There will be a time in your life when you will need to sit down with a Certified Financial Planner and wealth advisor to discuss your financial situation. Circumstances where this may arise include planning for the education of your children, the transfer of wealth from one generation to another, and paying for care as you and your partner ages while preserving the wealth you have accumulated. Whatever your need to plan for the management of your wealth, understanding what a financial advisor does and the services they provide is important in order to obtain the peace of mind about your financial future.
What is a Financial Advisor?
A financial advisor is your financial quarterback, working on your behalf to navigate the world of finance and investment in order to provide you with advice as to how to meet your financial goals and objectives. Financial advisors act as a fiduciary on behalf of their client’s interests, helping them meet their goals and make their money work for them as oppose to their clients working for their money.
When seeking a financial advisor, clients are looking for individuals who are experienced, both through education, training and years of practice. A good financial advisor adheres to a strict code of ethics, which demands service to the interests of their clients over personal profits.
The Importance of Financial Advisory Services
Financial advisory services are as important today as they have ever been in the past. According to a study conducted by the Center for Wealth and Philanthropy at Boston University, an estimated $60 trillion in wealth will be passed to younger generations in the United States over a period of the next 55 years. This unprecedented amount of wealth transfer, which will pass from Baby Boomers to Gen-Xers and millennials, will require the services of trained and experienced professionals who understand how to properly manage, grow and preserve wealth.
Consider the myriad of tax law changes, sophisticated and complex financial instruments and investment vehicles and you will conclude that decisions regarding the management of your wealth should be made in consultation with an expert in financial matters. Just like you would not consider surgical options for yourself without first consulting with a trained physician, you should not consider making important decisions that will impact your financial future without consulting with a qualified and well-trained financial advisor.
What Should You Consider When Consulting with a Financial Advisor?
Given the amount of wealth that will pass between generations and the role financial advisors play in shepherding their clients through the word of financial planning and investing it is important to find a trusted professional to discuss your needs. Ask any prospective advisor for their qualifications, where they attended school and any professional qualifications they may have such as Certified Financial Planner or accredited estate planner. Ask questions about the company they represent, how long they have been in the business of meeting their client’s needs and what their philosophy is toward wealth and money management. The more questions you ask, the better you will feel about working with a financial advisor and together charting a course toward financial independence and freedom.