03 Jun Who should you take financial advice from?
We thought that we would blog this week about what to look for when you’re getting financial advice. When you get financial advice it’s really important that you have the right information. Your entire future is at stake and nobody wants to make the wrong decision or take the wrong advice.
How long has the advisor been in the industry?
This applies to mortgage brokers as well. How long have they been in the business? The longer they’ve been in the industry, the more they’ll know. They’ll have come across a variety of situations and will have answers to most questions. If they don’t have the answer to the question, they’ll have the contacts to get the question answered. You may have a question relating to getting a home loan after starting a new job, or about buying your second property. It’s essential you take advice from the experts as thousands, if not millions of dollars, is at stake.
Who do they work with?
A mortgage broker or a financial advisor who has lots of relationships in the financial field is better equipped to help you out. They know the requirements of different lenders and can advise you accordingly. Working with different lenders means they have access to updated information. From a practical point of view, it means that if one lender doesn’t accept your loan application, another might. Your broker can advise you accordingly without you applying yourself. Applying direct can hurt your credit rating because each time a credit check is run on you, you will lose points. That impacts your ability to get a loan in the future.
What certifications do they have?
Up until a few years ago, financial advisors were not required to have industry accreditation. Due to dodgy behaviour in the industry a requirement was introduced. At the very minimum they should have the RG-146 license which gives them the ability to give advice on financial products. They may also hold tertiary qualifications in Finance, Accounting or Economics. Accreditation and a tertiary qualification indicates to you that they are serious about what they do and that they understand the impact of the decisions. It’s evidence that they have the theoretical knowledge they need to advise clients on financial products such as home loans.
What area do they specialise in?
Do they specialise in an area? Although it can be good going to a generalist because they have knowledge in a range of areas, you may want a specialist, especially if your situation isn’t like others. You’ll want someone who is equipped to advise you properly. A specialist may be better for your situation, so it’s always helpful to ask questions upfront so you know you’re dealing with the right person.
What’s their track record?
There’s a reason mortgage brokers, financial advisors and other service providers have testimonials on their websites. It’s because it reassures future clients that they offer high quality service. It demonstrates that they have had success in the past and that they can build positive relationships.
These are just some of the things that you should be looking out for when you are considering who you want to get financial advice from.