SmartAsset Review
Caption: SmartAsset Review

SmartAsset Review

SmartAsset offers financial advice with free tools and information organized on its website. The company also developed complex algorithms to help consumers find the best financial advisor for their needs. Complete a set of questions online to get a fine-tuned pairing with up to three financial professionals.

A recent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau study shows a correlation between effective money management and using a financial advisor. SmartAsset assists people with finding the best advisory firm for their financial situation and life stages. Automated Financial Modeling is built into the free financial planning tools on the website. AFM reveals how different decisions made now impact finances in the future.

Pros
  • Free financial tools and information
  • 17 calculators to help with taxes, buying a home, retirement, investing, banking and credit cards
  • Answer questions once to get the best financial advisor matches
  • Over 65 million people per month benefit from using SmartAsset’s services

Cons
  • No tools for estate planning, although there’s plenty of reading material
  • You need a free consultation to learn each financial advisor’s fees

How SmartAsset Helps You Choose a Financial Advisor

SmartAsset asks 20 questions about your finances. Your answers remain private. SmartAsset then uses proprietary algorithms to provide white-glove service to connect you to the right financial professionals in your area.

  1. Visit the SmartAsset website, click on Find a Financial Advisor, enter your ZIP code and click on Get Started
  2. Answer 20 questions, then enter your name and contact information
  3. SmartAsset’s algorithm uses your answers to find up to three financial planners or investment advisors, depending on your needs
  4. You have the opportunity to read each financial advisor’s bio before you talk to them
  5. Book a consultation appointment online, or use SmartAsset’s free concierge service to get in touch with a financial advisor

Tip: Pay attention to the explanation provided with each question on SmartAsset’s assessment to learn why your answer is important.

SmartAsset Financial Advisor Screening Process

SmartAsset vets each financial advisor in its network. These professionals meet strict criteria and licensing requirements and must have demonstrated reliable and responsive client service. Choose a registered investment advisor, and you will work with a financial advisor who works under fiduciary duty standards.

Financial advisors may specialize in family finances, retirement planning, wealth management and other areas. Your answers reveal your priorities and needs through the algorithm, which selects advisors with the appropriate experience.

Tip: Here are some good questions to ask during the consultation. SmartAsset’s concierge service can assist you with the initial consultation as well.

SmartAsset’s Personal Finance Tools

The SmartAsset website is divided by topics with personalized financial tools. Under each section, you will find detailed guides, reviews of related resources and calculators that let you perform what-if scenarios. For example, adjust income and retirement age on the Social Security calculator to see how changing these variables affects your benefits.

SmartAsset Free Financial Decision Tools
Section Calculators and Other Resources
Home Buying Home Affordability Calculator
Rent vs. Buy Calculator
Mortgage rates, lender reviews, home buying guides
Taxes Income Tax Calculator
Retirement Taxes Calculator (based on state)
Tax guide, how to fill out a W-4, tax software reviews
Retirement Retirement Savings Calculator
401(k) Calculator
Estate planning guide, financial advisor advice, robo-advisor reviews
Banking Savings Calculator
Comparisons for various types of bank accounts, bank reviews
Credit Cards Credit Card Pay-off Calculator
Best credit card quiz, rewards card guide, credit card reviews
Investing Asset Allocation Calculator
Capital Gains Tax Calculator
Compare online brokerage accounts and 529 plans by state

Other sections on the SmartAsset site are not as feature-rich but offer a calculator and rate or quote comparisons. These sections cover life insurance, mortgage refinance, personal loans and student loans.

SmartAsset Costs

SmartAsset charges nothing for you to use the financial tools on the website. Getting matched to financial advisors is free as well. The company makes money from fees charged to network advisors and for other services.

How to Access SmartAsset’s Services

Visit the SmartAsset website, and you will see the Home Buying, Taxes, Retirement and other sections on the top navigation bar. Hover your mouse over a topic to see the available information and calculators and click on your selection.

Click the Get Started button found throughout the site to access the questionnaire used to find a financial advisor.

SmartAsset Complaints

There are few SmartAsset reviews online, but almost all were positive. ConsumerAffairs recommends SmartAsset for its free comprehensive advice, and GoodFinancialSense endorses the company. ScamReport gives SmartAsset an A+ rating, while that site’s readers rate SmartAsset 5 out of 5 stars.

SmartAsset has no listing with the Better Business Bureau. WalletHub reader ratings averaged out to only 2.1 out of 5, but WalletHub doesn’t guarantee the accuracy of the reviews. Business publications Forbes, Crunchbase and Financial Advisor Magazine all speak highly of SmartAsset.

SmartAsset Q&A

  • Does SmartAsset offer financial planning services directly to the consumer?

    SmartAsset doesn’t employ financial advisors to work with consumers. The company’s website provides a broad range of personal finance tools and information. You can use SmartAsset’s financial advisor tool to locate up to three professionals in your area.

  • How does SmartAsset Financial Advisory Service keep my information private?

    You never provide account numbers, your Social Security number or credit card number to SmartAsset. You pay SmartAsset nothing to help you make wise financial decisions. If you use the site to find a financial advisor, SmartAsset collects your name, phone number and email for communications purposes. The site also provides a link at the bottom of the page so you can opt out of advertisements.

  • What if I don’t like the financial advisors SmartAsset recommends?

    You can answer the questions again using a nearby ZIP code to expand your search. You can also work remotely with a financial advisor who isn’t located near you. Many professionals offer service with video chats, email and phone calls.

  • What information do I have to give SmartAsset to find a financial advisor?

    SmartAsset only requires enough information to narrow the selections of professionals who will work best for your situation. You provide your:

    • Full name
    • Phone number
    • Email address
    • ZIP code
    • Marital status and children
    • Investment risk tolerance
    • Retirement timeline
    • Income
    • Savings
    • Investment and retirement assets
  • What is the SmartReads section on the SmartAsset website?

    SmartReads is SmartAsset’s blog, which covers everything to do with personal finance. The blog features current events, how-to articles and studies related to consumer money management.

Conclusion

SmartAsset provides consumers with a bounty of free information and tools for managing money and making sound financial decisions. These resources and the financial advisor match-up service are appropriate for all adults. SmartAsset’s algorithm selects the best financial advisors whether you need short-term assistance or long-term planning.

There are no minimum income or assets under management requirements. SmartAsset financial advisory services help you find the right professional to help you reach your goals.

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