How to Choose a Financial Advisor

If you're feeling clueless about how to choose a financial advisor, think about the qualities you'd want in a BFF — someone who's got your back, gives good advice, and won't ghost you when things get tough. Your financial advisor should be no different, especially because choosing the right advisor can help set you up for long-term financial success.

So, how do you find "the one"? First, look for someone who aligns with your money goals and values and who you can trust to help you make smart financial moves. And, if you're wondering where to begin your search, start by checking out your local credit union's credit union financial advisors, who are all about putting their members' best interests first. It's just one of the many benefits of working with a financial advisor at a credit union. 

Meanwhile, let's take a look at what to consider when choosing the right financial advisor.

Financial Advisor

What is a Financial Advisor?

So, what does a financial advisor do, and how can they help you meet your money goals? Financial advisors are professionals who guide clients to manage their money effectively. Advisors can work as independent agents or with institutions like credit unions. They possess the training and licenses to assist with various specialized financial services. Financial advisors charge an upfront fee or take a commission percentage from third-party services. 

Financial advisors can help you establish money goals and may specialize in specific types of financial planning. Here are some of the most popular financial services available: 

While some financial advisors offer general services to cover every aspect of financial planning, others specialize in select areas. So, defining your financial goals is essential before selecting an advisor.  

The Importance of Choosing the Right Financial Advisor

Choosing the right financial advisor comes down to alignment with your needs and accountability. Your financial advisor will help you through some of your most significant money decisions, so it's essential to take the time to find the right fit. 

Set aside time to assess your financial goals and lay out your budget before making an appointment with an advisor. For example, if you’re looking to pay down some large bills, an advisor specializing in debt management could be a great fit. Defining your needs will help streamline the process and ensure you find the right financial advisor to help you reach your goals. 

Once you find an advisor who aligns with your needs, you must verify that they are trustworthy and accountable. Some financial advisors, such as those working through larger organizations like credit unions, have a fiduciary duty to their clients, meaning they are legally obligated to act in their clients’ best interests. 

Additionally, look for certified financial advisors registered with the proper licenses your state requires. As with any profession, experience, and testimonials matter. 

How to Choose a Financial Advisor

Choosing a financial advisor is a big decision. However, you can make the process easier by outlining your top priorities. Here are a few factors to consider when choosing a financial advisor: 

Keep these factors in mind, and you’ll be well on your way to finding the right financial advisor for all of your money needs.

Further Resources on How to Choose a Financial Advisor

Ensure you choose the right financial advisor with these helpful resources. 

Find Your Financial Confidant

Choosing the right financial advisor can be just as crucial as finding a meaningful friendship. Ultimately, you’re looking for someone you can count on to help you with life’s biggest decisions — so they better have your back! Fortunately, that’s one of the top benefits of working with a financial advisor at a credit union. Begin your journey by finding member-centric credit union financial advisors with our Credit Union Locator Tool.  

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Did You Know?

Credit unions often have financial advisors ready to help you with life’s biggest financial decisions, from your first investment to your first home. Unlike large corporate banks, not-for-profit credit unions are built around their members, so you always know your advisor has your best interests in mind.

Find the right Credit Union for you

There are more than 5000 credit unions to choose from across the U.S.