Most of us probably wouldn’t think twice about hiring a trainer if we were looking to improve our physical conditions.
So, why are we so hesitant to hire a financial advisor whose job it is to help us attain our financial goals?
Much like a physical trainer helps to keep our bodies strong, a skilled financial advisor has the knowledge and know-how to keep our finances in top condition. They can coach you and provide tips to help you do the right things financially while avoiding the wrong things. A recent Vanguard study found that financial advisors can increase their client returns by up to 3 percent a year simply by helping them stick to a plan even when times are tough; allocate assets, and refinance loans when appropriate.
You may think you can get all the services a financial advisor provides by simply using an online program that allocates your assets and rebalances them on an ongoing basis.
These online brokers are largely incapable of customizing a program that fits individual financial needs or one that takes into account lifestyle changes such as marriage, children, divorce, retirement or death of a spouse.
Let’s return to our fitness analogy. If you are healthy and fit and want to continue that pattern so you have a much better life as you age, you are probably not going to stop exercising or eating right. You should manage your finances the same way you do your health since the amount of money you have directly impacts your quality of life both now and in the future.
It boils down to this: If you can afford a gym membership, you more than likely can afford a financial advisor. If you pay your advisor 1 percent to get a 3 percent return, you are ahead 2 percent, meaning you’ve potentially got more money in your pocket with an advisor than without one.
Many people are also simply too busy with the demands of day-to-day life to keep as sharp an eye on their investments as they would like. But, a financial advisor can help you see the big picture of what is happening in the market today and how that can impact your investments 10, 20, or even 30 years down the road.