The day I left Edward Jones, I felt a big relief. The shackles I had been wearing for close to two decades were finally released. I left the firm I started my financial journey with and said my final goodbye to open myself to a new world of empowerment, and for good reasons.
Reason 1: Weird “fees.”
Every time I took a look at my account, I noticed weird “unmarked” fees and then fee reversals. I prefer transparent fees. Let me clearly know how much your services will cost me, and let's keep it at that.
I shouldn’t have to face different fees each time I glance at my account breakdown, which contributed to the ingenuine experience I acquired with Edward Jones.
Reason 2: Constant “rebalancing.”
I get it; rebalancing is necessary — especially to maximize returns. But how many times do we need to rebalance? The number of times I had to rebalance my portfolio seemed excessive, and it started to make me feel at odds with the motive of my many different advisors.
Reason 3: No tax savings
One year, I made a mistake and over-contributed to my IRA account (before the year was up). Instead of trying to help me clean up my mistake, Edward Jones went after me to ensure I paid all the penalties in taxes, and why not help me avoid the mistake in the first place? Isn’t that an advisor's job to help advise me to pay the lowest tax fees and maximize my returns?
Reason 4: Too many different advisors
I was with Edward Jones for over a decade, but I finally called it quits. One of the reasons being I had too many advisors who left without notice. I was often left with alerts that I was getting a new advisor, and they would contact me after getting acclimated. It got a bit tiring; it seemed like the employee churn at Edward Jones was high — for me anyway.
Reason 5: Invalid information
I will never forget how I had to correct a previous financial advisor of mine to this day. The information they conveyed to me was invalid, but I would’ve agreed and adopted the financial advisor’s inaccurate information if I had not done my research.
Just because someone has a financial education, background, or certification does not mean they are 100% right. Don’t blindly trust financial advisors with your money and for financial advice. Do your due diligence.
I had my first financial advisor at the age of 14, and it was amply beneficial initially, but I never stopped educating myself on the subject of finance. We all have a personal responsibility with our money — no matter what age we are.
Stop Leaving Your Money In Others’ Hands
“Get a financial advisor!” is advice we hear a lot. But why? Well, because most people are not educated on personal finance. A majority of Americans don’t know what to do with their hard-earned money, which is why those who do decide to improve their finances end up getting a financial advisor.
Before you get a financial advisor, do this.
Before you get a financial advisor here’s what you need to do: Educate yourself on personal finance, so you know what your financial advisor is talking about.
Yes, a financial advisor should know more about money than you, but that doesn’t mean they’re always right. Be able to hold your own in a conversation with a financial advisor (if you decide to get one).
Be the ultimate decision-maker for your money. Never leave all the money decisions up to your financial advisor.
It can be painful and uncomfortable to learn about money, and the information might go over your head, but eventually, the knowledge will stick, and things will start to make more sense.
I’m still getting comfortable with investment and real estate terminology. Much of the information goes over my head, but as I slowly invest time and energy into learning about it, the knowledge sticks, and terms become familiar and start making more sense.
There is no one like the individual who educates themself on finance.
Don’t be lazy
Don’t be lazy when it comes to your money. Learn about the subject — in-depth — enough to make responsible financial decisions that won’t hurt you in the long term.
For those who want financial freedom and build significant wealth, you will need to educate yourself on finance to help you meet your goals. Sure, you can take shortcuts and leverage your financial advisor heavily, but that won’t make you the person in charge. Furthermore, you won’t really know what’s going on with your money as your financial advisor does.
“Financial freedom is available to those who learn about it and work for it.” ― Robert Kiyosaki
Ways To Educate Yourself About Money
There are plenty of ways to learn about money — for free! Here are a few ideas:
Read books (see my book recommendations at the end of this article)
Read personal finance blogs and articles
Attend/complete free seminars and courses about money
Make new friends that are financially savvy
More Money Reads
Destiny S. Harris is a writer, poet, entrepreneur, teacher, and techie who offers free books daily on amazon. Destiny obtained three degrees in political science, psychology, and women’s studies. Follow her on Instagram, Facebook, or @ destinyh.com
This article is for informational purposes only. It should not be considered Financial or Legal Advice. Not all information will be accurate. Consult a financial professional before making any significant financial decisions.