Excellent Investor  »  FeaturedInvestor Centre   »   10 Questions To Ask When Choosing A Financial Adviser   » | Date Published:  July 2, 2017 2:15 pm
10 Questions To Ask When Choosing A Financial Adviser

10 Questions To Ask When Choosing A Financial Adviser

When people think of their money and how it is managed, they often zoom in on one metric — how well their investments performed compared to the broader market.

When it comes to our money, how well our investments do is out of our control — as they say, past performance is not an indicator of future results. But, who we choose to manage our money is.

1. How do you charge for your services, and how much?

If you didn’t see this information on the planner’s web site, ask whether there’s an initial planning fee, whether they charge a percentage for assets under management, or whether they make money from selling you a specific product. Not only should you know how much the service will cost you, but it can help you determine whether they have an incentive to sell you things.

2. What licenses, credentials or other certifications do you have?

Of the four main types of financial advisors, the certified financial planner (CFP) designation is harder to achieve than Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), because the former requires a comprehensive board exam; the latter, however uses the same core curriculum. If you want someone to manage your money, then look for a registered investment advisor (RIA). If you have a high income or a small business owner, you’ll probably want a certified public account (CPA), who can offer you advance tax planning. The personal financial specialist (PSF) certification is usually obtained by CPAs who want to demonstrate they can help clients with comprehensive financial planning.

3. What services do you/does your firm provide?

Implicit in this question is also what assistance the advisor will not give you. “Some people are just investment advisors and only provide you advice on your investments,” says Bera. “Other people do comprehensive financial planning around retirement, insurance, estate planning and tax planning.” Go with someone whose offerings suit your needs.

3. Is your first meeting free?

Many financial advisers offer a free first meeting that gives potential clients an opportunity to meet the adviser face-to-face. The introductory meeting is a good time to ask questions about what to expect, how many meetings you’ll need to develop the financial plan, what information you will need, how they charge for their services as well as any specific concerns or interests you may have such as investing in shares, SMSF, retirement planning, insurance etc.

Some advisers will post or email a questionnaire prior to the first meeting so you can come prepared and you will recieve an Financial Services Guide (FSG) to take away. The FSG generally looks like a dry document however it outlines the adviser’s qualifications and the products and services they are authorised to provide advice on.

5. Could I see a sample financial plan?

There is no one set structure for a financial plan, which means there is wide variation. “Some people might give you 50 pages of stuff you don’t understand like charts and graphs, and another planner might provide a five-page snapshot of your financial situation,” says Bera. “With a sample, you can say, ‘I really want that in-depth analysis,’ or ‘I don’t understand that.’”

6. What is your investment approach?

If you have a strong preference for a particular philosophy, ask the advisor what his or hers is. For instance, if you prefer to use low-cost funds, you can ask whether they plan to used actively managed funds or passive investments. Wacks gives an example of the kinds of differences in investment philosophy that can arise: “I say to the client, ‘I’m not here to make you a lot of money. If you want someone to do that, and trade stocks back and forth, then I’m not the person. If you’re looking for someone who makes investments consistent with your risk tolerance and goals, then I can help you.’”

7. How much contact do you have with your clients? 

“Some of planners hold an initial planning meeting and then you see them once a year, and that’s all you get,” says Bera. Others might have quarterly check-ins. “Some clients just want to go over everything once a year and then they’re good. Others are looking for more support, so it depends on the amount you want to pay, and how involved you want your planner to be. Are you a delegator? Or do you expect your advisor to explain things to you?” If you’re not sure of what you’ll be comfortable with, the J.D. Power & Associates survey found that investors contacted 12 or more times a year had the highest rates of satisfaction with their advisors.

8. Will I be working only with you or with a team?

This question will also help you see how often you’ll be in touch with your advisor. “Some will say, ‘I’ll meet with you once a year, but Gina will reach out to you regularly and is my right hand person and does a lot of data gathering for me.’ Some companies have a team approach rather than an individual approach,” says Bera, adding that one isn’t better than the other. “It’s really whatever your preference is. But I wouldn’t want someone to get into a relationship and say, ‘I only see my advisor once a year, and I thought I’d be seeing him more often.’ Then others really like the team approach because they know if their planner is on vacation, they can still get an answer right away.”

9. What makes your client experience unique?

“Basically, ‘Why do I want to work with you?’” says Bera. “And people should be able to answer that.” This will also give you insight into whether their strengths are the ones you seek in a planner. For instance, she would tell clients, “I’m your financially savvy best friend,” and explain that her focus is on using their money to match their values. This pitch would appeal to some clients, but not ones who, for instance, are out to maximize returns in the market.

Finally, there’s one last question you want to ask of yourself after meeting with a potential adviser:

10. Did he or she ask me questions and seem to be interested in me? 

“Do they talk 90% of the time?” , “If it’s more like 60/40 and he has asked you how they can help you, that’s really important. Financial planning about looking at the person’s individual circumstance instead of punching in some numbers — it’s based on the client’s goals, financial background, what they believe about money, etc.”

Author – Laura Shin  

Article Source: FORBES


  1. F*ckin’ tremendous things here. I’m very glad to see your article. Thanks a lot and i’m looking forward to contact you. Will you kindly drop me a e-mail?

  2. It’s arduous to find knowledgeable individuals on this subject, but you sound like you understand what you’re speaking about! Thanks

  3. Howdy, you’re definitely correct. I constantly read through your content attentively. I’m also curious about upvc windows cost, maybe you could write about that at times. See you!

  4. That is the fitting weblog for anyone who desires to find out about this topic. You realize so much its nearly laborious to argue with you (not that I really would need…HaHa). You undoubtedly put a brand new spin on a topic thats been written about for years. Nice stuff, simply great!

  5. I’m curious to find out which blog system you are utilizing? I’m experiencing a few small safety difficulties with our latest blog related to Arvind Pandit Kansas and I’d like to find something more secure. Are there any suggestions?

  6. There’s terrific improvements on the structure of this website, I certainly love it! My site is regarding intercom system upgrade NY and generally there are quite a lot of stuff to be done, I am yet still a rookie in web development. Take care!

  7. I was just looking for this info for some time. After 6 hours of continuous Googleing, at last I got it in your site. I wonder what’s the lack of Google strategy that do not rank this kind of informative web sites in top of the list. Normally the top web sites are full of garbage.

  8. I came over here via another website on the subject of more twitter followers and imagined I might look at this. I adore the things I see therefore now I am following you. Getting excited about looking over your site yet again.

  9. Our LGV (Large Goods Vehicle) HGV training is based in East London, and our LGV/ HGV courses are taught by qualified DVSA LGV & HGV trainers. LGV was formerly known as HGV, where it used to be referred to as HGV Class 2 (now called LGV Category C) and HGV class 1 (Now called LGV Category C+E).

  10. Hello! This is my first reply here so I just wanted to give a quick hello and tell you I truly enjoy reading your articles. Can you recommend other websites which deal with accident claims? I’m likewise very intrigued by that! Thank you so much!

  11. Hello! This is my very first comment on your site so I just wanted to give a quick hello and tell you I genuinely enjoy reading through your blog posts. Can you recommend any other blogs which cover where to buy ethereum? I’m also pretty fascinated by that! Many thanks!

  12. Howdy can you let me know which platform you’re working with? I’m going to get started on my personal blog on ride on mowers for sale soon although I’m having difficulties making the decision.

  13. Thanks a ton for discussing the idea, I bookmarked the website. I’m additionally seeking material regarding canon installation software, do you know where I could come across a thing like this? I’ll return quickly!

  14. My family and I definitely adore your website and find almost all of the blogposts to be what precisely I am searching for. Would you offer people to write content material for you? I would not mind writing a post about withdrawing bitcoin from blockchain or even on a number of the things you’re writing about on this site. Great internet site!

  15. I’m actually loving the design of your website. Do you run into any internet browser interface problems? Some of the website visitors have lamented regarding my driving games website not operating properly in Internet Explorer but seems great in Safari. Are there any suggestions to aid correct the situation?

  16. Hello! This is my very first comment here so I simply wanted to give a fast hello and tell you I truly enjoy reading through your articles. Can you suggest any other websites that go over forwarding company? I am also very hooked on that! Thanks a ton!

  17. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d without a doubt donate to this brilliant blog! I suppose for now i’ll settle for book-marking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to brand new updates and will talk about this site with my Facebook group. Chat soon!

  18. With virtually no side effects, not like the dreadful
    buzz of way too much caffeine or the upset sensation that numerous cravings suppressants could
    bring, this supplement was featured on the Dr Oz program,
    where his group of committed specialists explained just exactly how this new pill could assist the body to use its excess fat stores AND block
    the capability to construct brand-new fat gets whilst lowering the stress and anxiety level

  19. Good blog! I truly love how it is easy on my eyes and the data are well written. I’m wondering how I might be notified when a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your RSS which must do the trick! Have a nice day!

  20. Thank you so much for the amazing write-up! I genuinely liked reading it.I’ll make certain to take note of this blog and will often return from now on. I wish to encourage that you keep on with your good job, perhaps blog about urgent dental care also, have a fine afternoon!

  21. It is the best time to make some plans for the future and it is time to be happy. I’ve read this post and if I could I wish to suggest you some interesting things or suggestions. Maybe you can write next articles referring to this article. I wish to read more things about it!

  22. Asking questions are truly fastidious thing if you are not understanding anything totally, except this
    piece of writing gives good understanding yet.

  23. Heya i am for the first time here. I found
    this board and I find It truly useful & it helped me out a lot.

    I hope to give something back and help others like you helped me.

  24. Good web site you’ve got here.. It’s hard to find high-quality
    writing like yours nowadays. I honestly appreciate individuals
    like you! Take care!!

  25. My coder is trying to convince me to move to .net from PHP.

    I have always disliked the idea because of the expenses.
    But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using Movable-type on a variety of websites for about
    a year and am anxious about switching to another platform.
    I have heard fantastic things about blogengine.net.
    Is there a way I can import all my wordpress content into it?
    Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  26. This design is incredible! You certainly know how to keep a
    reader entertained. Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Excellent job.
    I really enjoyed what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented it.
    Too cool!

  27. Hi there! I understand this is kind of off-topic but I had
    to ask. Does operating a well-established blog like yours require a lot of work?
    I’m brand new to operating a blog however
    I do write in my journal daily. I’d like to start a blog so I can easily share my own experience and thoughts online.

    Please let me know if you have any kind of recommendations or tips for
    new aspiring blog owners. Appreciate it!

  28. Actually no matter if someone doesn’t understand after
    that its up to other people that they will help, so here it
    takes place.

  29. Hey there just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading properly.

    I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different
    web browsers and both show the same results.

  30. Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up.
    The words in your post seem to be running off the screen in Chrome.
    I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to
    do with browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let
    you know. The layout look great though! Hope you get the problem solved soon. Kudos

  31. Asking questions are genuinely good thing if you are not understanding anything entirely, however this
    piece of writing gives nice understanding yet.

  32. Do you have a spam issue on this website; I also am a blogger, and I was wondering your situation; many of us have created some nice methods and we are looking to swap techniques with other folks, please shoot me an email if interested.

  33. That is very fascinating, You are a very skilled
    blogger. I’ve joined your feed and stay up for seeking more of your
    fantastic post. Also, I have shared your web site in my social networks

  34. Hello there, I found your website by the use of Google whilst looking for a similar topic,
    your site came up, it appears to be like good. I’ve bookmarked
    it in my google bookmarks.
    Hello there, simply turned into alert to your weblog via Google, and
    located that it is really informative. I’m gonna be careful for brussels.

    I’ll appreciate in the event you proceed this in future.
    Numerous folks will likely be benefited from your writing.


  35. This is very attention-grabbing, You’re
    an overly professional blogger. I’ve joined your rss
    feed and look ahead to in quest of more of your wonderful post.
    Also, I have shared your web site in my social networks

  36. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I truly appreciate
    your efforts and I am waiting for your further write ups thank you once again.

  37. What’s up i am kavin, its my first time to commenting anyplace,
    when i read this post i thought i could also create comment due to this sensible post.

  38. all the time i used to read smaller articles which also clear their motive, and that is also happening with this post which I am reading here.

  39. It is the best time to make a few plans for the long run and
    it is time to be happy. I’ve learn this put up and if I may I wish to suggest you some attention-grabbing
    issues or suggestions. Maybe you could write next articles regarding
    this article. I wish to read more issues about it!

  40. Everything is very open with a really clear description of the issues.
    It was definitely informative. Your site is extremely helpful.
    Thank you for sharing!

  41. Excellent blog you have here but I was wondering if you knew of any user
    discussion forums that cover the same topics
    talked about in this article? I’d really like
    to be a part of community where I can get comments from other
    experienced individuals that share the same interest. If you have any recommendations, please let me know.
    Bless you!

  42. I am not sure where you’re getting your information, but great topic.
    I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding
    more. Thanks for great information I was looking for this info for
    my mission.

  43. I wanted to thank you for this very good read!!
    I certainly loved every bit of it. I have you saved as a favorite to
    check out new stuff you post…

  44. Heya! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new
    apple iphone! Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and
    look forward to all your posts! Keep up the great work!

  45. Aw, this was a very nice post. Finding the time and actual effort to produce a
    great article… but what can I say… I hesitate a whole lot and never seem
    to get anything done.

  46. Heya i’m for the first time here. I came across this board and I find
    It really useful & it helped me out much.
    I hope to give something back and help others like you helped me.

  47. I am curious to find out what blog platform you happen to be utilizing? I’m experiencing some small security problems with my latest website and I would like to find something more risk-free. Do you have any solutions?

  48. It was actually wonderful reading this and I feel you are completely right. Tell me in the event that you’re thinking about forex wealth generators, that’s my major competence. I really hope to hear from you soon, bye for now!

  49. Hello! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any problems with hackers? My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing months of hard work due to no data backup. Do you have any solutions to prevent hackers?

  50. You’re absolutely correct. I liked reading through this info and I will come back for more as quickly as possible. Our website is on the subject of more followers on instagram, you might have a look if you are still interested in this.

  51. It was amazing to read this article and I believe you are really correct. Inform me if perhaps you’re looking into movies, this is my major expertise. I am hoping to hear from you soon, take care!

  52. Al Hadi AC Refrigration and Repairing is committed to giving your ACs a new lease of life. We have a team of experienced professionals which has serviced more than a 1000 units, much to the satisfaction of our clients. The effort at Al Hadi has always been to service a call in the shortest span of time and to close it with a happy client. The referrals we get is a testimony to our work. Try our services today!

  53. Hey there, you’re absolutely correct. I constantly read through your content carefully. I’m also curious about real estate news, you could write about that occasionally. I will be back!

  54. I am actually loving the theme of your internet site. Do you encounter any kind of web browser compatibility issues? A lot of my blog audience have lamented about my asthma therapy site not operating correctly in Explorer yet looks wonderful in Safari. Do you have any advice to aid fix the problem?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Copyright © 2018 Excellent Investor - "An investment in knowledge pays the best interest"