Becoming a Financial Adviser
The first step in becoming a financial adviser is to complete an appropriate training course. Typically, this consists of shadowing an experienced adviser and dealing with clients under their supervision. You will eventually have your own list of clients, and most employers pay for your training and exams. There are also many distance learning courses available, and regular supervision is required to ensure that you are complying with regulations. However, you may need a certain amount of experience and education to become a financial adviser, so it is important to do some research.
In addition to studying the various aspects of financial planning, you need to know how to choose the best advisor for you. In general, financial advisors meet with clients one-on-one to provide holistic financial planning and help them meet their financial goals. They will ask you questions about your financial situation, your preferences, and your tolerance for investing risk to come up with a personalized plan that is tailored to your specific situation and circumstances. To make sure that you are getting the best advice possible, make sure you hire a certified financial planner, or a CFP (Chartered Financial Planner). Be aware of their conflicts of interest, as well as their commitment to putting your interests first.
Fees charged by financial advisors vary, but most charge a percentage of assets under management. In general, this amount is around 1%, though some firms can charge as much as 2%. These fees are deducted quarterly. If you have $250,000 in assets, a fee of 1% means you will be charged $625 every three months. Some firms have a sliding scale for their fees, so if you have more money than you can afford to pay, you will pay a lower fee.
Financial advisors have the skills to guide you through every step of your financial life. From saving for retirement to paying off student loans, financial advisors can help you achieve all of your financial goals. They can even help you with tax-planning advice. And if you need to invest, they can recommend specific investments or provide complete investment management. It all depends on your individual situation. However, your advisor should be able to help you make the best financial decisions.
When you meet with a financial advisor, he or she will gather all of the information necessary to create a comprehensive plan that will serve as your roadmap for your financial future. It summarizes key findings from the initial questionnaire, as well as any goals you have discussed. You will receive more detailed information about several topics in the analysis section of the financial plan, including long-term care, estate planning, and risk tolerance. He or she will also advise you on the best investment strategy.
A financial adviser is required by law to comply with a certain set of rules. The Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act, 2002 (FSRA) defines financial advice as “any information or service which is designed to induce investment or rely on”. A qualified adviser will never tell you that he or she does not have any training in finance or other relevant areas. The SCA has found that a financial adviser is not required to provide you with a course of action without a full examination of the client’s situation.