I was recently asked this question by a prospective new client and thought it would be useful to post my response here.
1. Do you really need Financial Advice?
If you know what you want and feel you can easily do it yourself, then maybe you are not seeking an ‘adviser’.
Financial advisers are not order takers. Based on our knowledge, we recommend financial products that we know are best suited to you after assessing your situation and after a thorough fact-find. If you already know exactly what you want and how to get it, perhaps you are not seeking advice but execution in which case it is questionable whether you need an ‘adviser’.
2. When do you need an IFA? When is it financial advice?
Here are a few examples that that I can think of when you may really need an IFA:
- If you’re looking to transfer a pension and you don’t know what to do next
- If you need a mortgage but have no idea how to navigate the various choices available or where to find the best rates
- If you are interested in investing but don’t know how to set up a good portfolio or define the risk you are comfortable to take
- If you need to speak to someone about the level of life insurance you should take, then find the cheapest plan
- If you are looking for a critical illness policy and you are concerned about having conditions that run in the family, such as diabetes and would like help to pre-screen the most suitable providers for you
- If you want to invest an amount of money but you are not clear about how to construct the best suited portfolio
3. Is it your area of competence?
Occasionally clients understand clearly what they need, however, this isn’t something they deal with day in, day out. Most people lead busy lives earning a living, they do tend not read the financial pages or care about the small details of capital gains tax. So, they may miss out on crucial, essential steps in financial planning. I often see clients fail to put a life insurance policy in trust or not placing their investments in ISA’s. A competent, good IFA will do more than create a great financial plan but also find the most effective way for you to achieve your goals.
Picture this, if you were in a plane that was doomed to crash, would you rather the pilot have 20 years of experience? Or would you prefer an inexperienced one with a manual he bought from the internet?
DIY can only take you so far, but when the panic sets in, it is very useful to have a calm professional who can talk you through making choices that are right for you in the long run.
4. Adding Longer Term Value Is Another Reason Why You Need An IFA
I strongly believe that trust with an Financial advisor Leeds takes a long time to build. I have found that the clients who trust me most have met with me several times over the years. As I get to know my clients better, I add more value in various ways often challenging their psychology and some of their limiting beliefs around money.
In summary, if you want to work with a professional in the field of financial planning, take your time to find an IFA that works well for you if that is what you really need. It can lead to a great long-term relationship that truly helps you over time.
Most clients don’t really take action unless they are inspired to do so; in my honest opinion, a good IFA helps the client make good decisions and take great action.