When to get financial advice

You won’t always need a financial adviser to help make financial decisions, but when things get complex, tailored advice from an expert can help you get it right and could even save you money in the long term.

When will I need financial advice?

A financial adviser can help your choose financial products to suit you and make a financial plan to meet your goals. Financial advisers can offer advice on a range of product including, pensions, investments, life insurance, other protection insurance, annuities and pension drawdown as well as helping you with your financial and tax planning needs.

Here a few examples of when financial advice could be useful to you:

You want to invest: an adviser can help you select complex investment products and come up with an investment strategy that suits you.

You want to build a financial safety net for your dependents: an adviser can offer advice on finding the right protection products and the right level of protection based on your circumstances.

You want to plan ahead for the future: whether your goals are medium or long-term, a financial adviser can help you make a plan to meet them.

You’re planning for retirement or are about to retire: making sure that you’re on course to meet your retirement goals and choosing how you want to convert your pension are crucial decisions that will affect a significant proportion of your life. A financial adviser can help you make the right choices for your needs.

The government has promised that everyone will receive free, impartial guidance before accessing their pension pot, which is currently provided by the Pensions Advisory Service and Pension Wise. This service won't be able to recommend specific products, so you may wish to supplement this guidance by paying for additional advice.

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Do I need to pay for financial advice?

Most financial adviser will provide a no-obligation free initial consultation, but check this before you take advice to avoid unexpected charges.

After that you will probably need to pay for advice that you receive in one of the following ways:

  • By the hour: a pay-as-you-go model, where you’ll typically pay between £50 and £300 per hour
  • By flat-fee: you pay for a particular service e.g. a pension review
  • As a percentage of your assets: the charge is calculated as a percentage of the money that you want advice on or management of

Advisers can still accept commission payments for mortgages or life, critical illness, and income protection insurance policies they sell to you. Commision is paid by the provider to the adviser on a regular basis while you hold the product. These charges are built into the cost of the product, so the advice may seem like it’s free, but it’s not.

Types of financial advice

There are two main types of financial advice:

  • Independent financial advisers: can offer advice on financial products and services from across the market, to help you find the best product for your needs.
  • Restricted financial advisers: can only offer advice on a restricted range of services, products or providers.

Speak to a financial adviser today

Last updated: 08 June 2015