Rapid advancements in technology and a proliferation of websites, apps, and even blogs such as this one has helped level the financial playing field, giving individuals the means to make better decisions and achieve their goals without always needing to consult an advisor.
Still, despite the abundance of available tools and information, not everyone is equipped to take charge of their own financial picture, filling their free time with seeking out investment opportunities while also making the day-to-day decisions that can have a big impact on their future financial outlook.
For most people, there’s no substitute for the input and assistance provided by a trustworthy, reputable financial advisor. While many think otherwise, you don’t need huge wealth to benefit from the services of a financial advisor, and the costs of working with one are always lower than the risks of a DIY-approach that doesn’t pan out.
If you’re trying to decide whether an advisor is right for you, here are some tell-tale signs that can help make up your mind about choosing professional advice for your financial problems and concerns.
You’re not certain you’re on a path to a comfortable retirement
There are no do-overs in retirement planning. It’s got to be done right the first time. No one dreams of scrambling to make ends meet in their ‘Golden Years,’ or worrying about whether they’ll have enough to last until the end of their life.
If you can’t say for sure that you’re confident about being on a path to enjoying a comfortable, secure existence in retirement, don’t wait to discover how your story ends without asking a financial advisor for help. Even if you don’t have any interest or intentions of becoming an investment aficionado, it’s vital to get a professional assessment of your future outlook. If the picture looks rosy, congratulations. If it’s hazy and unclear, you need someone to help you find your way to a future of financial security.
It’s important to note that reaching retirement is only half the battle. Among other things, a successful retirement plan will incorporate strategies to mitigate tax implications, and will adjust your investment mix over time to minimize risk while still maintaining some income. An experienced financial advisor can help turn that problem from a head-scratcher into a simple slam dunk.
You and your partner don’t see eye-to-eye about finances
If money matters are a source of disagreement between you and your spouse, a third-party can help relieve some of that financial-induced stress and tension. Needless to say, each partner must feel comfortable with the choice of independent voice, and the chosen advisor must be able to help build bridges, finding reasonable common ground between potentially different ideas and strategies. That way, both parties work together as a team to achieve their financial goals, instead of fighting about the best way to get there.
You’re about to experience a major life event
Is marriage or engagement on the cards for you? Perhaps you are on the verge of buying property or starting a family. Maybe you’re getting a big raise or selling a business you helped build. Whatever big things are going on in your life, they’re likely to have an impact on your financial needs, and your overall financial situation. At times such as these, it can be helpful, and sometimes reassuring, to have a trusted financial advisor to lean on for suggestions, information, and experienced advice.
You don’t have the time, or the will, to do it yourself
The idea of managing your own portfolio might sound empowering, even inspiring, but the reality is that it requires an enormous amount of time and effort, more than most of us have in our busy lives. Even if you’re keen on investing and don’t mind spending free time researching opportunities, remember that you may not always be asking the right questions. In fact, you could even be missing out on something important or valuable simply because of ignorance. Be honest about your limitations when it comes to personal financial planning, and don’t run the risk of overlooking something important.