Just about anyone can refer to themselves as a “financial advisor,” as there isn’t much in the way of qualifications required to do so. Therefore, if you are seeking assistance with your finances or your financial planning, it is important you do your due diligence in researching every potential financial advisor in Oklahoma City, OK you come across.
Here are a few of the biggest considerations you’ll want to keep in mind:
- Education and experience: Check to see the kind of education your advisor received and how much experience they have in their field. Are there any unique qualifications they possess that could be of use to you with your specific financial situation? You should especially be on the lookout for financial advisors who have already demonstrated a clear ability to apply the knowledge they have to particular situations to develop effective financial strategies. Any worthwhile financial planner should have their qualifications listed on their website, but you can also check with state registries.
- Certifications: Some financial planners continue to seek out educational opportunities long after they leave school in the form of certification programs. These programs allow an advisor to increase their knowledge base in a particular aspect of personal finance. The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation is considered the highest standard of quality for financial planners, but there are other common designations, including Certified Public Accountant (CPA) for advisors who specialize in taxes and accounting, and Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) for advisors who specialize in investing.
- Fees: Advisors will use one of three fee models: hourly fees (based on time spent with you), fixed or flat fees (based on an agreed-upon flat rate) and assets under management fees (based on percentage of assets managed for you). It’s typically advisable to seek a financial planner who charges a flat rate for their services. The industry as a whole has seen a large shift from commission-based compensation to flat rates and asset-based fees.
- Quality of care: Any registered investment advisory firm is required by law to look out for the best interest of its clients over all else at all times. However, advisors that work at banks or brokerages are not always held to the same standard. They are only required to make recommendations that are suitable for your financial situation, not necessarily the absolute best. Therefore, you should look for advisors with fiduciary status, requiring them to place your interests above all else, including their own profitability.
- Working relationship: Last but not least, you should find an advisor with whom you think you will be able to develop a strong working relationship. They should be easy to get along with, and communication should never feel like a chore—you should be able to send an email and get an answer back within a reasonable amount of time, or pick up the phone and call your advisor when you have questions.
For more tips about finding a financial advisor in Oklahoma City, OK, contact Chrisman & Chrisman Financial Services today.
Categorised in: Financial Advisor
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