How do you choose a fi­nan­cial plan­ner who suits your needs?

Mint ST - - PERSONAL FINANCE - Shaikh Zoaib Saleem [email protected]

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

Age: 27

As­sis­tant pro­fes­sor at

NMIMS Uni­ver­sity

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.

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