How to Prepare for a Meeting with Your Financial Professional
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Guest Post by Shanna Tingom, of Heritage Financial Strategies

Meeting with a financial professional can feel like a meeting with your doctor. You don’t want to go but you know you must. When you meet with me at Heritage Financial Strategies, rest assured that we’re going to talk about what you’re doing today with your money, not what you’ve done in the past.

My mission is to make money fun by helping you identify and reach your goals.

As a new client, I will ask you to gather basic information before our initial meeting. These include investment accounts (IRA, 401K), Social Security statement that you can find by going to ssa.gov, and insurance declaration pages. Having these in hand means we spend more time getting to know each other to decide if we will work well together.

How to Prepare for a Meeting with Your Financial Professional (2)I will explain how I work, how I get paid, and the plan for the next six months should you decide to hire me.  We will set up an appointment for 2-3 weeks later for me to present the formal plan and findings from my analysis that is based on the statements provided and our conversation.

You won’t walk out of the first appointment with an investment plan, but you will walk away knowing more about me so that you can decide if you want to hire me to be your financial professional.

Whether you’re a new or existing client, please have the specifics of your employer’s 401K plan available including your contribution percentage and employer match. Typically the match is a percentage of what you contribute.

If you’re an existing client coming in for an annual or biannual review, I will ask you to send 401k statements from employers that include your investment funds, other investment account statements, life insurance through work, and life insurance through auto or homeowners insurance carrier.

I will also want to know what’s been happening in your life – marriage, divorce, death of a spouse or other beneficiary as these impact our financial planning. Also, let me know if you’re making changes like having children or buying a house or car in the next few years.

Bring the declaration pages from auto and homeowners or renters insurance. While I don’t sell this type of insurance, I want you to be fully insured. In the event something happens, if you’re not properly insured, you will need to call me to get money from investment accounts. If that can be avoided, it’s better for you financially.

If you have a budget, bring it with you to our meeting.

It is helpful for me to see your spending habits, what you’re paying for insurance premiums, and if you’re saving for retirement outside of an employer-sponsored plan.

Review your statements before coming to the meeting. Come prepared with questions like how to read the statement or where exactly you’re invested.

The more I know, the easier it will be for me to develop a plan for you.

It is my mission to help you reach your financial goals, which begins with you understanding where you are today. 

If you’re interested in learning more about planning a financial future that meets your goals, please call Heritage Financial Strategies to schedule an appointment.

shannaShanna Tingom, AAMS® is an independent financial professional and the founder of Heritage Financial Strategies. Her specialty is working with female entrepreneurs, business leaders, and individuals experiencing life transitions.

A veteran of the financial services industry, Shanna was 19 years old when a meeting with a financial advisor revealed her purpose and passion. The advisor dismissively reached across the desk, patted her on the head, and said, “Don’t worry sweetheart. Your husband will take care of this money stuff for you someday.” Since then, Shanna has built a career out of helping others take charge of their financial future.

Shanna keeps active as a member of the Gilbert Small Business Alliance and Gilbert Chamber of Commerce. She also enjoys traveling with her husband, Eric, and spending time with her two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Oliver and Princess.

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