Do your new year’s resolutions include getting your financial plan in order? Look not only at where your money is going, but who is helping you decide how it gets there. If your new year means you need a new approach, look at finding a new advisor. Here are some reasons to consider making a change.
You don’t have one
Is your financial planner the first person to come to the front desk at your local bank branch or whoever answers the telephone banking line? A financial planner will help give you perspective and look at Even long -term planning rather than what mutual fund or ETF is popular. While you may feel you are doing all right on your own, there may be issues you are not thinking of, especially when in or approaching retirement.
It is no longer a good fit
Over time your needs have changed and your relationship with your advisor may have changed too. The person who helped you with your first home, may not be the person to help you with your plans for downsizing and estate planning. After any major life event or large purchase such, as a home or vacation property, it is a good idea to review your financial plan. If you are looking at investments or products your advisor does not deal with often, a new stage in life may require a new advisor.
It’s been years since…
Can’t remember the last time you actually sat down with, or spoke to, your advisor? In the digital age of web meetings and email correspondence, there is no reason you should not be able to get in touch with your advisor when you need to. If you find that your calls or emails repeatedly go unanswered, or that your advisor never contacts you to update your plan and review your current situation, it may be time to find someone who can give you more attention.
You feel like your advisor does not listen to you
You are going to a financial advisor because you would like some guidance or assistance. That does not mean that you are not entitled to your opinions. Your advisor’s recommendations should reflect your needs, goals and tolerance for risk. Do not stick with an advisor who you feel is bullying you into making decisions you don’t agree with.
Your advisor won’t tell you how he or she gets paid
Whether advisors are working on a yearly rate, fee for service, or on commission, you should be able to get a clear answer about how they are paid and who is paying them. You should also know with all mutual funds and similar investments if there are any options regarding management fees, commissions and how they are paid.