This post is the third in a series that I have titled “1-800-NO-HELP.” Every major discount bank or financial advising company has a 1-800 phone number that clients can call when they need assistance. I call these numbers “1-800-NO-HELP” numbers, because the advice given over the phone is not personalized to the individual, and may not always be in the best interest of the client. This series explores how our ethos at Lindsey & Lindsey is to provide the opposite of “1-800-NO-HELP” – personalized, custom-built, and independent advice for our clients.
Would you give a stranger access to your bank account? Loan a friend of a friend of a friend a few thousand dollars? How close is “close enough” to trust someone with your money?
Your Money Matters
A recent survey done by U.S. Trust showed that six out of ten financially successful people have provided substantial financial support to adult members of immediate or extended family, including parents, children, siblings, and nieces and nephews. Yet, only three percent of these people have financial plans to support this.
The survey also showed that a mere 38 percent of married couples have a financial plan that addresses the cost of long-term care for both partners, and only one in ten have a plan to account for the needs of aging parents down the road.
Whether you are supporting a loved one, saving for your kids’ college funds, or planning for your retirement, the person managing your hard-earned assets should be someone who cares about meeting your personal needs. A caring advisor will ensure that you can meet your long-term goals. Independent, objective advice that isn’t swayed by financial incentives should be the goal.
Communication is Key
One of the most important aspects of a solid client-advisor relationship is effective communication. It is vital that your advisor evaluates your full range of current and future needs, and then periodically reviews your strategy to meet those needs. We communicate with our clients so that we can make appropriate adjustments to keep your plan on track. I know how important it is to see the “whites of your eyes” when we build that plan.
A study by the Financial Planning Association Research and Practice Institute in 2014 revealed that there is a lack of effective communication between financial advisors and their clients. This hinders a financial advisor’s ability to ensure their clients meet their individualized goals.
At Lindsey and Lindsey, we communicate by keeping in touch with your current goals, answering your questions, and constantly reviewing our strategy. How we communicate is just as much a part of our plan to help you build your wealth as the mutual funds and stocks we recommend.
It’s all About You
Does your financial advisor have a fiduciary duty to you? By that I mean do they have a legal responsibility to act in your best interest? You bet they do!
As a Certified Financial Planner, I have a fiduciary duty to my clients to advise them in their best interests. Your needs are my priority, not only because it’s the ethical thing to do, but because I want you to succeed.
You should feel secure and stable knowing that your advisor wants what’s best for you, not what’s going to make them the most money. We want our clients to feel safe in knowing that our loyalty belongs to them, and that the products and services we recommend are tailored to fit their unique needs. Acting in your best interest is part of our core values and is paramount in effectively managing your wealth.
Align Your Wealth with Your Life
Management consultant and college professor Yuval Bar-Or writes in Forbes that one of the biggest mistakes financial advisors make today is neglecting the individual needs of their clients. Often, advisors lack a sophisticated client service model, and don’t offer personalized plans. They segment their clients based on the amount of assets under management, instead of sitting down with each of them for in-person meetings. As a result, wealthier clients get significantly more attention than those who are less wealthy. In other words, they treat their clients as assetsinstead of as real people with real financial needs.
At Lindsey and Lindsey, you are not just another set of assets to our business. You are a person with real needs and money that serves a purpose for you and your loved ones. Our main goal is to develop a plan that aligns your wealth with your life.
We know that each client is unique, and we treat you that way. We create a personal connection with our clients so that each individual plan is customized to fit your goals at each milestone in your life. You deserve the peace of mind knowing you have the fiduciary care you’re entitled to, no matter the size of your nest egg.