Financial Planner, Financial Advisor, What’s the difference?

financial planner v financial advisor
 “The best fund in the world won’t change your life, financial planning will” – Paul Armson.


Regardless of your financial state, everyone can benefit from taking stock, financially. Consider what you need to do to achieve better financial wellbeing… So, where do you begin? Talk to a financial advisor or a financial planner? What’s the difference between financial advice and financial planning, isn’t it the same thing?


Financial Advisor

A Financial Adviser’s job is to help you manage your money by evaluating your finances, reviewing your options, and explaining the risks before recommending the best products to achieve your goals. Often, their focus is on the financial product solution and providing the best product for you based on your circumstances right now. This can be effective and many clients will come to a financial planner or advisor requesting a specific product. However, the Financial Advisor’s focus is generally narrower, centring on a single process such as your investment portfolio without considering the bigger picture.


Financial Planner

A Financial Planner, on the other hand, will provide a broader service. They will help you to see what you have right now and identify your financial goals. Look at your overall financial objectives and set out what you need to do to achieve those goals and live the life you want without running out of money or leaving too much behind. They will look at what needs to happen to get you to where you want to be financially and will make the appropriate recommendations to help you get there.



Most Financial Planners are also Financial Advisors however, unlike a Financial Advisor; a Financial Planner may have additional areas of expertise, such as retirement planning, estate planning, or lifestyle funding. The key difference between being, a Financial Planner should prepare a thorough written financial plan incorporating an overall strategy showing you what you need to achieve your financial goals. This service is a standalone, impartial financial analysis of your specific financial and personal circumstances and is a direct fee for this service is usually agreed in advance.


The review is a 6-step process that ensures a greater understanding of you, the client, what has shaped your outlook, what your current financial position is, how this is likely to progress in the future if left unchanged and the aspirations you have for yourself and your family.


A good Financial Planner helps you to understand the impact of your financial situation on your lifestyle advising you on:

  • What you need to do differently
  • How much you need to save
  • What level of investment risk is appropriate for you
  • Your retirement plan and what pension will work best for you
  • What type of insurance you may need & how much (this would include life insurance, income protection, mortgage protection, serious illness, cancer cover, health insurance, etc)
  • How much to keep in your emergency fund
  • Estate planning
  • How might improve your tax situation
  • What rate of return you will need to earn to achieve your goals over a given timeframe


Financial Planners help you to achieve your life objectives by working with you to achieve your financial ones. They look beyond financial advice by offering a more holistic approach to financial planning.  Taking into account your personal circumstances they work with you to establish how best to achieve financial independence. Click here to request a call. 

Scroll to Top