It's humorous to me when clients blame their financial advisors for just about everything when it comes to their finances. Many clients fail to show even the slightest bit of interest in their own account values, policy values, and other related statements pertaining to their monies. If my clients aren't interested in their finances, it's hard to make them interested. That's why I encourage you to at least review your finances annually.
If you want to know what’s happening with your money, review a statement with your financial advisor, or at least put a call in to his or her office. When my clients call for a visit, I am eager to discuss their accounts with them. In fact, I encourage the visits from the very beginning of the sales process.
Dave, What Do I Bring For My Review?
Bring your statements, and if you have any questions, write them down before you come to the office. Statement reviews are important because they mark your progress from the previous year. They also show if your accumulation values are on track with the ledger illustrations that were signed in previous years.
A statement can be reviewed and decisions can be made on the basis of these values, so it is mightily important to review your statement. I can also take a temperature with my client to determine if they are in fact pleased with the product performance.
Again, helping clients and meeting their expectations is very important and the annual review helps us perform that vital function. As I stated previously, showing an interest in your money is also telling your advisor that you’re “on your toes” and expectations can be met much better.
Bring Your Spouse
When you meet with your advisor, he or she may suggest that you bring your spouse or partner. This is key, because the more the couples understand together, the better it goes for the surviving spouse—especially if the surviving spouse is not the financial expert.
Be sure your annual financial discussion takes place with your advisor. This helps couples understand the concepts and products that were placed in force prior to a spouse passing. In other words, everybody benefits if both spouses are present at the meeting with the advisor because then everybody is on the same page.
Lastly, you should be interested in your assets and how they accumulate. Monies are important later in life; try living on a fixed budget when you are getting on in years. Making smart choices with your money now, means you can have a higher quality retirement. When you review your assets and other financially related matters, you empower yourself and the ones who count on your good judgement.
So please consider reviewing your finances annually with your advisor; it’s solid advice and it will make a huge difference going forward with your retirement.
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