Since we moved to North Vancouver from the Philippines, my family and I have made certain adjustments to fit into the lifestyle here in the north. While we’ve had a swell time since our arrival, we were quick to learn that it was essential to keep our finances in order. That’s if we were going to enjoy our stay. We weren’t used to paying bills for heating and cooling, as it was considered more of a luxury to have air conditioning units installed in the first place.
There was so much to pay for, and we had no idea how to go about it. That’s when I considered hiring a financial planner. While I was lucky to have some cash saved up before moving, I needed help to avoid getting my family and me in money crises. So if you are considering moving to or need help with your finances in North Vancouver, you may find these few tips to be helpful.
Do your Research
So I was new in town and had no idea of who to ask for help, but decided to ask our dear friend Google. A quick search of the keyword “financial planner in North Vancouver.” turned up a host of results for different financial services consultants within the metropolis. That was where the challenge began, sifting through the pack to find the right one to cater to my needs. But all that’s required is a little bit of research, and you will get headed in the right direction.
You may want to ask around for any referral from friends or close relatives if you have one. If not, then you may have to rely on the internet. You would have to find a few financial advisors you will like to visit, but you first have to access their website to see if they would be worth it. Check for client feedback about their services and discover what others are saying about them. It is also an excellent place to see if they are fully certified to provide such services in the area.
Conduct a Visit
It is always best to discuss matters relating to your finances in person. I don’t know if this rule applies to everyone, but I wouldn’t advise you to hire an accountant, stockbroker, cashier, or a financial advisor over the phone or online. You have to meet them in person and hear how they intend to keep you from bankruptcy. It is also a good time to check them out at their office and see what kind of outfit they are operating.
It would help if you also prepared a few questions for them regarding how they propose to be of assistance. Ideally, they should provide you with ideas on how to cut back on your spending and other advisory aid to keep you out of bankruptcy. You can read up on some of the questions to ask in this website piece.
Run a Background Check
At this stage, you already have one or two financial advisers on your radar you may be willing to hire. The next step will be to run a security check on them to confirm their records are clean. If you are hiring an individual, you can ask the person if he/she has been convicted of a crime before. In the case of an agency or firm, you will have to double-check that they are not under any financial investigation.
You will also need to run a background check on their credentials to confirm they are who they claim to be. A certified financial planner (CFP) is the level you should aim for when looking to hire one. He/she has the expertise to offer advice on how to manage finances and carry out capital intensive projects.
Ask About their Pay
You don’t want to leave this one out of the entire hiring process. Price was one of the critical determiners when it came to hiring a financial adviser. I didn’t have a lot of money, and sure wasn’t going to spend the little I had on hiring a money shrink. So I will advise that you start by drawing up a budget and know how much you can shell out monthly for a financial planner. If you don’t have much, you should stay away from services that require a commission as that will be best for a later stage of your life.
A service that charges you by the hour will be alright to start with. At least, this way, you pay for what you get and don’t incur outrageous bills at the end of the month. This one served me pretty well, as it was easy to plan my visits and get the best out of each meetings.
Ask About their holiday Schedule
You should also know about your financial advisor’s travel itinerary whenever they are going on vacation. This is important so you can work around their schedule whenever you need their expertise. Many of the experts will need time off during holiday periods such as Christmas and Thanksgiving. They could also need to take an extended work leave any time of the year, so you want to find out from them exactly when.
You will find a lot of options if you decide to take your search online, which is why I advise you to begin by asking a few close pals if they have any recommendations. If you are new in town and have no one else, then the process could be a tad bit challenging. It is always more comfortable once you have decided if you need someone to advise you financially.
For starters, the type of service you require depends on your status, if you are fresh from college or new in North Vancouver, you will be better of seeking services suited for startups and low-income individuals. If you are in your midlife and want assistance in saving for your retirement, it may be best you go with an agency with a proven track record. Again, it all depends on your financial predicaments.