Have you ever wondered how to choose the right financial advisor?
Whether you’re looking to work with a financial advisor for the first time, or you are looking to change advisors, the looming question in your mind might be:
HOW DO I CHOOSE THE RIGHT FINANCIAL ADVISOR FOR ME?
One thing I will admit is there’s no shortage of financial advisors in the world!
In fact, when it was suggested to me by a friend of mine that I should consider being a financial advisor, my response was “hey man, thanks – but, the last thing the world needs is another financial advisor!”
I’m glad I rescinded that statement, however. I love the work I do now.
What should you be looking for in an advisor? What questions should you ask, and what questions might they ask you?
In my opinion, you want to choose someone who you can get to know, get along with but also be challenged by, and someone who you can trust and can earn your trust in return.
Another part of that is getting clear on what you expect from a relationship with a financial advisor. A few factors to consider:
Many people get referred to an advisor from a friend, family member, colleague, coach, or therapist. Or, maybe you have that college buddy or family member who is an advisor.
Regardless of how you find them, the next question is: How will I know if this is the right advisor for you?
The factors I just talked about cover the expectations of the job.
This question – how to find the right advisor for you – is very important, and one I think you should spend the most time thinking about. Most advisors I know can do the job and do it well.
Some who carry the job title of “financial advisor” are only focused on selling financial products that may or may not be in your best interest. Those folks need a wake-up call to how they’re really impacting people’s lives, but that’s another blog article for another time.
Actually, let me just say one more thing about these folks: a product salesperson – I won’t name specific firms, but it their lead is life insurance or annuities – they are not delivering financial advice at all, and are therefore not qualified to be the right advisor for you.
When interviewing for the right financial advisor, here are a few things to look for:
Now that we’ve covered what expectations to consider and what to pay attention to during the meeting, let me share a couple of questions you want the advisor to ask you, as well as a couple of questions you may want to ask the advisor.
First, the right financial advisor is probably going to ask some variation of good questions, such as:
All of these questions have a monetary implication, but none of them dig into your financial specifics.
That’s precisely why I do not ask anyone to bring any statements to the first meeting. I don’t ask anyone to fill out the 10-page “intake” form that has you list everything out for me.
My approach with this is highly intentional. In my first meetings, I do not ask financially nosy questions! From my perspective, your financial specifics are none of my business until we decide to begin working together.
Some people don’t want to waste time, they want to get right down to brass tacks, and that’s fine. I can adjust. However, I find most people appreciate lowering the pressure for the first meeting.
Now, here are few questions you may want to ask the advisor in that first meeting:
If you are considering working with a financial advisor for the first time, or feel underserved and looking for a new advisor, use this as a “know before you go” resource.
If you’re reading this and want to talk with me about your situation, or click here to access my calendar and schedule time to explore how.
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