What is a Christian Financial Adviser? How to Find One

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Contributor, Benzinga
July 24, 2023

If you live your life guided by the teaching of the Bible, why would financial management be any different? Christian financial advisers can help guide savings, investing, and charitable donation planning according to a biblical framework and shared values. This financial strategy can lead to long-term financial security while adhering to ethical standards and important values. Read on to learn how a Christian financial adviser can help you reach financial and charitable goals. 

What is a Christian Financial Adviser?

A Christian financial adviser is a financial professional who applies standard financial planning and investment advice with Christian values or a Biblical framework. They can work to help you create a financial plan that incorporates your values into investing, saving and charitable giving. You can choose to work with a Christian financial adviser online or in person. 

Christian financial advisers differ from other types of advisers in the principles or criteria they use for investment and savings decisions. While the same basic financial principles apply, they also take other values into consideration. Someone may choose to work with a Christian finance professional for the same values, inherent trust and the opportunity to work with someone in your community who shares common ground and values. 

In investing, many investors choose a value-based approach to promote the businesses or activities they want to see in the world. A Christian financial adviser can help you create a customized, value-based investment strategy. Working with an adviser you know is applying the same principles to their financial lives can give you greater confidence in their advice. 

Benefits of Hiring a Christian Financial Adviser

Key benefits of hiring a Christian financial adviser center around shared values and ethics. Here’s how these can benefit your wealth planning. 

1. Shared Values

A Christian financial adviser understands and embraces Christian principles and values. This shared belief system can foster a strong connection between the adviser and the client, enabling them to align their financial goals with their faith. It provides an opportunity for clients to receive financial advice that is consistent with their religious beliefs.

2. Ethical Guidance

Christian financial advisers are committed to ethical practices and may prioritize principles such as honesty, integrity and transparency. They can provide advice on investing in socially responsible companies, avoiding unethical financial practices and making decisions that align with Christian values. This emphasis on ethical conduct can give clients confidence in their financial choices.

3. Supportive Community

Engaging a Christian financial adviser can also provide clients with access to a supportive community of like-minded individuals who share similar values and goals. This community can offer additional resources, networking opportunities and encouragement on their financial journey.

What to Look for in a Christian Financial Adviser

Here’s what to consider in a Christian financial professional:

1. Professional Credentials and Expertise

Verify that the adviser has the necessary qualifications, certifications and licenses to provide financial advice. Look for designations such as Certified Financial Planner (CFP), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) or similar credentials that demonstrate their expertise in the field.

2. Faith and Values Alignment

Seek an adviser who shares your Christian faith and values. Look for evidence of their commitment to Christian principles and their ability to integrate faith with financial matters. You can evaluate this through conversations, reviews, testimonials or their mission statement.

3. Experience and Track Record

Consider the adviser's experience and track record in the financial industry. Look for advisers who have worked with clients in situations similar to yours or specialize in areas relevant to your financial goals. Request references or client testimonials and read reviews to gain insight into their past performance and client satisfaction.

4. Comprehensive Financial Planning

A good Christian financial adviser should offer comprehensive financial planning services. This includes assessing your current financial situation, setting goals, developing a personalized financial plan and providing ongoing guidance and support. They should address various aspects, such as budgeting, investment strategies, retirement planning, tax planning, insurance needs and estate planning.

5. Ethical Standards

Verify that the adviser follows a code of ethics and operates with integrity, honesty and transparency. Inquire about their approach to ethical investing, commitment to avoiding conflicts of interest and fiduciary duty to act in your best interest.

6. Communication and Collaboration

Consider the adviser's communication style and how well they listen to your needs and concerns. Look for an adviser who is responsive, clear in their explanations and willing to educate and empower you to make informed financial decisions. Collaboration and a strong working relationship are essential for a successful partnership.

7. Fee Structure

Understand the adviser's fee structure and ensure it is transparent and aligns with your expectations. Some advisers charge a percentage of assets under management, while others may have hourly or fixed fees for specific services. Clarify potential additional costs and ensure you are comfortable with the overall fee arrangement.

8. Personal Connection

It's crucial to feel a personal connection with your financial adviser. Schedule an initial consultation or meeting to assess if your values, personalities and communication styles are compatible. A good fit fosters trust and facilitates open and honest discussions about your financial goals and challenges.

Where to Find Christian Financial Advisers

You can find financial advisers with a Christian values basis through specific financial networks and online directories. Here are six places to start your search for a financial adviser to help you meet your goals.

1. Christian Financial Networks

Several Christian organizations and networks specialize in connecting individuals with Christian financial advisers. These networks often have directories or databases of advisers who align with Christian values. 

2. Referrals from Church and Faith Communities

Seek recommendations from fellow church members, pastors or leaders within your faith community. They may have firsthand experience or knowledge of Christian financial advisers who have served others in your congregation. Personal referrals from people you trust can provide valuable insights and help you find advisers who share your beliefs.

3. Online Directories and Search Engines

Use online directories and search engines to find Christian financial advisers. Many companies and directories allow you to filter for Christian advisers.

4. Professional Associations

Explore professional associations or organizations that cater to Christian financial advisers. These associations often have membership directories and resources to help you find advisers who integrate their faith into their financial practice. 

5. Financial Planning and Investment Firms

Some financial planning firms or investment companies have advisers who specialize in serving Christian clients or have expertise in faith-based investing. Research well-known financial firms or brokerage houses that offer specific services for Christian individuals or organizations. 

6. Local Networking Events and Conferences

Attend local Christian financial seminars, conferences or networking events where you can meet and connect with Christian financial advisers. These events often provide an opportunity to learn about advisers' services, ask questions and build relationships with professionals who share your values.

Creating Wealth with Values

A financial adviser can help you make the decisions and long-term planning across investment types and asset classes to build sustainable, long-term wealth. Financial advisers who incorporate and share your Christian worldview can help ensure that you promote key ethics and values to support your community and society while building wealth. Learn more about the importance of finding a financial adviser that shares your values, what to look for in a financial adviser and find some of the best financial advisers

Frequently Asked Questions

Q

How can a Christian financial adviser help me?

A

Financial advisers with a  biblical or Christian viewpoint on money can advise you to save and invest your wealth and make financial decisions that align with Christian values and priorities.

Q

Are Christian financial advisers only for Christians?

A

No, anyone can use a financial adviser with a Christian worldview. These professionals can offer general financial advice for all types of clients. 

Q

Is it expensive to hire a Christian financial adviser?

A

Hiring a financial adviser with a Christian worldview doesn’t have to be expensive. Financial advisers may charge flat fees or a percentage of your account balance, typically 0.25% to 1% per year. A famous Christian financial adviser might charge more than average, but you can also find free or lower-cost Christian financial advisers.

About Alison Plaut

Alison Plaut is a personal finance writer with a sustainable MBA, passionate about helping people learn more about financial basics for wealth building and financial freedom. She has more than 17 years of writing experience, focused on real estate and mortgage, business, personal finance, and investing. Her work has been published in The Motley Fool, MoneyLion, and she is a regular contributor for Benzinga.