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Have you used the services of a Financial Adviser?


spuds
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Have you ever had the need to seek the help of a Financial Advisor, or considered doing so,whether through a bank or independent outlets?.

If so, what have been your experiences, good or bad, and would those experiences help others seeking advice?.

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LastChip

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Then that has expanded rapidly in the past 14 months. When I originally researched that title (2+ years ago), I think there were less than 100 or so.

Research a few moments ago reveals at the end of 2011, there were only 2792*, with only 362 firms qualifying, so a sudden jump to over 20,000 is quite remarkable. Though quite were you got that figure from I'm not sure.

*CFP's

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spuds

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No doubt about it, this subject can be a complete minefield for the unaware. Even contacting some of the organisations who offer advice or otherwise, can still leave you confused.

One thing that made me raise this subject, was something that was completely alien to me, before this morning. Apparently pension companies holding pensions that are not being used, but placed on hold as a future investment or inheritance, are subject to Standard Lifetime Allowance (SLTA) if not activated by a certain time or age, which could possibly incur a 25% deduction for tax payable to HMRC.

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Forum Editor

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LastChip

"Though quite were you got that figure from I'm not sure."

Apologies, I should have stated that figure (20,000) is the worldwide number, the UK figure was, as you say, 2792 a year ago. There are 100,000 members worldwide, but of course not all of them are Chartered.

Apologies again for the confusion. The point I wanted to make clear is that it is the Institute which says that Chartered Financial Planners are considered to be the elite of their profession. I don't say that in any derogatory sense - the Institute is a highly respected organisation, and its qualifications, specifically in the insurance field, are recognised worldwide.

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LastChip

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Ah! Thanks FE, that makes more sense.

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oresome

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With the changes taking place in how a Financial Advisor will make his/her money there seems to be a chasm developing between the expectations of the client and the advisor.

Clients expect to pay something like £50 to £75 per hour.

Advisors expect to charge something like £250 to £350 per hour.

These charges were hidden in commission made from the sale of products at one time and were thus more palatable to the client in many cases.

I have read that clients will now need funds of at least £100k for Financial Advisors to be at all interested.

Those advisors tied to banks and particular products are really simply salespeople.

Regardless of qualifications, no advisor has a crystal ball and can only work on probabilities. There's no guarantee in life.

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woodchip

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Financial Adviser!!!!! Yes that would be me, I never go out of the Black. After nearly 40 years working for ones self you get used to Managing money. As you do not have a pay packet at the end of the week.

PS if you start looking to see if you can afford something, you should not be looking because you cannot afford it

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Grey Goo

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I think some of the Tax Efficient Bond plans are only available via a financial advisor.

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Simsy

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We used one a couple of years ago... Fee based, not commission.

We were fortunate enough to have just paid our mortgage off and were looking for some guidance on how to best put by the "mortgage money", and also anticipating some big payouts from various sources, and retirement within a few years...

An inital, (nominally 1 hour but actually was nearer 2), was free. This was EXTREMELY helpful. Advisor provided very useful advice regarding then imminent changes to pension law, and came up with a very good idea.

Co-incidently, at the same time my employer was about to make big changes to it's pension scheme, and also bringing in another one. It, (the employer, provided, free of change, access to a personal independant financial advisor, whose expertise was pensions. These advisors were from one of the big financial companies. (I can'r remember who for certain now, but it might have been Waterhouse Coopers).

The difference in knowledge between the independant advisor, and the one provided by work was huge. The work provided advisor didn't even know about the impending change in pension law I earlier referred to. At the time, (March 2011), it was only a month away!

In my case I have no doubt that the fee I paid, (£220 per hour), was worth it. For many it will not be. Were it not for some good fortune, and some good planning by my wife, We would not be in a position to make that investment worthwile!

Regards,

Simsy

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JamesBr

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c

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JamesBr

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Agree with above - definitely seek out Independent Financial Advisers over tied ones. Chartered is the gold standard but they can be a tad pricier and now under new rules any IFA must be qualified to at least "Level 4" (equivalent to b/w A-Level and Degree).

Sounds like people have had mixed experiences. If inclined, there's now a new site where you can rate & review any IFA you've used - http://www.vouchedfor.co.uk

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