New York City is the financial hub of the nation. It’s home to the New York Stock Exchange, Wall Street, the New York Mercantile Exchange, NASDAQ, the New York Board of Trade and the American Stock Exchange. For those who know little about financial planning, it can be daunting to find a financial planner in New York City. The cost of living in New York City is one of the highest in the nation, which means that a large portion of residents’ salaries are supporting their lifestyles. This means there are little funds left over for saving or investing. It’s a myth that you need to be rich to need a financial advisor. A financial advisor can help maximize even a small savings and turn it into a larger investment.
Financial advisors are not all the same. Some financial advisors act as asset managers where they are actively investing your money and making investment recommendations. Other paid advisors help with overall financial planning including creating a budget, defining goals, and monitoring goals. Some advisors serve both functions.
Many financial advisors now have in-house specialties such as advisors who only work with certain professions, like doctors. Others work strictly with clients who have children with special needs or those who are doing estate planning. Individuals who are looking for a personal financial advisor should seek out a financial advisor who does the type of work that they need and specialize in an area that prompted them to seek financial assistance. An in-person interview will often solidify your decision about working with the advisor, one way or another.
Before attending your first appointment with the financial advisor of your choice, you’ll want to think through some of your financial needs and problems. Jot down your financial goals, calculate your net worth, make a list of debts, and decide how much you want to keep in an emergency fund.
It’s no surprise that New York City has more than its fair share of financial advisors and planners. Ask family and friends for recommendations and do some research on your own. Here’s a short list of resources where you can find out about certifications, designations, and licenses, as well as any regulatory actions or complaints:
Not all brokers and advisors sell investments on commission. The ones that do may be swayed to invest your money in stocks and bonds that yield the highest commissions, so consumers who engage with advisors who get paid on commission can never be certain if the advisor is putting their needs first before their own.
For consumers who want to make sure that advisors are working hard to make sure their money grows, fee-only planners are a good choice. This type of commission will be charged either on a per-hour basis or a percentage of total annual assets. Advisors that also sell insurance products may work on a fee and commission basis.
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