Your future and legacy likely rank very highly on your list of important topics, but are you giving them the attention they deserve? Financial planning is about planning for life and longevity, not simply an endpoint such as death or retirement.
The lackadaisical approach is understandable when considering the number of factors that are squarely outside of your personal control. Taxes, law changes, unfortunate events, and a hefty variety of unknowns can all make the planning process seem overwhelming. It is, after all, easier to visualize your goal than the path you need to reach it. Financial advisors are an integral piece of the puzzle to taking the stress and worry out of the financial planning process. If you are worried about your initial meeting and being unprepared, don't be. Here are three tips to make sure your first advisor meeting goes as flawlessly as you hope.
Know The Goals You're Invested In
A financial advisor can accomplish a lot of things, but deciding the personal goals for someone else is not part of their skillset. The beginning of any financial plan involves your goals, and they should be mostly decided on before you even walk in the door. The finer details and specifics can always wait; the important thing is having that framework of knowing what you want to achieve. If you have the details such as you desired investment or savings goals down to a T, well you're a step ahead and this makes the process smoother. For the best chance of success on your first visit your advisor will need to know your goals, the state of your finances, your ideal timeline to achieve these goals, and, if applicable, the level of risk you're willing to take with regard to investments.
Gathering paperwork is the last way you'd prefer to spend your time; however, it is a necessary evil if you plan to get started right away. It will be impossible to assist you with your financial planning journey if the key information needed is unknown, underreported, or incomplete. The list of the information you should bring with you is quite long and not all of it will apply to everyone. Additional information may also be necessary and you can always call ahead to inquire about what to bring.
Bring Your Questions
While this may seem like a silly tip, it is actually rather important. Meetings with a financial advisor are not typically very frequent and many clients do so only once per year. Preparing a list of questions ahead of time and making sure to get them answered during the meeting can save you time (and money!) on a future appointment. The process of financial planning won't be a once and done action, instead it will constantly evolve over time in reaction to changing variables and circumstances. You will naturally have the opportunity to ask questions whenever you desire, but it is a good idea to plan ahead.
The road to achieving your financial goals can be difficult enough, planning them doesn't need to be. Let the BD Financial Concepts team help guide you on the path to financial success. Contact us today to begin your first steps on the road to achieving your goals.
We are a professional financial services firm located in Sanford, Central Florida.