Retirement is a crucial and complex financial decision that requires careful consideration. While you can undertake this process on your own, working with a retirement financial advisor ensures that you get the most out of your retirement by creating a smart financial plan.
Here’s what you need to know before you hire a retirement financial advisor.
What is a Retirement Financial Advisor?
The simplest definition of a retirement financial advisor is someone who gives guidance and advice on how to plan, save, and invest leading up to and during retirement. However, there are a few types of advisors who offer such a service.
If you’re looking for someone with more rounded experience, you want to work with a wealth advisor who also specializes in retirement planning. A wealth advisor takes a broader look at your finances, so you don’t have to meet with several financial experts to get the whole picture.
Additionally, you’ll want to choose an advisor who is also a fiduciary. A fiduciary is someone who is certified to act in the best interest of their client. Seems obvious, but some financial advisors are not fiduciaries - which means they aren’t required to offer advice in the best interest of their clients but may instead offer advice based on kickbacks or benefits the advisor receives.
⇾ Read Now: What is a Fiduciary?
What to Know Before Hiring a Retirement Financial Advisor
When looking for a retirement financial advisor, there are some things you should keep in mind.
Credentials and Experience
Think of hiring a retirement financial advisor like you’re hiring someone for a job - which you are, but people don’t always think to ask for experience, certifications, and references when researching an advisor.
As mentioned above, you’ll want to verify that the potential advisor is a fiduciary. You should also ask what other affiliations and certifications they have - this can give you insight into their expertise. You can also ask them about their experience - how long have they been an advisor, where did they receive their training, have they worked with similar clients to your needs, etc.
Additionally, ask the advisor for references. An advisor who’s confident in their work will have no issue providing you with some of their current or past clients to speak with. It can be incredibly helpful as well to hear from someone who was in the same position you are in now.
What is that Advisor’s Investment Philosophy?
A good financial advisor is more of a partner than a manager. You want to establish a relationship with this person that will last for years to come. Beyond just their credentials, knowing their investment philosophy will help you determine if they’re a good fit. You can come right out and ask them directly for their philosophy, or ask the following questions to glean it:
- How do you measure success?
- How often do you evaluate my investments? How often do you make changes?
- How do you choose what to invest?
You can also look on their website and social media to see what type of community involvement they partake in. While not directly related to their work, it shows you what they value and if those values align with yours.
Communication Style and Frequency
Finally, you’ll want to ask a potential advisor how they communicate with their clients, and how frequently. Some advisors set period meetings throughout the year, while others frequently text their clients. This is where you’ll need to consider your personal communication preferences. You may want that more hands-off communication or you may want to stay in the loop frequently.
Additionally, ask the advisor if they keep you informed of laws, trends, and other global factors that may affect your account or if they ask you to stay on top of the news. A good financial advisor will of course consider all these factors when creating your plan, but some go the extra mile in giving insights you didn’t even think to ask.
⇾ Read Now: Why GMFG?
Choosing a retirement financial advisor doesn’t have to be a difficult process - you just need to know what to look for and what to ask. Following the advice above will set you on the path to finding that perfect partner. If you are looking for a retirement financial advisor, consider Greater Midwest Financial Group.
Practical Retirement Advice with Greater Midwest Financial Group
Whether you’re an employee or a small business owner, saving for retirement is essential. But in your day-to-day life, it can be challenging to plan for two years down the road—much less 20 or 30.
That’s where Greater Midwest Financial Group fits in. We’ll work with you to develop a sound retirement plan that attempts to maximize your retirement goals. It doesn’t matter if you’d love to play golf all day, read books on the beach or give back to others. We’ll help you do what you enjoy.
Work with our experienced financial advisors and get the chance to:
- Explore the amount of risk you should take for returns you can potentially expect
- Ease the transition during pre- and post-retirement years
- Plan for a lifetime of income stream
- Arrange for liquid cash to travel or make major purchases
- Prevent inflation from destroying your purchasing power in the second 10 years
You can depend on GMFG to periodically monitor your retirement plan and make necessary adjustments so you can keep enjoying retirement.
Greater Midwest Financial Group is a financial advisor firm serving St. Paul, Minneapolis and the wider Twin Cities area. We specialize in wealth management, retirement planning, asset management and other personal finance needs.