We’ve just stepped over the threshold of a New Year and that, right on the heels of a new tax bill voted into law. With those two facts in mind, there’s never been a more perfect time to make sure your investments on the right track. Having a review by a fiduciary financial advisor could be eye opening, life changing and money saving.
For starters, let me clarify the difference between fiduciary and non-fiduciary financial advisors. Fiduciaries are bound by law to avoid conflicts of interest, to operate with full transparency and to always act in the client’s best interest. Non-fiduciary advisors, which include brokers, on the other hand, are not legally bound by any of the standards just mentioned.
For instance, many investors put their retirement funds in the hands of ‘brokers’. A broker is shorthand for stockbroker. You might not be aware that brokers work for investment firms. Their job is to persuade a client to buy or sell stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs (exchange-traded funds) and other financial products. Brokers are salesmen who are paid on commission. It’s in their best interest to sell you more of whatever they are selling.
Fiduciary advisors receive a flat salary or fee or they may receive a cut (1 percent is typical) of the assets under management. Because of the compensation structure, fiduciaries are free of conflicts of interest.
Additionally, fiduciary advisors keep a close watch on clients’ accounts. The first meeting with a fiduciary is just the beginning. It’s a great time to ask important questions. You might set up a review with your current financial advisor and a separate meeting with a fiduciary. This is the time to ask each of them important questions, the first of which would be, “Are you legally bound to act in my best interest?”
I will go over more questions in a future article. In the meantime, you can do your research and set up your reviews. The fiduciary advisors at Retirement Resources operate on the following four core values: Always do the right thing; Make a difference; Truly care about people; and, Surround ourselves with successful people. If you would like to schedule a review with one of our advisors, call our office today.
This content is provided for informational and educational purposes only. The information, analysis and opinions expressed herein reflect our judgment as of the date of writing and are subject to change at any time without notice. They are not intended to constitute legal, tax, securities or investment advice or a recommended course of action in any given situation. All investments carry a certain risk and there is no assurance that an investment will provide positive performance over any period of time. Information obtained from third party resources is believed to be reliable but not guaranteed. Past performance is not indicative of future results.