What to Look for in a Broker?

When it comes to investing in the stock market there are very few road signs to help you get started on your way. Most people find that the waters are very frightening indeed and filled with all kinds of new words, new meanings, and confusing contradictions. For this reason it is best to work with a financial advisor or stock broker while you are learning your way around the world of investing in the stock market and mutual funds.

A broker can help you learn the terminology and make informed decisions that are in keeping with your financial situation and your financial goals. He or she can also help you identify your financial goals and your retirement needs as well as a timeline for retirement. In other words a broker is an invaluable tool in helping you secure the financial future of your dreams.

When you are searching for the right stock broker to work with you will want to consider a few things first. You will want to find out about his history. How long has he been in the business, how long has he dealt with specific aspects of the business? What type of education does he have? Where he went to school? And what, if any, advanced degrees, education, and certifications he may have should be a nice set of questions to begin with. Many of these of course can be found on the broker’s website so you can save your time meeting with him for more important questions.

Some of the important questions might be how much time he sets aside for his clients, how much of a retainer (if any) is needed for him to take you on as a client, what are his going commission rates, financial planning rates (if applicable), and if he is going to be available to you or dodge your calls and emails. You can often get a hint about these things before you are a customer. If he dodges your calls and emails when he’s trying to get his hands on your money, chances are he will do the same once he has them on your money.

Get recommendations from friends and family and ask them the same questions about fees, commissions, and attention before you even talk to a financial advisor. The most important thing you can get from your time with a broker or advisor is a foundation upon which you can build a financial future. If you can learn as you go by asking questions of your advisor and having them answered you just might create a situation in which the two of you have a lifelong and beneficial working relationship.

This brings me to my final recommendation. Go with a broker that you feel comfortable talking to and secure handing over a large portion of your money to. This person is going to help you plan your financial future you need to feel as though you can trust him to make the right decisions for your financial dreams and goals. If you cannot then you need to seek advise and guidance elsewhere.

Finding the right financial planner or stock broker to help handle your financial needs will take a huge weight off your shoulders while allowing you the freedom to worry about today while he worries about your tomorrows.