Q&A: Needs advice for his RRIF

Question: I need some help in setting up my RRIF portfolio. How do I select a financial advisor? I’m feeling overwhelmed by the number of names and phone numbers in the yellow pages. How do you narrow your list and what questions should you be asking to ensure that you and your financial advisor are compatible?

Gordon Pape answers: Here are two suggestions:

  1. Talk to friends and relatives. Ask if they use an advisor. If so, do they recommend the person, and how strongly. This should be your primary source.

  • If this course doesn’t prove fruitful, check out the Web site of the Canadian Association of Financial Planners (http://www.cafp.org). They have a facility that provides you with the names of their members in your area who meet your criteria in terms of fields of expertise, method of payment, etc. Arrange interviews with three or four of them. At the interviews, discuss your portfolio and your needs, ask what services they would provide, ask about their investment approach, discuss their fees, and see if you are on the same wavelength with the person. Then ask them to send a written proposal for your consideration, inuding client references. Check out the references, evaluate the responses you get, and make your decision.
  • Do you have a money question you’d like to ask Gordon Pape? E-mail it to [email protected] and then check our website every week to see if it was chosen for a response. Sorry, we cannot send personal answers.