Here’s something I observed, after being in the personal finance space for a while: everyday Malaysians want more guidance in their money management from an unbiased professional (aka not agent). But most people don’t know where to find a financial planner, or even start the process.
I got you. Here are 4 places to find and hire a professional financial planner in Malaysia. #1 is the cheapest option (ie FREE), and #4 is the most affordable option.
#1 – Through free consultation at InvestSmart’s #FinPlan4U event [ENDED; wait for 2022 event]
The first method is to let the universe pair you up with your fated financial planner (jk jk but not really).
Every year, Securities Commission Malaysia holds the public education event InvestSmart, which includes a collaboration with the Financial Planning Association of Malaysia (FPAM) and Malaysia Financial Planning Council (MFPC). The public can book a one-to-one financial planning consultation under the #FinPlan4U initiative, which is completely FREE.
The only catch is the event only happens once a year, and if you missed it, you missed it, have to wait for next year, usually around Quarter 4. The poster looks something like this:
I attended a session back in 2018 and had a good experience with my assigned financial planner, and I’d recommend you take advantage of this initiative too – if you like your financial planner’s vibe, you can proceed to hire them, but if not you can continue your search, no worries.
#2 – From financial planner/content creator hybrids
Cost: Varies. RM2000-5000++ is a good starting point
Nowadays, there is more financial content in Malaysia than ever before, produced from konon-terer personal finance bloggers like myself to financial companies to financial planner/content creator hybrids (and more).
Financial planner/content creator hybrids are people who choose inbound marketing strategies to get clients, instead of outbound marketing.
(Simplistically, inbound marketing = clients chase you; outbound marketing = you chase clients.)
In Malaysia, some notable financial planner/content creator hybrids include:
- KC Lau (the OG)
- Pakdi (Malay language)
- Stev Yong of Wealth Vantage Advisory, who also runs top personal finance website MyPF.my
- Peter Yong of Mr Money TV
- Farah Adira
- Saidah Asilah Abdul Shukor
I’m sure there are more but these are the names I can think of atm. I admire them for creating free beneficial financial content and prioritising their audience. If some of those audience members turned to customers, that’s a win-win situation all around.
P/s – if you’re a (licensed) financial planner/content creator hybrid yourself, please comment and I’ll add you to the list.
#3 – Through SmartFinance.my platform
Cost: Varies. RM2000-5000++ is a good starting point
If you prefer to search for your own financial advisor, you totally can at SmartFinance.my, the platform to find and book financial planners. Financial Planning Association of Malaysia (FPAM) is behind SmartFinance.my, so its legit.
The cool thing is you can select financial planners based on location (if you want face-to-face consultation), language (English, Mandarin, Bahasa Malaysia, Cantonese, Hokkien, Tamil) and fees.
Even cooler is you can select your financial planner based on their specialisations, such as:
- Emergency Savings
- Estate Planning
- Comprehensive Plan
- Health Care Planning
- Financial Security
- Credit Protection
- Child Planning
- Retirement Planning
- Succession Planning
- Family Office
- Child Tertiary Education Planning
- General Accumulation
- Wealth & Investment Portfolio Management
- Islamic Financial Planning
- Cash Flow Management
- Wealth Protection
- Estate (Will, Trust and Power of Attorney) Planning and Implementation
#4 – From RinggitPlus’s Financial Planning Service
Cost: From RM699 (minus RM50 if you use my code)
RinggitPlus’s financial planning service is one of the cheapest in the market – just RM699-RM1199. I got the 360 plan for my husband and 100% recommend it.
If you missed #FinPlan2u (1st option) and looking for an affordable option, this is the one. Use code ‘Suraya50’ to get additional RM50 off.
What to ask your financial planner
Here is a non-exhaustive list of questions to ask your financial planner:
- Am I overpaying for house loan/car loan/insurance
- How to lower my monthly commitments
- Is there a better debt repayment strategy I can use
- Is my investments and asset allocation good enough
- Are there better insurance out there more suitable for me and is it enough to protect myself and loved ones
- What estate planning tools do I need and how do I go about it
- Can I afford to retire with my current contribution
And more. If you have exhausted online resources and still can’t find answers, then it’s time for you to hire a financial planner for professional advice.
My unsolicited advice – Even if you think you’re good at this money thing, you could also hire them to confirm that yes, you’re doing the right thing. There’s peace of mind in knowing you’re on the right track.
Where to find retirement planner in Malaysia
You can find a retirement planner in all of the options above. Just let your financial planner know about your retirement goals and they’ll chart your current progress and suggest an optimised and more efficient method to get there.
Where to find Islamic Financial Planner in Malaysia
You can find Islamic Financial Planner in all the options above. If they have IFP in their name, that means they are Islamic Financial Planner.
However, you should also know that financial planner and Islamic financial planner is like, 90% similar. Chances are your financial planner will be able to advice you on Islamic financial planning too, or know where to find the information you need.
Protip for Muslims – Do ask your financial planners about Hibah, Wasiat, Takaful and other Syariah-compliant financial products and services. The Hibah Takaful instrument, for example, can help you leave an inheritance to non-Muslim loved ones, and to female family members who may be financially abandoned by male relatives after your passing.
I said what I said.
Where do you get your financial advice from?
There’s nothing wrong with doing DIY research and getting financial advice from friends, family and companies. But you must know MOST advice out there is biased:
- Someone who made money from property will tell you property investment is a good idea
- The dude who made money from the stock market will tell you investing in stocks is awesome
- That person who made money from cryptocurrencies/digital assets will say it’s the best
- A wealth planner, also a unit trust agent (representing one company) will tell you unit trusts are the best investments
- A life advisor, also an insurance/takaful agent (representing one company) will only recommend products from their company
- Not to mention network marketers (MLM and Ponzi), scammers, high-risk-high-reward opportunists and self-proclaimed financial gurus who have totally bastardised the phrases ‘financial freedom’ and ‘financial independence’ until they now become red-flag phrases instead
Financial planners, on the other hand, are the best possible professional option. They are bound by Code of Ethics where they first and foremost serve you, the client, and not their financial interest (ie commissions). Not everyone can use the CFP title too – one needs to complete the Certified Financial Planning course to call themselves a financial planner in Malaysia.
Any of you have hired a financial planner in Malaysia before? Why did you select them? How was your experience like? Share with us in the comments section 🙂