If you are looking for a new adviser, or are taking advice for the first time, it’s important to make sure that the adviser you choose is a good fit for your requirements. We know we won’t be the best fit for everyone looking for financial advice in the UK so using our industry knowledge, here are five things to consider as you review the advisory marketplace.
Independent or restricted?
An independent adviser will have access to what is known as the ‘whole of the market’, whilst a restricted or tied adviser will only be able to offer you solutions from a predetermined list of options. Whilst these options may contain a choice suitable for you, they also might not! Investigate your adviser’s status and assess any limitations.
Whole family, business and everything else
A good financial plan will take account of your family’s ongoing requirements. If you are a business owner, this is also likely to be a feature of a strong plan. Investigate how far your adviser is proposing to go. Are they limiting your plan to just you, or will your family and your business be involved too?
Good advisers normally grow by referrals, which means that they’ll have plenty of clients only too happy to spend five minutes on the phone to you talking about their experience to date! Don’t be afraid to ask for a quick chat before you commit.
Technology has revolutionised financial planning over the last ten years or so. Most genuine planners will now use financial modelling software and other tools to demonstrate to you how the plan they are proposing can come to life. Without these tools, it can be difficult to get full insight into proposals and expected outcomes.
Pay attention to charges
Advisers will normally charge for their services as a percentage of your assets, but there may also be other charges involved; from the funds you are invested into, for example. This is normal, but pay close attention to what these charges are and compare them to alternatives. Even a 1% charge difference can be significant over a long period of time and dealing with reasonable amounts of money.