At times you may need the guidance of a financial advisor. When you do, it’s important to find the best investment advisor near you. To help with this task we’ve put together this post which provides a list of questions to ask and things to look for when searching for an investment professional. We’ll also provide tips about how to find a qualified advisor in your area!
Most financial advisors are located in major financial hubs, like New York City and Chicago, but there are also many specialties that will only be found in rural areas. The best investment advisors will focus on providing the specific services you need. This means you need to get a qualified advisor in your area. Here are some questions to ask:
How many advisors are there in the area?
How many of these are registered with the SEC (Security and Exchange Commission)?
Where do they work? At an office? Home office? Part time? Full time? Freelancer?
Financial professionals charge a fee for their services. Just like with any service you would use, you want to find a good one for your money; meaning an experienced advisor with a reasonable fee structure.
So make sure you get a written estimate of the cost of their services and ask questions like:
How much do they charge? Does it include any commissions or fees? What are those charges? Are there additional costs for investing? Are there any surcharges involved with using their services (i.e. wire transfer fees, telephone usage, etc.
Ask your advisor questions about their experience with investing, tips for new investors and advice for getting started. You don’t want any hidden agendas or unprofessional behavior.
Does your advisor know the ins and outs of investments? Do they have a good grasp on risk management, inflation, asset allocation and portfolio strategies? It’s important to have a relationship with an investment adviser who can keep up with current developments in the markets and methods used by professional financial advisers across the country.
Don’t be afraid to ask your advisor where they’ve worked, if they have a professional history and what their experience level has been. Also check to see if they have mutual fund or brokerage licenses. You want to know if they are working in the industry in which you’re investing and a financial professional should also be able to show you how to do so, right?
A technical degree can be beneficial to an investment advisor, but you don’t have to have a 4-year degree to get started. If your advisor is actively involved in the industry, work with them and their colleagues to learn about their careers and what exactly they do.
- Problem Solving Skills
Your financial advisor should be able to take the information you give them and turn it into a plan that helps you reach your goals. In some cases you may need to speak with multiple financial professionals before you get the advice you need.
It’s not the end of the world if it takes 2 or 3 months to get an appointment with one. However, if you’re buying a house or have other big financial decisions that require time, then it’s important to have an advisor who can be on top of things and help move along. Remember your investment adviser should work for your best interest!