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A Step-by-Step Guide to Finding a Trusted Financial Advisor Near You

Choosing the right advisor for your finances is a very important decision that can affect your financial well-being. If you’re searching for a financial advisor near you, there are various avenues to explore. Whether you prefer a local advisor or a virtual one, here’s a comprehensive guide on finding a suitable financial advisor for you.

  1. Utilize Online Financial Advisor Matching Services

Several online services can help match you with a financial advisor in your area. These services often have a network of advisors who pay to be part of the platform, and they are vetted to ensure they meet specific standards. Here are some reputable financial advisor matching services:

  • Zoe Financial: Matches clients with certified financial planners (CFPs) and other financial professionals. Advisors typically charge an annual fee ranging from 0.50% to 1.50% of assets under management.
  • Harness Wealth: All firms on this platform are fiduciaries, and advisors may include CFPs, CFAs, CPAs, and tax attorneys. Typical fees are around 1% of assets under management.
  • Wealthramp: Offers a network of vetted fiduciary advisors. Clients fill out a survey and are matched with up to three advisors for free consultations.
  • Facet: Provides access to fiduciary CFPs with a unique flat-fee service model. Meetings with advisors are conducted online.
  1. Check the CFP Board Website

The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) Board is a professional certifying organization. You can use their website to search for certified advisors based on criteria such as planning services, client focus, and preferred language.

  1. Explore Professional Finance Advisor Organizations

Consider looking into professional organizations that can help you find qualified financial planners. Some examples include:

  • Financial Planning Association (FPA): Offers access to certified financial planners and provides assistance in finding a financial planner near you.
  • Association of African American Financial Advisors (AAAA): Focuses on helping Black investors find expert guidance. The organization provides a directory of Black advisors.
  • NAPFA or National Association of Personal Financial Advisors: A network of fee-only advisors who adhere to a fiduciary duty.
  1. Tap into Financial Planning Networks

Explore financial planning networks that connect clients with advisors based on specific criteria. Examples include:

  • Garrett Planning Network: Member advisors are fee-only, offer planning services on an hourly basis, and adhere to a fiduciary oath.
  • XY Planning Network: Every advisor offers virtual services, holds the CFP designation, and operates on a commission-free basis.
  • CHIP: A network focused on matching clients with Black, Hispanic, and Latinx financial advisors and professionals.
  1. Consider Robo-Advisors

For those seeking investment management, robo-advisors are automated services with lower fees. Some robo-advisors offer access to human financial advisors and additional features.

  1. Ask for Recommendations

Seek recommendations from friends, family, or colleagues who have had positive experiences with financial advisors. Personal referrals can provide valuable insights.

How to Find a Virtual Financial Advisor

If local choices are restricted, consider delving into online financial advisor services that incorporate videoconferencing for virtual meetings. Numerous virtual advisors come with competitive pricing, and a few even offer comprehensive financial planning services to fit your budgeting needs.

Points to Keep in Mind When Finding a Local Financial Advisor

  • Identify Needed Services: Clarify the specific financial services you require, whether it’s estate planning, tax assistance, or investment management.
  • Verify Advisor Certifications: Ensure that the advisor holds relevant certifications such as CFP or CPA, and verify these credentials on the respective licensing board’s website.
  • Prepare Questions: Interview potential advisors to assess their strategies, options, and compatibility with your financial goals.
  • Understand Fees: Clearly understand the advisor’s fee structure, whether it’s a percentage of assets under management or a flat fee.

Finding the right financial advisor involves careful consideration of your needs, preferences, and the advisor’s expertise. By exploring these avenues, you can make a decision that aligns with your financial objectives.

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