Editor's Note: We asked a Gen Y personal finance blogger with no affiliation to the network to review XY Planning Network's brand-new Find an Advisor Portal.
Our reviewer: Erin from Journey to Saving. Here's what she had to say about the experience in finding the right advisor for her using XYPN's new search feature.
XY Planning Network’s “Find an Advisor” search engine is unlike any other. Why? It’s specifically targeted to Gen Y and Gen X, taking the limitations of physical location out of the picture.
Even the design is modern and sleek -- I could see that this was something meant for me from the second I loaded the page.
XY Planning Network is known for its modern edge when it comes to financial planning services. Their search engine reflects that. It’s presented in an easy to read, easy to search format.
In addition, all of their advisors are able to meet with you virtually. You don’t have to worry about finding one locally. That means I have a better chance at finding the right advisor for me.
(If you’d rather search for an advisor by state, that’s still an option - there’s a simple drop-down menu for that.)
Here's a walkthrough of the many options you have in order to find your ideal planner.
Search by How Advisors Charge for Financial Planning
Many members of Gen Y are concerned about the cost of a financial advisor. We think of financial advisors as traditionally handling large accounts for the wealthy.
But that’s a misconception XY Planning Network is putting to rest.
With XYPN, you can choose an advisor based on how they charge: monthly, quarterly, annually, a flat fee, an hourly fee, or assets under management fee.
This is great for those of us concerned about being able to afford a financial advisor. We can choose the option that works best for us.
Use the Find an Advisor Portal to Look for Specialty Service
XYPN realizes that not all members of Gen Y or X are the same. It’s not “one advisor fits all.” We’re all at different points in our lives, with different assets, and it’s important to be able to match up with an advisor who is able to cater to our specific needs.
With a name like XY Planning Network, it’s no surprise to see you can sort by Gen Y or Gen X, but this is still an important distinction. Both generations will likely be at different points in their careers and family life, and that can affect insurance and retirement needs.
This is great for same-sex couples that have very different tax issues to contend with. This might not have been a concern 10 years ago, but with same-sex marriage laws having been passed, it’s a specialty that should be addressed.
I was curious to look at this one. Here are the choices I had to select from:
- Former Collegiate Athletes
- High Intensity Individuals
- Middle Class Accumulators
- Those Seeking Enhanced Tax & Wealth Strategies
- World Travelers
This is a really unique subset of interests, and it’s obvious that XY Planning Network advisors truly care about the personality and background of their clients.
I personally identify with at least four of these, and it’s nice to know they have financial advisors with similar interests to mine.
It’s doubtful you’d have a “traditional” financial advisor taking bloggers into account, but blogging has been growing in popularity as a way to make an income. It’s great to see it on here.
Seeing “world travelers” on there is nice, too, as those that prioritize travel are also going to have a different outlook on life. They’re probably not going to be saving for a house, and they might not be interested in traditional retirement as we know it.
This is even more specific than interests, and I would argue, even more important! Here’s the list of options you can choose from:
- Career Changers
- Families in Transition
- Newly Engaged Couples
- Newly Single
- Blended Families
- First-time Parents
- New and Expecting Parents
- Parents With School-Age Children
- Servicemen and Women Leaving the Military
Let me tell you why this is so exciting to see: depending on what category you identify with the most, you’ll be in a very different stage of life. A newly engaged couple is going to have completely different financial needs than parents with school-age children.
One might be more concerned about trying to save for a wedding and a down-payment on a house, while the other might be worried about saving for their children’s education.
I think it’s great that XYPN recognizes this -- and it also forces us as consumers to recognize that our financial needs will change and evolve over time.
With 16 different options, there is something for everybody here.
- Business Owner
- Educators and Teachers
- Government Employees
- International / Immigrant Professionals
- Investment Banker & Private Equity Professionals
- Medical Professionals
- Medical School Faculty
- Ministry Workers
- Scientific Professionals
- Technology Professionals
Again, I think it’s wonderful that these member advisors are so specific to the clients they can serve. Entrepreneurs and business owners are going to need vastly different retirement plans, insurance, and saving strategies than government employees or teachers.
Stages of Professional Career
This needs to be taken into consideration when serving the Gen Y and Gen X population. The three choices are:
- Recent Graduates
- Young Professionals
I think these are perfect for Gen Y and Gen X. A large majority of us are just starting to earn a decent salary, and it’s important to have a financial advisor that understands the position we’re in.
We might not be able to invest heavily, we might not need life insurance (if we’re single), and we might have a lot of student loan debt to tackle.
My Own Experience with the Find an Advisor Portal
Besides the actual search engine, I really enjoyed the “advisor cards” that are shown based on the selections you choose. They give you a brief overview of each financial advisor, along with the clients they’re looking to help/target.
I decided to try out the search engine myself. I started with Profession-Specific, as I know that being a freelancer/entrepreneur puts me in a unique situation as far as finances go. “Entrepreneur” yielded 6 results.
I could have chosen another search term, but I quickly scanned the six advisors that popped up, and was able to find one. The way advisors are presented on this page makes it really simple to determine if they’re what you’re looking for.
Based on this short description, I can tell Sophia would be an excellent fit for me. I’m a freelancer/entrepreneur, member of Gen Y, a young professional, and I’m all about meeting with clients virtually. I also love that she was named “Financial Planner for Millennials.” I’m definitely the type of client she’s targeting!
In conclusion, I think the search engine tool that XY Planning Network provides consumers with is really simple to use, and it’s perfect for those of us who are looking more toward financial planners that can help guide us in the right direction with our finances.
The advisors of XYPN are breaking the traditional mold, and that’s a great thing for the younger generations. Too many of us are writing financial advisors off because the process seems daunting, but XY Planning Network is making it enjoyable, which hopefully means more members of Gen Y and Gen X experiencing financial success.
Have you found the perfect financial advisor for you with XYPN's Find an Advisor Portal? Let us know if you have questions or need help -- we'd love to connect you with the ideal planner to help you reach your financial goals.