The financial product market can seem like a complicated maze. Whether you want to buy a house, invest for the future, plan for your retirement or protect your family with life insurance, you may be feeling a little daunted and confused about where on earth to start. A financial adviser, however, can help you plan your route and lead you to the most suitable product.
An independent financial adviser (IFA) researches the whole financial market on your behalf, offering you unbiased, independent and impartial advice on all the different types of financial products available. They will then recommend the most appropriate product for you according to your financial situation.
An IFA will ask you detailed questions on your finances to help determine your financial goals. You'll have to provide honest and in-depth answers to questions on your financial commitments, your investments, your credit history, your debts, your state of health and your risk tolerance. They will then be able to decide what help they'll be able to offer you.
Every financial adviser who gives advice should be regulated by, and answerable to, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). This means that if anything goes wrong, you will be able to make a formal complaint.
It also means that IFAs have to provide you with reasons as to why they have recommended a certain product or taken a particular course of action.
All IFAs are required to explain how much their advice will cost and agree with you as to how it will be paid. All costs must be clearly presented to avoid any confusion or misinterpretation.
Payment can be a set fee payable upfront.
If you have answered yes to both of the questions, you should seek help from an IFA. But before making an appointment, you need to think about what you need:
This will help you to get a feel for the top products available in the current market and how they work.
Before your meeting with an IFA, make sure you compile detailed information on:
An initial disclosure document will be compiled by all IFAs, which will include key facts on:
The 'Key Facts' document is very important, so make sure you are given one up-front.
If you feel pressured, do not sign anything! You should not be forced into signing something you are not comfortable with.
Disclaimer: This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfacts will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfacts recommends you obtain independent financial advice.
Moneyfacts.co.uk will, like most other websites, place cookies onto your computer’s
hard drive. This includes tracking cookies.