Why should I work with a financial advisor?
There are many benefits to working with an independent financial advisor, including:
How do I choose the right financial advisor for me?
The Financial Planning Standards Council provides some useful tips on choosing a financial advisor. In addition, you might find it useful to consider the importance of the following questions about a potential advisor: Is he/ she a person who...
As my financial advisor, how are you paid?
There are several ways for Financial Advisors to be compensated in Canada. My income most commonly comes in the form of commissions from insurance and investment companies when I provide their products.
For investment products, there are trailing commissions that act as compensation for the ongoing service I provide – it is paid as long as you own the fund. Sometimes an initial commission is paid when a fund is purchased. This commission varies based on the load type of the product/fund sold. If you have a fee based account, there are no upfront or trailing commissions and instead I am paid an annual fee usually charged monthly to your account. This fee is negotiable and is agreed upon with the client.
Insurance companies in Canada typically pay a commission to advisors in exchange for matching the needs of their clients with specific insurance products.
I will always explain the alternatives and tell you exactly how I am being paid at the time I am making a recommendation. As a client, you will be entitled to my full suite of planning and advisory services at no additional charge. As a Certified Financial Planner I have a legal duty to put the interests of my clients before my own and I take that responsibility very seriously. I am proud of the work I do and I hope you will agree that there is real value in the services I provide.
How much time will it take to get my own financial plan started?
This question depends very much on you – your goals, challenges and the level of detail you seek for your own plan. I understand that your own life involves more, much more, than your financial plan and I work hard to make myself available on a schedule that works for you. Most often I meet with clients in their own homes at a convenient time but can also arrange meetings at my office in Waterdown or an alternate location of your choosing.
Initially, I like to get a preliminary assessment of your financial status and your goals as a start point for a informed plan. Your decisions about investments and insurance can be made after one meeting or as many as 3 or 4 depending on your needs.