3 Reasons To Work With A Financial Advisor

Money can be complicated. Especially when you don’t have a lot of experience managing money outside of paying bills and putting some aside in a savings and/or checking account.

How do you make sure you save enough for retirement? How should you plan for buying large ticket items like a house or car?

Whether you are well versed in money management or not, a financial advisor can help with figuring all of those things out. That’s why I have one.

In this blog post, I’m going to share what a financial planner is, what is the general consensus around the benefits of working with one, and my own personal experience. I’m not a financial professional and am just sharing my own personal experience, so make sure to do your own research.
 
Great reasons to work with a Financial Advisor | A Relaxed Gal
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What is a financial advisor?

A financial advisor is a generic term that is basically used with anyone who works with people on their financial picture. This includes Certified Public Accountants (CPA), Registered Investment Advisors (RIA), and Certified Financial Planner (CFP), and a few others. Depending on where you are in your financial journey will determine which one, or ones, make the most sense for you to work with.

In this particular article, I’m going to be focusing on the CFP (Certified Financial Planner) type of financial advisor as it’s the one I have the most experience with. Also, CFPs are less niche-focused because they typically do more than just managing investments. They can provide holistic advice on your money and finances. Because they look at more than investments. They take into account your savings, insurance, and taxes as well as your financial goals. CFPs are certified by passing an exam and they also have to agree to a code of ethics.


Why work with a financial advisor

Everyone will have different reasons for wanting to work with a financial advisor but in all of the conversations I’ve had with friends and family and from my own experience it seems to come down to three key reasons

1. You don’t know where to begin

If you don’t feel you have a good or comfortable understanding of how to invest or save it can be helpful to have someone who does have a great understanding and can help guide you to give you more confidence when it comes to managing your money.

2. You want to get serious about your finances

Like me, you may have been investing and saving but aren’t sure where you stand in regards to achieving your long-term financial goals. A financial advisor can help provide some clarity and additional direction.

3. Your finances are getting more complicated

Making more money, having more assets, growing your family, you name it can add another layer of complication to your finances to the point where you can’t or don’t want to manage it all yourself. Working with a financial advisor can help make it less complicated and stressful.


How to find a financial advisor

One of the best and probably easiest ways is to ask family and friends if they work with one or have someone they would recommend.

Other ways to find a financial advisor to work with are

What to look for in a financial advisor

There is no one size fits all when it comes to this but there are a few standard things to look out for

How are they paid - You’ll want to know this as it helps you determine how much you’ll be paying them and can weigh whether the cost is worth it based on where you are with your finances

How they explain things - Because you aren’t a financial expert you’ll want someone who can explain things in a simple way without making you feel like you’re bothering them or asking dumb questions. It’s even better if they ask you what your comfort and expert level is when it comes to investments and money.

Easily accessible - You should find out how and when you can contact your financial advisor. I prefer having one that I can reach out to whenever I want (within reason of course). I can set up a call with my advisor when I need to talk to her or I can reach her via email and get a quick response.

Puts your goals first - A financial advisor is working for you so you should feel like your financial goals are being listened to and being worked on. A good financial advisor won’t push certain investments and products that don’t fit with your goals.


What I like about working with a financial advisor

As I previously mentioned I’ve been working with a financial advisor for several years now and I wish I had started working with one earlier.

I had worked with a financial advisor previously but he didn’t take into account or ask about my larger financial goals outside of retirement. So while I don’t feel like that put me behind it didn’t help me get ahead by as much as I would have liked.

Since I’ve been working with my new financial advisor I’ve had not just a better view of my finances but a better understanding. This is because my planner and I work together on my financial plan. She examines all of the inputs and provides me with an overview of my current status and some recommendations. We then go through the recommendations together and she’s great at explaining what everything means so I can decide how I want to proceed.

I can also go to her with questions I may have about my financial plan, new investment opportunities, or articles I recently read with tips and advice to see if they would make sense for me.

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