Broker Check

Don't Skip That Annual Check Up With Your Financial Advisor

With the financial markets now into their 6th straight year of positive returns it is easy to see how individuals have become complacent with their investments and their finances. During the meltdown in 2008 and 2009, Advisor calls out to clients were answered or returned in record time as individuals yearned for guidance and someone to talk them off of the proverbial ledge. The education and training we have provided to clients to ignore the media’s daily catastrophe has worked in the sense that we advisors get far fewer panicked phone calls from clients about an article they just read or a television segment that they just viewed. What starts to concern many of us though is this training almost going too far and clients choosing not to hold to the review schedule that was mutually agreed upon when the relationship began.

Although everything in the media may seem “okay” it is still vital that clients and advisors continue to meet and “stick to the plan”, keeping an open line of communication. Our lives are constantly changing and keeping your advisor up to date with these changes is key to happy healthy client-advisor relationships. Events that may seem relatively normal and not worthy of updating your financial advisor may be vital to your planning success. Things like promotions at work, birth of children and grandchildren, even reaching certain birthdates like 59.5, 62 and 66 all hold significance that should be addressed on a continuing basis. These annual meetings also provide time for client and advisor to ensure that all beneficiary designations are accurate and truly reflect on your intentions. They also provide a great time to work through “fire drills” to help show the consequences of unforeseen events like a premature death, disability or loss in employment.

Just a few weeks ago, we had clients into the office for their spring review. After a quick thirty minutes of reviewing and updating their investments and retirement game plan, the meeting was winding down with some casual chat about kids and family. The husband mentioned briefly his concern for his 89 year old mom who was starting to decline cognitively. We dug a little deeper and were able to connect him with an Attorney who specialized in Elder Law to help address some of their concerns and draw up a game plan to ensure mom’s health and finances were taken care of in a timely, professional, and compassionate manner.

So remember, when your advisor calls for your annual check-up, just like your annual physical with your doctor, be sure to book it!

Joshua Farmer CFP® is a registered representative with and advisory services are offered through LPL Financial Member FINRA/SIPC.   Joshua Farmer CFP® is a Partner at Brookstone Wealth Management in Oxford, MA. He may be reached at