What is Financial Planning?

Most clients immediately think of investment management when they hear financial planning.  
While it’s true that investment management is part of financial planning, when done properly, investments are one piece of the overall ‘puzzle’.  
True financial planning will incorporate several topics into a comprehensive solution for a client’s financial needs. Topics include:
•    Cash flow management
•    Developing personal financial statements
•    Education funding strategies
•    Insurance planning
•    Investment planning
•    Income tax planning
•    Retirement planning
•    Estate planning

 

A CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER has, at a minimum:

- An undergraduate degree
- Three years of client experience in financial planning
- Competed a financial planning education program including: 
       - General Principals of Financial Planning
       - Insurance Planning
       - Investment Planning
       - Income Tax Planning
       - Retirement Planning
       - Estate Planning
       - Interpersonal Communication
       - Professional Conduct and Fiduciary Responsibility
•    Passed a rigorous comprehensive exam (historical pass rate of 55-60%)
•    Completed a required 30 hours of continuing education hours bi-annually
•    Committed to adhering to the standards of ethics and practice outlined in the CFP Board’s Standards of 

To summarize, CFP®’s are obligated to act in their client’s best interests. Period.  
Not everyone in the financial services industry is held to this standard. 

http://www.cfp.net/become-a-cfp-professional/cfp-certification-requirements