Finding a Financial Planner


#1

Hello! My boss has sent me on a quest to find the BEST financial planner around. I have done a lot of searching to find some in his area, but he was hoping for the best of the best. How do I find this unicorn? Do you have any advice? I have been scouring blogs, reddits, and forums to find him a great advisor, but how do I know who is the best? I would appreciate any advice you can give me.


#2

That feels like an impossible quest to do for someone else because it’s so dependent on personal situation. Some planners will be better for specific things, such as managing retirement income, building wealth, tax planning or debt repayment. It also matters if he only wants fee for service planning or also someone who can manage investments.

My advice for finding a good planner is always to ask people in a similar money situation as you for referrals and then interview a few people to find a good fit.


#3

Is he asking you to help him personally or to find someone to manage a company 401(k) plan?

If it’s the former, I wouldn’t get involved.


#4

Long story short, I would only use a fiduciary fee-only financial advisor who does not sell insurance. Only 3% of financial advisors are fee-only, so you’re already looking for a unicorn. If he’s looking for the best, unless they just happen to live in your boss’s city he will likely be using FaceTime or Skype to work with them.


#5

Not asking me to help him. Just to help him find someone. Thanks!


#6

Thanks!


#7

I meant to say is he asking you to find someone to help him with with his personal financial assets or for the company’s retirement plan? If it’s the former, I would definitely not get involved, because no good deed goes unpunished, as they say, if something goes wrong, you don’t want to deal with that. If it’s for a company 401k plan - then sure, give a few suggestions, I wouldn’t give just one though.


#8

Check out Retirement Answer Man and also Financial Life Focus. You want someone who is a fiduciary and also someone who wants to know you as a person and understand your goals before they talk money.


#9

The best of the best are generally high net worth wealth managers for family trusts in the tens of millions or billions. Unless she is in that category (and my guess is no) than the best of the best is not an option.

She will want a fiduciary - someone who has taken an oath to look after the interests of the client - rather than a sales agent who comes across as an advisory (their advice is almost always to invest in their financial products).

If their assets are less than a million the advise is simple and free and is as follows.
-Save more
-Invest those savings in index funds

But if they want "only the best"my guess is that savings part of the equation isn’t a strength yet (but they can change!).

However, your situation is way more interesting to people on this message board. It’s you we want to make wealthy. Not your boss.

I am guessing that you are early career. If so, in addition to your clear work ethic you have something you boss does not and can not get that is so important to investing: lots of time. You have the opportunity to be wealthy beyond belief and change the world for the better (rather than buying stuff).

If you are early career you are probably a millennial type person. And there is a blog by and for millennials included below. I hope her writing style resonates with you - it’s fun stuff!

PS
The best of the best includes
Tweed and Brown
Goldman Sachs
Kennon and Green Co

You boss likely won’t qualify for any of these. I mention them for you to research so they can manage the family charitable trust you set up in the future - funded by your frugality, investing and the power of time.


#10

You need to know what really financial advisor is that is what is the definition of financial advisor. Only than you can find a best of the best financial advisor.
You can also see
Average salary of financial advisor
Financial advisor job description
How much do financial advisors make.


#11

I’m considering getting a financial planner too, but she’s a good family friend as well. Only issue I’m juggling here is whether I want to put my money in the hands of someone I know personally. Anyone have thoughts on this? Does it give rise to messy situations if anything happens with the money?