Five key benefits of truly independent financial advisors
The right investment advisor does what’s right for you.
What is an independent financial advisor?
Independent Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs) are professional independent advisory firms that provide personalized financial advice to their clients, many of whom have complex financial needs. Because these advisors are independent, they are not tied to any particular family of funds or investment products. Fee-Only Advisors, a subset of independent RIA’s, do not sell any products or earn any commissions. As fiduciaries, they are held to the highest standard of care – and are required to act in the best interests of their clients at all times. They are registered with either the Securities and Exchange Commission or state securities regulators. Blueprint Financial Strategies is a Fee-Only independent Registered Investment Advisor.
Why does it matter if your advisor is independent?
As well-informed clients begin to understand the complications and conflicts of interest inherit with other business model, RIA’s have become one of the fastest growing areas in the financial services industry.
Many independent advisory firms, such as ours, are owned by the individual advisors who run them, so they forge deep, personal relationships and have a strong sense of accountability to their clients. Investors with complex needs are increasingly seeking out personalized advice – and one way to ensure you’re getting that is to work with an independent financial advisor.
Benefits of working with an independent financial advisors:
1. Customized guidance based on your entire financial picture.
Independent advisors such as Blueprint Financial Strategies are not tied to any particular platform, family of funds or investment products and are solution agnostic. Whether you need help with retirement planning, a tax situation, estate planning or managing assets at multiple places, independent advisors have the freedom to choose from a wide range of options in order to tailor their advice based on what’s best for you.
2. A relationship that’s responsive, attentive, and personal.
Independent advisors must first build a strong understanding of your situation. As a result, many build deep relationships with their clients, a focus here at Blueprint. This often takes regular, ongoing interactions. We offer advice closely aligned with your goals. Because many independent advisors are entrepreneurial business owners, they hold themselves personally accountable to their clients.
3. A fee structure that is simple and transparent.
Independent advisors typically charge a fee based on a percentage of assets managed. This fee structure is simple, transparent and easy to understand. It also provides your advisor an incentive to help grow your assets. When you succeed, your advisor succeeds. At Blueprint Financial Strategies, we have the additional flexibility to engage with clients in a financial planning only capacity or on project-based work as well. You can see our transparent fee schedules here.
4. A high level of expertise to support your complex financial needs.
Independent advisors can help investors address the variety of complex investment needs that arise as you accumulate wealth. While specific services vary from firm to firm, these advisors are often described as financial “quarterbacks” focused on your holistic financial picture. Some advisors are specialists in certain investment strategies, such as the Evidence Based Investing mantra followed here at Blueprint Financial Strategies, which adheres to our Investment Process. We can also assist you with comprehensive services, such as estate planning or borrowing, retirement plans, the sale of a business, complicated tax situations, trusts and intergenerational wealth transfer.
5. Your money is held by an independent custodian, not the advisor firm.
Independent advisors use independent custodians, such as TD Ameritrade or Charles Schwab, to hold and safeguard clients’ assets. For many investors, this provides a reassuring system of checks and balances – your money is not held by the same person who advises you about how to invest it.