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When seeking a high value advisor, there are several things to take into consideration. The following eight attributes will help you find someone who stands out among the crowd.
Financial Advisors should demonstrate a strong working knowledge of not only design, features and options of the products they recommend but of the financial planning principals and effects the products are addressing. They should be prepared to offer expert guidance on your financial plan and provide education so the client fully understands their complete financial picture.
High Value Advisors deliver their services with honesty and integrity. Some advisors push a specific product or service because of their affiliations or licensing. Look for an advisor who instead focuses on your individual specific needs and offers solutions that are specific to your needs.
High Value Advisors offer quick, dependable service you can count on. They consistently demonstrate their commitment to client service by returning phone calls and emails promptly, making themselves available for in-person meetings and responding with solutions when needed.
Communication is key when working toward a bright financial future. Advisors shoud have the ability to explain complex concepts in a simple and easy-to-understand way. They should have the heart of a teacher.
Your financial advisor should be personable and easy to work with. This helps make the process more efficient and enjoyable for everyone involved.
Highly Valued Advisors spend more time listening than they do talking. They skillfully gather information and insight about the client’s financial picture, objectives, and motivations to tailor a plan that meets the client’s individual needs
Clients need an Advisor who will serve them in a proactive way. This translates to communicating activities performed on the client’s behalf, reviewing the clients Plan periodically, making adjustments or changes as needed, noting compliance issues and keeping the client involved in the process. Engaging proactively not only helps the advisor serve the client’s ongoing Plan needs but it also demonstrates a level of commitment and personalized attention that can truly set the advisor apart.
There are more than 100 certifications and designations for financial planners. Some of them are good and demonstrate the advisor's commitment to learning and knowledge. They have rigorous requirements, require continued education and reporting and require testing of knowledge. Some do not meet necessary requirements to demonstrate these things. Designations with the most rigorous requirements and Certified Public Accountant/Personal Financial Specialist (CPA/PFS), Certified Financial Planner (CFP) and Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA). These designations reassure the public of an advisor’s level of expertise. Clients should look for designations and when present inquire about the particular designation and what level of commitment and knowledge it demonstrates.