I can’t imagine many things worse than carefully saving and investing money over the years to help secure your retirement, only to find out that the “investment” has been squandered in fees and unsuitable securities. It’s so difficult for me to see investors like you being taken advantage of by their financial advisors, and the hardship that follows. For that reason, our team at Schwartz Investor Advocates has dedicated our careers to helping investors who have found themselves in this same position.
In Parts 1 and 2 of this article series, I discussed six red flags to beware of when it comes to bad financial advisors. These include:
– Advisors acting outside of your best interest
– Advisors promising guaranteed returns
– Advisors being hesitant to give investment advice tailored to your needs.
– Advisors who push investments they are personally vested in
– Advisors that are hesitant to explain their own compensation structure
– Advisors who have a history of incidents or overly frequent movement on their regulatory record
What are signs of a bad financial advisor? In today’s post, I will talk about the final three potential signs of a bad financial advisor. Here is what to look out for:
Have they pitched products/investments that they cannot clearly explain?
A financial advisor who asks you to rely on them and trust them without fully explaining the products you invest in is not acting in your best interest. Although there will always be a learning curve – your advisor is the “expert” and you are not – the investments recommended or purchased should not be mysterious to you. Your financial advisor should be able to walk you through the recommended investment choices and thoroughly explain how they work if it is unclear to you as the investor. If the advisor recommends an investment product but provides you with false, misleading or insufficient information for you to fully understand if this is the right investment for you, I recommend contacting an attorney.
Have they been condescending to you or do they talk down to you?
Not everyone is financially sophisticated or takes a detailed interest in their investments, however, piggybacking on the prior point, your financial advisor should be able to explain investment choices and courses of action in a way that makes sense to you. If your financial advisor has led you to believe you aren’t sophisticated enough to understand their recommendations, or you feel they intentionally speak in terms you won’t be able to follow or that are above your head, be wary. Advisors and the firm they work for must provide you, as their client, with appropriate information to fully understand any investment that is recommended and, as importantly, take the time and effort to communicate it to you on your level. If they seem unable or unwilling to do this, again, you may want to seek the advice of a professional.
Have they dodged your calls or emails?
Investment advisors are busy people, but they should never be so busy that they cannot return your calls or emails in a reasonable timeframe. If you feel your advisor has dodged your calls or emails, this could be a sign they are trying to hide something or avoid being completely transparent with you, and this should concern you. This is one of those situations that may not be black and white. But if something just doesn’t seem right, especially if some of the other warning signs are present, trust your gut and take some action.
If any of the signs in any parts of this article sound familiar to you, or you would like to know more about ‘what are bad signs of a financial advisor?’, I can help you. I have dedicated my career to helping individuals who have experienced significant losses and been taken advantage of by their financial advisor. Since the laws and regulations that apply to financial advisors are complex, I always recommend consulting with an expert if you are unsure as to whether you are a victim of misconduct or fraud. If you would like to talk to me about losses you have incurred, or any other concerns you may have, please contact me at 1-855-463-9859 or [email protected] for a free consultation. You can also request a free case evaluation by sending us a message through our secure contact form.