Understanding the Goldhar Difference : A one-on-one interview with founder Richard Goldhar

Tell us a bit about your background and experience. What led you to launch Goldhar & Associates?

When I graduated from university with a Bachelor of Commerce degree,  I was determined to put my education to work in way that could help people.  I first worked in a charitable organization, and then decided on a professional career as a licensed insolvency trustee. I articled in a midsize firm, and thereafter worked in two national trustee firms while I completed my licensing exams. I became a licensed insolvency trustee in 2013, and was offered a partner position in a national firm. However, I decided that I would prefer to practice in my own firm, and founded Goldhar & Associates in December 2013.

The national insolvency firms are owned by much larger professional accounting firms. As a result, they lack heart and empathy, qualities that in my mind are essential to working with people grappling with serious debt problems and the intense, emotional issues that always go along with that. I wanted my professional practice to be focused only on helping people overcome their financial distress.

What sets Goldhar & Associates apart from the national insolvency firms?

The difference is in our mission and how we approach each client. We understand how stressful and overwhelming debt can be. Goldhar offers a very human, non-judgmental approach. People can expect us to treat them with respect and dignity as we help them shed the debt® and get their financial lives back in balance.

What is your #1 piece of advice to someone struggling with debt?

Act sooner rather than later.

It is never too early to call Goldhar for help. You don’t have to wait until you’re teetering on the brink of insolvency to seek help. If you start to fall behind on your credit card payments, get declined for credit at a bank, or have a low credit score, Goldhar can review your financial position and talk about the ways you can repair your credit and get you back on track.

My best day at work is when I can find a solution that does not require insolvency proceedings.

How has your firm evolved?

Since we launched in 2013, we have gone from having 1 office to 13 locations across Ontario from Windsor/Chatham in the southwest, to Ottawa in the northeast, and everywhere in between. We offer services in six different languages including Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Tagalog (Filipino), French and English.

What’s next for Goldhar & Associates? Anything new and exciting on the radar?

We are in the process of opening new locations. The Belleville office will be open and staffed full-time in June, with Chatham and Windsor locations operational by mid-summer.

How do you measure success?

It’s exciting to see people shed the debt® and get back on track financially. When they are so happy with our services that they refer their friends and family to Goldhar, we know we are doing things right.

We have had many people come to us for help as a direct result of being referred by other people we helped. I believe this is due to our high degree of expertise and professionalism, as well as to the empathy and respect offered by everyone at Goldhar, from the trustees, to the estate administrators, the debt counsellors, and the staff at the reception desk.

If you are struggling with debt, talk to Goldhar & Associates today. Anywhere in Ontario there’s a Goldhar near you. Click here for a list of our office locations. They all can be reached by calling #debt (#3328) on your mobile phone, or 1-855-541-5114 toll-free.