Financial advisors are there to help you build wealth while simultaneously managing risk. They can provide advice, balance your investment portfolio, and generally put your interests first to help you enjoy financial success.
While most financial advisors and brokers do right by their clients, a small percentage actively try to scam as much money from their clients as possible. If your advisor is doing some of the following things, it might be time to take legal action.
They’re Rushing You Into Making Financial Decisions
While you might not jump into suing a broker just for telling you to act fast regarding making a financial decision, it can sometimes be a warning sign that a broker or advisor is not entirely genuine in their intentions.
High-pressure sales tactics aren’t necessarily scams, but they might indicate that an advisor wants you to invest in something that might not be entirely above board or purely to make your money work for you.
They’re Vague About How They Make Money
Financial advisors aren’t helping you make money out of the kindness of their hearts. They make money while making financial decisions on your behalf. However, financial advisors can earn a living in different ways, such as receiving a commission on mutual funds or charging fees to your account.
You’re trusting someone else with your hard-earned money, so knowing what they’re doing with it and how they’re making their own money from it is important. When you meet with a potential advisor to see if they suit your needs, don’t be afraid to ask them how they’ll pay themselves. Legitimate, trustworthy advisors typically provide information about commissions and fee structures.
Their Credentials Don’t Check Out
Anyone can say they are a financial advisor, but that doesn’t mean they’re qualified to hold this title. Research your preferred advisor to make sure they are who they say they are. This can be as easy as visiting the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards website and going through the verification process to confirm your advisor’s CFP certification. You can also visit the BrokerCheck website to learn more about brokers and brokerage firms and whether they are registered by law to sell securities and offer investment advice.
They Tell You to Put Your Money In One Place
A particular investment opportunity might be so lucrative that you can’t think of any reason why you wouldn’t invest your money. However, a reputable financial advisor would tell you not to empty your bank account into it.
Portfolio diversification can be important for riding the ups and downs of the investment world, and an ‘all eggs in one basket’ approach can have severe repercussions. If your advisor tells you to put everything you have into a specific investment option, consider shopping around for a new one.
They Make Unrealistic Promises
As lucrative as many investment types can be, there’s no such thing as a risk-free, high-reward investment. If an advisor guarantees high rewards without any risk, they’re potentially trying to involve you in something as untrustworthy as a Ponzi scheme.
There are plenty of honest and hard-working financial advisors and brokers, but a few dishonest ones ruin it for the rest. If you’re concerned about the integrity of your broker and the decisions they’ve been making, now might be the right time to shop around for a new advisor or even consider legal action.