How to Become
If you’re looking for a financial adviser, you’re taking a great step, but it’s important to make the right choice. Your financial adviser will play a major role in your financial decisions, so you need to be sure that your adviser is trustworthy. Ask these questions.
Who do you work for?
Many financial advisers work for the same institutions that make and sell the financial products they are offering. In some situations, advisers get commissions and bonuses for every product they sell.
These arrangements are very common in the finance industry, and it works out for all parties most of the time. There is still a conflict of interest. If your financial adviser has an incentive to sell you one product over another, it’s important for you to understand that up front.
What is your background?
Although most financial advisers are very knowledgeable, anyone can legally give himself this misunderstood title. To make sure that your financial adviser is trustworthy, ask them about the work experience, professional certifications, and education they have.
There are different credentials for different financial specialties, so do some research on the industry standards for the type of financial adviser you need. The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) credential requires education, passing a lengthy exam, and years of work experience, and it is highly regarded in the financial industry.
What will you do for me?
There is a misconception that a financial adviser is a person who will help you map out your entire financial future. There are financial advisers who do this but avoid making assumptions.
Other advisers only help clients with one aspect of their financial life, such as choosing a retirement savings account. Get a clear understanding of what your financial adviser is qualified to do and where his or her interests lie.