Finding the Proper Financial Guidance

By: Jason ValaVanis, CFP®

Everyone knows someone who’s tried to plan their retirement themselves. Diving into the world of personal finance is like trying to assemble IKEA furniture without the instructions—confusing and occasionally frustrating. For this reason, many people look towards financial advisors to decipher their needs and goals. While some may be capable building their financial coffee table by themself, others may need motivation and guidance from a true professional. No worries. You could simply Google “financial advisors near me” and find your perfect pairing… right? For some this may be true, but unlikely. Truthfully, many can pass an entry exam hosted by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and label themselves as a financial advisor. No college education or work history is needed. So, who can you trust?

The pinnacle of the financial advising industry is the fiduciary. A licensed professional who is legally obligated to prioritize your needs over theirs. This means he/she must ignore their paycheck and strictly recommend what is best for you! I know, it’s perplexing to think a financial advisor is not compelled by this simple concept. If you are interested in finding a professional who is bound by this seemingly low bar, the easiest way is to find a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®).

Not only are Certified Financial Planners™ obligated to recommend financial strategies that are in the sole interest of the client, but they must first prove their financial competency at a high level. The rigorous coursework to become a CFP® includes retirement, estate planning, insurance, investment, employee benefits, and tax classes. Once the advisor completes these courses and displays their considerable knowledge in these fields, they must pass the 6-hour CFP® exam. While this might sound like gibberish, it truly means that Certified Financial Planners™ have an elevated understanding of a plethora of financial concepts and are legally bound to implement them in the sole interest of you, the client.

I know it can be difficult to trust someone with your nest egg. If you are reading this article, there is a good chance you are in retirement or nearing the finish line. If you are not confident in creating your own financial guide in – as I like to call it – The Eternal Saturday phase of your life, find an advisor who can confidently do so for you. A Certified Financial Planner™ is a trusted pathway towards a sound financial future. CFPs® can provide the knowledge and the trusted fiduciary responsibility that most retirees seek.

In our office at ValaVanis Financial, we pride ourselves on our expert knowledge of Financial Planning. Having two Certified Financial Planners™ in our family firm, we understand the commitment and responsibility needed to proudly serve our clients. If you seek a financial guide who is committed to putting you first and possesses the knowledge to do so, please give us a call at (321) 956-7072 for a no-obligation first appointment at either our Melbourne or Rockledge office. We look forward to seeing you soon.

Max ValaVanis, CFP® is a co-owner of Valavanis Financial in downtown Melbourne and in Rockledge. Max specializes in lifetime income planning for Retirees while protecting principal.  Max can be reached at 321-956-7072.