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Choosing the Right Financial Advisor

by Steve Schott, Financial Advisor, Schott Financial Management

Happy New Year! Many of you may be considering changing or employing a financial advisor. Perhaps you are new to Prescott and looking for an advisor with a hands-on approach. Maybe your portfolio performance has been underwhelming, or your current advisor doesn’t seem to listen. Whatever the reason, there are a few things to consider before moving your money. 

Years of experience: as with any craftsman, techniques improve over time. You want to make sure your advisor has been in the business long enough to have weathered the inevitable ups and downs of the market. You can also get recommendations from trusted contacts. Word-of-mouth is still the best marketing tool in the financial industry.

Have clear expectations: as with any service-lead profession, setting and communicating your expectations is essential. One of the main reasons people leave their advisors is because they don’t feel heard. Make sure you set goals with your advisor and that they understand what you are looking to do. 

Be upfront about fees: whether it’s commission-based, fee-based, or fee-only, as an investor, you have the right to know about the cost of your investments. Don’t be afraid to ask! A good advisor will display trust and transparency. 

Check the Advisor’s Licenses: it’s good to know the difference regarding what types of certifications are held by your advisor. The Series 7 is the gold standard of licensing. Administered by FINRA (Financial Industry Regulation Authority), it gives an advisor the ability to sell stocks, bonds, options, futures, and packaged securities. It also provides the advisor with a broad knowledge base of the industry. 

Products: what exactly is the advisor recommending? Believe it or not, it matters. Whether you are looking to purchase stocks or an annuity, you want to make sure your advisor has the best type of investments and that the recommendation aligns with your needs and financial goals. 

At Schott Financial Management, we offer free, no-obligation consultations. You can call our office, 928-776-1031 or visit www.schottfinancialmanagement.com. 

Securities offered through Registered Representatives of Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a broker-dealer, member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor.

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