The Different Types of Advisors

Gurus’ Advice: Be Skeptical

Many financial celebrities, like Dave Ramsey, hand out advice for an audience of millions that rarely applies to a real person. Instead of following their one-size-fits-all rules, you should make decisions based on your unique situation.

I’m not saying you should disregard what Dave or any of the other financial gurus out there has to say. What I am saying is that we need to take their advice with a grain of salt.

4 Uses of an Advisor

What is the value of a financial advisor? The personal touch. Here are four stories of how flesh-and-blood advisors you meet in person (that’s opposed to a robo-advisor, where your contact is digital or over a phone line) benefited their clients.

These good advisors helped clients to overcome emotionally based decisions, stop them from making mistakes, figure out whether to make a big purchase and decipher arcane retirement plans. We’ll have separate articles throughout the summer describing in greater detail how they helped their clients.

Advisors: Trust but Verify

You can never be too careful with the major matters of life – especially your financial future. Take a lesson in caution from a former U.S. president and the heavily armed guards at the gates of a military facility. Trust but verify your financial advisor’s bona fides.

I have the honor to provide financial counseling to service members, going to military installations to talk to soldiers and their families regarding financial issues such as buying a home, saving for retirement, reducing debt or creating a budget.

What an Advisor Should Ask

A common question that we get from people after telling them that we own our own financial planning firm is: What do you ask clients at the first meeting?

Robo-Advisors: the Downside

Robo-advisors are getting lots of misplaced accolades lately as the noble purveyors of inexpensive financial advice for the average person. And traditional advisors, the thinking goes, supposedly ignore that average person. Nonsense.

Advising Your Future Self

How do you encourage yourself to do something that you swear today you’re going to do? Easy: Send yourself an email today for delivery to you in the future.

“Send your future self some words of inspiration. Or maybe a swift kick in the pants,” reads the introduction on futureme.org, where you write and store emails to yourself for eventual, scheduled delivery.

You can write to yourself on any subject, of course – personal, professional, familial. How can you use this tool to commit yourself to a financial or savings plan?

How to Manage Your Wealth

Some think of advisors as purely investment focused. But for many people your advisor should be a wealth manager – someone who can give you guidance on both financial planning and investment issues ranging from topics like estate planning to taxes to insurance to investments.

Weighing an Advisor’s Biases

Is your financial advisor biased? To find out, just check two things: Is the advisor human? Is he or she breathing? If so, the advisor is biased. You need to assess an advisor’s biases in evaluating the person’s advice.

Misdeeds of Rogue Advisors

What is the worst thing rogue advisors can do to you? Selling you too-risky investments? Milking your account for their own use? Pushing inferior house-brand products? Well, the most insidious is doing nothing and collecting a fat fee for the privilege.

6 Ways to Find an Advisor

The professional you pick to manage your assets and advise you on key financial decisions affects your retirement and other major financial goals more, maybe, than even you. Make the right choice.

When trying to find a financial advisor, you may ask your attorney or accountant for a referral. Makes sense, as you trust their advice. Just as important, these professionals cross-pollinate with the advisors of many clients (like Glassman Wealth Services), so often they know a variety of financial planners and who might fit best with you.

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