Retire In Style

What to Know Before Meeting with a Financial Advisor

It doesn’t matter what your financial situation might be at this moment because there are a lot of good reasons for you to seek the help of a financial advisor. Whether you want to boost your income through investments, get out of your debt, or just save up for your future, a trustworthy and honest financial advisor can point you towards the right direction to reach your goals.

What to Know Before Meeting with a Financial Advisor

What is a Financial Advisor?

Before meeting a financial advisor, first, you might want to know what they do. Financial advisors are qualified investment professionals. Your financial advisor will work with you hand in hand so you can achieve your financials. Simply put, financial advisors are go-to experts who have the knowledge of growing your money for you to reach your dreams.

However, it is important to do your homework before enlisting the help of a financial advisor. There are some things you have to know before meeting with a financial advisor:

Determine Your Financial Goals

An experienced financial asks the right questions and what is more important is that they make sure that their clients are prepared for their first meeting together. One of the most critical pieces of information that you need to prepare at this point is your own financial goals. Simply put, you have to be ready expressing why you decided working with a professional financial advisor.

Identify the Current Standing of Your Finances

Working with a financial advisor is among the most important decisions you can ever make in your financial life. They will be able to help you better if you can give them more information and details about your current financial standing and your future goals. Don’t be intimidated when you meet with your advisor because their purpose is to help you achieve your financial objectives.

Evaluate If the Financial Advisor is Suitable for Your Specific Needs

The key here is to know your goals, whether it is for personal or business purposes. But, setting goals is usually the most difficult thing to do and this is why a lot of people are working with financial advisors. It would be great if you prepare some well-researched questions to determine if the financial advisor is the perfect fit for your needs. For instance, you might ask about the investment philosophy of the advisor or how they want to be compensated.

Know If the Financial Advisor is a Fiduciary

Considering all the regulations regarding financial advisors, the secret here is to make sure that you work with the right one. A fiduciary financial advisor will be responsible to you compared to a non-fiduciary one who only tries managing your money and taking a fee whatever their performance might be. Always be smart and ensure that the advice you take comes from someone whose net worth is higher than yours.

Prepare Your Questions about the Service Model and Credentials of Your Financial Advisor

Many people who are not yet working with financial advisors state that they choose to do so because of lack of trust. During your initial meeting with a financial advisor, ask them questions such as whether they are fiduciary or not, how they are compensated, as well as their service fees. Knowing all these factors from the start is crucial to determine if they perfectly match your needs.

Be Honest and Open about Your Finances

The relationship you will have with your financial advisor is like that of marriage. This means that you need to be honest and open with each other since you will be with them for the many years to come. You have to let them aware of your main fears and hopes so that they can give you unbiased and professional advices that can help you reach the best decisions not only for yourself but also for your family.

Look into Your Different Financial Options

Aside from all the obvious materials that have something to do with your income and assets, you might also want to research about the available financial options for you before meeting a financial advisor. It will help you understand better all the concepts that might be discussed during your meeting and help you know the returns and risks that will likely occur. Again, never hesitate to ask questions if there is something that you don’t understand.

Check Your Cash Flow

It would be very helpful to have a good overview of your household expenses and budget before your first meeting with a financial advisor. Whatever your goals might be, cash flow is the start of setting priorities. Identifying where your money goes now can help you determine where it will be coming from in the near future.

Set a Definite Timeline for Achieving Your Goals

Don’t meet a financial advisor with no goal in mind. Your financial advisor wants to know the things you wish to achieve for them to structure a roadmap that they will use to help you get there. Also, they would be interested to know your horizons or how far out you wish to achieve your goals. Even the best advisors won’t be able to work to your advantage if they are not aware of these things.

Think about Your Purpose for Saving

To make the most out of meeting a financial advisor, you have to be ready to talk about your financial plan and why you are saving in the first place as both of these are important for creating a financial plan. Good topics include assets, expected growth, income, savings rate, monthly expenses, and major milestones in life that you are planning for as well as your intended vision and time for your retirement.

Decide When Your Retirement Will Be

A lot of people spend a lot of time planning a week-long vacation instead of planning their retirement. It is not really a good idea. When you meet with your financial advisor, make sure that you already have your retirement plans in place.

A financial advisor can make a big difference not only to your present but most importantly, to your future financial standing.