Nearly everyone could benefit from a financial advisor handling their investments and planning for their retirement. Look for a reputable, fiduciary financial advisor with professional certifications and positive reviews from past clients. Our partners at ConsumerAffairs researched the best financial advisors in Waco to help narrow your search and find the right financial advisor to secure your financial future.
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Having a good financial plan in place for your future is imperative. If you’re just starting to think about your finances or unsure how to maximize them in the future, consider hiring a financial advisor in Waco.
Most people hire a financial advisor as they encounter a major life change, such as retirement, college graduation, marriage or divorce, but financial advisors benefit people at every stage of life. A money advisor gives you personalized advice on where to invest your money and how to properly save toward your financial goals.
To some people, paying someone for asset management seems unnecessary, but, according to experts, financial advisors typically increase return on investments by 1.5 - 4 percent.
Many advisors in Waco work with clients no matter their financial situation, but some investment advisors require minimum accounts balances of at least $100,000.
Types of financial advisors
A few years ago, the only option for hiring a financial advisor in Waco was via face-to-face consultations, but today the industry has expanded and more companies are providing the services of so-called robo-advisors.
A robo-advisor is actually automated investing software that involves little to no human interaction, although many companies do offer the opportunity to speak to an advisor if you wish. Robo-advisors are typically cheaper than human advisors but less tailored in their services.
People just starting out who want help saving for short-term goals
With a human advisor, you are more likely to get a greater return on your investment because your advisor is working specifically for you and knows your situation. However, it is often much more expensive and some advisors require higher starting balances up to $250,000 for asset management.
People with a lot of assets who want to maximize returns
Your Waco financial advisor should be a fiduciary in addition to whatever other titles they hold. A fiduciary is someone obligated by law to act on your behalf honestly, regardless of their own interests. This means that the asset management advice you get from a fiduciary financial advisor in Waco is guaranteed to be in your best interest.
However, not every financial advisor is required by law to act with your best interests in mind. Typically, a non-fiduciary offers more generic recommendations based on people like you, whereas a fiduciary considers all of your information to make sure their recommendations are ideal. Non-fiduciary advisors might also receive kickbacks for selling you certain financial products or investments.
What is the cost of a financial advisor in Waco?
Here’s an overview of the main ways financial advisors in Waco charge for the financial advisory services:
Assets under management (AUM) fee
Dependent on how much money is under management
1% - 2% of balance (human advisor)
0.25% - 0.89% of balance (robo-advisor)
Dependent on the financial products you purchase or trade
3% - 6% of transaction
Monthly or yearly fee for asset management
$2,000 - $7,500 per year
Paid per hour for short-term service
$200 - $400 per hour
Payment for a one-off service
$100 - $3,000
It’s critical that you understand how your advisor makes money because it impacts the service you receive. If you are purchasing a one-off service, such as the creation of a retirement plan, the advisor may not care as much about its success. However, if they make money based on the size of your account, which is typical for asset management in Waco, they are more likely to work harder to earn more for both of you.
However, this self-interest can work against you as well. Money advisors working for commission might be tempted to recommend frequent trades and purchases to bolster their own earnings. Fee-only advisors only make money off of the fees they charge clients to avoid this conflict of interests, while fee-based advisors earn both fees and a commission.
You may also face other costs hiring a financial advisor, such as third-party fees. For example: If your financial advisor uses mutual funds, you pay fees for those funds as well, on average 1.25 percent.
What qualifications should a financial advisor have?
Before you start working with a financial advisor in Waco, check their qualifications on the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Form ADV. Here, you can search the advisor’s history and registrations to make sure he or she is licensed and legitimate.
If they pass this test, scour the internet for reviews. This is often a great way to see how they work with customers and if customers have found their asset management services to be worth the cost. After you narrow your search to a few advisors, ask for a consultation. Many offer this option for free.
During your consultation, ask the following questions:
Are you a fiduciary?
How do you make money?
What licenses and certifications do you hold?
Do you have experience with cases like mine?
What products and services do you offer?
Are there any limitations on what you can recommend to me?
If you’re hesitant to commit to a human advisor, consider a popular robo-advisor as a safer and more
affordable option for your first financial advisor.
Facet Wealth combines robo-advisors with human support. Facet customers in Waco work directly with a licensed CFP fiduciary to create a financial plan that they manage online for a flat yearly fee. Prospective customers receive a free 30-minute consultation as well.
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