How Do You Choose a Financial Advisor?

Choose a financial planner who charges a fee as a percentage of the assets managed rather than obtaining a commission for the products he sells, recommends Laura Shin for Forbes. Another approach is to pick a financial planner who charges by the hour, says Allan Roth from AARP The Magazine.

You can find a list of certified financial planners who charge a percentage of the assets managed as a fee from professional organizations such as the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, states Kiplinger. A financial advisor who charges an hourly or fixed fee is less likely to sell you unnecessary products because he is not trying to earn a bigger commission. This ensures a better portfolio that meets your financial needs.

Other factors to take into account are the investment philosophy of the financial advisor; his credentials and certifications; and the demographic he typically advises, states Shin. By picking a financial advisor with the certification and credentials needed, you are less likely to be cheated. By ensuring the investment philosophy matches yours and the advisor has other clients in your demographic, you increase the likelihood of the financial advisor having a better understanding of your financial needs and life goals such as adequate funds for retirement, children's education and medical treatments.