What is a one-time financial advisor, and how do they work?

1 min read by Unbiased team Last updated June 14, 2024

A one-time financial advisor provides cost-effective, tailored advice for specific financial needs and their impact can be maximized through preparation and openness about goals.


  • A one-time financial checkup is helpful when experiencing a significant change in finances or income. 

  • The support and advice offered focus on your current financial situation rather than long-term planning and support. 

  • CFPs and CFAs are typically better options for one-time financial checkups. 

  • For expert financial advice, find a financial advisor through Unbiased. 

What is a one-time financial checkup? 

A one-time checkup is a comprehensive view of your financial situation conducted by a financial advisor. Unlike ongoing advisory services, a financial advisor one time consultation focuses on immediate needs rather than continuous support. 

During the session, the financial advisor examines various aspects such as budgeting, savings, investments, debt management, and retirement planning. This review identifies areas for improvement and provides actionable steps to enhance financial health. The typical scope of a one-time financial advisor review includes the following: 

  • Assessing current financial status 

  • Identifying goals 

  • Offering personalized advice on how to achieve financial goals 

Who should consider a one-time checkup? 

A one-time financial advisor checkup is ideal for those who need specific guidance on budgeting, debt management, or investment planning, especially during pivotal moments in life.  

Individuals and families who would benefit most from a one-time financial checkup include those experiencing significant life changes.  

People getting married, changing careers, or receiving an inheritance might need a focused, professional review of their finances.  

Other examples include: 

  • Young professionals starting their financial journey 

  • Families planning for their children's education 

  • Retirees seeking to manage their savings 

A one-time consultation with a financial advisor helps these individuals by providing them with financial advice without the ongoing commitment. Clients can access expert advice and make informed decisions that align with their financial goals by paying a one-time fee. 

What are the benefits of a one-time financial checkup? 

A one-time financial checkup enhances your financial stability and confidence, helping you make informed decisions.  

Here are some of its benefits for clients: 

  • Objective assessment: A once-off checkup provides an unbiased review of your financial situation. 

  • Personalized advice: A financial advisor delivers tailored recommendations based on your unique needs. 

  • Immediate clarification: A one-time checkup helps to resolve financial doubts and answer questions promptly. 

The impact of a financial advisor one time consultation is also significant: 

  • It can improve savings by identifying better budgeting strategies and highlighting optimal investment opportunities to grow wealth. 

  • For insurance, it ensures adequate coverage and identifies potential gaps. 

  • In retirement planning, a one-time financial checkup offers insights into achieving long-term goals and securing your future. 

What to expect during a one-time checkup 

Clients can anticipate a thorough review of their financial situation during a one-time financial checkup.  

Advisors often address questions like "How can I save more effectively?" or "Are my investments aligned with my goals?"  

The topics they often cover include the following: 

  • Budgeting 

  • Debt management  

  • Investment strategies 

  • Insurance coverage 

  • Retirement planning 

To prepare for a one-time financial checkup, clients should ensure they have the necessary financial documents on hand. It's also helpful to list specific questions and clearly define financial goals.  

This preparation ensures the session is productive and tailored to the client's needs, providing actionable insights and personalized advice for improved financial health. 

How do I choose the right financial advisor for a one-time checkup? 

Knowing how to find a one-time financial advisor who aligns with your goals is crucial for practical and personalized advice.  

It ensures that their recommendations will support your long-term economic health and success.  

Here are some considerations when choosing a one-time financial advisor: 

  • Check credentials: Look for certified advisors, such as CFP (Certified Financial Planner) or CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst). 

  • Assess expertise: Ensure they have experience in areas relevant to your needs, such as investment strategies or retirement planning. 

  • Review fee structures: Understand the one-time advisor cost structure and ensure it fits your budget. 

  • Align values and goals: Choose an advisor whose approach matches your financial values and objectives. 

How to prepare for a one-time checkup 

Preparing for a one-time checkup requires gathering pertinent and comprehensive information and preparing the questions you want to ask.  

For starters, gather essential financial documents such as: 

  • Bank statements 

  • Investment portfolios 

  • Tax returns 

  • Debt details 

Additionally, list specific questions and clearly define your financial goals.  

Be ready to discuss challenges openly and honestly with your advisor. This transparency ensures the advisor can provide tailored and practical advice. 

What are the potential downsides of a one-time financial checkup? 

The potential downsides of a one-time consultation with a financial advisor include limited depth or scope of advice compared to ongoing advisory relationships.  

Additionally, more than one consultation may be required for advisors to understand long-term goals or provide comprehensive strategies fully. 

Getting financial advice on an ongoing basis and building a relationship with a financial advisor will be more beneficial in the long run.  

Find an expert financial advisor  

A one-time financial advisor offers a cost-effective, tailored approach to financial planning, perfect for those facing significant life changes or specific financial questions. By preparing thoroughly and being open about your goals, you can maximize the value and effect of a one-time checkup.  

Get matched with a financial advisor at Unbiased for expert financial advice to ensure you manage your money successfully. 


Unbiased team

Our team of writers, who have decades of experience writing about personal finance, including investing and retirement, are here to help you find out what you must know about life’s biggest financial decisions.