Have you ever thought about enlisting the help of a financial professional to help you manage your money?
I’m betting the answer is “no” for the majority of you. After all, if you don’t have a lot of money in the bank, what’s the use, right?
Well, financial professionals can help you in a variety of ways. Believe it or not, you don’t need to be a millionaire to hire one. Millennials can benefit from having a financial professional, too.
1.) Financial professionals aren’t just for the wealthy
You might be wondering how, as when most people think of a financial advisor, the first thing that comes to mind is probably an old, stuffy guy in a suit behind a huge expensive desk with tons of paperwork on it.
Or you might believe that it costs thousands of dollars per year to hire a financial professional, or that you need millions of dollars in your portfolio to be considered as a potential client.
That was the financial planning field years ago. These days, things are a little different. For one, there are a plethora of financial professionals that work virtually with clients in all different stages of their financial journey.
The second is that many of these professionals enjoy working with millennials (and are millennials themselves), and they don’t charge an arm and a leg for their services. In fact, you could probably find an advisor that charges around what you pay for your cell phone service or gym membership each month.
Now that you know the barrier to entry is likely lower than you originally thought, you probably want to know how a financial professional can help you manage your money.
2.) A financial professional can help you define your financial goals
A good financial planner doesn’t simply manage your investments. They’re there to help you create an entire financial plan – from building a stable financial foundation, to saving, to paying off debt, to estate planning.
That all starts with defining your financial goals. You won’t know what actions to take if you don’t know where you want to end up. A financial planner can help you figure out how to prioritize these goals, and once you’ve done that, they can give you a list of actions to take so you can accomplish them.
3.) A financial professional can help you budget
Of course, a budget (or spending plan) is typically part of a financial plan, so it’s no surprise that a financial professional will help you set one up. They’ll analyze your spending for any issues, suggest inexpensive alternatives, and help you track your spending.
To be clear, a good financial professional will help you budget in a way that works for you. They shouldn’t be forcing you to stick to an unrealistic budget, and they should be providing encouragement and tough love along the way when it’s needed.
4.) A financial professional can help you invest
Finally, financial professionals are there to help you invest in the market and grow your wealth. This is the end goal for most people: Save enough money to live off of in retirement. Many individuals need help with this and prefer to hire someone to manage their portfolio rather than do it themselves.
A word of warning: Make sure the financial professional you hire is fee-only. This means they charge a flat fee for their services and don’t get paid a commission for recommending certain products. A fee-only financial advisor will act as your fiduciary, which means your interests come first – not theirs.
Additionally, make sure that the professional you hire has the correct certifications to help you. A CFP® (Certified Financial Planner) designation is the most common.
5.) Financial professionals are for everyone
Even financial professionals have advisors that oversee their money because it never hurts to have a second pair of eyes on your financial plans. If you’ve ever felt lost or confused about how to manage your money, look into your options, both locally and virtually.
Many professionals offer a free consultation so you can see if they’re a good fit or not. Take advantage of that and get on your way to a better financial future.