If you’re planning for retirement, or have recently inherited some money and don’t know what to do with it, you might be in need of professional advice. If that’s the case, then you might be wondering “where can I find a good financial planner near me”?
Finding a financial advisor near you can start with a simple Google search.
A search for “financial planner near me” can turn thousands of results.
But this may be overwhelming. And you may not know which one to trust. In other words, you have to know where to look.
That’s why we have compiled 5 of the best places to find a financial planner near me to help you with your finances.
Want help with your money? SmartAsset’s free matching tool can help find you a financial advisor near you.
What do financial planners do and do you need one?
Before we jump into the best places to find a financial planner in your local area, we need to answer two questions:
1) What does a financial planner do? And do you need a financial advisor?
A financial planner or a financial advisor is a professional who provides advice on some or all areas of investing, retirement planning, estate planning, tax, and risk management, etc.
More specifically, a good financial planner can:
- suggest ways to manage your money;
- explain risks of investments;
- implement an investing strategy for you;
- help prioritize your goals;
- set up a retirement savings plan;
- planning for big expenses such as a wedding or a buying home.
Do you need a financial planner?
You may not need a financial planner if you’ve just started out with saving money.
Or, if you’re just trying to pay off credit card debts, you may not need one.
That is because, these are simple things that you can do on your own and it’s because financial planners do not come cheap. You’re better off paying for professional advice for more complicated matters.
But if you’re looking to invest in the stock market, planning for retirement, want to build wealth, or buying a house, an independent financial planner may be an invaluable resource.
Therefore, looking for a financial planner nearby makes financial sense.
Best Places to Find a Financial Planner Near Me
Are you looking for an independent financial advisor nearby, but don’t know where to find one? Below are the seven places to get a good financial planner near me to help manage your money.
1. SmartAsset’s free matching tool
SmartAsset’s financial advisor matching tool is perhaps the best way to find an independent financial planner who you can trust.
That is because each advisor has been vetted by SmartAsset and is legally bound to act in your best interest.
The free matching tool will pair you up to 3 financial planners near you based on your needs.
The way it works is very simple:
- Answer a few questions: you let Smart Asset know what you’re looking for in a financial planner, so they can find a match near you
- See your local financial planner matches: based on your answers, Smart Asset will match you with up to three financial advisors in your area.
- Book appointments: you can use Smart Asset’s online tools or concierge service to book an appointment.
If you’re ready to be matched with local financial planners that will help you achieve financial goals, get started now.
2. The Garrett Planning Network
GarrettPlanningNetwork.com provides a map of the United States where you can click on a state and find a list of local financial planners.
You can also type in your zip code in the search field to find a financial planner near you.
3. The National Association for Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA)
NAPFA is another popular way to find a financial planner near you. It’s easy and quick.
At the very top of their page, you’re able to enter your zip code or location. Then, you click on a button at the very top entitled “Find Advisors Near Me.”
You have an option to save your advisors to a favorite list and then send them an email about your financial planning needs.
4. Search Engines
Without a doubt search engines are the quickest ways to find a financial planner nearby.
Choose your favorite search engine and type in the following terms:
- Financial planner near me
- Financial advisor near me
- Fee-only financial planner
- fee-only financial planner near me
- Expertise financial planner
- How to find a financial planner
You will be amazed how many results your search has gathered.
You will see that, after searching for “financial planner near me,” instead of results of actual names of financial planners in your area, you will get websites with different advisors.
That is because, not all financial planners have their own websites. Or it could be that they’re not independent financial advisors and work for firms.
That does not mean your “financial planner near me” results will not be helpful. It means that you will need to know which sites are the most useful.
That can make it hard to choose the right financial planner.
So, what’s the best way to find a financial planner near me without feeling overwhelmed?
Use the SmartAsset’s free matching tool. With the tool, you’re able to see nearby listings and find your financial advisor among the 3 financial planners near you.
Searching for financial planners or advisors near you is much easier with SmartAsset. You simply answer a few questions and the tool will match you with up to three (3) financial advisors in your local area.
5. Ask family, friends, or colleagues for recommendations
Besides your “financial planner near me” search results, use a financial planner who has worked for a friend, colleague or family member in the past for an extended period of time.
If they had a good experience with them, you’re more likely to experience the same. So, take advantage of those sources to find a local financial planner. However, understand that just because your friends had a good experience does not necessarily mean you will. Your circumstances might be different.
Select your financial planner by asking several questions
Finding a good financial planner near me takes time and effort and your search should go well beyond referrals from family, friends, and colleagues.
In fact, you should dedicate as much time as if you were looking for a primary doctor whom you can trust with your physical well-being.
In other words, your search shouldn’t stop once you find a financial advisor. You need to make sure you select the best one by asking several questions.
Here are some questions to ask your potential financial advisors:
What are your qualifications?
Anyone can call themselves a financial advisor or financial planner. So it’s crucial to ask important questions to know if they are well qualified.
Knowing where they attend undergraduate and graduate schools is important.
It’s also good to know if they are certified.
A good financial planner usually has credentials such as certified financial planner (CFP).
Financial planners who are certified are regulated and are required to take courses in subjects such as retirement planning, financial planning, etc.
How much do you charge for your services?
Financial advisor costs should be on your top list of questions to ask them. That is because financial advisors have different fee structure and they are not cheap. Some fee-only financial planner charges hourly.
Other financial advisors charge on percentage or commission basis. So ask them: how much will you charge me hourly?
For more information on financial advisor cost, read: How Much Does A Financial Advisor Cost?
Are you a fiduciary advisor?
It’s important to know if your potential advisor is fiduciary. A fiduciary advisor is legally bound to put your needs before their own.
In other words, they’re legally bound to act in your best interest. Whereas a financial advisor who is not a fiduciary is bound to provide you products that are suitable for your needs, but which may not be the very best for you.
What type of clients do you typically work with?
It’s important to select a financial planner with the experience and expertise in the kind of advice you’re seeking.
For example, if you’re deciding on what retirement plan, such as a 401k plan or an IRA, to set up, you want a financial planner who has advised other people on the same topic.
If you’re starting a business, ask your financial advisor if they have experience in handling similar clients.
So questions such as their qualifications, specialty areas, typical clients, fee structure, are important.
Have you been subject to disciplinary action?
Now this is one of the questions you might not want to ask the financial advisor directly. To avoid offending your potential advisor, do your due diligence by doing your own research.
Bottom line: financial planner near me
How do I find a financial planner near me? Finding a good advisor in your area is easy. But you have to know where to look.
The best places to find ones are through the SmartAsset’s free matching tool, the National Association for Personal Advisors (NAPFA), Garrett Planning Network, recommendations from people you know, from your bank or financial institution.
The bottom line is you have to do your own diligence and choose the best financial planner for your needs.
Are you looking for a fee-only financial planner? What do you do to find a financial planner near you?
More articles to help you find the best financial Planner near me.
Speak with the Best Financial Planner Near Me
You can talk to a financial advisor who can review your finances and help you reach your goals (whether it is making more money, paying off debt, investing, buying a house, planning for retirement, saving, etc).
Find one who meets your needs with SmartAsset’s free financial advisor matching service. You answer a few questions and they match you with up to three financial advisors in your area. So, if you want help developing a plan to reach your financial goals, get started now.