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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Financial Advisors

    What is your experience with Financial Advisors (Planners)? At times I have considered working for Edward Jones or similar companies because financial planning is my passion. Has anyone out there tried it and succeeded or failed? Does anyone work with a company (advisor) that you would recommend? I'm wondering how may people that try to become a financial advisor actually make it and succeed and how many fail after a year or two and go back to the 8 - 5.

    I'm not really interested in hearing comments about Northwestern Mutual or other insurance companies that claim to be advisors but really try to sell high priced insurance. I'm more interested in the true financial planning companies like Edward Jones, AG Edwards, AXA, Merrill Lynch, etc......hopefully someone out there has some advice. Thanks!


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    Re: Financial Advisors

    Just keep in mind that you are mostly a salesman in that role, so the job may not synch with your interests as much as you hope. I've never worked with a financial advisor, so don't know much about it. Did go to a recruiting event for NY Life once. It was dumb. I work in investment management now.



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    Re: Financial Advisors

    I have been one for 4 years. I would wager to guess less than 25% of those that enter the industry last that long. I am still one of the newer guys in my office.


    Exaggeration is a BILLION times worse than understating.

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    Re: Financial Advisors

    I am a people-person and enjoy sales. However, going door-to-door or cold calling someone isn't the type of sales I would enjoy as I would feel like I am always bugging people. That is the main reason I have not joined the industry. I've considered Investment Management but not sure enough people interaction is there for my taste. I really enjoy helping people reach their financial goals, etc....I have been managing investments for family members and friends for years now so that cures the desire most of the time. However, i consider myself "above average" at managing investments and really think I could do a lot of good for people.


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    Re: Financial Advisors

    I have used AG Edwards in the past to roll over 401ks from previous jobs. I was not all that impressed, he seemed to only be interested in signing me up for other stuff right then, I still have an account with them and have not heard from them in years. Boy he is missing out because this is the point where I am no longer in debt and am looking to start really get into investing. But that guy is not getting my business.


    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. - Benjamin Franklin 1775

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    Re: Financial Advisors

    I guess my problem with financial advisors is, I am not sure who is in it for the long haul and who is in it to sell me whatever they make the most commision off right then. I guess the pay by the hour financial advisors may be the way to go.


    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. - Benjamin Franklin 1775

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    Re: Financial Advisors

    You're not the only one who thinks that. That is what makes it very tough for someone trying to get into the business.
    There are a lot of good advisors, but some in the business have what we call commission breath.


    Exaggeration is a BILLION times worse than understating.

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    Re: Financial Advisors

    Quote Originally Posted by wartknight View Post
    You're not the only one who thinks that. That is what makes it very tough for someone trying to get into the business.
    There are a lot of good advisors, but some in the business have what we call commission breath.

    That is what scares me, you do not know if this pesron that you are trusting your entire financial future to is in it to sell you more stuff, or to make sure your portfolio grows and your goals are met. At least when you go buy a car you know what the score is going in, with financial advisors, it is hard.


    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. - Benjamin Franklin 1775

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    Re: Financial Advisors

    Quote Originally Posted by brianhos View Post
    I guess my problem with financial advisors is, I am not sure who is in it for the long haul and who is in it to sell me whatever they make the most commision off right then. I guess the pay by the hour financial advisors may be the way to go.
    I feel the same way. It's hard to know who to trust with your future.



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    Re: Financial Advisors

    What a lot of people don't realize is that even though a lot of advisors are under the umbrella of a certain company, many have access to the EXACT same products and funds. With that in mind, if you trust someone that is in the business, they probably have access to the exact same things you can get from someone you don't know.
    There are however people who won't do business with friends. I don't know about you guys, but when I have pretty much anything done, if I know someone who does it, I go to them. I trust a lot more that a good job will be done if that person knows I know where they live :)


    Exaggeration is a BILLION times worse than understating.

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    Re: Financial Advisors

    I've been in the business since I left ISU in Dec 89. Fist off, it will take time to build your business and establish a customer base. If you don't like cold calling and knocking on doors, you'll have to come up with some other way to build your book(seminars). Second, don't expect to make a lot of $$ right off the bat. If you have a family and financial obligations, it will be tough because initially you'll have to work long hours to get yourself built up. Finally, look objectively at where were at in this economic cycle. You only need to look at the thread were an individual is having a hard time selling his house. The credit bubble is ending and recession is likely if were not already in one. My point here is that it will be much easier to build your business in a bull market as opposed to a bear. Hope this helps.



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    Re: Financial Advisors

    Some very good points already listed regarding the "wash out" rate and the time necessary to build your block of business.

    One thing I would add is that I believe it is best to affiliate with a company that does not "manufacture" any "products" and is purely a distributor. For example if you go to work for "X-Company Financial" and they have "X-Company Mutual Funds" and "X-Company Annuities", etc. you can guarantee that you will be given some level of pressure to sell the "in-house" products and that you will probably not have selling agreements with some of the other top product manufacturers (meaning you will not be able to sell their products). This sort of arrangement makes it tough to work in the best interest of your client.

    One other thing, if you are not willing to prospect then you probably will not make it in the industry. Once you get your licensing all squared away you will have to go get your clients...unfortunately, you cannot just sit at your desk and wait for the calls to roll in...you have to get clients through seminars, cold calling, referrals, etc. And you would be wise to remember that your list of family members is only so long (many of these companies instruct newbies to prospect the family first).



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    Re: Financial Advisors

    I work for an independent B/D and RIA. Not saying that you can't make it as a finanical planner, but you have a better chance of being successful in this industry as an asset gather and financial planning is part of your services. If you want to do mostly just financial planning...AMeriprise is probably your best bet, because that is there #1 focus. HOwever I feel as an overall shop they are not so good. I think they are expensive to clients and the quality of service is not too good.

    If you are new to the business I do recommend going the Edward Jones route, until you get an established book of business then I would go independent and get the high payouts. Jones has a pretty good reputation, but they are not known for their finanical planning, but more as being a "broker"



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    Re: Financial Advisors

    If you are going into the industry, make sure you enter an arrangement in which you are comfortable. In other words, if you aren't comfortable earning your paycheck by selling investments, work as a fee-based advisor. Too many times in this and other fields, the income incentive is not in complete alignment with the needs of the customer or your own. Make sure you find a situation where you can take care of the customer and sleep well at night knowing you did the right thing. As in any profession, there is the full range of people, from great, virtuous advisor down to lowly maggot weasel.

    It is an interesting field and a lot of people need help. If you are passionate about it and find a company and arrangement you like, you are much less likely to find yourself looking for a new gig. Sorry, not much advice on a specific company.



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    Re: Financial Advisors

    At this point, I am thinking I need to get an advisor here pretty soon. I am applying for a much higher position in my company, and if I was to get it, my income would probably rise nicely also. Since I am used to living on my current salary, I want to take the difference and invest it all. Anyone know any good advisors in the dsm area? I guess I am looking for advice on who to use that is trustworthy since this is a huge decision for me.


    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. - Benjamin Franklin 1775

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