Building Financial Freedom

Financial Advisors or Planners
Planning to achieve your financial goals is a complicated job that can be made easier with the help of a qualified financial advisor or planner. For a fee generally based on the nature and complexity of the plan, financial planners assess the "big picture: of your financial situation and make financial planning recommendations that are right for your particular needs. Financial professionals can address budgeting, saving, taxes, investments, retirement, and insurance. The "big picture" approach distinguishes financial planners from other professionals, like estate attorneys or accountants, who focus on a particular financial area (e.g., taxes). A qualified financial planner can help you understand how each financial decision you make relates to other financial decisions. In general, financial planners and advisors will offer the following services:

A thorough examination of your financial history, including tax returns, debts, investments, retirement information, insurance policies, and wills.
Development, in consultation with you, of a written, personal financial plan. The plan may include ways to improve investment returns, recommendations for building up retirement funds, ways to reduce tax payments, and recommendations for insurance coverage. A good financial planner will make sure you understand the proposed plan and your options.
Implementation of your plan, if you’d like it. A financial planner may refer clients to specialists (e.g., lawyers, accountants, stockbrokers) to provide services they cannot, but the financial planner should disclose any referral fees he or she might receive.
Periodic reviews of your plan, including recommended changes when needed.

You may want to hire a financial planner to draw up a comprehensive financial plan, and then decide whether to implement the plan yourself or ask your financial planner to help you put your plan into action.

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