Getting Professional Advice

Getting advice for your child’s college decision may be a good idea.  It is one of the most expensive and important decisions your will make for your child.  A college planner or college expert may vary in expertise and your need to know where your need the help.  There are two major types of college planners. There are the academic college planners and the financial college planners.

The academic college planner specialize in school selection, standardize testing, college admissions and application preparation.  Some college advisers will do all of these task and some will do only certain parts of the process.  Knowing the advice your need before you start is important.  Some academic college planners will help with some of the financial aid questions.  Academic advisers and college financial aid offices cannot legally answer all of the questions that you need answered.  Legally they cannot give financial advice unless they are a Registered Investment Adviser or Representative.

The job of the college financial planner is to help you understand your cost of education.  They should be able to address the financial aid process, college saving plans, educational tax strategies, various financing options and student loan repayment.  As stated throughout this website your need to be careful since you will need to disclose your entire financial information.  Some advisers will recommend certain financial products as a solution.  In most cases these products are not long term solutions.  An important question you need to ask the college financial planner is how they are compensated.  Do they receive compensation from their recommendation?  Are they a fiduciary, which means the advisor must act in client’s best interest.  As an example we are fee-only financial advisers and act as a fiduciary for our clients.

This college planner video covers the following topics:

  • Types of expertise
  • Preferred College Planner Organizations

Getting the right advice can save your thousands of dollars and help you avoid mistakes in this confusing process.  Our professional college financial aid service can help you with the the entire college funding process, please visit our Services page.