Financial planners often have a difficult time articulating what they actually do for their clients. Contrary to what you might have heard, financial planners do a lot more than invest their clients' money.

Basically, financial planning isn't a one-size-fits-all endeavor, because everyone's needs are different.

A financial planner should, among other things:

  • Help you achieve all of your short and long-term goals
  • Ensure you are on track for retirement
  • Help determine how much house you can afford
  • Ensure you (and your family) are protected from unexpected emergencies and catastrophic losses
  • Determine the best use of your cash flow for debt repayment (e.g., student loans, credit card debt)
  • Ensure you have worked with an estate attorney to draft wills, medical directives, and other important estate planning documents