Wanted: One impartial financial planner

A good test is to ask a prospective adviser what asset mix he would recommend after you’ve outlined your investment goals. See how well it meshes with what you had in mind going in.

The bottom line is that you need to interview several possible advisers before making a choice. Look at it this way: would you test-drive only one vehicle before making a decision on buying a new car? Is choosing someone to handle your money any less important?

An alternative approach is to separate the advisory and implementation functions. Hire a fee-for-service financial planner who does not sell securities. It will cost you, but you’ll get an unbiased plan tailored to your needs. To find fee-only planners, check the Yellow Pages. Look for key words such as “independent financial advice” but be sure to ask when you call whether the company operates strictly on a fee-for-service basis or sells products as well. Another option is to use the “Find an adviser” feature on the www.Advocis.ca.

Opinions expressed are those of the writer and should not be understood as offering advice. Information is of a general nature and may not be appropriate for any single individual.

© Copyright June 2007 CARP magazine June