There are plenty of resources online to help investors chose and work with financial advisors. The websites of regulatory agencies are, in fact, one of the better places to go in this regard. As a supplement to my columnand earlier blog poston financial advisors, lets highlight two of the more useful documents.
1. Of note is the quite thorough Guide to Investing: How to work with your investment advisor.
2. Also of interest is a useful list of questionsto ask prospective advisors, put together by the Canadian Securities Administrators. Here are the questions (see document for more details):
1 Are you registered with a securities regulator? Securities regulators will only register firms and individuals if they are properly qualified. Is your firm backed by an investor protection fund such as the Canadian Investor Protection Fund?
2 What is your background? Make sure they are qualified and have the right experience to give you the help you need.
3. How much do you cost and how do you get paid — salary, commission, a flat fee, or a combination
4. What kinds of products and services do you offer? Not all advisers offer the same products and services.
5. Who are your clients? It will help if the adviser has a good track record with clients who have similar backgrounds as you (and ask for references from long-time clients).
6. How will you help me reach my goals i.e. safety, income, of growth?
7. What level of service can I expect from you?