Am I Ready to Work with a Financial Advisor?

A financial advisor at NEST is like a compass to guide you

There comes a point in life when it makes sense to seek out specific services. A college advisor. A real estate agent. A midwife. At those particular moments, the services these professionals offer can be a huge benefit to you. Employ them too soon, and it’s a waste of your resources. The same is true for working with a financial advisor. 

Sure, they could be a great educational resource and offer you sound advice at any stage, but hire one too soon, and the value in your accounts won’t justify the expense. 

Financial advisors are there to help you grow your wealth, not be an expense that actually impairs your ability to do so. That means working with one prematurely just doesn’t make sense. 

It’s pretty clear when it’s time to find a real estate agent or talk to a college advisor. 

But how do you know when you’re ready to work with a financial advisor

Here are some questions to ask yourself before reaching out to potential candidates.


Do you have enough assets for work with a financial advisor?

This is a big one. 

Working with a financial advisor shouldn’t be a hindrance to your finances. Similar to working with a CPA, your income and assets should be high enough that working with a financial advisor is a value to you, rather than an expense. 

A lot of the value in working with a financial advisor comes from tax savings and ensuring your money is in the right types of accounts — things that don’t affect you as much if your assets are below a certain threshold. 

The ideal candidate for financial advising services already has significant enough assets that employing an advisor won’t be a detriment. They should be in a position to comfortably pay for the services or have enough assets for a percentage of them to cover the cost. 

At NEST, our financial planning service is fee-based, starting at $5,000. It’s an intensive, personalized process that takes into account your financial state, assets, and goals.  If that fee puts you in a pinch, it’s probably not the right choice for you, yet.

And most investment managers have a minimum threshold in order to work with clients, especially if they offer fee-based services. At NEST our minimum is $250,000, and we take a 1% fee annually.

If you’re not yet in a position to meet the minimum of a quality fee-based investment manager, or to comfortably pay for financial planning, consider going the DIY route until you are. There are many avenues for self-education online, and you can even get started with the foundations of financial planning with online software like

It’s far better to educate yourself and DIY than it is to waste money on a bad planner.

If you’re still trying to build up your nest egg, buying products from a financial planner and paying their fees can actually be detrimental to your ability to save and can outweigh the growth you’ll see from hiring a financial advisor at this stage.



Are you overwhelmed with self-management?

When you’re starting out as an adult, and often beyond, managing your own spending, bills, and savings is fairly straightforward. But as your income increases and assets start to grow, you might start having questions that you don’t have the answers to. 

  • Are my investments optimized? 
  • Am I on track to retire when I want
  • What kind of life insurance policy would provide for my dependents? 
  • Should I have a will or a trust? 
  • What will happen to my estate if something happens to me? 
  • What should I do with that 401K from my old employer? 
  • Are my assets in too many places? 
  • Should I consolidate my accounts?

If unanswered questions about your assets are starting to keep you up at night, it’s time to bring in the big guns.

Trying to answer these questions on your own can be not only overwhelming but can also lead to costly mistakes. 

For example, if your assets are sitting at $20,000, a 10% mistake is only $2,000 — not too difficult to recover from. But if you’re holding half a million, this would mean a $50,000 loss, which could take years to recover from. 

As your net worth grows, so does the potential cost of bad moves. Using an advisor to educate you and help you navigate your personal financial landscape not only helps your assets grow but can also prevent you from making costly mistakes. 



Have you hit a plateau with self-management?

Up to this point, perhaps you’ve done everything right. You’re using (and sticking to) a budget, You’re paying yourself first and contributing toward your retirement. You’ve got a nice cushion of savings. Maybe you’ve purchased a home, or started a successful business. Perhaps you’re even dabbling in investing. 

In short, you’ve mastered the basics of personal finance and made good progress on your own.

But now you’re feeling stuck. 

It can be frustrating to be doing everything right, but no longer see the kind of improvements you did in the beginning. If you’ve done well, but have found yourself at the limit of what your own knowledge can build for you, it’s time to hire a financial advisor. 

A good financial advisor helps you build on the solid foundation you’ve already laid for yourself, allowing you to construct your goals, and work toward them efficiently and strategically. 

Taking your finances from competent to excellent requires a lot of knowledge and experience — the ins and outs of personal finance, tax planning, macroeconomic awareness, and multi-asset investing. At NEST we have the education and over 30 combined years of experience that can take you off the plateau and help you level-up again and again.



Are you having trouble establishing the right priorities for your cash flow?

Even highly successful and wealthy people can have trouble managing their budgets. Anyone over a certain age remembers MC Hammer’s glorious rise to fame and wealth, and his subsequent bankruptcy.

There’s a reason why 70% of people who win big in the lottery end up back where they started. Making and having money is only half of the equation. The other, and possibly more critical,  piece is knowing how to manage it. 

That’s why at NEST, education is so important to us. 

Just because your income is high, doesn’t mean you don’t need to have (and use) a budget and be acutely aware of your cash flow

Sure, you might be able to pay your bills, but are you maximizing your money’s potential? Are you prioritizing smart investing so you can retire when you want? Could you retire sooner than you think? Are you missing opportunities for your money to work for you, all because you don’t have a grip on the most foundational aspect of money management – cash flow?

A good financial advisor will get you honest with yourself about your spending habits and help ensure that the money you work so hard for works even harder for you. 


Have you come into money and are unsure of what to do with it?

Oh, don’t we all wish for it — a mysterious great aunt we never knew bequeaths her fortune to us. Suddenly we have the enviable problem of what to do with our inheritance. 

People come into large amounts of money in many ways — inheritance, divorce, selling property, selling a business. 

When this happens, people often find themselves sitting on a lot of money with no idea what to do with it. The experience can be bewildering and more than a little overwhelming. 

Where do you put this money? In your checking account? Savings? Your mattress?

If you find yourself in this situation, it’s time to hire a financial advisor, to not only help you uncover your goals and create a plan to achieve them, but also to make sure your money is working for you as efficiently and profitably as possible

Financial planning coupled with investment management services can ensure that a windfall won’t go to waste. 



Do you have leveling-up questions about:

  • Buying additional property
  • Starting a new business
  • Starting another business
  • Expanding your business
  • Moving up retirement date
  • Living comfortably off retirement assets


If you’re buying your first home or starting your first 401k, it might not yet be time. But if you’re asking these kinds of next-level questions, it means your financial situation is becoming more complex. The more additional moving parts you have, the easier it is to make mistakes or to drop a ball. If this is you, it might be time to find yourself a knowledgeable financial advisor.


If after reading this article, you realize you’re ready for a financial advisor, why not reach out to NEST Financial? NEST is a boutique financial firm, and we love working one-on-one with Austin and Central Texas businesses, families, individuals, and entrepreneurs toward your financial goals. We take care of both the financial planning and investment aspects of your comprehensive, bespoke financial strategy. Contact us to schedule a no-obligation call today.


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DISCLAIMER: We are legally obligated to remind you that the information and opinions shared in this article are for educational purposes only and are not financial planning or investment advice. For guidance about your unique goals, drop us a line at


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