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Should I Change Financial Advisors Over Poor Performance? An In-Depth Guide

Selecting a financial advisor is a critical step toward managing your investments and securing your financial future. 

However, there may come a time when you start to wonder, should I change financial advisors over poor performance?

In this guide, we’ll explore how to assess your financial advisor’s performance, the reasons that might compel you to consider a change, and how to go about making that change if it’s necessary for your financial well-being.

Understanding Financial Advisors’ Performance

Measuring your financial advisor’s performance is not always straightforward. You need to consider various factors, including the overall market climate and how your investments have fared in comparison to relevant benchmarks. 

Keep in mind that the market fluctuates, which means seeing a dip in your investments does not immediately signal poor advice or management. 

Setting realistic benchmarks and having clear financial goals will help you better assess your advisor’s effectiveness.

Should I Change Financial Advisors Over Poor Performance? Detailed Guide

Reasons to Consider a Change

Several red flags may signal it’s time to evaluate your relationship with your financial advisor. Continuously underperforming the market can be a concern, especially if this trend persists over time and fails to meet your agreed-upon financial goals. 

Another significant issue is a lack of communication and transparency. Your advisor should regularly check in with you, explain their decisions clearly, and adjust strategies as your life changes. 

If your financial strategies seem misaligned with your goals or you find the fee structures too high for the value you’re receiving, these are also valid reasons to consider looking elsewhere.

Critical Considerations Before Making a Switch

Before you take the step to switch advisors, think about the possible costs and tax implications that might arise from making changes to your investment portfolio. 

Is the timing right, or might it be better to wait for a more favorable market condition? It’s also crucial to discuss your concerns with your current advisor. 

Sometimes, a straightforward conversation can clear up misunderstandings and lead to adjustments that re-align with your financial goals.

Should I Change Financial Advisors Over Poor Performance?

If you decide to change advisors, start by researching potential candidates. Verify their credentials, ask for references, and ensure their investment philosophy aligns with your financial goals. 

Once you’ve found a new advisor, they can help you with the transition of your financial portfolio. 

Expect to sign new documents and possibly sell certain investments, which your new advisor should guide you through, ensuring a smooth transition.

Pros and Cons of Changing Financial Advisors

Changing financial advisors has its advantages and disadvantages. On the positive side, a new advisor might offer fresh insights and strategies that better meet your financial goals. 

However, there are downsides to consider, such as potential costs and the time it takes to build a relationship with a new advisor. 

The key is to carefully weigh these factors and make an informed decision based on your long-term financial well-being.

Evaluating Your Investment Goals

Reassessing your investment goals is a vital step before making any decisions about changing your financial advisor. 

Life events such as marriage, the birth of a child, nearing retirement, or receiving an inheritance can significantly shift your financial priorities and risk tolerance. 

Take a moment to reflect on these changes and evaluate if your current advisor’s approach still supports your modified aims. 

If your investment strategy appears misaligned with your evolving goals, it might be an indication that your financial planning needs a fresh perspective. 

Ensuring your advisor’s strategy is in sync with your current and future financial objectives is paramount for achieving your desired financial outcomes.

investment portfolio

Frequently Asked Questions

What is normal performance fluctuation for an investment portfolio?

Performance can vary widely based on the type of investments and market conditions, but a well-diversified portfolio should aim to meet or exceed relevant benchmarks over a multi-year period.

How long should I wait before deciding my financial advisor’s strategy isn’t working?

Financial strategies often require patience to see fruition, typically several years, depending on your objectives. Immediate results are not always a good indicator of future success.

Can poor performance just be bad luck?

While luck can play a role in short-term investment outcomes, long-term performance is more closely tied to skill in selecting investments and aligning them with client goals. Continuous poor results, particularly relative to comparable benchmarks, may indicate a problem.


Knowing when to change financial advisors is a significant decision that should not be taken lightly. Continuous poor performance, lack of communication, and fee concerns are valid reasons to consider making a switch. 

However, it’s important to approach this decision with careful thought, considering the impact on your investments and any potential costs involved. 

If you decide it’s time for a change, take the necessary steps to ensure a smooth transition to a new advisor who is better aligned with your financial goals.