What To Look For When Choosing A Financial Advisor


Most people who plan for retirement eventually come to the point where their wealth management needs overwhelm what they can handle by themselves. While it’s certainly a good idea to research personal finance yourself and take an active role in planning your future, most people don’t have the time, energy, and expertise to do it right.

This is when professional financial planners become attractive. This is someone who with deep financial expertise who manages your assets and investments and advises you on long term planning decisions. The problem is, anyone can claim to be a professional financial planner. Abuse and scams are always a danger, so review this list of tips to make sure you select a responsible planner with your interests at stake.

Look into their background. Ask for references from past clients with similar portfolios, and follow up with those clients. Also ask if they have ever had lawsuits brought against them. You can check this information with regulatory agencies and consumer protection organisations. Avoid anyone with a history of complaints.

More and more, large firms are catering to wealthy clients. Unfortunately, a lot of planners don’t give adequate attention to accounts under a million dollars. If you are investing less than that, look for firms that focus on middle class investors.

Avoid advisers that don’t charge you for advise or asset management. It may sound good to get free advise, but most of the time these planners are not actually working in your interest. Instead of collecting fees from the client, they get paid commissions by financial asset companies. When their clients buy funds from a particular company, the planner gets a kickback. This motivates them to sell whatever funds they have arrangements with or will pay them the most, not what is necessarily good for the client.

Look into their background. Ask for references from past clients with similar portfolios, and follow up with those clients. Also ask if they have ever had lawsuits brought against them. You can check this information with regulatory agencies and consumer protection organisations. Avoid anyone with a history of complaints.

The best place to start to find a good Financial Advisor is always by asking friends and family who have used one in the past. Having a personal connection with your adviser at the start of your relationship gives a foundation of trust and mutual interest.