The questions is posed often: “Why should I hire a financial adviser? Can’t I just create a savings account, and then sign up for something like eTrade to invest in securities?” I like to counter this argument by asking, “why do people hire personal trainers?” Personal trainers teach the same exercises you can find online for free, so why pay for something that is only a search query away?
The answer to this question is multi-faceted. When you work out on your own, you’re responsible for your own schedule. Being responsible for your own schedule is incredibly difficult – it’s very easy to cheat yourself on the number of days you workout, or the number of reps you complete in an individual workout. When you workout on your own, you sometimes demonstrate improper form – something that may not hurt now, but will 10 years from now. When you workout on your own, it’s hard to stay motivated.
That is precisely why you hire a personal trainer – to be responsible for your schedule, to whip you up into good form, and to keep you motivated. What’s funny is this – a financial adviser is much like a personal trainer. Albeit, they practice in different industries, but what they provide you is very similar.
Financial advisers help you diversify and manage your assets (schedule responsibility), show you how to properly prepare for retirement (good form), and create an obligation to invest in your present and future (motivation). Sure, you can try to save money on your own, but your will must be strong. And of course, you can go out and use eTrade to handle your security trading, but many eTrade investors fall pray to personal emotions getting into the way of good judgement.
I recommend finding a financial adviser, and schedule a sit-down to talk about what you’re current investment portfolio looks like, what you’re financial goals are, etc.