Tips For Meeting With Your Financial Advisor

June 28, 2021

Tips for Meeting With Your Financial Advisor 

If you’re meeting with your financial advisor in Houston or any other city for the first time, you’ll want to know what to expect and how to prepare.  Your first meeting will set the stage for your relationship and help determine if you’re a good fit. You should walk away without any guilt if you don’t feel confident about working together long-term. Before you meet, do some online research and try to find out about the financial advisor’s background and experience. Also, look into the firm they work for and see what past and current clients have said about their experience. 

What to Focus on at Your First Meeting With a Potential Financial Advisor 

Your first meeting with a financial advisor will give you important insights into what the future will look like if you choose to work with them. Take note of what kind of questions they ask, how much they control the conversation versus listen. Get a feel for how comfortable you feel as the advisory relationship is incredibly personal. You’re going to share more information with your advisor than with anyone else in your life, aside from your immediate family. 

What to Bring to Your First Financial Advisor Meeting 

If your first meeting is productive, you’ll be covering a lot of ground and information. The more information you can give an advisor about your situation and goals, the better they’ll be able to offer guidance. Help your advisor better serve you by bringing the following documents to your first meeting: 

  • Your most recent financial statements, including retirement and nonretirement accounts 
  • Health savings accounts and certificates of deposit 
  • Life insurance and annuity policies 
  • Your budget, including expenses for any dependents, including children and/or parents 
  • Your most recent mortgage statements, including property taxes, insurance, and home equity credit lines 
  • Debt statements for credit cards and loans 
  • Your most recent complete tax return and business returns if self-employed 

Be Ready to Answer Personal Questions 

The first meeting with your financial advisor will go beyond just a financial review. Because the relationship is personal, they will want to know your short and long-term goals. They need to know about everything in your life that may affect your finances. This includes your current health, investment experience, risk tolerance, and family goals. The more honest you can be with personal questions, the better plan your advisor can create. 

Question to ask Your Financial Advisor 

The first meeting with your potential financial advisor is not a one-way conversation. You are interviewing them as much as they are interviewing you. Some good questions to ask include: 

  • What is your investment philosophy? 
  • What services does your firm offer? 
  • How do you determine what I should invest or not invest in? 
  • How often will we meet? 
  • How do you charge for your services? 
  • Are you a fiduciary? 

Fiduciaries are required by law to put your interests ahead of their own. If the advisor doesn’t answer that question directly and clearly, then you might be wary of working with them if you’re looking for a true fiduciary advisor. 

If you’re meeting with a financial advisor in Houston for the first time these tips should help you be prepared to find someone who will be a good fit today, and long into the future. 

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