Looking for a female financial advisor? You're not alone in wanting to diversify your options when it comes to financial guidance. Although the financial advisory field has been traditionally male-dominated, there are compelling reasons to consider a female advisor.
Women in the field often excel at relationship-building and active listening, qualities that are crucial for understanding client needs and providing top-notch advice. Additionally, female advisors frequently adopt investment strategies focused on long-term gains and downside risk protection, which can be advantageous.
These qualities and strategies can make a significant difference in your investment performance over time. If you're interested in exploring this avenue, you're in the right spot. Keep reading to learn how to find a female financial advisor and discover the unique benefits they can offer.
Steps for Finding a Female Financial Advisor
Now that you're convinced of the benefits of working with a female financial advisor, let's dive into the steps to find one that aligns with your financial goals.
Step 1: Define Your Financial Goals
It’s worthwhile to spend some time contemplating and defining your financial goals. Yes, a financial advisor can help you define your financial goals, but you’ll have a better picture of the type of advisor you want to work with if you take on some of the initiative yourself.
Start by thinking about where you want to be financially in the short run, medium run and long run. Maybe you want to start building a budget or set aside some savings in the next few months. Down the line, you may be hoping to pay off debt, buy a home or invest in a business. Long term, you should be focused on retirement.
Step 2: Understand How a Financial Advisor Works
Your relationship with your financial advisor begins with an open and honest discussion of your financial situation — including debt, assets, cash flow — and financial goals. Your financial advisor will consider where you are, where you want to be and how to help you achieve your goals. Your advisor may also identify financial areas that could use some improvement.
A financial advisor will offer suggestions and recommendations unique to your personal situation. She will work with you to create a plan and develop strategies for attaining your goals. This could mean creating a savings or estate plan, investment strategy, tax strategy, helping you refinance debt, cover insurance needs, build an emergency fund or just about anything else.
Financial advisors also help you build wealth for the long term by investing money and minimizing risk. They may offer investment recommendations or manage your entire investment portfolio.
It’s important to remember that your relationship with your financial advisor is ongoing. Although you can use their services on a one-off basis, most people receive the bulk of the benefits by checking in with their advisors periodically. You may meet with your advisor every month or quarter to discuss your progress and whether your financial plan should be adjusted.
Step 3: Compare Prices, Commissions and Fees
Most financial advisors are paid through client fees, commissions or a combination of the two. Client fees can be charged hourly or on a retainer basis. Most financial advisors charge between $150 to $400 an hour, which can total $2,000 to $5,000 depending on how much service you need.
Many financial advisors charge an asset-based management fee. This fee is a percentage of a client's assets the advisor will manage. An asset-based management fee is usually charged on an annual basis and is typically about 1% of the entire investment portfolio. If you have a large sum of money to invest, your financial advisor may be willing to charge you less than 1% annually.
Financial advisors can also earn commissions for certain transactions or for selling you specific investment products. Advisors who work on a commission basis might have an incentive to promote products that generate a larger commission for themselves.
For this reason, it’s important to work with a fiduciary advisor or someone who is legally obliged to act in your best interests. Many people may opt for a fee-only financial advisor, to avoid potential conflicts of interest altogether.
Step 4: Get Matched With a Female Financial Advisor
Ready to get matched with a female financial advisor? Remember to have your financial goals in mind as you start your search. If you’re trying to pay off debt, work with a professional that specializes in this field. If you’re hoping to plan for a family or save for retirement, focus on advisors who regularly work with clients in similar situations.
Pros and Cons of a Financial Advisor
As you contemplate working with a financial advisor, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons. While financial advisors can help you improve your overall financial well-being, they may not be a good fit for everyone. Here’s what you should know.
Pros of a Financial Advisor
- Expertise and investing knowledge: Financial advisors are professionals in their field. They’ve spent years helping people from all walks of life plan their finances and have in-depth experience with market fluctuations.
- Personalized financial planning and investment strategy: Financial advisors cater to you and offer recommendations based on your personal situation.
- Less risk: Financial advisors create an investment strategy based on your risk preference and can help you stay on track even during market downturns.
- Minimize taxes: Financial advisors can offer remedies that allow you to stay invested while minimizing your tax burden.
- Ease: Managing your finances can be overwhelming. Financial advisors allow you to take a hands-off approach while still keeping you informed as you make critical decisions.
Cons of a Financial Advisor
- Possible conflict of interest: Unless you’re working with a fiduciary, fee-only financial advisor, there may be some conflict of interest risks.
- High fees for a small investment: If you’re not investing much money, it may not be worthwhile to work with an investment advisor charging an asset-based portfolio management fee. You might be better off with a one-time consultation.
Find a Financial Advisor
Looking for more information on how to find a financial advisor? Here are our top choices for the best financial advisors. Take a look!
What to Know Before You Hire a Financial Advisor
You’ll want to shop around for different financial advisors before you decide on which one to work with. Most financial advisors offer a free initial consultation. Use this time to ask them questions about their qualifications, investment philosophy, whether they’re a fiduciary and how they get paid. Ultimately, go with the investment advisor you feel has a good understanding of your situation and goals.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you really need a financial advisor?
No, but working with a financial advisor brings many benefits. In fact, many people choose to maintain an ongoing relationship with their financial advisor because typically, the benefits outweigh the costs.
What percentage of financial advisors are female?
According to the Bureau of Labor statistics, approximately 31% of U.S. financial advisors are female.
How to find a CFP professional who specializes in LGBTQ communities?
To find a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) who specializes in serving LGBTQ communities, individuals can visit the CFP Board’s website and use their search tool. They can also seek recommendations from LGBTQ advocacy organizations, community centers or financial planning networks. It is important to interview potential wealth advisors to ensure they understand the unique financial needs and goals of LGBTQ individuals or couples.