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I am not sure how I am going to initiate this other than just calling and telling them that I'm done. Beforehand, I plan to call the broker where the accounts are held first (going around the adviser) to just ask general questions about the accounts. I will also talk to my previous broker where I want to transfer everything to, to see what they say as well.
Any other advice?
Thanks for your help.
When we terminated our relationship with an advisor about 20 years ago, our first contact was a certified letter to the account custodian / trustee (First Trust.) In your case, it appears your account is held by a broker. We notified the custodian that all discretionary authority of the advisor as well as access to our account information was immediately terminated. We did this to prevent ourselves from being talked out of our decision to leave and to prevent the advisor from making any changes during the process.
After we received a receipt for the certified letter, I called to confirm that the advisors access and discretion over our account was terminated. Only then, did I write our advisor to inform them we were leaving.
The custodian informed us that that the type of account we had was only for advisory clients and we needed to change it into an regular individual account. We discovered that the custodian had been providing a range of services to the advisor including printing the glorious full-color quarterly statements that we had received. Eliminating these types of services, commonly called "soft money arrangements" resulted in a significant reduction in custodial expenses after we switched to a regular account.
I was a little surprised but we never heard a single word from our former advisor. I don't believe that the advisor billed us for termination and they no longer had our consent to extract fees directly from our accounts. We had liked the local representative on a personal level, it was simply that the cost of the service greatly exceeded its value to us. We were able to make all of the desired changes (to index funds) at a gradual pace and according to our plan. Over the next couple of years, we learned that we could save additional expense by transferring all of the mutual funds in our accounts into new accounts at Vanguard. Our former advisory service (Lowry Investment Disciplines) eventually merged with others and has since disappeared. I suspect that this was done, at least in part, to distance themselves from a very poor performance record. On the other hand, we have done much better than we had ever expected.
The information contained herein, while not guaranteed by us, has been obtained from from sources which have not in the past proved particularly reliable.