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Raleigh Financial Advisors

Financial advisors in Raleigh are easier to find than you may think, but do you need one? If you are trying to reach your financial goals, especially goals for retirement and the 20 to 30 years after you retire, then a certified financial planner (CFP) can help you. A CFP will review your finances and offer guidance regarding paying too much in investment fees, paying too much in taxes, and not saving enough money for retirement.

The financial advisor will assess your risk and make suggestions to diversify your portfolio and potentially increase your net worth. Before choosing a planner from the dozens in the Raleigh area, you need to be aware of how a financial planner is paid as well as what to look for in an advisor.

When to Find a Financial Advisor

Getting your finances under control and on track should be done as soon as possible. A financial advisor will work with you to create a blueprint based on your goals, your age, the length of time before retirement, and your risk level.

If you currently use a financial advisor, make sure to keep them updated about your major life events, such as marriage, divorce, or the death of a spouse. You will want to know how these events can change your financial blueprint and goals.

Where to Look for Financial Planners in Your Area

You can find listings for 62 financial advisor businesses within 100 miles of Raleigh, according to the Better Business Bureau (BBB) of Eastern North Carolina. You can also use the databases at the CFP Board of Standards website and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) website. You can search both sites by name and location for CFPs across the country.

Choosing an Advisor

As you are searching the CFP Board’s website for financial planners, don’t forget to research the prospective advisor’s credentials, certification status, and background. You can also see if there have been any disciplinary actions taken against the CFP or if they have filed bankruptcy.

Your friends and family may have recommendations for CFPs in your area. Be sure to contact the advisor’s list of references as well as sit down for an in-person interview to see their personality first-hand.

Whether you are hiring a CFP from a friend’s recommendation or through a brokerage firm, clarify with the advisor how they will get paid. Most CFPs get paid using one of three models: fee-only structure, commission-based structure, or a fee and commission structure.

Fee-only models mean the CFP will only charge you a fee (typically a percentage) based on your holdings. This fee is charged annually and is based on the portfolio’s performance.

Commission-based models mean the CFP receives money for investment products you purchase. Ask the advisor if they are a fiduciary (meaning they must put your best interests first in all transactions) to avoid conflict of interest.

CFPs that use a fee and commission structure tend to offer clients several services including money management and other products.

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