Working with a Financial Advisor: Things to Know

The world of 50 years ago was a lot different than it is today. An individual often worked at the same job all his or her adult life, lived in the same house, and stayed married to the same spouse. In those days, too, one spouse could support a family, paying for college ordinarily didn't require taking out a second mortgage, and people could look forward to retiring on Social Security and possibly a company pension.

Today, your hopes and dreams are no different. Like most people, you probably want to buy a home, put your children through college, and retire with a comfortable income. But the world has become a more complex place, especially when it comes to your finances. You may already be working with financial professionals—an accountant or estate planner, for example—each of whom advises you in a specific area. But if you would like a comprehensive financial plan to help you secure your future, you may benefit from the knowledge of a financial advisor.

Services a financial advisor may provide

Even if you feel competent enough to develop a plan of your own, a financial advisor can act as a sounding board for your ideas and help you focus on your goals, using his or her broad knowledge and skills in specific areas such as estate planning and investments.

A financial advisor can be a partner in your financial journey, supporting you with decision-making and investment advice, while helping you build your confidence in your own ability to manage your money. He or she can help you see the big picture and help get you started in the whole process, or meet you where you can fine-tune your current plan to better fit your short- and long-term goals.

Specifically, a financial advisor may help you:

  • Set financial goals
  • Determine the state of your current financial affairs
  • Develop a plan to help meet your financial goals which addresses your current financial weaknesses and builds on your financial strengths
  • Make recommendations about specific products and
  • Monitor your plan and regularly evaluate its progress
  • Adjust your plan to help meet your changing financial goals, life events, and to accommodate changing investment markets or tax laws

How are financial advisors compensated?

When it comes to compensation, advisors fall into four categories:

  • Salary based--You pay the company for which the advisor works, and the company pays its advisors a salary
  • Fee based--You pay a fee based on an hourly rate (for specific advice or a financial plan), or based on a percentage of your assets and/or income
  • Commission based--The advisor receives a commission from a third party for any products you may purchase
  • Commission and fee based--The advisor receives both commissions and fees

    You'll need to decide which type of compensation structure works best for you, based on your own personal circumstances.

When is it time to consult a financial advisor?

  • Getting married or divorced
  • Having a baby or adopting a child
  • Paying for your child's college education
  • Buying or selling a family business
  • Changing jobs or careers
  • Planning for your retirement
  • Developing an estate plan
  • Coping with the death of your spouse
  • Receiving an inheritance or a financial windfall 

In these situations, a financial professional can help you make objective, rather than emotional, decisions.

However, you don't have to wait until an event occurs before you consult a financial advisor. A Farm Bureau financial advisor can help you develop an overall strategy for approaching your financial goals that not only anticipates what you'll need to do to reach them, but also remains flexible enough to accommodate your evolving financial needs.

Find a Farm Bureau advisor and start the conversation today.



From materials prepared by Broadridge Investor Communication Solutions, Inc.

Advisory services offered through FBL Wealth Management, LLC.

Neither the Company nor its agents give tax, accounting or legal advice. Consult your professional adviser in these areas.