”) and what they earn on the loans and investments (“interest income”) is called “net interest margin.”
Stadia Capital Group is a private investment firm that operates with a similar net interest margin business model. Accredited investors place funds with us via Certificates of Investment that are structured under Rule 506c, Regulation D, of the Securities Act and offered per a Private Placement Memoranda. The interest we pay to investors is our “cost of funds.” We then aggregate these funds and deploy capital into strategic investment opportunities. The interest income earned by providing short term financing and appreciation on our investments is our “interest income.”
We understand there’s a lot of complexity in the investment world, and it’s hard to know whom to trust. Just like all investment options, you should understand the underlying business model and fully understand the sales charges, management fees, and expenses prior to investing.
We have strict investment standards by which we evaluate potential new investment opportunities which further increases the level of protection for invested capital. Because we offer Certificates of Investment directly to clients without sales charges, management fees, or commissions, we eliminate many costs and fees typically associated with investment offerings and share this savings to our clients in the form of higher returns.
Due to our cross-sector expertise in finance, real estate, and over two billion dollars in construction management experience, we create investment opportunities where we can successfully deploy capital. Our ability to acquire assets and add value is a key difference in our business model which allows us to offer attractive interest rates to our clients. This combination of expertise and operational efficiencies allows us to provide higher returns to our customers.
Who is Eligible to Invest in Certificates of Investment?
Our Certificates of Investment are open to “accredited investors” as defined in Rule 501(a) of Regulation D under the Securities Act.
Are Certificates of Investment FDIC Insured?
Similar to stocks, bonds, ETFs, REITs, hedge funds, real estate and other investments in your portfolio, CI’s are not FDIC insured. However, like bank investments, CI’s are secured by liens on tangible assets and marketable securities, and the fund maintains 20% higher reserves than that required of banks. Stadia Capital Certificates of Investment are designed to provide capital preservation and stable principal valuation through maturity.
How Are Certificates of Investment Different from Other Types of Investment?
This is not meant to be a complete discussion of all the features and risks of each investment type, but these general comments should provide insight into some key differences.
Stocks, bonds, ETFs, REITs, hedge funds, and real estate are all subject to varying degrees of market volatility because the value of the underlying asset can fluctuate up or down. The prices of stocks, bonds, ETFs, and REITs can fluctuate, sometimes dramatically (think of popular IPOs that have exponential increases and decreases, and venerable stocks in companies such as Enron and Bear Stearns, that were a complete loss). Market volatility can be influenced by any number of external or internal factors, including the global economic situation, the impact of short selling, and negative publicity.
The value of bonds are also subject to interest rate risks. In this historically low-interest rate environment, you should consider how an increase in interest rates will impact the underlying value of your investments.
There are liquidity risks of owning hedge funds and direct ownership in real estate as you may not be able to easily and timely gain access to your funds if needed. Owning REITs, commercial or residential real estate, also involves additional costs and expenses of property taxes, management and Capex fees, and other maintenance and repair expenses.
Comparison to a dividend-paying stock: you purchase the stock at a certain price and receive regular dividend payments. In addition to market volatility from stock price fluctuations, the dividend amount can change depending on the operating performance and financial conditions of the underlying company.
Comparison to an annuity: Think of annuities as a hybrid of an insurance policy and fixed-income instrument. They do provide regular income, but you give up your entire principal balance to generate that income. You also pay very large sales fees upfront, so essentially you lose part of your capital amount on Day one.
Our Certificates of Investment are specifically designed to provide capital preservation, predictable monthly income, and provide protection from market volatility with no sales commissions or management fees.
How Do I Know If a Certificate of Investment is Right for Me?
It depends on your investment goals and overall risk tolerance. Stadia Capital Group is not a financial advisor or brokerage firm, so we can’t give you specific advice, but these general observations may help you evaluate the options.
Our Certificates of Investment are design for people seeking capital preservation and income. If you are interested in high growth opportunities with the potential for IPO-type, 10x capital appreciation, then our CIs would not be the right choice. The capital preservation feature protects you from downside risks by returning 100 percent of your investment principal, while providing reliable current income.
Conversely, if you are most concerned with the security of deposit insurance, the tradeoff is settling for historically low interest rates. Because interest rates are currently below the rate of inflation, you face the “stealth” threat of eroding your real savings and investment returns over the long term.
Our Certificates of Investment are situated somewhere between these two spectrums. Many savvy investors find Certificates of Investment to be an excellent way to diversify their portfolio because of the focus on providing predictable monthly income without market volatility while preserving capital.
I Mentioned Investing in a Stadia Capital Certificate of Investment with My Personal Wealth Manager and They Were Hesitant. Why Would They Try to Steer Me Away?
We’re sorry to hear that. We believe most wealth managers provide an important and helpful service to individuals by helping them navigate the investing landscape. Nevertheless, the truth is our CI has substantially less volatility risk than many of the investments currently in your managed portfolio. There could be a couple of factors at play.
One reason is that perhaps they don’t fully understand what the Certificate of Investment is. Our CI bypasses middlemen and is offered directly to accredited investors without management fees or sales charges through a Private Placement Memorandum structured under Regulation D Rule 506c of the Securities Act. We adhere to the Code of Ethics set forth by the American Association of Private Lenders, which is intended to ensure the welfare of our clients, as well as protect the reputation and integrity of the private lending profession.
Another possible reason is if your wealth manager is primarily compensated by an “assets under management” model. If you transfer funds away from the assets they manage to place funds in another investment, it could lower their income potential.
I Would Like to Invest, but My Funds Are in an IRA. Can I Still Participate?
Yes. To invest within an existing IRA, you’ll need to establish a self-directed IRA investment account. We partner with Provident Trust Group to facilitate this, and our staff can assist you in completing the necessary paperwork. Funding of the Certificate of Investment will come through the self-directed IRA and interest payments will go directly to the self-directed IRA account.
What Are the Account Fees and Sales Expenses to Invest in Certificates of Investment?
Zero. There are no sales commissions, broker expenses, or account management fees now or ever to invest with us. We have an efficient operating structure, and our staff work on salary rather than commission. This approach means 100 percent of your investment principal goes to work immediately to generate predictable monthly income for you.
I’m Ready to Invest with You. How Do I Get Started?