A financial advisor can do more than just steer you onto a potentially lucrative path. Also known as a financial planner, these experts can draw up a blueprint of your finances to help you meet your financial goals, whether that is saving enough money for retirement and beyond or financing an early retirement in Rochester.
A certified financial planner (CFP) can also review your finances to make sure you are not overpaying in taxes or investment fees. Some advisors offer additional services like money management. You can find several CFPs in the Rochester area.
Saving and investing enough for retirement can take time so the earlier you can begin working with a CFP, the better off your retirement accounts will be in the long run. By working with an advisor now while you are still employed, you can invest more money into your accounts including your 401(k).
If you currently use a financial advisor, make sure to meet with them at least annually or anytime you experience a life event, such as marriage or divorce.
You can find financial advisors and their contact information on the following credible sites:
The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) hosts a database of fee-only CFPs.
The CFP Board of Standards features a database of CFPs from across the country.
Your family attorney or elder-law attorney may also offer suggestions for local CFPs. You may want to research local firms in the Rochester area for financial advisors and research potential planners on the BBB site and other online review directories.
Before choosing a financial advisor, ask your friends, family, and colleagues for referrals. You will want to conduct a face-to-face interview with the prospective planner before hiring. You can also check their certification status, credentials, and other pertinent information, like bankruptcy history, through the CFP Board’s website.
CFPs are generally paid in one of three ways so you will want to make sure you know exactly how your advisor is paid.
Fee-based model – The advisor will charge your account an annual percentage fee based on the portfolio’s performance throughout the year.
Commission-based model – The advisor earns a commission from the investment products you purchase.
Both fees and commissions structure – Some advisors that offer several services may charge a fee as well as earn commission based on your investment purchases.
It is important to clarify whether or not your advisor is a fiduciary. If they are, then they must place your best interests first in all transactions. This will negate any conflict of interest when the CFP earns a commission. Discuss the necessity of purchasing any products beforehand. You want to make sure your investment portfolio reflects your financial goals and is based on your age and level of risk.
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