We’ve all been in a situation where we have to search for a professional, be it an auto mechanic, home repair person, or accountant. A financial advisor is no different. There are tons out there to choose from and you need a way to separate the wheat from the chaff to set your sights on a home, college fund, or expensive car.
Make Them Listen
A meeting is essential to determine the character of a financial advisor. After all, you can’t give your investment money to just anyone. What people say about the advisor matters. A reputation of friendliness and dependability opens the door to good conversation, which is essential for sharing ideas about where you want your money to go.
Ask questions in the initial meeting and pay attention to how an advisor listens. Try not to reverse roles with the advisor doing most of the talking. A supreme level of service might mean that you walk out of the meeting energized to do business and excited for the future.
Check Who’s Doing the Talking
Five-star recommendations from friends and family is a start. But just a start. If you want to invest money in a house, then you might not want an advisor who specializes in college funds, for example. Another approach is to seek out an advisor who has experience helping clients in a similar situation. And of course, an advisor should be certified to gain instant credibility.
A certified financial planner from the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards means that he or she has met examination, education, ethical, and experience requirements. It’s a great lead for professionals who know how to make the most of your hard-earned money.
Follow the Data
Believe it or not, extensive research has been conducted to rank America’s top wealth advisors. Thousands of professionals are subject to a meticulous algorithm to grade their investing process and service model. When in doubt, you can always go with the math.
Keep in mind that some financial advisors prefer to work with a certain type of client. If you have less than $200,000 to invest then you may be turned down, for instance, but don’t get discouraged. There are plenty of top-ranked professionals that can cater to your financial needs. If you’re a beginner then the right advisor can consult with you through the ups and downs as you expand your knowledge base.
Beware the Brags
Warren Buffet is America’s most successful investor and it seems like everyone and their cousin want to reach his level of wealth. Financial advisors, however, should provide you with realistic numbers and outcomes. Meet with several advisors of your choice and walk away from any who claim to beat market averages. Only a few geniuses can reach that level of mastery.
There’s no shame in being tricky in choosing an advisor. According to experts, between seven and 15 percent of professionals have been accused of misconduct. You can check the credentials of an advisor through a simple Google search. Pay attention to the organization that looked over someone’s work history; FINRA and the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards are reputable sources.
You can also run an independent background check that reveals if an individual has been charged or convicted of a crime. It might seem extreme for those eager to jump in the waters, but it’s worth it if you want to manage risks. A private investigator can do the dirty job while you sit on your money and wait.
You worked hard to save money to invest. Choose your financial advisors carefully to ensure you receive top-notch advice and returns for an abundant future.