Most people don’t wake up and say, “Today, I am going to get a financial advisor.” Frankly, I wish that happened more often. I wish I wasn’t able to put the phone down before it rang again with prospective clients wanting a comprehensive financial planning relationship. Now maybe you’ve considered working with an advisor but aren’t sure if the timing is right. Maybe you’re a pharmacist who just passed your boards, a promising attorney, a 30-something whose life is starting to really get busy, or a young professional who wants to make sure you’re doing the right things. In my opinion, there is no perfect time to start, however I strongly believe that it’s when you’re ready to start taking your finances seriously.
I love pizza and I like analogies, so let’s combine those two. I can get in my car, drive to the grocery store and buy flour, yeast, some spices, tomato sauce, and mozzarella cheese. I can then go back home with all of my ingredients, and start to make a pizza. After a few hours, I’ll have a “pizza”! I’m no chef and can’t tell you if the pizza will turn out good or not, and if I choose to make another pizza I can’t promise any consistency between the two pies. All of that is time consuming, the end result isn’t clear, I’ve made a mess and have to clean, I don’t know if I’ve done everything right or missed something, and I still might have to go out to eat afterwards if I did a bad enough job. This is what I’ll compare to DIY financial planning!
I would much prefer to call LaRosa’s and order a pizza. I know exactly what I like, the quality of the pizza is high and consistent with my last visit, I don’t have a mess to clean up, and I’m not going to leave hungry. So much simpler for me and I can spend more time doing things I enjoy. This is what I’ll compare to working with an advisor.
I know that if I go to LaRosa’s for pizza, I will probably pay a little more, but I’m paying for convenience, quality, and consistency. If I chose the DIY route, I’ll have to spend more time, have more headaches, and will end up making mistakes and redoing things. I’ll skip that nightmare and just order a pizza!
If you believe in delegating tasks and responsibilities, believe that your time is best spent doing what you love, and understand the value of good advice, then I feel you are someone who would benefit from working with an advisor. If you’re a die-hard DIY’er, that’s okay; to each their own!
My battle isn’t in getting someone who doesn’t think they need an advisor to want one, rather it’s in being in the right place at the right time when someone is looking for an advisor to help them. Be on the lookout for a future article about how to choose a financial advisor!