Working with a Certified Financial Planner

If you’re interested in working with a Certified Financial Planner, the most important thing is finding someone you relate to and can trust.

Always listen to your gut when deciding whether or not to work with a potential financial planner. Remember, they work for you and should always operate in your best interest. Make sure you find someone who values you as a client and treats you with respect.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. A good financial planner will take the time to explain your options to you, so that you can make better decisions for your future.

Financial Planner New York

Lauren Lyons Cole is a Certified Financial Planner in New York City.

I’m not your typical Certified Financial Planner.

For starters, I only work with clients who are truly ready to make a difference in their financial lives. Think of me as a personal trainer for your finances. If you’re wondering what a typical client of mine looks like, or what my process is like, you can read through a few editorial money makeovers I did recently.

I work with individuals and couples of all ages, from all over the world.

The whole point of financial planning is to reduce money-related stress. With a little bit of effort up front, you can put your finances on auto-pilot and enjoy the ride until your next big life event gives you reason to revisit your plan.

Disclaimer: The one thing I don’t do (besides accept excuses) is provide investment advice.

I am a Certified Financial Planner, but I am not an investment advisor, nor do I ever intend to be. My reason is simple—investment advisors charge A LOT. Way too much. And research has shown they don’t add enough value to justify it. I keep all my investment accounts at Vanguard. I use their risk tolerance questionnaire and have an allocated portfolio full of their index funds and ETFs. Need help with that? Call Vanguard. Their customer service is top notch and you’ll hardly pay any fees. The bottom line is, I don’t want to get paid to give investment advice. So I don’t. (In case you’re wondering, I don’t sell anything at all. It’s not my style. And I’m not affiliated with Vanguard either, I just like them.)