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How to choose the right financial planner

Financial Planning  |  29/05/2017  |   4 min read

A financial planner can help you reach your goals. Whether it's investments, retirement, or your taxes, they can provide you with specialist advice. But how do you find one that’s best suited to your needs?

When it comes to managing your money (and your future) it pays to shop around.  Here’s how to get started, and what you should be looking for.

Check the financial advisor register

All financial advisors need to be qualified and registered. For added peace of mind you can check a planner’s official records on the government’s MoneySmart portal. This will outline a planner’s qualifications, experience and employment history. It will also outline the areas they specialise in, and if they’ve ever been subject to disciplinary action.

Read their Financial Services Guide

All planners should present you with an FSG (Financial Services Guide) before you enter into any agreement. This booklet will outline the services they provide, the cost structure, license number, how they are renumerated, any otherfactors that may influence their recommendations, and how complaints are handled. You can find the Equip FSG located here.

Understand their fees

The FSG should outline all the fees associated with a planner, including any ongoing fees. Prices for a plan will vary wildly, and more money doesn’t mean better advice. Speaking to a few financial planners or organisations will help you get a feel for the market, and what’s on offer. Super funds like Equip allow you to deduct financial planning fees from your superannuation savings, so there’s no out-of –pocket costs.

Know how they make their money

Some financial planners receive a commission on the products they sell or recommend. We feel this creates a potential conflict of interest. Equip Financial Planners do not receive any commissions, which means the advice you receive is always independent and in your best interest. When considering a financial planner you should ask if they have a relationship with any other financial institutions, and if they stand to receive any commission from the third parties. 

Make sure you feel comfortable 

To be effective a financial planner needs to understand your needs and motivations. Whether that means more funds for overseas holidays, money to leave the grandkids, or better investment returns, it’s essential that you trust your planner and can communicate your desires and preferences to them. Beyond qualifications and experience, it’s important to find a planner that understands you. 

Where can I find out more? 

Equip hosts regular financial planning seminars where you can hear from our planners and ask them questions in a casual, obligation free environment. You can check for future events here. You can learn more about our planning process by clicking here

 

Equipsuper Financial Planning Pty Ltd (ABN 84 124 491 078, AFSL 455010) is licensed to provide financial planning services to retail and wholesale clients. It is owned by Equipsuper Financial Holdings Pty Ltd (ACN 604 515 791).

This information is provided for general information only. It does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs and should therefore not be taken as personal advice. You should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it and, if necessary, you should seek professional financial advice. Before making a decision to invest in the Equipsuper Superannuation Fund, you should read the relevant Equip Product Disclosure Statement (PDS). Past performance is not an indication of future performance. Issued by Equipsuper Pty Ltd ABN 64 006 964 049 AFSL 246383. 

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