It has been a terrible year. Your investments got clobbered, and you have no idea where you stand in terms of your overall financial plan.
Is it time to fire your financial adviser?
Maybe. The following reality checks will help you decide:
- Focus. You want a full financial plan, but your adviser only talks about investing.
“For an adviser to truly provide comprehensive financial planning, they must have a clear understanding of your income, expenses, assets, liabilities, and goals,” says Manisha Thakor, financial expert and author.
If not, it’s time to have that conversation—or find someone who can.
- Payment. Your broker or planner should spell out whether they are charging you by commission only, a flat fee, a percentage of assets, or another method. If they haven’t that’s a red flag, Thakor adds.
- Performance. A good adviser or broker should send you regular (monthly or quarterly) statements so you know exactly where you stand. If they’re not, that’s also cause for concern.
Money is so emotional, it’s easy to get attached to a planner regardless of whether they’re actually helping you. Focus on the bottom line to figure out when to cut ties.
Walk away. How would you describe your relationship with your financial planner?