You know you want smart financial advice. But would you be comfortable turning over some major decisions to a computer, or would you be better off paying for a little—or a lot—more hand-holding? Take the following quiz to sort out where you stand.

When It Comes to Your Personal Finances, What Are Your Major Priorities?

A. Figuring out how to set up a diversified portfolio.

B. A diversified retirement portfolio, plus some basic estate planning.

C. I have so much going on, I don’t even know where to begin.

How Do You Do Your taxes?

A. I use tax software.

B. I throw everything in a bag and take it to the local H&R Block.

C. That’s what I pay my accountant for.

If the Dow Drops 500 Points, You Do What?

A. I take a deep breath and stay the course.

B. I freak a little, but then I talk to someone I trust or research a bit to calm down.

C. First I call my adviser, then I call my therapist, then I call my adviser again.

What Financial Chores Do You Handle Online?

A. Pretty much everything— banking, budgeting, investing, and taxes.

B. I do some online banking and investing but prefer to do other things offline.

C. I occasionally check my balances, but I don’t make any online transactions.

When Was the Last Time You Looked at Your Portfolio?

A. When I clicked on the bookmarked page by accident.

B. I check in a couple of times each year.

C. I’m looking at it right now and thinking about making some trades.

Which Statement Best Captures the Way You Use Technology?

A. I do everything on my mobile device.

B. I still use an iPhone 4S.

C. I remain partial to pen and ink.

How Frequently Do You Think You Should Check Up on Your Portfolio?

A. As seldom as possible.

B. A few times each year, so I can take action if something looks really out of whack.

C. I want my portfolio continually monitored.

What Major Life Changes Do You Expect in the Next Five Years?

A. I might get a new job.

B. My partner and I are hoping to have a child.

C. I’m planning to retire, downsize my home, and use the proceeds of my investment income to fund extensive travel.

Which Quote Best Matches Your Personal Philosophy?

A. “To be simple is to be great.”—Ralph Waldo Emerson

B. “Never be afraid to ask for help.”—Demi Lovato

C. “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”—Helen Keller


What Your Answers Mean

If You Answered Mostly As
Best adviser: robo.
 You’re comfortable with technology and prefer to take a hands-off approach. Over the long haul, using a robo-adviser instead of a human could save you hundreds of thousands in fees.

If You Answered Mostly Bs
Best adviser: hybrid.
 You’re fairly self-sufficient, but your financial life is a little too complicated for a solo approach. A hybrid model will give you the option to reach out to a human adviser for extra advice or reassurance.

If You Answered Mostly Cs
Best adviser: human.
 You have some big financial decisions and/or challenges on your plate, and you’re not eager to sort through the muck on your own. Before you hire any adviser, make sure you understand how he or she will be compensated. Your adviser should also adhere to the fiduciary standard that requires that your best interests are put first.

Editor's Note: This article also appeared in the September 2016 issue of Consumer Reports magazine.