If you do not have a high comfort level with answers to the following questions, you may want to explore further:

  1. Are they a fiduciary to YOU?  (Do they act in your best interest?)
  2. How important are you to them? (How many accounts do they currently manage? Small Fish/Big Pond?)
  3. Do they understand YOUR goals and YOUR financial needs?
  4. Do they provide a cost-effective approach?  (If utilizing mutual funds, do total expenses exceed 2%?)
  5. Have they sold, or offered you annuity products? (Do the benefits exceed the costs? What is the actual net expense?)
  6. Do they charge commissions?
  7. Does their strategy make sense for YOUR financial plan?
  8. Do the securities they hold fit their strategy?
  9. How much experience do they have managing investment portfolios? (Are they Portfolio Managers or Sales/Incentive Based?)
  10. Are they experienced in both the management of fixed income and equity investments?
  11. Will they assist you with (free) planning, including:
    • Establishing goals and objectives?
    • Establishing appropriate asset allocation to meet goals and objectives?
    • Tailoring assets to objectives – including estate plans, income tax planning?
    • Coordinating asset allocation to time frame?
    • Tracking and benchmarking investment performance and net worth?
  12. Do they coordinate your investments with your objectives, income tax plans, and estate plans? (Are they using a tax-efficient investment approach?)
  13. Are they accessible? (if they have over 200 clients, they may not be.)
  14. Will the benefits I receive exceed the costs? (Do they add value?)
  15. Will I enjoy this relationship? (If the benefits exceed the costs, your answer is probably – yes.)

 Downloadable Resources