When you are searching for financial advice, a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional can provide valuable insight to an individual or family. The CFP® designation carries great significance for those who have achieved the qualifications to use the designation. The CFP® designation is not based on selling, it is based on knowledge and experience. To understand what it takes to call ones self a CFP® professional, it essentially boils down to the 4 E's.
1. Education. There are two components to the education requirement. One part being that an individual has a bachelors degree from an accredited college or university. The second part being the the individual has enrolled in and completed a program that has a comprehensive financial curriculum that was approved by the CFP® board.
2. Exam. Upon completion of the CFP® course, an individual must sit for and pass a comprehensive exam that was administered by the CFP® board.
3. Experience. a CFP® practitioner must have 3 years of financial planning related experience, or 2 years of apprenticing.
4. Ethics. A person must satisfy a back ground check and hold themselves to an ethical set of standards. A CFP® professional will put the clients best interests first. This fiduciary standard helps to reduce conflicts of interest, and transparency in the relationship between practitioner and client.
Once the 4 E's completed, an individual may hold themselves out as a CFP® professional once they are granted permission to use the designation by the CFP® board. Only about 20% of Financial Advisors have achieved the CFP® designation.