The work Daily Money Managers (DMM’s) handle for their clients is highly personal and confidential. Your judgment and instincts are important in choosing any professional. Asking for a referral from someone you know and trust is a good start. Reviewing DMM’s from this site, who live/work in your area is another option.
Asking relevant questions will also help you chose the most appropriate DMM to meet your needs.
Below are some questions to ask:
1. What percentage of your clients are like me (seniors, busy professionals, small business)
2. What services do you provide?
Review the scope of the work before you agree to start working with the DMM. Often this is accomplished at the initial meeting.
3. What are the ways in which you have assisted your clients?
4. How long have you worked as a daily money manager? What is your background and education.
5. What kinds of professional insurance do you have? Do you have Errors & Omissions insurance ?
If you want the DMM to act as a Power of Attorney or Executor you will also need to ask if they have Errors & Omissions insurance with additional Fiduciary coverage.
6. What professional organizations do you belong to?
7. Are there industry standards and a code of ethics to which you adhere?
Ask to see the industry standards and code of ethics. The American Association of Daily Money Managers is committed to promoting high standards of client services provided by members. Members follow the principles found in the association’s Standards of Practice and abide by its Code of Ethics?
8. Do you collaborate with other professionals?
9. What are the costs of your services and what is your billing policy?
What are your fees? Do you charge hourly or by the project? Do you charge for travel?
Some DMM’s offer a free initial consultation (by phone or in person) — ask in advance for their policy on first meeting charges.
Most DMM’s charge for their services on an hourly basis, with rates varying by geographic area served.
In addition to the hourly rates, most DMM’s charge for their travel time and for out-of-pocket expenses, such as postage.
Be sure that you understand the billing arrangements before the work begins. Some DMM’s request payment at the time of service and others bill on a monthly or bi-weekly basis.
10. Do you have a letter of engagement?
11. Does it include a confidentiality clause?
12. Are you affiliated with any other organizations?
If your DMM is active in community organizations such as a chamber of commerce, a church or religious organization, community action groups, or a local provider’s council, connections with these groups will help your DMM better serve you since they will be able to refer you to other professionals and resources in your community.
13. Can you provide references?
References could include clients or their family members, professional colleagues such as attorneys and CPA’s, Financial Advisors, etc.
Ask the references whether the DMM is respectful, dependable, efficient, empathetic, and professional in manner. Has the DMM been patient and willing to explain complicated issues? Has the reference felt confident and comfortable in the relationship and with the work provided by the DMM? Does the DMM work efficiently with documents and records, assuring the client uninterrupted access to them?