Asking the Right Questions
By: Alexander Roig, November 7, 2014
I recently had a water leak in my house, so I asked a number of friends and family members for the name of a trustworthy plumber. Unbeknownst to us, our upstairs shower drain had been leaking, and eventually the water leaked through the ceiling on the first floor on to the furniture. We had quite the mess on our hands. A few friends gave me the same name, so I gave Joe the plumber (yes, that is his real name) a call. I explained my situation, and he came to the house a few days later to assess the problem. I found myself peppering him with questions, such as “What is broken?’ “Why is it broken?” and “How do we fix it so this doesn’t happen again?”
I wanted to gain knowledge from his expertise while I watched him fix the problem. He answered each one with a smile on his face, and things were fixed in no time. The next day at work, I met with a new client family. They were asking me some of the exact same questions that I had asked the plumber the night before. After the meeting, I realized how much I enjoy answering those questions and educating my clients on their way to achieving their financial goals.
With each passing day, I become more and more convinced that the most knowledgeable clients are almost always the most satisfied customers. Why? Because they understand that the actions they are taking are a means to an end, getting them closer to their goals on down the road. The service and advice isn’t just something they are paying for; there is a clear and tangible benefit. One of the best things you can do as a client is ask questions of your adviser. Talk with your financial team about what’s happening with your money, ask about anything you’re not sure of, and keep the communication lines open.
The financial world is complicated, and it’s our job to simplify it for our client families. We want to be the team you call when you’re making any financial decision, from buying a new home or car, to choosing the right benefit package during open enrollment, to gifting money to your church or favorite charity. We’ll make referrals to outside professionals when needed, and we’ll help you understand how those decisions factor into your overall financial picture.
Our team will help you understand not just where your money is going, but why. Investing in your own financial future can also lead to greater returns down the road. We know you’re trying to build your nest egg and work towards a comfortable retirement, but there’s a certain truth to the saying that you have to spend money to make money. That means protecting your financial future by working with a qualified advising team. Sure, it might cost a little more than trying to self-manage your portfolio, but with a team, you’ll be able to get all of yourquestions answered so you can sleep well at night. Even if you don’t know what questions to ask, but want a second opinion on how you are tracking towards your goals, we can provide that as well.
There is an important distinction between an adviser who simply tells you what to buy, and an adviser who educates you on why that purchase improves your situation in the future. At Family Financial Partners, we think your financial team should be a tool and a resource. Making the investment now could give you an edge as retirement draws closer. We don’t expect you to know everything. We just expect you to want to know more. Ask us the questions that are running through your mind. I’m confident you will be glad that you did.