You’ve probably seen advertisements for financial advice services literally everywhere at this point, from on the television to in the pages of your favorite magazine. With so many services out there to choose from, it can be a little difficult to find the right fit for both your situation and your budget.
The fact is most people could benefit from a little financial wisdom but feel overwhelmed by the choices or aren’t sure they can afford the service. With some research and the following tips, you can find sound advice at just the right price.
Start With Your 401(k)
If you’ve got a 401(k) account through your employer, you may already have access to discounted or free financial advice. Several retirement plan providers offer this service to individual participants with 401(k)s, according to Bankrate.
While the laws concerning retirement accounts and your employer’s concern about legal liability may limit the type of advice you can receive from a 401(k) plan provider, it’s still worth looking into. Contact your employer’s plan provider to find out what types of financial services are available and what, if any, the cost is to you as a 401(k) participant.
Find a Paid Pro
If a 401(k) plan provider’s advice isn’t available to you or you need more help than they can provide, it’s time to get Financial Advice from a paid professional. As with any other financial service, you need to shop around before you settle on a particular provider.
The first thing you’ll want to consider is payment time. Some advisers take a percentage of your total managed assets, such as 1 percent, as a fee. Others charge a retainer. Both of these fee types are usually aimed at the higher end of the wealth market and not the best option if you’re not rolling in dough.
Some planners charge by the hour. Fees vary widely but are often between $150 and $300 each hour, as reported by Forbes. This can be a good option for those who need advice on a particular matter and only need advice occasionally or for people who want to build a financial plan but don’t need constant support.
A financial planner may also be commission-based, meaning they only take commission from your investment transactions instead of being paid upfront. While this lowers your out-of-pocket cost, you’ll have to be careful with commission-based investors because of the potential for conflict of interest, as investing in funds that pay higher commissions will benefit the planner but may not be in your best interests.
Don’t forget to do your homework before selecting a financial planner, no matter what type of payment structure you decide on. Check the planners you’re considering with your local regulatory board and consumer protection bureaus. Avoid planners who’ve had actions taken against them in the past by the board or any clients, and review all customer feedback before making a final decision.
There are other ways in which to invest, one of these is to develop a property portfolio.
Specialist advisors like Robert Stones at Target Markets in the UK can advise on this.