Looking for post-mortum financial advisor

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Post Reply
blueman457
Posts: 411
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2015 12:19 pm

Looking for post-mortum financial advisor

Post by blueman457 » Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:25 pm

All,

Q: what should questions should I ask a fee-only financial advisor?

I've started to look around for a post-mortum financial advisor. I am more than comfortable managing our finances, but when I pass away I'd like to know my wife could arrange a meeting with someone to help her out.

Quick points:
-I already have a document that suggests low-cost target date funds and where all of our savings are going.
-She could use Vanguard PAS, but I have a feeling she'd want to meet someone in person
-I do not have a trust yet, but probably need to set one up

What questions should I ask when I meet with potential advisors?
-Are you a fiduciary
-What are your fees? Do you have any commissions?

Thanks,

Blue Man

daveydoo
Posts: 1564
Joined: Sun May 15, 2016 1:53 am

Re: Looking for post-mortum financial advisor

Post by daveydoo » Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:34 pm

Speaking from experience (although I am still alive): develop the relationship, then die. Not vice-versa. You will know what type of person you are dealing with, and what their strengths and weaknesses are. If they pressure you, for example, they will torture your spouse.

Meet with this person annually and keep them apprised of your assets. Tell spouse how to get in touch with this person, and tell spouse what information this person will have.
"I mean, it's one banana, Michael...what could it cost? Ten dollars?"

BogleBike
Posts: 52
Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:26 pm

Re: Looking for post-mortum financial advisor

Post by BogleBike » Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:57 pm

If she'd be comfortable with Vanguard PAS, how about switching to Fidelity?

I don't want to be a bad Boglehead, but rumor in other threads says that prices and products are similar, customer service better, and in-person consultations available (example, post 8 in thread below).
viewtopic.php?t=240670

livesoft
Posts: 62960
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:00 pm

Re: Looking for post-mortum financial advisor

Post by livesoft » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:04 pm

Instead of "feeling", why don't you ask her to see what she thinks?

Another possibility is to enlist the help of adult child[ren].
Wiki This signature message sponsored by sscritic: Learn to fish.

blueman457
Posts: 411
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2015 12:19 pm

Re: Looking for post-mortum financial advisor

Post by blueman457 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:10 am

daveydoo wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:34 pm
Speaking from experience (although I am still alive): develop the relationship, then die. Not vice-versa. You will know what type of person you are dealing with, and what their strengths and weaknesses are. If they pressure you, for example, they will torture your spouse.

Meet with this person annually and keep them apprised of your assets. Tell spouse how to get in touch with this person, and tell spouse what information this person will have.
That's fair, although I'd definitely feel like I was throwing away the fee each year. Although long term it could save the spouse money.

BogleBike wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:57 pm
If she'd be comfortable with Vanguard PAS, how about switching to Fidelity?

I don't want to be a bad Boglehead, but rumor in other threads says that prices and products are similar, customer service better, and in-person consultations available (example, post 8 in thread below).
viewtopic.php?t=240670
I'm looking for flat fee based, this overall commission seems pricey for what you get.
livesoft wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:04 pm
Instead of "feeling", why don't you ask her to see what she thinks?

Another possibility is to enlist the help of adult child[ren].
Sorry, "feeling" is the wrong word. Definitely would prefer a face to face meeting. And for adult kids, we got a couple of decades to go :-P

User avatar
celia
Posts: 8611
Joined: Sun Mar 09, 2008 6:32 am
Location: SoCal

Re: Looking for post-mortum financial advisor

Post by celia » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:46 am

Be aware that depending on how many years there are before you die, the advisor you meet today, may no longer be working at the time you die. Even if you have recently retired, you could live another 30 years. Since people typically have a 30 to 40 year working career (assuming they live that long), you will likely need a series of financial advisors.

The best you can do, in my opinion, is have your spouse with you and participate with you in interviewing and selecting an advisor. Let her do her share of the talking, since this is as much a task as getting her involved as it is in selecting an advisor. After interviewing a few advisors and discussing their pros and cons with her, go with her choice. Since this is for her benefit, she needs someone SHE is comfortable with, not who YOU would select. Then see how her choice works out over the next few years.

Don't expect the person to be like you. Just look for them to avoid the huge mistakes of lack of diversification, excess fees, and inappropriate products (variable annuities, recommending insurance that is not needed).

JoeRetire
Posts: 1694
Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:44 pm

Re: Looking for post-mortum financial advisor

Post by JoeRetire » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:51 am

blueman457 wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:25 pm
Q: what should questions should I ask a fee-only financial advisor?
https://www.edelmanfinancial.com/educat ... al-advisor

But unless your demise is imminent, it doesn't make much sense to choose someone now that you will never use until after you are gone. Perhaps you could educate your wife on how to make the choice that meets here eventual needs, whatever they may be when the time comes.

I have a relationship with a fee-only fiduciary financial adviser now. Partly because I'm okay with having a little help now, but mostly so that when my time comes the transition to more intense financial help will be seamless. It's a price I'm willing to pay for the sake of my wife.

Post Reply