Types of Financial Advisor Services: What Financial Guidance Can Do For You

Financial advisors can do more than help you establish a portfolio. You can turn to a professional for help with a number of financial challenges in life.

https://tickertapecdn.tdameritrade.com/assets/images/pages/md/Financial advisors can help with your financial strategy
5 min read
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Key Takeaways

  • Financial professionals can help you develop a portfolio strategy based on your situation and goals
  • Many financial advisors offer other services such as tax advice and financial or estate planning
  • Financial guidance may be helpful during major life events like marriage or divorce

Financial advisors are professionals who can provide a number of services to help support your financial health. Many people envision a financial advisor as someone who can help them with investment choices and work with them to develop a solid financial plan, and in fact these are among the common services they provide. However many advisors can help with other specific needs as well.

Financial advisor services can certainly include helping you develop goals and establish a strategy or portfolio that suits your risk tolerance and time horizon. In addition, you can turn to a financial advisor for guidance on how to handle your money throughout major life events and for advice about how to pursue your specific financial goals. Many investors prefer to self-direct their portfolio but find that in some instances they need a little extra help from someone with specialized financial knowledge when the approach major life changes.

Not all financial advisors offer every kind of service to clients, but if you have a difficult decision to make about your money, you can likely find sound advice through a professional. For investors interested in connecting with a financial advisor, the AdvisorDirect® advisor referral service can introduce you to an independent Registered Investment Advisor (RIA). For more information, call 800-551-2315 or visit a local TD Ameritrade branch.

Establishing a Portfolio for Your Investment Goals

Many financial advisors work with their clients to find investment opportunities that match their financial goals, age, and risk tolerance. For example, if you are approaching retirement, a financial advisor might recommend investment choices that can generate income. On the other hand, if you’re a younger investor with a longer investing horizon, an advisor may discuss how a portfolio that includes more risk has the potential for more significant gains and can recommend investment choices toward that end.

Guidance During Major Life Events

Many financial advisors can offer guidance to help you with significant changes that can affect your finances, such as getting married, having a child, navigating divorce, or transitioning to retirement.

For example, if you get married, you may have a number of financial questions to answer, such as whether to combine your accounts with your spouse’s account, how to establish joint budgets, and how to update important financial documents such as wills. Similarly, getting a divorce can also bring financial challenges of separating joint accounts and revising long-term estate documents.

During a transition to retirement, financial advisor services may include helping you establish a new budget that adapts to your post-retirement income and expenses. Some financial advisors can offer help managing the investments in your retirement accounts, or for tax guidance on how to handle a 401(k) or IRA when you stop working.

Pursuing Financial Goals

Financial advisors frequently work with their clients to help them develop a financial plan that suits them. Throughout life’s stages, financial advisor services can help with specific short-term and long-term goals such as planning and saving for retirement, a down payment or home project, or a college or private education.

Developing a budget that’s well suited to your income and expenses can be difficult. Some financial advisors can walk you through the pros and cons of your choices for strategizing toward your specific savings goals and help you avoid putting your long-term plan in jeopardy while helping you achieve your shorter-term goals.

When you identify your specific goals, you might turn to a financial advisor for ideas you might not have considered. For example, if you want to build savings for your child to go to college, an advisor might walk you through some of the details of tax-advantaged accounts like a 529 plan and discuss whether those choices would be appropriate for your budget.

Other Assistance in Financial Planning

Some advisors may be able to offer advice on how to handle your wealth in the long term, such as helping you establish trusts and planning for your estate. They can review the potential benefits and consequences of your plan, offer alternatives, as well as walk you through the details of how to set up your preferred solutions.

On an annual basis, some financial advisors might also include tax guidance. Some may provide tax service to help you prepare and file your taxes. Professionals who provide tax services can often also help you prepare and file your tax forms.

The Bottom Line

Financial advisors can help you address a number of needs in your financial life. Although not every financial advisor provides every service, you can likely find a reputable professional to help you with most financial decisions.

If you're not sure how to get started when searching for a financial advisor, then AdvisorDirect® advisor referral service can help by connecting you with a RIA. Through AdvisorDirect you might find a Financial Advisor providing services that can meet you financial needs.

About AdvisorDirect

Minimum asset level required. You will pay an advisory fee if you select to work with an independent advisor. Brokerage transactions executed through TD Ameritrade are subject to standard transaction charges. You should review the independent advisor’s Form ADV and other applicable advisor disclosure document(s). The Form ADV contains important disclosure information relative to an independent advisor’s services and fees. Independent advisors will pay TD Ameritrade fees for their participation in the AdvisorDirect program. For additional details, please review the AdvisorDirect Disclosure and Acknowledgement Document.

TD Ameritrade does not endorse any particular independent advisor.


Key Takeaways

  • Financial professionals can help you develop a portfolio strategy based on your situation and goals
  • Many financial advisors offer other services such as tax advice and financial or estate planning
  • Financial guidance may be helpful during major life events like marriage or divorce
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