Managing your own money isn’t easy. From planning for retirement to navigating complicated tax implications, there are many decisions with which you will be faced. That’s where a financial advisor comes in to help. When choosing who to work with, you should have an understanding of exactly what to expect and what services you will be receiving. There is a variance amongst what each advisor provides, so to help guide you in the process, we put together a list of the recommended services and features that you should prioritize in your search.
1. Financial Plan & Investment Review
With the many changes that are likely to take place in your life over the course of a year, it is important to evaluate your financial position annually. As part of this annual review you can expect to review and update estate plans, documents and data while also analyzing overall performance. Included with your review are recommendations from attorneys, accountants and other financial planners.
2. Client Appreciation Event
When advisors host events for their clients, it’s a great sign that they’re looking to build stronger relationships and know their clients better. The more your advisor knows you, the better they’ll be able to plan investments to work toward your goals.
3. “Accountant-Ready” Tax Packages
Your financial provider will compile a summary and details of gains or losses during the year. Included in these packages is the completion of tax documents such as 1099’s, 550’s and K1’s. This can reduce your annual tax preparation workload.
4. Performance Review
An effective way for financial advisors to keep you up-to-date with portfolio and global market changes is through quarterly reviews. This is your opportunity to receive detailed updates and make changes based on your situation. Look for your advisor to have this conversation one on one on a quarterly basis.
5. New Opportunities Discussion
Whether it be changes in market conditions, the political environment or your personal circumstances, be sure to work with an advisor who discusses new opportunities on a quarterly basis. In doing so, it opens the door to update your portfolio and be both proactive and reactive as necessary.
Your advisor should be touching base with you on a monthly basis, in non-review months. That way you’ll have constant communication with your advisor and feel welcome to address any changes before or after scheduled reviews.
7. Group Communication
Beyond individual check-ins, look for your advisor to be in communication with his or her clients via financial newsletters or executive summary emails. This is a sign that your advisor has his or her finger firmly on the pulse with regard to the current investment environment and marketplace.
8. Access to Specialists
What sets financial advisors apart from others is their access to specialists such as an employee benefits consultant, long-term care consultant, mortgage banker, estate planning attorney, CPA and legal counsel. Having more comprehensive recommendations can not only benefit your portfolio but can provide ease with any major purchases you make.
9. Capital Gains Tax Adjustments
We encourage you to seek a financial advisor who seeks to reduce your capital gains taxes as an added benefit of using their services. By realizing necessary losses at the end of each year within your portfolio and from other investments, they may be able to offset any realized gains. In doing so, they can ensure all of your investments are working in tandem.
At Trost Financial Consulting, we’re pleased to provide all of the above services to each of our clients. We believe in creating a more personal experience alongside the financial services we provide. If you’re looking for a financial advisor, we invite you to reach out.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.
All investing involves risk including loss of principal. No strategy assures success or protects against loss.
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