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mutual fund based financial advisor; off topic, I know

edited September 2012 in Fund Discussions
While I admit I need a financial advisor, I want to pay by the hour, not by a percentage of my assets. (I don't presume the advisor gets smarter as my assets increase, but I could be wrong). Through my 403b, Fidelity offers advisory services at a percentage rate, which I've ignored, but they also have reps on campus (50 miles away) who offer advice, but I've never spent the gas money). My inherited paranoia prevents objective evaluation. Does anyone have experience that may be helpful?


  • edited September 2012
    Take a look at

    Advisors in this network provide services on hourly basis.
  • I've had family deal with a broker (not a fidelity-type, but a large, independent/private co) and it became very apparent that every fund used was something that "needed to be sold" from high up in the co. While there would occasionally be a good fund that would slip through the cracks, they were all load funds. The advisor/broker wasn't very active and there were times where there'd be an issue with a holding where the family members would have to initiate the call.

    They switched to a financial planner in 2008 (right before...) and the planner is fee/performance fee based and it's been a tremendously positive difference. This person is much more active (not overly, but she's earning her fees with terrific active management and pretty much "go anywhere" flexibility (using shorts, alternatives, all manner of stock/fixed income funds.

    But I think it's a matter of finding what's right for you. Are you looking to bounce ideas off of, or have someone take a more active role in helping to manage your investments?
  • I recently read an article about a financial advisor giving advice to a wannabe advisor. It may give you some ideas on what to look for in a financial advisor and some questions to ask. About halfway through the article I was reminded of C. S. Lewis' book The Screwtape Letters.

    Here's the link: Financial Advisor Advice
  • Oops! I don't know what happened to the link; here's a new try.

    Financial Advisor Advice
  • Try after reading technical discussions:

    Financial Advisor Advice
  • edited September 2012

    I had a link text with the same problem; displaying only a portion of the site. I will give this a go, as the article you linked is a very good read.
    I could not name the link and get it to display properly either; however, this link below is for the full text page.
    Thank you for posting this.

  • Thanks for the links. I'll try to find time to review them.
    Part of my problem is working about 55-60 hr in 5 d then a 14 hr week-end roundtrip home.
    Guess it depends on what fee/performance fee means in percentages and absolute money.
    Garrett does have hourly rates, but I wasn't sure how well-vetted their members are. I'm sure they mean well and accept a fiduciary role; and I think I want to bounce ideas as much as turn over the management (unless one reads MFO for entertainment).
    Can't feel good about a broker, esp after reading the Edw Jones piece. TDA also offers access to advisors, but they seemed to be asset-based. May see what Garrett has in the Arch City.
    Thanks again, back to work
  • Keep in mind that many Garrett network members do not offer ongoing investment advice and portfolio management. They tend to be more of a "checkup" advisor, in that they will review your holdings, allocation, risk profile, etc., then suggest what changes are appropriate for you. This is fine, as long as you understand that there may be no ongoing work. You pay for the time spent by the advisor, period. This is very different from what Scott discussed earlier. My suggestion is to think carefully about what your interest/time availability/education level/other factors are before making a decision. By all means interview some folks, too. Be sure to visit their web sites so that you know exactly what services are available, how they are paid (some version of fee only), and the level of experience/expertise they have. For example, a CFP credential is vital when working with a more comprehensive planner, but many of them spend much of their time managing investments. A CFA is going to have more extensive analytical background. Those are the two credentials I would look for. I would however avoid folks with insurance backgrounds (CLU, ChFC), and skip a CPA unless that person also has a CFP or CFA credential.
  • Reply to @LarryH:

    To view the complete linked reference you must do a "right click" and open the link in a new tab or window.
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