Changing Brokers/Financial Planners

By Al Thomas

Bet you have been thinking of getting rid of that broker/FP for a long time. Especially after he lost all that money of yours in 2008. Yeah, he said the market would come back and it has rallied about 30 or 40 percent, but you’re still out almost 50% from where it was.

Don’t change until you have done your homework. Cash is king right now and you are smart enough not to allow him to buy anything. You must first find a new broker or financial planner who did a better job for his customers in 2008. But how?

You can do a Google search for financial planners, but then you have to find one that knows how to make a profit or at least keep his customers out of the market when it is going down. And he doesn’t have to be in your town.

Do you really want a broker or financial planner? It would be hard to do any worse yourself than most of them. Be careful of financial planners, but a good one who charges only a fee will be easier to find than a broker. Some are CFPs, Certified Financial Planners. That doesn’t mean they know how to make money. Most have the same training as brokers – all bad. You definitely don’t want one with ties to any financial organization or brokerage company.

An independent financial planner will have an account he can show you. Also ask to see his monthly statements for the year 2008. Ask for at least 3 references. Sure he is going to give you his best.

If you have a $50,000 account ask to see several statements for accounts your size during 2008. He can black out their names and addresses. You want monthly statements for the entire year. He has them. Any time he won’t verify the info you want hang up and go to the next name on your list. It is going to take some tough digging to find a good one, but it is your money and you don’t want to lose any more of it.

Always remember the key question I have been preaching for years. Ask, “What is your exit strategy?” If you like what he says have him send it to you in writing because if he doesn’t follow it you have a just cause for return of your excess loss. Read your statement carefully every month.

Don’t believe anything any broker or financial planner tells you until it is verified by written statements.

When you do find a financial planner then you want to have your account with a discount broker not a full service broker. This will keep trading costs to a minimum.

It is your money. Don’t expect a stranger to care if you go broke.

If you are not making money with your current financial adviser it is time to start your search today.

Al Thomas’ book, “If It Doesn’t Go Up, Don’t Buy It!” has helped thousands of people make money and keep their profits with his simple 2-step method. Read the first chapter at and discover why he’s the man that Wall Street does not want you to know. Copyright 2010 Williamsburg Investment Co. All rights reserved.
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