Basinger Investment Group, LLC

CONNECT

Address:


AHWATUKEE
5010 East Warner Road
Suite 208
Phoenix, AZ 85044

SCOTTSDALE
6991 East Camelback Road
Suite D200
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
(by appointment)

Phone:

(480) 855-3993

Fax/Other:

(480) 855-7661

5 critical questions to ask before choosing a financial advisor

  1. What are your qualifications and credentials?

A critical first step in choosing a financial advisor is to check their qualifications. Check for securities licenses and investment advisor licenses that allow for comprehensive advice with a variety of investment products. For example, a Series 6 license allows for the limited sell of mutual funds and variable annuities but not individual stocks, bonds, or private placements.

Go to the public U.S. Government website www.sec.gov/investor for investor education on what securities exams are required of the different types of financial advisors.

In addition to securities licenses, there are many other designations, but the most significant credential to look for is the CFP®, Certified Financial Planner designation. A CFP® has passed a rigorous board exam administered by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards about the specifics of personal finance. CFP’s must also commit to continuing education on financial matters and ethics classes to maintain their designation.

 

  1. How will I pay for your services?

Financial advisors can be paid in several ways: through fees, commissions or a combination of both.   Your financial advisor should make it clear how they will be compensated for the services they provide, whether they charge a percentage of  assets under management (fee for advice), or whether they make commissions from selling a specific product. Not only should you know how much the services will cost, but it can help determine whether they have an incentive to sell certain products.

 

  1. What types of investments and financial services do you offer?

There is no one perfect investment.  If there were, everyone would be in that investment!

Make sure you are working with a financial advisor who has access to a variety of investments and services that can help you meet your goals.  Some advisors are merely investment advisors and only provide advice on investments, while others do comprehensive financial planning around retirement, insurance, estate and tax planning.  Go with someone whose offering best suits your needs.

 

  1. What is your investment approach? 

Check for a balanced approach where investment solutions are matched to reasonable financial goals, time horizons, and acceptable levels of risk. Time-honored principles of diversification and thorough asset allocation do not guarantee future results but historically have shown to be an excellent start. Beware of market beating brags. If you have an initial meeting with an advisor and you hear predictions of market beating performance, get up and walk away. No one can safely make such guarantees.

Also, get clarification if the advisor would work with you in a fiduciary capacity or a suitability standard. As a fiduciary, the advisor pledges to act in the investor’s best interests at all times. While the suitability standard requires an investment be at least suitable for an investor’s profile. Some firms are dually registered to provide service under a fiduciary or a suitability standard.

 

  1. Have you ever been publically disciplined for any unlawful or unethical actions in your career?

The CFP® Board, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the state insurance and securities departments each keep records on the disciplinary history of financial advisors.  Ask which organizations they are regulated by and contact these groups to conduct a background check.

This can be viewed at the public website http://brokercheck.finra.org

FINRA’s BrokerCheck Obtain more information about our firm and its financial professionals
FINRA’s BrokerCheck Obtain more information about our firm and its financial professionals