It’s not easy to en­trust your sav­ings to some­one else. Nar­row down on a few names through ref­er­ences from peo­ple you trust. “It has be­come easy to find about the skills of a plan­ner through some re­search on­line, but some good plan­ners take clients only through ref­er­ences,” Mud­holkar said.

It is also im­por­tant to un­der­stand the plan­ner’s way of func­tion­ing. Sadagopan said some­times there is a com­plete dis­con­nect be­tween what a plan­ner does and what a client wants. “A lot of peo­ple come to us directly to only get ad­vice on i nvest­ments. But we have to turn them down as we reach the in­vest­ment ad­vice level only af­ter com­pletely un­der­stand­ing the po­si­tion of the in­di­vid­ual and mak­ing a fi­nan­cial plan. We want to en­gage only af­ter fully un­der­stand­ing their po­si­tion,” he said.

Just like in­vest­ments, there is no one-size-fits-all so­lu­tion when it comes to plan­ners. Choose the one who suits your needs.

ife in­sur­ance is not about in­vest­ing your money to earn a re­turn on it, it’s about fi­nan­cial pro­tec­tion for your loved ones. The most ef­fi­cient way to do that is through a term in­sur­ance pol­icy. You pay only for in­sur­ance and af­ter the pol­icy term ends, you don’t get any money back. But on death dur­ing the pol­icy term, it pays a huge cor­pus to the nom­i­nees. Look at the pre­mium (cost of the term plan) and the claims set­tle­ment record of the in­surer. We list pre­mium rates for some poli­cies of a sum as­sured of ₹1 crore across three age cat­e­gories for pol­icy terms are 30, 25 and 20 years. The list of 15 poli­cies has been sorted on the ba­sis of claims set­tle­ment rate. The claims set­tle­ment rate is mea­sured by ben­e­fit amount or the sum as­sured, as a lower set­tle­ment rate is indica­tive of high ticket-size poli­cies be­ing re­jected.

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