Know who you are working with

Mary Schulz |

I am a very social person by nature. Those who know me know how much I love a good conversation. One such conversation I had this morning was with a friend and his reluctance to continue working with his financial advisor. I asked what his reservations were and he said for one, he does not understand the types of accounts he is in, let alone the commission structure or fees he is paying. When he asks how the money is going to be invested, he gets a run around answer of well you know, I am going to put it here or there which immediate lost the confidence of my friend. He also knows this individual needs a service from him and his advisor tells him he can't afford it. That triggered a thought, let's visit www.FINRA.ORG and check this individual out. What we found was surprising to my friend. He had two very recent disclosures for Debt Settlements. Would you want someone managing your money who can't manage their own money? Very doubtful.

It is a good idea to check out anyone you are considering working with especially considering this is your livelihood. FINRA.ORG is a great place to start. For one, you will find out if they are legitimate. What do I mean? Are they really a financial advisor and do they have a fiduciary responsibility to do what is in your bests interests at all times. Some people are very misleading on their business cards and it may say "representative" or "associate." But what does that really mean? Well, if they have a Series 6 or Series 7 which is required to buy and sell securities, they will show up on FINRA.ORG. If they do not have a securities license, they will not show up there. The next place to look is by searching the NAIC for their insurance license: This will help you determine their professional licenses and allow you to ask follow up questions to ensure they are the right fit for you. Do you want an insurance agent managing your retirement account? Probably not. While insurance is an important part of the retirement income plan, most financial advisors are also insurance licensed so they understand where it will fit the best within your plan.

Work with someone who does not have a one size fits all approach and listens to your goals and concerns. Avoid the transactional advisors and bad actors who have no business misrepresenting those of us who genuinely care about our clients. What differentiates the advisor is their willingness to listen, teach and see you through the finish line.

For a one hour complimentary consultation, please contact Mary at 520-468-7587 

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual