A financial professional can help you address your financial challenges and develop plans for the future. Whether you’re unsure about savings and investment strategies, what the tax impact of your choices are or find yourself faced with new financial responsibilities, such as caring for a loved one or making a major career change, you may be interested in the services of a financial professional.
Why Work with a Financial Professional?
Financial professionals will look at your entire financial picture—devising a game plan to make sure your assets are being managed appropriately to meet your specific needs and goals. If you don't feel confident about your knowledge of investing or specific financial products, having someone on your side who does can be extremely helpful.
Even if you have the knowledge to manage your own finances, the financial world grows more intricate every day as new products, services and technologies are introduced. Legislative changes can also have a substantial impact on your investment and tax planning strategies. A financial professional can monitor such developments on an ongoing basis and assess how they might affect your situation.
Further, a financial professional can also help you see the big picture and make sure that the various aspects of your financial portfolio are integrated in a way that makes sense for the achievement of both your short- and long-term goals.
If you already have a financial plan, a financial professional can also act as a sounding board by giving you a reality check and making sure that your assumptions and expectations are realistic. For example, if you've been investing far more conservatively than is appropriate for your goals and circumstances out of fear or uncertainty, a financial professional can help you assess how your portfolio might need adjusting to improve your chances of reaching those goals.
Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to be extremely wealthy to make use of a financial professional’s expertise. While some do focus on clients with assets above a certain threshold, others do not. You also shouldn’t wait until a major life event occurs before consulting a financial professional. Having someone in your corner to help you develop an overall strategy for approaching your goals can be useful at any time. However, a specific life event or perceived need often serves as a catalyst for seeking advice, such as a marriage, an addition to the family or planning your retirement, among others.
Know Your Goals
You'll need to understand your personal and family goals to clarify the areas in which you're looking for assistance. Your plans should take into consideration your financial goals, time horizon for achieving each one, current financial and emotional ability to tolerate risk, and any recent or upcoming changes in your circumstances.
You should also think about the scope of the services you'll need. For example, are you looking for comprehensive help in a variety of areas, or would you be better served by assembling a team of specialists? Do you need an ongoing relationship, or can your needs be taken care of on a one-time basis? If you're preparing to make some major financial decisions that you've never had to make before, someone with broad knowledge and expertise might be a good fit for you.
Even if you feel that you need advice from several different specialists, consider whether you might benefit from having someone who can coordinate among them. A financial professional can sometimes be a gateway to other specialists who can help with specific aspects of your finances, such as accounting, tax and estate planning, or insurance.
If you want comprehensive investment management, you can work with a financial professional who will determine the optimal investment allocation for you. In that case, you'll likely be asked to help develop and sign an investment policy statement that spells out the guidelines to be followed when making those investment decisions.
Don’t be Afraid to Ask Questions
Whether you have experience or are a novice when it comes to managing your finances, don't be afraid to ask questions. Further, do not allow yourself to be pressured into making a decision that you're not comfortable with or don't understand. This is your money, and you have the right to know how it’s being managed.
Additionally, don't be reluctant to ask about fees and compensation—any reputable financial professional should be willing to explain how they are compensated for their services. Some receive a fee based on an hourly rate (usually for specific advice or a financial plan) or a percentage of your portfolio's assets and/or income. Some receive a commission from a third party for any products you may purchase. Others receive some combination of fees and commissions, while still others receive a salary from their financial services employer.
If you feel that consulting an expert might be helpful, don't postpone making that call. The sooner you get your questions answered, the sooner you'll be able to pay more attention to the things that an organized financial life can help you enjoy, such as your family, friends and hobbies.
As you strive to set yourself or your family up for future financial wellness, the professionals at Busey Wealth Management are here to help you prepare. To learn more or to find an advisor near you, visit busey.com/wealth-management.
This is not intended to provide legal, tax or accounting advice. Any statement contained in this communication concerning U.S. tax matters is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of avoiding penalties imposed on the relevant taxpayer. Clients should obtain their own independent tax advice based on their particular circumstances.
This material is provided for educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment advice or an offer or solicitation to buy or sell securities.
This presentation is for general information purposes only. It does not take into account the particular investment objectives, restrictions, tax and financial situation or other needs of any specific client.
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