How Advisors Help (Beyond Investing)

When people hear “financial advisor” they often think of someone hunched over multiple computer screens, day trading, and trying to “beat the market.” In reality, this image couldn’t be farther from the truth.

While many financial advisors help their clients create and implement an investment strategy, they certainly aren’t day traders who exclusively spend their time crunching numbers and trading stock! This specific view of advisors often lends itself to people believing that financial advisors are only for the wealthy, or for people who are nearing retirement.

There are many other ways that financial advisors help their clients beyond traditional investing - and you don’t have to be around the corner from retirement to benefit from working with an advisor!

Navigate Ongoing Financial Questions

Whether you’re a pre-retiree or are still newly growing your career, you likely have at least a dozen financial questions buzzing through your mind on any given day. Over the course of your life, these financial questions will grow and change as you do.

You’ll have questions about negotiating salary, what health benefits are best for a growing family, how to combine finances with your spouse (or how to separate finances while going through a divorce), the best way to save for retirement, whether or not you should buy a home...and these barely scratch the surface! A financial planner can help you to navigate any of the questions that are taking up your time and energy at any point in your life or career.

Assess Employee Benefits

Employee benefits can be stressful and confusing. Even when you think you’ve made the right elections, it’s tough to know for sure whether or not you’re doing everything you can to maximize the benefits your company offers.

A fee-only financial planner can help you to walk through the different benefits available to you, and guide you through the pros and cons of each. They can also help you to assess ongoing benefit needs as your life changes - whether you need to add a spouse or a child to your plan, or purchase additional life insurance beyond what your company offers.

Putting Together a Savings Plan

Your savings plan is so much more than your company 401(k). Working with a financial advisor can help you to:

  • Set short and long term savings goals (like buying a home, traveling Europe for a month, etc.)
  • Estimate your emergency fund needs
  • Help you set up a comprehensive retirement savings strategy based on your goals and lifestyle that leverages your company savings account and other investment vehicles
  • Determine whether you should start saving for your child’s (or grandchild’s) college fund - and how much you save without sacrificing your other goals

Beyond helping you set saving goals, your financial advisor helps you create a strategy to reach those goals. They also act as an accountability partner to help keep you on track.

Creating a Debt Strategy

If you’re struggling with consumer debt, student loans, a mortgage, or a loan, a financial advisor can help. Many people think that working with an advisor is all about growing wealth through investing, and while that’s one piece of the financial planning puzzle, you can’t fully commit to growing your wealth if you’re still weighed down by debt.

A financial advisor can help you put together a debt repayment plan, and figure out if you should consolidate or refinance. They can also help you to balance your debt repayment with your other financial goals - like growing your savings or enjoying your wealth in the present by spending in a way that lines up with your values.

Ready to Get Started?

If you have questions about whether working with a financial advisor is right for you, you can get in touch with us by clicking here. We’d love to talk to you about what kind of services a fee-only financial advisor can provide, and how our team can help empower you to live your best financial life.

Wood Smith Advisors, a woman-owned Registered Investment Advisor (RIA), is a fee-only financial services firm that partners with its clients to simplify their financial lives. We focus on women, entrepreneurs, and individuals with complex financial situations, providing objective and competent advice, education and services to help them develop and build their businesses and reach their financial goals. We can be reached by clicking here.

"Finance Made Simple" blog posts are intended for educational purposes and not for specific advice. Each person’s situation is different. Consult your financial advisor for advice relating to topics discussed.

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