Importance of Good Advice

The Importance of Good Advice

In an existing climate of one-page financial plans, bargain-basement fund pricing and automated investment management tools, you may wonder what you need most to help you manage your investments.

The answer? You need good advice.

Good advice is timeless. And timely. At its essence, good financial advice never goes out of style. Its principles are permanent. It should be brave and true, and meant for you. At the same time, good advice must remain relevant in an ever-changing world. Your financial advisor should be able to help you embrace promising new opportunities and insights, while avoiding the false leads and frightening challenges that are as formidable as ever in today’s markets.

Good advice looks at the parts. And the whole. Good financial advice helps you manage your investment portfolio for preserving or increasing your wealth according to your goals. It also helps you plan, implement and manage your myriad related interests, such as taxes, insurance, estate plans, philanthropic pursuits, business interests, real estate holdings and more. Beyond that, what are your goals? How can your total wealth relate to your relationships, resources and realities? Good financial advice should bring a unifying whole to your multifaceted parts.

Good advice is personalized. And persistent. Good financial advice is essential for making good decisions. Not just in general, but for you, your money, your interests and your life. It is about being in a relationship with an advisor who is there for you, not only during the promising planning stages when everything makes sense, but when your resolve is being sorely tested in turbulent markets. Or when your own life’s events have knocked you off-course. Good advice helps you find your way when you have been sideswiped by the unexpected.

Good advice is wise. And compassionate. Good financial advice is grounded in enduring academic evidence, structured process and informed experience. But for all that, financial advice is nothing if it fails to contribute to that which brings joy to your life, protects the ones you love and reassures you in times of trouble. For this, a good advisor must not only advise you. He or she must also listen to you. This brings us to our most important point.

Good advice is in your highest financial interests, period. Above all, good advice should always and only be in your highest financial interest, even when it means the advisor must take a hit to deliver it. Around the world, various advocates, ourselves includes, are pressing for legislation to govern best-interest advice in a fiduciary relationship. Such efforts are often met with resistance from those who would prefer to continue prioritizing their own best interests. As a result, the financial advice you choose to use will probably always call for a “buyer beware” perspective. As the late Vanguard Group founder John Bogle has wryly observed, “There are few regulations that smart, motivated targets cannot evade.”

We wish that were not so. That which best serves investors ultimately best serves all of us, so we would welcome a world where good advice reigns supreme. Until then, we hope you will now know what good advice looks like when you see it. It is the kind that sees you through turbulent times and onward to your relevant financial and life goals. If this sounds dramatically different from the stock tips or market-timing tactics you are used to hearing, that is because it is.

Are you looking for some advice about how to seek good advice? Contact us anytime to open up a discussion.

FREE FINANCIAL ASSESSMENT

With all the uncertainty and volatility in today’s economy, the time is now to take a thorough look at your finances. To accurately plan for your financial future, you must first know where you currently stand. For these reasons, our Success Team at Impact Advisors Group is offering a free financial assessment for both individuals and business owners. Request yours today!

This post was written and first distributed by Wendy J. Cook.

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