Advisor
Jun 4
,
3
min read

How Much Does a Financial Advisor Cost?

Financial advisor fees come in a variety of structures.
Adrianna Adams, CFP®

If you are looking for a financial advisor to help you plan for the future, it is important to be aware of the various types of fee-structures and costs you may encounter. This will allow you to compare different types of advisors and find one whose fee structure aligns with your unique needs and financial goals.

Commission-Based

Financial advisors who operate on a commission-based model earn their compensation through the sale of various financial products. These products could include stocks, bonds, mutual funds, insurance policies, and more. An advisor’s earnings can vary widely depending on the product they are selling. It is important to be aware that commission-based advisors are often incentivized to recommend and sell specific products. This arrangement can create a conflict of interest, as their compensation is tied to the products they sell, rather than solely to the best interest of their clients.

Performance-Based

Performance-based fees reward financial professionals for positive returns on their investment recommendations. This means, if your investment performs well, the advisor may receive higher fees, whereas poor performance results in minimal or no fees. The fee structure may vary, but the idea is that an investment manager has an extra incentive to help their client achieve superior returns. 

Fee-Based

Fee-based compensation allows a financial advisor to charge clients a combination of fees and commissions. For example, a Financial Advisor may charge a flat fee for their planning or advisory services, and a separate commission when clients purchase a specific product. If you are working with a fee-based advisor, be sure to have a thorough discussion about how they are compensated for each of the services they offer.

Fee-Only

Fee-only compensation refers to a single or flat fee, typically a percentage of your assets, paid directly by the client to a financial professional for advice and services. This model provides a transparent and objective approach to financial advice, since advisors receive no extra commissions or kickbacks from selling certain products. Fee-only advisors often act as fiduciaries, meaning they have a legal and ethical obligation to act in your best interests. So, you can rest assured that your best interests are of top priority.

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