Financial planners will say darn goofy things. Here’s an example.
I read a website where the financial planner, who sells insurance and investment products, discussed the difference between micro and macro-managers. This got my attention. According to this conflicted agent/advisor/broker, micro-managers are specialists, but it’s the macro-manager that is needed to help with the complex financial decision-making process. Hiring a macro-manager allows the micro-manager to do what they do best and helps improve the overall performance of the financial plan. That’s the sales pitch.
Financial planning is not difficult. It does not involve a lot of complicated software, hardware, or thought. Frankly, 90% of all that is considered financial planning can and should be done at home while at the kitchen table with a legal pad, pen, and calculator. Planning begins with thinking. When you think about it, regardless of what it is, you begin to have clarity. If you are one who cannot think for themselves, then yes, you need a financial planner to help you from start to finish. But let’s get real. If you cannot connect a few simple dots, you’ll never have a pot to put the dots in anyways. Seriously and no joke, just think about it.
At TrueStar Advisors, we believe in providing great information without cost or obligation through this blog and our Connecting Dots podcast. Why? Well, I could say why not, but the reason is “showcasing.” This is how we showcase our knowledge and abilities. This is how we are helping others to focus on the most important components of wealth rather than on the least important. And this is how we are empowering many with concepts that will last a lifetime. The bottom line is this: “You have to take responsibility for yourself.”
Let’s continue with why an accountant is an important person.
Taxes can be complicated and confusing, and because of the need to file an income tax return, the accountant is the one person you are most likely to engage with on an annual or more frequent basis. It is best to have an accountant who is non-conflicted. Non-conflicted means the accountant does not sell insurance, investments, or solicit for the latest multi-level marketing scheme. A true and competent accountant can and will provide advice and assistance with your complex financial planning. At TrueStar Advisors, we believe the profession best suited to be “the” financial planner is the accountancy profession; however, the accountant and firm must, with an emphasis on “must,” be non-conflicted. With that said, we are always on the lookout for true fiduciary-based accountants who are willing and able to fill a true need when one exists.
The attorney is one who has the legal authority to go to court, draft legal documents, and provide legal advice. Using someone other than a licensed attorney constitutes the unlicensed practice of law, which is a crime in many states. Not all attorneys are conflict-free as many are insurance agents, brokers, even investment advisors. These Jacks-of-all-Trades (JOATs) are slightly better than the JOAT financial planners who are insurance based, but not much as there’s still that thing called a “conflict-of-interest.” Many estate planning attorneys are well versed in elder law, financial planning, business law and planning, and asset protection issues. This is the type of attorney one might want to seek out for financial planning advice if the accountant does not fit the bill. It is also important to know that litigators have a mindset that is different from transactional attorneys or estate planning attorneys.
Insurance and insurance agents are like a toothache and the dentist. Nobody likes someone shoving their fingers in their mouth, nor drilling into one while awake. Yes, I like my dentist and the dental hygienist who helps keep my teeth clean, but it is what it is, and that’s what it is with insurance. Nobody wants to get sick, become disabled, die, or have something broken, stolen, or lost, but things happen. We do what we have to do to insure against the losses we prefer not to incur alone. We brush and floss but still need that deep cleaning. We lock our doors, set the alarm, and turn the lights on, but we still want the police to come if needed and the insurance company to make us whole when the neighbor with a meth problem took everything not nailed down. The question is: “Is the insurance agent who makes a commission every time a policy is sold, the person you want for a financial planner?”
Get Started by clicking on this link and doing just that: Get Started. The longer you wait, the more time, money, and effort you are wasting with a high-commission advisor, agent, banker, broker, or planner. And if you are the preverbal DIYer, well, good luck with that. One day, when you’re out of time, disabled, or completely distracted, you’ll remember this: “I could have had a fiduciary.” (Think V8)