I’m 65 and half retired, I’ve amassed $1.8 million myself with “lots of risky small caps,” tech stocks, and some ETFs. I also have 20% cash. Am i doing it right? Do I need an advisor to help?


How to find the right financial advisor for you.

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Ask: I have always been a self-directed investor, although I have sought advice from time to time. I lean towards a lot of risky small caps along with a core of Google, Amazon and Apple, plus some ETFs. And for the most part, they’ve done pretty well, retiring at age 58. I have about 25% in some smaller, high beta companies, mostly from Motley Fool recommendations. I also have 20% in cash which didn’t bother me too much but with high inflation that worries me a bit. Now I am 65 and half retired and earn only a little bit of money as a freelance graphic designer and musician. (Looking for a financial advisor too? You can use this tool to get matched with an advisor who may meet your needs.)

I’d like to get a check-up/second opinion once or twice a year without paying a consultant an asset-based ongoing fee. With combined portfolios of about $1.8 million, I hate the idea of ​​paying 1% or $18,000 for an expensive advisor to plug my variables into an app and spit out an algorithmic asset allocation dressed up as a custom financial plan. Instead, I prefer to pay an hourly rate or a flat fee for specific advice on how to strengthen my financial position. Suggestions for finding a suitable advisor are welcome.

Answers: Congratulations on your success as a self-directed investor! And you’re right, it would be a waste of time and money for a financial advisor to collect your documents, fill in numbers and read you the conclusion. “Looks like you’re looking for an advisor who can verify that you’re on the right track and that there are no foreseeable obstacles in your path,” says Spark Financials’ graduate financial planner Danielle Miura.

“To find a compatible advisor, you need to look for someone who only provides advice and doesn’t want to manage your investments. Instead, they charge an hourly rate or a fixed price for a fixed-term assignment,” says Kaleb Paddock, certified financial planner at Ten Talents Financial Planning. The value of these types of relationships is that the advisor helps you with tax planning, insurance planning, estate and beneficiary planning, health care planning, and more, explains Paddock.

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“You can find an advisor by using XY Planning Network, NAPFA, or Fee-Only Network and only look for advisors through those reputable networks,” Paddock says. If you can’t see how they get paid on their websites, you can call and ask if they have hourly or project-based rates that fit your needs. Depending on where you are and how complex your situation is, you can expect to pay between $200 and $500 per hour or anywhere from $1,000 to $7,500 for project-based assignments. You can use this tool to be matched with an advisor who may meet your needs.

“If you are looking for an advisor to work with, ask him what he can do for you beyond your investments. Based on the information you provide, you can ask them what they think are the most important topics you should discuss together. If there’s something specific you’d like to work on, ask the advisor to tell you a story about how they’ve worked with clients on that topic in the past,” says Miura. And be sure to ask these 15 questions of any consultant you hire.

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