Asked by Christopher  |  Submitted January 18, 2015

What should I look for in a financial planner and what sort of questions should I ask when I start interviewing for one?

Hello, I am currently 20 years of age and about to get out of school and start making some real money and I want to start saving early so I can either retire early and/or retire well, invest well, saving for buying a house and college for my kids. I want to find someone who can help me with my financial decisions. Thanks

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  Answers  |  3

January 19, 2015

Hi Christopher! Good for you for getting started on the right foot. Sounds like you have lots of great goals, so a financial planner can definitely help. First, look for one who is paid either hourly or on a retainer basis. They can help you even if you don't have much money starting out. Find out if the planner is independent and works for you, or if they are paid by another company. Do a background check through FINRA, and look for qualifications such as the CFP® designation and other education and background.

A great source for this type of planner is the XY Planning Network. This group of like minded young planners is ready to help Gen X, Gen Y and Millennials with their finances. Check them out and find one that suits your style.

Christopher | 01.19.15 @ 22:14

Thanks for the advice

$commenter.renderDisplayableName() | 09.26.20 @ 17:53


August 17, 2015

Check the FINRA website for any broker issues. Work with someone who you trust or feel that you can trust. In reality, you aren't going to know who's telling you the truth or being honest - this is why I suggest you go with your gut feeling. Just because someone has a CFP does not make them right for you - and I'm a CFP. Check referrals. Interview advisors, ask them what they charge or would be willing to charge to manage your portfolio. Establish a relationship with your advisor of choice, don't go hourly as this sets you up for many different opinions and scenarios where eventually you'll get someone who offers up bad advice.

$commenter.renderDisplayableName() | 09.26.20 @ 17:53


November 23, 2015

Hi Christopher - here are a couple resources for your search.

1. Financial Advisor Checklist - 17 Questions you can ask a prospective advisor.

2. Shopping for a Financial Advisor Blog Post - A post I did earlier this year about the considerations of finding a good financial advisor.

I hope this helps in your search!

$commenter.renderDisplayableName() | 09.26.20 @ 17:53