Before you say “I do” to that special someone, it’s important to get to know that person and have a feel for their values, philosophy, point of view, and generally, your ability to connect to those traits. So when considering your financial future, retirement plans, and income, finding a trusted financial professional couldn’t be more important. A financial advisor you can trust can help guide you through lifecycle events and monetary needs by creating a better financial plan than the one you have or don’t have, for that matter. The end goal, of course, is peace of mind knowing that finding a financial advisor makes the financial planning process a smooth one that will allow you investment and retirement solutions you can rely on. If you choose correctly, it can be a union that will last a very long time.
What is Financial Planning?
Everyone has goals and dreams and, for better or for worse, those dreams often cost money. The financial planning process provides direction towards those goals by not only providing a comprehensive picture of your current finances (and understanding them) but also creating retirement income strategies and a financial planning analysis towards achieving those goals. If done well, it’s a step-by-step approach that helps you be in control of your income, expenses, and retirement finance. By its very definition, it is a plan, or a map, on the road to your financial future.
Why Do I Need a Financial Planner?
If you’re just setting out on the road of retirement and income (or even if you’ve already traveled on it a bit), finding a financial advisor is an important decision. Let’s take a few lifecycle event scenarios:
- Young Family
- Managing Your Own Investments
Any one of these events requires the expertise and financial planning process that a trusted financial professional can provide. For example, if you’ve been working your whole life and have income from different retirement plans, an advisor can conduct a retirement evaluation and create smart strategies around any 401(k), IRAs, or other investment vehicles you may have. The financial planning process will allow you to maximize your retirement and income to meet your post-working goals.
Also, let’s say you are starting your new family. Family financial planning can assist how you grow and direct money towards childcare needs, college, and eventually inheritance. Over time the aggressiveness of investing and asset classes you may choose will vary depending on the lifecycle event and how much time you have to consider market fluctuations.
How to Choose a Financial Advisor You Can Trust?
It’s rare to find an unbiased opinion these days. Depending on what you are searching for – consumer products, services, help from a friend – it really doesn’t matter; getting agenda-less advice is difficult to find. The good news is that financial planning tools and personal evaluations can be found for all your financial needs and in all stages of life. The Institute of Financial Wellness (IFW) provides the first multi-media financial education platform with free access to all the financial information and resources people need to develop customized strategies for every stage of life.
The key for any individual or family considering retirement education, retirement evaluation, or simply a better financial plan is finding unbiased, agenda-less information that takes out the jargon and provides simple fact-based information. The end result allows people to select trusted financial advisors who are committed to the same unbiased approach when addressing all aspects of financial well-being. IFW’s Financial Professional Network offers that peace of mind with the knowledge that each professional has been vetted and maintains state certifications along with possessing respect, professionalism, independence, have undergone background checks, and a basic understanding of the economic trends serving you – the client.
We’ve done a lot of the due diligence necessary to provide you with a network that you can trust and feel secure will provide you with the unbiased solutions you need. However, it is important to do your own vetting and understand what you need from a trusted financial planner before you make the final decision. Some things to consider in the process of choosing the right financial advisor include:
- Do you get along with them?
- Do they work alone or part of a larger firm?
- Have you reviewed their record?
- What licenses or accreditation do they have?
- Are you comfortable with how they are compensated?
- Can they provide references?
- Are they independent or beholden to one company that may restrict investment offerings?
Once you’ve narrowed down the specific part of your life that you need financial assistance with you will be better equipped to sit down with your advisor to explain your particular money management or wealth needs. Your needs may be simple, and therefore you need only one advisor, or you may have complex needs in which case you may want to talk to specialists about retirement, debt, insurance, family planning, and estate planning, for example.
Making the final choice and ensuring you have the right advisor(s) for the job is not unlike a marriage. Talk it out, with as much detail as possible, before you make the final decision. Know whom you are hiring and what they believe. The IFW, with its Financial Professional Network, can help make that match for you, along with unbiased and jargon-free education to round out how you can best meet your future goals. Taking that final plunge should be a rewarding experience that lasts for years to come.
Learn More About IFW’s Retirement Planning Education Services
The IFW provides valuable financial education, resources, and services that help people live their best life.
Please remember, be mindful of the messenger that positions certain products or services as “always” bad or “always” perfect. The fact of the matter is there are no “bad products” or “perfect products”. The right product is the one that aligns with your goals and objectives.
The Institute of Financial Wellness believes when it comes to financial decisions; never say “Never” never say “Always”…It Depends.