Financial decisions touch nearly every aspect of an individual’s life. Working with a capable, trustworthy financial advisor can make the difference between financial success and sleepless nights. Though separating and identifying the strongest advisors from the industry’s pool of professionals is a challenge, we hope to make the daunting task a little easier. We worked with the National Association of Board Certified Advisory Practices (NABCAP), an unaffiliated, nonprofit organization, to compile a list of financial advisors you can trust.

ASSEMBLING THE LIST

NABCAP and its board of directors created an unaffiliated evaluation process in which 20 categories of practice management are evaluated. Advisors are invited and/or nominated to participate by submitting an online questionnaire. The multi-step process uses independent resources to verify the accuracy and truthfulness of the information submitted by participating practices. NABCAP’s methodology provides more transparency for investors by using largely objective, not subjective, procedures for making sense of advisors. The NABCAP list of Premier Advisors is not merely defined by assets or revenues, but identifies top advisors regardless of size, firm or affiliation.

PUTTING THE LIST TO USE

The list of advisory practices is in alphabetical order. The NABCAP suggests narrowing the list of practices by average client size. Consider selecting practices with an average client size of a quarter to half the size you estimate yourself to be. For example, if you have $2 million of investable assets, then identify practices with an average client size of $500,000 to $1 million. By doing this, you fall within the top 20 percent of the practice’s clientele, increasing the probability you’ll receive the greatest care and attention. Make sure the practice is capable of handling your needs by checking their top five specialties and designations. You should also interview at least three practices to see if you align well with different personalities, service models and practice methodologies.