You’ve identified a goal and are ready and able to get serious about saving money to achieve that goal. Maybe you’re planning to purchase a home, funding post secondary education for your kids, imagining what you want retirement to look like or perhaps you’ve come into an inheritance. Whatever the objective, you’ve decided it’s time to start working with an investment advisor.

Now what? How do you go about finding the right advisor for you, particularly when there are so many to choose from? It seems like there’s an investment advisor on every corner and each one has a different designation. Here are a few key pieces of information that will help you on your search.

  1. Know what you’re looking for from an advisor. Some investment professionals only sell mutual funds, others focus on insurance products, while others are able to build and manage diversified portfolios. It starts with you, the investor, having clear financial goals and then finding an investment advisor who can help you achieve them.
  2. Ask family and friends. If someone in your network is happy with their advisor and willing to refer them, then that is an excellent place to begin. It means the advisor has proven themselves both in terms of trustworthiness and performance.
  3. Don’t get hung up on certifications. There are plenty of them: Personal Financial Planner (PFP), Financial Management Advisor (FMA), Chartered Investment Manager (CIM), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Certified International Wealth Manager (CIWM), the list is long. Rather than focusing on the letters behind someone’s name, look at their experience and approach and whether or not that’s aligned with your needs. Are they knowledgeable about the markets and do they follow them closely? Do they have access to the types of products you require?
  4. Understand how they are compensated. Some financial advisors charge a flat annual fee for their services, others charge a commission per transaction and others still are paid commissions from the mutual fund companies whose products they sell.
  5. Interview a few advisors. Get to know their practice and what they bring to the table. It all comes down to experience, knowledge and trust.

Call Me or Email Me

My approach to investing is straightforward. I help my clients find good quality investments that will help them meet their goals. I build custom portfolios for each client. I’m currently offering a complimentary portfolio review where we sit down together to review your portfolio in an introductory meeting that focuses on five main things: Where are you today? Where do you want to be tomorrow? What’s your timeline? What’s your risk tolerance?

There also will be a discussion of strategies that could give you a better plan to secure and grow your portfolio. It’s a great opportunity to get to know each other. I welcome you to call me at 416-332-3863 or email me at allan@allansmall.com