A financial advisor is supposed to help you maximize your earnings. After all, they are experts in the field of finance. But some also take more of your money than they should. Below are five questions you should ask your advisor.
Stocks, bonds, 401ks…there are a lot of ways to invest your money. A financial advisor can help, but make sure you’re asking the right questions! The first: “are you a fiduciary?” This means the advisor is sworn to act in the client’s best interest, and you are the client. Many experts recommend only working with fiduciaries – instead of just brokers. Question two: “how do you make your money?” Most legit advisors will charge a simple management fee based on your total investment. This fee is typically between 1 percent and 1.5 percent of assets under management. Question three: “do you invest the same way you advise me to?” The answer to this should be “yes!” Another question to ask: “how can you help with taxes?” A good advisor will help you optimize your investments for tax purposes. Finally, ask: “what other services can you provide?” Sometimes advisors will offer advice on assets they don’t manage, such as a 401k plan, charitable giving, or college planning, free of charge. See what your expert includes, it could translate to big savings down the road.
Another good question: “how many clients do you have?” This will give you a rough idea of what’s average. A typical financial advisor served 156 households in 2013.
Contributors to this news report include: Julie Marks, Producer; Katie Campbell, Assistant Producer; Roque Correa, Videographer and Editor.