July 19, 2018
1) They adopt a proactive strategy
Communication is key, good financial advisers will keep you updated on current financial opportunities and potential problems. Advisers should always help you understand complicated financial concepts by explaining them to you in a way that makes them easy to understand. Beware of advisers that can’t be bothered to spend their time explaining their recommendations or advisers that withhold information. They are unworthy of your valuable time and money.
2) They have a positive reputation
Finding the right financial adviser isn’t very easy. If a family member or friend recommends a financial adviser, this could be a great place to start your research. The reputation and background of the adviser’s company should be carefully considered. Does the company have a proven record for success? Is the company local? Like most things in life, if they seem too good to be true, they generally are.
3) They convey confidence and trust
You should have trust and confidence in the recommendations given by your financial adviser. Discussions with your adviser that leave you feeling fearful, stressed or nervous are a massive red flag. Go with your instincts and put an end to the relationship.
4) They don’t panic
For your financial success, finding a patient and calm adviser is key. Your planner should always keep what is best for you in mind and evaluate the relevant options. However, they should do this without straying from a well calculated strategic plan. Another major red flag is if your adviser is constantly recommending the latest popular stock pick with urgency. This is a sign that they may not have what’s best for you in mind. Investment that leads to long-term growth should not have any sense of urgency attached.
5) They view your finances with a holistic attitude
The types of asset classes you choose to invest in or your income level should not be the basis for the quality of your financial advice. Financial advisers that place great emphasis on learning about your financial situation and investigating your banking, credit, investment and insurance needs, are exactly who you should be looking for. In order for a financial adviser to develop a worthwhile and accurate strategy, they should understand your life goals, spending habits and debt obligations.
6) They have plenty of experience as a financial professional
Industry-recognised certification or significant experience in the financial services industry are general indicators of a legitimate financial adviser. The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certificate, awarded in Australia by the Financial Planning Association of Australia, is highly regarded. In order to hold the certification, CFP professionals must completed 30 hours of ongoing education each year and meet certain standards for ethics and experience to maintain the accreditation. There are also a few other certifications available to financial professionals in Australia. Checking you advisers experience and credentials is important. Although it can seem like an unwanted chore, it’s your best chance at making sure you’re dealing with a reputable adviser.
7) They have a clear strategy
You should never try to shape your financial future without a solid direction. Your adviser should be ready to take any life circumstance changes into consideration and help you amend your financial plan.
8) They have a support team
An adviser with a strong team behind them will ensure your financial needs are not only met but exceeded. Your specific needs should be cared for by your financial planner who should have access to a variety of experts. Good advice on wealth management, debt management objectives, insurance and specialised investment will come from a good financial planner with a professional support team.
9) They put your best interests first
A good professional adviser will shape your plan to meet your goals. Making a large commission or meeting quota by pushing products on you is another red flag. Your adviser shouldn’t be restricted to proprietary solutions their company sells, they should have access to a wide range of product and service options.
10) They work with you
Regular meetings with you – and your significant others – are a good sign of a financial adviser that genuinely cares for your needs. Having one meeting to meet with an adviser and develop a plan before reverting to statements in the mail is a red flag. Financial advisers should maintain regular contact with you through every year of the relationship.
If you’re looking for a good financial adviser, Sedley Koschel Financial Group is happy to help.
This post was written by Erin Semmler