Is it time to find a new financial advisor?
Do your homework
When looking for a new advisor, ask for referrals and follow up with online research. FINRA’s BrokerCheck® and our advisor locator tool are good places to start. Once you have a few candidates, conduct some in-person interviews. Ask about their investment philosophy and the types of clients whose money they manage. Some may specialize in single parents, for instance, or retirees.
Professional certifications and designations may mean nothing to you, but look into them to find out if they require continuing education. Find out how long they’ve been working in this field. Ask if the advisor is a fiduciary – meaning bound to make decisions in your best interests.
Match your style
Do you like to communicate in person? By phone, text or email? Is a yearly meeting enough, or do you prefer to check in monthly? Make sure your advisor is willing and able to touch base in ways that best meet your needs.
Know the costs
Be sure to understand the cost of the advice, and what you’re getting for your money. Ask if your advisor earns a commission, is paid an hourly rate or takes an annual percentage of investment assets (and how much).
Get on the same page
How would your advisor handle market fluctuations? Do they generally favor riskier or more conservative investments? Be sure your advisor has a clear understanding of what’s happening in your life, and you have a clear read on their financial philosophy. Being in sync will help give you peace of mind so you can trust that your advisor is focused on your financial goals.
Ask about transitional help
There may be some paperwork involved when you leave one financial advisor for another, so find out if your new advisor can make it easier. These days, the transition can be as simple as requesting electronic transfers of your accounts. Be sure to review any contract you signed with your current advisor about terminating the relationship. You may have to put it in writing. If you own investments exclusive to your current advisor’s firm, you may need to cash them out (and potentially owe taxes).
Your work with an advisor may adjust as financial, career and life goals change over time. You need to find someone you trust and feel comfortable with. It’s both a personal and financial decision, so take some time to consider the right move.
Learn more about The Benefits of Working With A Financial Advisor.
One of the world's largest investment managers, we've helped investors succeed by remaining true to our values and approach. We believe in a distinctive way of managing money, an emphasis on research, a long-term view and the recognition of the power of relationships.
Capital Group offers a variety of investment options to help you pursue your objectives — including American Funds, one of the largest mutual fund families in the U.S.
Your financial advisor can tell you more about American Funds. Or, you can purchase our funds yourself through an online broker.
If you have worked with a professional advisor in the past, you may have some sense of what you’re looking for. These questions can help you sort out some of the important details.
What are the steps necessary to move my account to, or from, your firm?
What types of services do you offer, and how would you incorporate them into my existing plan?
How do you prefer to communicate with clients?
How are you paid for your services?
Can you provide names of other clients like me as references?
A financial advisor can work with you to define your goals and create a plan to help make them a reality. From establishing a budget to selecting investments to riding out market shifts, an advisor can help you make decisions based on your specific situation.
Our locator tool can help you find professionals in your area.
Check the background of these investment professionals on FINRA’s BrokerCheck.
Investments are not FDIC-insured, nor are they deposits of or guaranteed by a bank or any other entity, so they may lose value.
Investors should carefully consider investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. This and other important information is contained in the fund prospectuses and summary prospectuses, which can be obtained from a financial professional and should be read carefully before investing.
This content, developed by Capital Group, home of American Funds, should not be used as a primary basis for investment decisions and is not intended to serve as impartial investment or fiduciary advice.
American Funds Distributors, Inc., member FINRA.
Statements attributed to an individual represent the opinions of that individual as of the date published and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Capital Group or its affiliates. This information is intended to highlight issues and should not be considered advice, an endorsement or a recommendation.
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