How do you choose a financial planner who suits your needs?
Your choice will largely depend on the breadth of services you seek from a professional
Are you saving enough to fund your first car or children’s higher education or your retirement or even the international holiday you always wanted to take? Are the products you have chosen to put your hard-earned money in suitable for your respective financial goals? Or in the anxiety of having too little at the end of the road, you are saving too much, at the cost of your present lifestyle? There seems to be no clear answer to these and similar questions related to your money life because there is no onesize-fits-all solution. A professional financial planner may be able to answer all these questions and more and help you navigate your finances keeping your particular circumstances and life goals in mind.
But choosing the right professional is not as simple as it sounds. To start with, you would want to be absolutely sure that you need a financial planner. If you have just started working, all you may need is a little guidance to start on the savings path, but if you are in the middle of your career and have solid long-term goals, you may need to take a holistic look at your income, assets and liabilities. Moreover, the market is flooded with different kind of advisors—there are financial planners, independent financial advisors, agents and distributors. Your choice will largely depend on the breadth of services you seek from a professional and the money you want to shell out. PRASHANT DHAMALE
Assistant professor at
Dhamale found out the commissions that an insurance and MF distributor could be earning and decided that he would be better off with a fee-only planner
A good financial planner will try to ensure that the portfolio is appropriate for you, based on who you are, your life stage and what you want to achieve. It’s also possible that a planner tells you to reduce the risk in your portfolio, or that you are saving too much and can loosen up your present money life a bit. “As long as there is transparency and the consumer knows how the advisor or distributor is getting compensated and to what level, and the pros and cons of that, I would say it is perfectly fine,” said Sadique Neelgund, founder of Network FP, a knowledge platform for financial advisors.