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Where do these people get "certified" as "advisors"!?

Who said you have to be certified??? If one is a fnanical advisor (uncertified) the barriers to entry are pretty low; e.g. a business card & a phone line; the barriers to entry are still low even if certified; simply take an exam and pass; presto, you are a CFP.

IMHO, herein lies the problem --- the barriers to entry are virtually non-existent (not unlike being a residential real estate broker); therefore we have too many of them. Further, IMHO, it probably takes a minimum of 10 hours to think through & document a decent financial plan for anyone. Say that process is really worth $100 per hour or a minimum of $1000. Who is willing to pay $1000 for a financial plan that can quickly become $2500 including the slightest bit of complexity --- I think almost no one. So, what does the fianncial planner do? He gives the financial plan away as a loss leader and is then forced to sell what I consider to be inappropriate investments to the client (e.g. ones with big commissions) in order to put food on his own table.

Now addmittedly, there are fixed fee financial planners out there; albeit not many. Further, their fees normally start at $2500 and go way up. Their services are potentially worthwhile for people with net assets of $5mm and up.

TheBadger
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