As a CFP® who specializes in client advocacy, I have found that there is sometimes a disconnect between my industry and clients needs. Many of my new clients come to me after becoming disenfranchised with another advisor. Here are some questions to ask if you are considering shopping for a new financial professional:
-Is your income fee-based or commission-based?
-What designations do you have? (I suggest looking for a Certified Financial Planner or CFP®)
-Are you tied to any sales goals with specific products?
-Are you working with any vendors who require you to sell a minimum number of their products or your contract with them will end soon? (Do you have any quotas to reach?)
-What are your limitations, if any, in selling specific product lines due to your current licensing? (Someone who is fully licensed has a Series 7 and Series 66 to be fee-based.)
-Do you charge an annual planning fee outside of compensation from products? If you don’t why not?
-If you’re talking to an independent planner: If something were to happen to you, who will take care of me?
-If you’re talking to someone associated with a firm: What happens if you leave the business, by choice, disability or death? Who would then be managing my money?