In my long career in financial services, I have always provided face to face advice because I believe it provides the best interaction with my clients on a personal level. In other words, they get to know me as well as I know them. Trust is very important when you are making important financial decisions.
Every client is different. Some will prefer to meet me at their home whilst others enjoy visiting the office for a more formal approach which can incorporate a visual introduction to cash flow modelling. The use of cash flow modelling is I believe, very important as it allows me to demonstrate where the client is currently on their financial journey and what the future will look like, allowing for different scenarios. We use the cash flow model every year to review if they are on track along with any changes that may have occurred.
If you are looking for advice on a complex solution such as inheritance tax planning most people see the value in paying for an expert to ensure they get it right.
There are two types of financial adviser – independent or restricted.
Independent financial advisers (IFAs)
If an adviser is ‘independent’ or a firm advertises that it gives ‘independent advice’ this means that it’s able to advise on products from any provider right across the market. Therefore, you should get the very best advice and products tailored just for you. Richmond House provides this service and holds the “chartered” status which is the quality benchmark for any financial advice company.
In contrast, and as the name suggests, if an adviser or firm is restricted, it can only recommend certain products or product providers. The adviser should clearly be able to explain the nature of the restriction to you, but if you’re not sure, ask.
If you’re going to get professional advice, check it’s from an IFA. This is best if you’re starting out with financial advice, as it’s often difficult to identify in what way restricted advisers are restricted. Some will be restricted by products they advise on (not always bad), and some by provider (sometimes bad, as other providers may have better options).
Some of the main areas that financial advisers help with are listed below.
Protection insurance: Life insurance, critical illness, and income protection can all be complex products, with many exclusions.
Financial or tax planning: The more money and assets you have, the more complex financial planning gets. There’s a range of sometimes impenetrable products that can be useful but are also tough to understand. Here a good IFA can really prove their worth.
Pensions and pension transfers: Starting a private pension these days is often a simple case of picking the right provider or joining the one your employer provides.
But if you already have a pension scheme when did you last review it to ensure you are on track to achieve your desired retirement goals?
Pension transfers can be very complex, especially for those who want to transfer a sizeable existing pension. In this case, I would always recommend you seek advice from an IFA to ensure you get the best advice.
Usually the initial meeting or conversation with a financial adviser will be to establish what your needs are and this is usually free. Richmond House Wealth Management has specialist knowledge on a range of subjects and are always available to answer your questions.
John Merrifield Dip PFS, Cert CII(MP)
For a free initial meeting please contact us on 0333 241 3350
This information is provided strictly for general consideration only. No action must be taken or refrained from based on its contents alone. Accordingly, no responsibility can be assumed for any loss occasioned in connection with the content hereof and any such action or inaction. Professional advice is necessary for every case. It does not constitute legal or tax advice and must not be treated as such. All statements concerning taxation are based on our understanding of the current law and practice, as at the date of publication. Levels and bases of, and reliefs from, taxation are subject to change. Investments may fall as well as rise and you might not get back the full value of your investment.