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  • Michael DiBartolomeo

Who Can I Ask for Financial Advice?

Updated: Feb 24, 2022

Learning about wealth-management and retirement options is significant when preparing for the future. However, let's face it: not everyone has the time to be a financial guru. Some might consider hiring a financial consultant in Pittsburgh if they prefer having a simple strategy that they can follow without having to continually worry about changes in the law, financial products, or the economy.

What Is a Financial Advisor?

What Is a Financial Advisor?

Financial advisors, also referred to as financial planners, are experts who advise their clients on wealth management and self-finance decisions. They can assist clients with anything from setting out a comprehensive retirement savings plan with a schedule attached to simply answering a question about life insurance, depending on their field of expertise.

Here's a quick rundown of some of the services a financial advisor can provide:

  • Meet with a client to discuss their financial condition and objectives.

  • Create a thorough plan that addresses the client’s primary financial concerns, such as retirement, insurance, education planning, and avoiding estate taxes.

  • As unforeseen financial challenges happen in life, offer advice.

  • Set up investment accounts for a client and invest their money.

  • Find the right financial vehicles for a client, such as insurance or a mortgage.

There are numerous titles and industry credentials available for financial advisors, including certified financial planner (CFP), chartered financial consultant (ChFC), and chartered financial analyst (CFA). One of the most well-known of these credentials is that of a certified financial planner (CFP). In the United States, the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards (CFP Board) issues this designation. Qualifying exams and continued education are required by the CFB Board for people who hold this certification.

When to Ask for Financial Advice

Does someone really need a financial advisor with all of the knowledge accessible in books, the internet, and the plethora of sites devoted to personal finance?

Now, how much spare time do most people currently have? In addition, consider the following:

  • Do they have a good understanding of investments?

  • Do they enjoy exploring certain assets and reading about wealth management and financial topics?

  • Do they know how to work with financial instruments?

  • Do they have the time to keep track of their investments, review them, and make changes to their portfolio regularly?

  • Is it worth paying a financial advisor 1% or what is a reasonable percentage to pay a financial advisor?

Doing your own research is an option, but to do it well, a person needs to devote a significant amount of time to stay up to date on all the changes in investment and insurance legislation. Changes in tax rules or other legislation may have an impact on their financial situation.

Additionally, changes in a person’s brokerage firm's mutual fund offerings can also have a significant influence on their financial situation: One of their funds may be closing, and they may need to determine where to place their money. They also need to keep up with popular financial products as well as the launch of new ones.

Types of Financial Advisors

Financial advisors are divided into two categories:

IFAs (independent financial advisors) provide unbiased advice on a wide range of financial products from a variety of companies.

Restricted advisors only provide advice on a specific set of items. They may specialize in a single topic, such as pensions, or they may exclusively provide advice on items from a select few companies.

It's usually advisable to seek independent financial guidance in order to compare the greatest range of options and products.

Things to Do During a First Meeting with an Advisor

Here are some suggestions on what a client should do during their first visit with a financial advisor:

  • Ensure the advisor they’re meeting with is qualified to provide them with the information they require.

  • Take notes so that they have a clear record of what was said during the meeting.

  • Ask lots of questions to ensure they understand everything.

  • Take time to consider any options or compare products with another advisor.

  • Clients don't have to sign up for anything right away, but they should be prepared to honestly answer questions.

  • A financial advisor can ask a client several personal questions about their financial goals and personal situation in order to recommend the best products for them.

  • The client should make sure that their personal information is kept private and not exploited for marketing reasons.

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