By Dana Anspach. Money Over 55 Expert
Dana Anspach has been About.com's MoneyOver55 Expert since 2008. She is also a contributor to MarketWatch as one of their RetireMentors .
Dana is the founder of Sensible Money, LLC, a fee-only (meaning they sell no financial products for a commission) professional services firm which offers retirement income planning and investment management services.
You can follow Dana at Sensible Money on Facebook or Twitter where you'll find more free content and conversations.
You can also watch one of her recorded classes on YouTube called The Key to Retirement Success .
When you choose a family physician you trust they have the proper credentials, training and experience to give quality medical advice. There is a regimented process one must follow to become a physician.
In the financial services industry there are no such requirements for education, experience or training, that determine whether you may call yourself a financial advisor. Individuals with criminal records can obtain securities licenses
as long as their crimes were not securities related.
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Obtaining a securities license simply makes it legal for a financial advisor to receive commissions on the sale of investment or insurance products: it does not mean they have the knowledge to provide quality advice.
Knowing this, how do you go about choosing a qualified financial advisor?
You must learn what credentials, compensation structure, and type of experience to look for when you seek out a financial advisor.
Throughout your search, remember you are hiring someone who should function as the "chief financial officer" for your family. You want that person to be competent and trustworthy. They should explain things to you in language and terms that you can understand.
Just as the right physician can add years to your life, the right financial advisor can add thousands of dollars to your net worth. Take the time to find the right person for the job.
Next: Understanding Financial Advisor Credentials