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When searching for a Financial Advisor, here are some key things to look for

Looking for a Financial Advisor can be a long and overwhelming process, from people trying to push Whole Life policies to advisors not returning your phone calls. To help make your search easier, here are a few simple questions to ask the Financial Advisors you are interviewing.

What are the account minimums at your firm?

Here at Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers, it is an integral part of our mission to help people as they start the wealth-building process. This is one of the reasons why we use Charles Schwab as our custodian; they do not require minimal account balances or have fees associated with smaller accounts. This allows you, as a client, to open accounts starting at a $0 balance to slowly build that Roth IRA over time to help you win, just like the Tortoise over the Hare. It would be inconsistent with Dave Ramsey’s philosophy for us to say, “Now that you are on baby step 4, take $10,000 from your emergency fund to start your investments.”

Are you a Fiduciary?

This is an important question that many financial advisors try hard to avoid or downplay the answer to. For example, some financial advisors will claim to be fiduciaries, but they mean they are fiduciaries with financial planning. That means they try to keep your best interest in mind while building your financial plan. However, when they go to manage your money, they are putting you into funds that provide them with profit sharing or using proprietary products (funds that are developed by the company that is helping you manage your funds.) We do not use any of those funds or products at Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers, which means we avoid that conflict of interest.

Being a fiduciary is the highest standard in the industry, so the Financial Advisor you are interviewing must always be a fiduciary.

How do you get paid?

This is something you want to make sure your advisor can easily explain. At Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers, we keep it simple and transparent. We charge based on a percentage of the assets managed, and that percentage only goes down the more you have, thereby making us more efficient as a firm. This fee structure is essential because it aligns the advisor's and client's interests, incentivizing the advisor and their team to grow your assets over time. Your success becomes your advisor's success, putting us on the same team.

How do we communicate, and how quickly can I expect a response?

Technology has dramatically enhanced our ability to communicate with clients. At Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers, we try hard to make it easy for clients to communicate with us. When you do reach out, we strive to respond within the same business day, but if we cannot, for some reason, we will respond as soon as possible the following day.

You can also access our online calendar on our website and schedule meetings with us at your convenience.

How do I know what you are doing for us?

This is an important part of our Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers philosophy, which our Chief Investment Officer emphasizes. We provide you with weekly blog posts written by our team, also sent in our “Better Than I Deserve” newsletter. Most importantly, John-Mark Young produces a weekly video with a market update in the “What we learned in the Markets” video, and Amanda Sharratt produces a “Question of the Week” video answering a question from one of our clients.

What do you provide to allow me to track the progress of my portfolio?

A benefit to using Charles Schwab is that they provide you, the client, with a helpful app for your phone that allows you to track the daily progress of your account. If you make a contribution, you can know that we got it in the market within a timely manner, and it’s not just sitting 100% in cash missing the growth or ability to buy at a sale. In addition to Charles Schwab, we provide you with Morningstar, a 3rd party research firm. Morningstar provides you with a monthly report of all of your accounts. If you are married, you and your spouse’s accounts will be combined into one report. Not to mention, Morningstar also provides you with research on the funds we have in your portfolio to make sure we are not putting you in 1 or 2-star funds.

We are happy to help

We understand that finding a Financial Advisor you can trust can be an overwhelming process, but hopefully, this article has provided some helpful questions to ask when you are interviewing. If you want to discuss your financial questions, one of our Financial Advisors would happily help.


March 9, 2023

Logan Doup

Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers is an SEC-registered investment adviser firm.  The information presented is for educational purposes only and intended for a broad audience.  The information does not intend to make an offer or solicitation to sell or purchase any specific securities, investments, or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and are not guaranteed.  Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers reasonably believes that this marketing does not include any false or misleading statements or omissions of facts regarding services, investment, or client experience. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers has a reasonable belief that the content will not cause an untrue or misleading implication regarding the adviser’s services, investments, or client experiences. Please refer to the firm’s ADV Part 2A for material risks disclosures.

Past performance of specific investment advice should not be relied upon without knowledge of certain circumstances of market events, the nature and timing of the investments, and relevant constraints of the investment. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers has presented information in a fair and balanced manner. 

Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers is not giving tax, legal or accounting advice, consult a professional tax or legal representative if needed. 

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