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Chapter 5: What Questions Do I Ask a Potential Advisor?

Chapter 4: Verifying CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERS™

What questions should you ask a prospective advisor? What do the other clients say about the advisor? This can be as easy as getting referrals from someone you know, or asking the company where you are employed.

Here are important questions to ask a potential advisor:

  1. What education and certifications have you earned?
  2. Are you a fiduciary?
  3. Are you commission-based or fee-based?
  4. If you are a fee-based advisor, what is your fee schedule?
  5. Do you manage the investments, or is it outsourced to another company?
  6. What is the planning process you take your clients through? (This is a good question because most financial advisors do not do any actual planning. There are firms that have even claimed they do financial planning, but when pressed for details, they admit they do not do the planning per se, rather they “manage money.”)

Do you manage all client accounts with the same plan? (In other words, does the advisor make the same investments, using the same annuity, and the same insurance policy for each person? Or, do they take into account your specific needs and make decisions with your best interest in mind?)

Chapter 6: Comparing Advisors