Choosing a Devoted and Competent Retirement Planner
Whether your retirement is within a few years or a few decades, working with a Phoenixville retirement planner can help you feel confident in your financial future. However, finding a professional you feel comfortable with and knowing the right questions to ask can be challenging. Here are some key points on how to find the best retirement planner to meet your needs
What Can You Expect from a Retirement Planner?
If you are in Phoenixville, Chester County or even out of state — you and your financial planner will need to spend time discussing your retirement goals so they are in the best position to help you. For example, let your retirement planner know when you intend to start drawing from your personal savings, 401(k), or Individual Retirement Account (IRA) and what type of budget you expect to follow once you retire.
What kind of financial assets do you have now and what assets do you expect to have in the future? Common examples include social security payments, part-time work, and home equity in addition to your retirement savings. Knowing your financial assets helps your retirement planner create a realistic scenario of how much money you can expect to receive each month after you retire. Here are several specific types of advice a retirement planner can offer you:
- Age to begin drawing social security
- What types of investments you should consider
- When to take distributions from your pension if you have one
- Which accounts to withdraw from and when to make the withdrawals to have taxes work to your advantage
- How to change your current investments for a more profitable return
- Whether to keep or cash in on your life insurance policies
- Whether taking out a reverse mortgage makes sense for you
- Whether you should consider long-term care insurance
How to Choose a Retirement Planner
Interviewing financial advisors can be helpful in choosing a retirement planner. It isn’t about the financial planning office with the best location close to where you work or live, but rather finding a competent and experienced advisor who fits your needs. Here are some questions you should ask your potential planner:
Are You a Fiduciary Advisor?
Non-fiduciary advisors only need to recommend suitable investments, but that can leave a lot of ambiguity. By choosing a fiduciary advisor, you have the assurance of knowing he or she must provide guidance based on your best interest.
What Type of Experience and Education Do You Have as a Financial Advisor?
Working with a certified financial planner or certified public accountant is always a good idea with something as important as retirement planning. People with these credentials have studied retirement planning specifically and can advise you accordingly.
What is Your Fee Structure?
Retirement planners who work on commission can sometimes experience a conflict of interest. When this happens, the professional you work with might feel tempted to recommend a product because of the commission it would bring even if you would do better with a different product.
You can still choose to work with a retirement planner who receives compensation this way if you know this upfront and feel you can trust that person’s recommendations.
Fee-only retirement planners charge either a flat rate or an hourly rate for their services with no commission involved.
Trust Your Instincts
Experience matters with financial planning, so be sure to ask how long they have been in business, ask for client references and you can check for online reviews as well. Keep in mind that the financial industry has additional regulations and is not allowed to ask for public reviews, so you may not see many.
Your comfort level with your financial planner is equally as important as credentials.