People with high net worth (over $1 million in investable assets) tend to turn to wealth managers. Rather than having to worry about their own portfolios and investments, they go to an experienced professional to manage that money. But what makes a good wealth manager for a high net worth individual? What is it that the wealthy keep an eye out for when trusting a person with over seven digits of investable money?
For most high net worth investors, it breaks down into three main qualities: credibility, valuable research, and customer service. Find out why the wealthy look for these things in a wealth manager, and how it can apply to you when dealing with your investments, too.
You wouldn’t trust your Uncle Ray—who has been in and out of jail and always insists he’s on the “breaking edge” of a “sure thing” that always seems to fail—with as little as $20 of your own money. The same idea goes for the wealthy.
When high net worth individuals look for a wealth manager, they need someone that they can trust. They prioritize a person, or a firm, that has a stable background and can show a sustainable history of growth and success. One way credibility is developed is through brand identity and a dedication to following through on promises. Financial firms and managers are based on the idea that the firm will act in the best interest of their clients.
Another way firms establish credibility is with employees who hold credentials from respected industry organizations. It’s important to have advisers that stay current on industry growth through constant training and certifications. Employees that have earned certifications like Certified Financial Planner, Chartered Financial Analyst, or Personal Financial Specialist can provide a variety of assistance with investments and other financial planning following well-established methodologies.
Research and Resources
Wealth managers are part educators. Not only do they make the investments, but a good wealth manager does research and provides resources to clients about how the investment is currently doing, as well as suggestions for potential future investments.
Research is an essential basis to any wealth managers’ recommendations. Investment advisers, like Fisher Investments, provide research to keep high net worth clients up to date on why things are included in their portfolios. High net worth clients esteem this research because it allows them to understand why certain things are included in their portfolios. Many investors find such information helpful in keeping emotions from their investment decisions, as seeing how their adviser draws conclusions provides a sense of security.
While credibility and research are helpful in selecting a wealth manager, the biggest factor high net worth individuals value is customer service.
The most valuable thing to many of those that are trusting managers with their investments is a personal touch.
A major reason for this is that wealthy investors tend to be risk-averse and have very specific needs in their investment. Managers might be asked to diversify portfolios while also minimizing the tax bill, and it is the ability of the manager to fill that request happily and quickly that makes the difference. Focusing on client satisfaction is how major asset managers and firms attract and retain clients.
Finding a wealth manager that works for you and is able to provide quality service is important for everyone. What attracts high net worth individuals are the same things that you can look for, no matter your level of investment. When putting your hard-earned money to work as an investment, take a page from high-level investors and look for wealth managers with credibility, research and resources, and excellent customer service.