The value of financial advice
There are many reasons why you might choose to seek financial advice.
An independent financial adviser can help:
- Understand your needs - before they make a recommendation they’ll build up a picture of your overall personal financial circumstances and agree with you the areas you should prioritise.
- Discuss potential solutions - help to consider what products best suit you and your family and help calculate any cover you may need.
- Draw up a short list - they'll look at the different insurance and pensions providers available and take into account their investment options and claims track record, among other things.
- Highlight the pros and cons – they'll make you aware of how the products differ because they're not all the same.
- Make a recommendation - this will be tailored to your needs, making sure you get the right balance between what you can afford and the quality of products you need.
But can you really put a value on financial advice?
In 2017, we teamed up with independent think-tank The International Longevity Centre to release 'The Value of Advice', a report that found those who received financial advice in the years 2001 - 2007 were on average £40,000 better off in 2012 - 2014 than their unadvised peers.
Steve Webb, Director of Policy, Royal London said:
The evidence shows that when people take advice they are overwhelmingly satisfied and benefit as a result.
Some questions worth asking
What do you charge and how much am I likely to pay?
Reason: An independent financial adviser must tell you how much they charge before you’re taken on as a client (it’s part of the rules that all advisers have to stick to). The adviser might not be able to tell you exactly what you’ll pay, but they should be able to give you an indication and perhaps even an upper limit.
Do you have many clients who are in a similar position to me?
Reason: It’s always worth finding out if an adviser has a lot of experience advising clients in a similar position to yours.
How risky are the investments you’re suggesting for me?
Reason: You want to understand how much risk you're taking with your retirement savings. You need to ask yourself whether you're comfortable to take this risk or not.
Not ready for advice?
If you feel you're not ready for financial advice, there's support available where you can get good-quality guidance. Whatever you decide, making time to plan for the future is time well spent.
Visit the following websites for free and impartial guidance and support.
- Money Advice Service: access guides, tools and information to help improve your finances as well as your life savings.
- Citizens Advice: provides useful information to help you manage your finances.
- Pension Wise: a free and impartial retirement planning service, introduced by the government to help you understand your options.