Expect More from Your Advisor

We all know just how tough it is to find truly good professionals. Whether it�s a doctor, dentist, or attorney, it�s hard to know if you have a good one until you have worked with that person for a while. Your financial advisor can make this process a little easier.

People expect a financial advisor to provide expert advice about investments, retirement planning, insurance, and taxes. At BWFA, we believe a financial advisor should do all those things and much more. An advisor should act as a leader, marshaling a team of professionals to address the full array of your financial needs.

You will often have needs that fall outside the expertise of your financial advisor, but still have a significant impact on your finances. These could include buying and selling real estate, obtaining a mortgage, creating wills and trusts, and addressing long-term care issues for you or a loved one. In each of these cases, your financial advisor can add value by ensuring that you work with high-quality professionals and that the services you receive fit in with your overall financial plan.

Over the years, we have had the opportunity to work with many other professionals. Because we are fee-only and have no fee-sharing arrangements, we refer our clients only to those professionals whom we have found to be highly competent and who consistently provide good service.

You will see in this issue of our newsletter we have called upon some of these professionals. In the Retirement and Estate Planning section, we worked with Arlene Saks-Martin, a geriatric care manager, to create a meaningful article on planning for long-term care. In the Investment section, we spoke with Donna Barkman of Coldwell Banker in Ellicott City and Tim Rhodes of Coldwell Banker in Bethany Beach to bring you different perspectives on the real estate market.

And now BWFA is expanding its professional network by asking clients to provide us with information about exceptional professionals with whom they have done business. This can include any type of professional, from architect to caterer to web developer. If you have an experience you would like to share, or are looking for a professional referral, please contact us.

For those consumers who do not yet have a financial advisor they are comfortable with, we urge them to contact the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) at 1-888-333-6659. NAPFA does more than any other professional organization to ensure the competency of its members, and to steer consumers to experiencsed, fee-only financial professionals who can provide the independent financial advice consumers are looking for.